Word Confusion: Naval versus Navel

Posted December 23, 2013 by Kathy Davie in Author Resources, Editing, Self-Editing, Word Confusions, Writing

Christmas simply inspires me, and oranges will always be a major part of Christmas for me. Studded with cloves to make potpourri, the peel simmering with a few cloves and a couple sticks of cinnamon in a pan of water, separating those plump sections as the juice squirts high…right in my eye, dang it. But I’ll have my revenge, ha-ha, I’ll slip that slice right into my mouth and enjoy the tangy flavors. Better than candy any day.

Of course, this sensory imagery falls away when I read about someone eating a naval orange. I didn’t know the navy even had an orange named for them. Of course, the next immediate thought is metal. It’s all those ships and the metal they’re made up of. It just doesn’t sound quite as juicy.

There’s always the possibility that the navel you’re considering is the one on that cute girl at the beach or you’re contemplating your own navel. Scary thought: if you were contemplating your naval forces, would you be petting a white cat?

Word Confusions…

…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.

If you found this post on “Naval versus Navel” interesting, consider tweeting it to your friends. Subscribe to KD Did It, if you’d like to track this post for future updates.

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On the one hand… …and on the Other
He’s a naval architect.

A particular type of engineering which works with the design, construction, maintenance, and operation of marine vessels and structures.

He’s a navel architect.

He could be a plastic surgeon who gives you a pretty belly button, or he could be a botanist designing a better orange.

Word Confusions…

…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.

If you found this post on “Naval versus Navel” interesting, consider tweeting it to your friends. Subscribe to KD Did It, if you’d like to track this post for future updates.

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Naval Navel
Credit to: Apple Dictionary.com; Merriam-Webster: Naval; Merriam-Webster: Navel

Image courtesy of NoobFest

Image courtesy of Wikipedia

Ya gotta admit this is much softer…

Part of Grammar:
Adjective Noun
Plural: navels
Of, in, or relating to a navy or navies

[Obsolete] Of or relating to ships or shipping

A rounded, knotty depression in the center of a person’s belly caused by the detachment of the umbilical cord after birth

The umbilicus

The central point of a place

[Heraldry] Point in an escutcheon between the middle of the base and the fess point

Examples:
Richard Gere became a naval officer in An Officer and a Gentleman.

Naval operations require a lot of planning.

He will be attending the naval academy.

Great Britain was a great naval power.

Andrea plans to become a naval engineer.

She got a piercing in her navel.

Hip-huggers begin below the waist and reveal the navel.

The Incas saw Cuzco as the navel of the world.

I do love eating a navel orange.

Derivatives:
Adjective: nonnaval, prenaval, pronaval
Adverb: navally
History of the Word:
First Known Use: 15th century

Late Middle English from the Latin navalis, which is from navis meaning ship.

First Known Use: before 12th century

Old English nafela is of Germanic origin and related to the Dutch navel and the German Nabel from an Indo-European root shared by the Latin umbo meaning boss of a shield, umbilicus meaning navel, and the Greek omphalos meaning boss, navel.

C’mon, get it out of your system, bitch, whine, moan…which words are your pet peeves?

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