Wordly Wisdom

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An accomplished liar
 
Everyday language contains some archaic words that are only used in one context, like wreak havoc and militate against. Since we don’t wreak or militate every day, it’s easy to get these wrong and say mitigate against and reap havoc. So why don't we just avoid these cliches and say cause havoc and work against? (People seem to have got tired of "militate", thank heavens.)

accomplished liar (skilled)

allay fears (soothe)

amicable divorce (friendly)

arrant nonsense (utter)

assailed by doubt (attacked)

bounden duty (duty)

dabble in black magic
 
dwindling stocks
 
dulcet tones (sweet)
 
figment of the imagination (product)
 
fleet footed/fleet of foot (fast)
 
indissolubly linked (indivisibly)

inspissated gloom (saturated)

irredeemably naff

labour under the delusion

lull into a sense of false security (hypnotise)

militate against (work)

pent up emotions/fears (bottled)

permeated with melancholy (saturated)

ply a trade (carry on)

redoubtable old lady (terrifying old bat)

salve your conscience (soothe)

serried ranks Merriam-Webster: "crowded or pressed together”

stanch the bleeding (stop)

stem the flow/tide (stop)
 
straitened circumstances (reduced)

strident feminist (as people don't say any more. Perhaps because the feminists seem to have disappeared.)

tenuous connection (fragile, slight)

unmitigated disaster (total, complete, utter)

wanton destruction (irresponsible)

wax lyrical (become poetic) The only other thing that waxes is the moon; then itwanes.

woe betide (ill befall)

wreak havoc (cause)

wrest control (seize, grab, twist)