Wednesday, 19 August 2009

use of the word 'sided'

As I reached for a small square of cotton to wipe my face this morning, I was struck by the words on the box: '100 sided sealed cotton squares'.

Sided? I'd never heard the word used in this sense, but when I looked at the cotton in my hand, I saw that it had been sealed down two sides, presumably to stop the cotton falling apart as I used it.

I had a look at the Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary®, which gives the the definition:
side vb sid*ed; sid*ing vt (1591) to furnish with sides or siding <~ a house> ~
The dictionary on my computer says:
[ trans. ] provide with a side or sides; form the side of : the hills that side a long valley.
I think it's a great use of this word, precise and succinct.

By the way, they're not squares, as I use the word, because they're 5cm by 4cm.


Papillon Bleu said...

I have decided to follow your blog because I am French and have studied Englaish very deeply at University during 3 long years. Now that I live in England all I am thinking most of the time is ( what tha hell are they talking about?'. I know I make mistakes myself but I think I love English as I love French but it seems that in both countries, people have no idea of the proper use of vocabulary and grammar...
I don't want to seem pretentious. I just want to learn the proper meaning of words and use them accuretly.
Your blog is good fun for me!
Thank you!

parlance said...

Papillon Bleu, I'm glad you've decided to follow my blog. I must apologise for the fact that I only post occasionally.

I'm going to follow your blog also, via Google Reader, because I love miniatures and dollshouses and I saw your lovely miniature cookies.

Hackpacker said...

It's an interesting suffic isn't it? I was wondering about the rise "-gate" after Watergate originally but now we have Utegate. It seems like any minor scandal quickly becomes a -gate.

parlance said...

Hackpacker, the odd thing was that it wasn't being used as a suffix, it was just a word. And when I looked it up, the word has been around for a long time.