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Grammar Police Monday - Positively Green

Don't let word usage dominate you. Get the upper hand!

Envious vs Jealous 
Someone who's envious feels discontent due to coveting another person's wealth, success, etc.

Someone who's jealous resents the other person for having these things.

Ambivalent vs Indifferent
If you're ambivalent, you have mixed feelings and, possibly, an inability to choose.

If you're indifferent, you're impartial, disinterested, or you simply don't care. 

Dominate vs Dominant vs Domineer 
Dominate (v.) - to rule over, govern, control; to overshadow or predominate. 

Dominant is the adjective form of dominate, but can also be used as a noun.

In humans, the genetic trait for brown eyes is dominant
Um. You've got it wrong. He's the submissive and she's the dominant

(Sorry. Couldn't resist. :P) 

The verb domineer also means to rule over or control, but to do so with arrogance or outright tyranny.

Bear vs. Bare
Last, let's examine one I messed up last week. In my IWSG post, I wrote soul-bearing instead of soul-baring. Unfortunately, I didn't catch the error until half the world had seen it. o_0

The verb bear means to hold, support or bring forth, while bare means without covering; unadorned; bald. 

Go ahead. Have a laugh at my expense. :)


Thanks for stopping by.



  1. Hahahaa! (You said to!) I generally misuse jealous/envious when talking - but not when writing. Why is that? I know the difference, but it seems easier to say jealous... I guess... *shrugs*

  2. I promise not to laugh, I know I would jinx myself and end up making a mistake in my next post LOL. I also misuse jealous and envious, to be honest I didn't realize there was much of a difference. These posts are really interesting to me!

  3. I can't laugh unless I'm willing to laugh at the gazillion mistakes I make. Which I am, but still I promise not to laugh! I love your Grammar Mondays-- thanks Melissa.

  4. @Pegg, Julie & Julie - I mix jealous and envious up, too. Pride (and laughing) goeth before a fall. :P

  5. I've made the bear/bare mistake too. Trust me, yours was not that bad at all! :D

  6. Like I'd laugh at you. You've seen my unedited manuscripts! LOL

    1. Oh, I know you point and snicker every chance you get. LOL :P

  7. Those were some good ones. I wasn't aware of the nuances between envious and jealous and ambivalent and indifferent. Noted for future reference :)

  8. Like: Melissa couldn't bear to look as E.J. bared his white, hairy legs.

    Got it! Maybe... :-D

    1. Ack! I'm blind! I'm blind!
      LOL xD You crack me up.

  9. I wouldn't have picked up on the bearing/baring! I didn't know that! And the whole envy/jealous thing is so close!

    And I'm totally laughing at EJ's comment above me! LOL.

  10. Whoa! Love the envious/jealous info. I NEVER knew or just blatantly never learned the difference. You have definitely schooled me today. I'm making a mental note of it.

  11. Still love reading these. I feel like there are words I know, but if someone asked me to define them, that can be hard! Plus, I like school and I like learning so these are fun to me! :)

  12. Great tips, it's easy to forget the rules. I love listening to Grammar Girl to remind me :)

  13. I didn't know the difference between envious and jealous. I've misused them a million times at least. Thank you!

  14., think I'll have a beer.

    Good post!

  15. Love your grammarly posts, Melissa!


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