Usage

Usage is the manner in which written and spoken language is used. H. W. Fowler's Dictionary of Modern English Usage "defines usage as 'points of grammar, syntax, style, and the choice of words'". The Oxford Dictionary of English defines usage as "the way in which a word or phrase is normally and correctly used." But the word's meaning can be ambiguous. It can mean "the way people actually use language" or it can mean "the way one group of people feel other people ought to use it."

The Chicago Manual of Style notes that "the great mass of linguistic issues that writers and editors wrestle with don't really concern grammar at all—they concern usage: the collective habits of a language's native speakers." It goes on to note that "the standards of good usage change, however slowly."

Dictionaries are not always accurate guides to "good usage." "Despite occasional usage notes, lexicographers generally disclaim any intent to guide writers and editors on the thorny points of English usage."

Read more about Usage:  History

Other articles related to "usage":

Hyphen - Usage in English
... For Wikipedia's own standards for hyphen usage, see WikipediaManual of Style#Hyphens Hyphens are mostly used to break single words into parts, or to join ordinarily separate ... not exist rather, different manuals of style prescribe different usage guidelines ...
Usage - History
... According to Jeremy Butterfield, "The first person we know of who made usage refer to language was Daniel Defoe, at the end of the seventeenth century" ...
Nancy Mitford - Biography - U and Non-U
... to popularise the "U", or upper-class, and "non-U" classification of linguistic usage and behaviour (see U and non-U English) — although this is something she saw as a tease and ... the media have frequently portrayed her as the snobbish inventor and main preserver of this usage ... the actual inventor of the phrase, as an example of upper-class linguistic usage ...
Gong - Other Uses
... In older Javanese usage and in modern Balinese usage, gong is used to identify an ensemble of instruments ... In contemporary central Javanese usage, the term gamelan is preferred and the term gong is reserved for the gong ageng, the largest instrument of the type, or for surrogate instruments such ... In Balinese usage, gong refers to Gamelan Gong Kebyar ...
Gay - Generalized Pejorative Use
... While retaining its other meanings, it has also acquired "a widespread current usage" amongst young people, as a general term of disparagement ... This pejorative usage has its origins in the late 1970s ... in the 1980s and especially in the late 1990s, the usage as a generic insult became common among young people ...

Famous quotes containing the word usage:

    I am using it [the word ‘perceive’] here in such a way that to say of an object that it is perceived does not entail saying that it exists in any sense at all. And this is a perfectly correct and familiar usage of the word.
    —A.J. (Alfred Jules)

    Pythagoras, Locke, Socrates—but pages
    Might be filled up, as vainly as before,
    With the sad usage of all sorts of sages,
    Who in his life-time, each was deemed a bore!
    The loftiest minds outrun their tardy ages.
    George Gordon Noel Byron (1788–1824)

    Girls who put out are tramps. Girls who don’t are ladies. This is, however, a rather archaic usage of the word. Should one of you boys happen upon a girl who doesn’t put out, do not jump to the conclusion that you have found a lady. What you have probably found is a lesbian.
    Fran Lebowitz (b. 1951)