Thursday, 3 July 2008

Words that are their own antonym

Richard Lederer, in 'Crazy English', calls these "contronyms".  

They can be divided into homographs (same spelling) and homophones (same pronunciation). 

dust = to remove fine particles, to add fine particles
fast = rapid, unmoving

aural, oral = heard, spoken
erupt, irrupt = burst out, burst in

from alt.usage.english

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