It’s destruction versus overwhelming acts.
I always feel so sorry for the heroine who is being “ravaged” in a book. I can never figure out if she’s picked up on a really gritty facial scrub and applied it too vigorously or she’s being beaten to death or viciously raped.
On the other hand, ravish is an odd word. It ranges from fill with joy, delight, charm, captivate, and attract to rape. Do note, however, that ravage never encompasses any delight. Well, except that of the soldier, rioter, or force of nature intent on destruction.
…started as my way of dealing with a professional frustration with properly spelled words that were out of context in manuscripts I was editing as well as books I was reviewing. It evolved into a sharing of information with y’all. I’m hoping you’ll share with us words that have been a bête noir for you from either end. Consider sharing this Word Confusion with friends by tweeting it.
|Credit to: Apple Dictionary.com; Merriam-Webster: ravage; Encarta® World English Dictionary © 1999 Microsoft Corporation|
|Part of Grammar:|
Noun plural: ravages
Act or habit of destroying or plundering something
Severely damaging or disfiguring effects of something, especially time
Plunder or sack a place or area
To wreak havoc on
|[Archaic] Carry something or someone off by violent force
Force someone to engage in sexual intercourse[Literary] Overwhelm someone with deep and pleasurable feelings or emotions
His face had withstood the ravages of time.
The ravages of smog badly affects public buildings made of stone.
He bemoaned the ravages committed by man.
The tsunami ravaged the Indonesian coastline.
Napoleon’s armies ravaged the countryside.
|She had the most ravishing features.
He ravished her with his eyes.
The conquering soldiers ravished most of the females in the city.
Ravished by a sunny afternoon, she had agreed without even thinking.
|Noun: ravagement, ravager||Noun: ravisher, ravishment|
|History of the Word:|
|First known use: circa 1611
Early 17th century from the French ravager, from the earlier ravage and an alteration of ravine meaning rush of water.
|First known use: 14th century
Middle English from the Old French raviss-, a lengthened stem of ravir, from an alteration of the Latin rapere meaning seize or rob.
C’mon, get it out of your system, bitch, whine, moan…comment on which words are your pet peeves?