Revised as of 22 August 2017
This wasn’t an error I came across, but a question I had for myself. Naturally, I had to explore it.
While continuous and continual are fairly similar — they both roughly mean without interruption, its the finer distinctions that separate them.
Continual is frequent events but with intervals in between.
Continuous can refer to space and time and is used more frequently.
…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|
|Part of Grammar:|
|Forming an unbroken whole
[Grammar] Another term that describes the progressive verb
|His plane went down after continual attacks.
Some patients need continual safeguarding.
Service was disrupted with continual breakdowns.
The country has been in a continual state of war since it began fighting for its independence.
The continual interruptions by the student were annoying the teacher.
|The whole performance is enacted in one continuous movement.
There are continuous advances in design and production.
The present continuous is an indicative verb that emphasizes the continuing or progressive nature of an incomplete act, event, or condition.
A continuous function with a continuous inverse function is called a homeomorphism.
The development forms a continuous line all around the bay.
|Adjective: quasi-continual, uncontinual
Adverb: continually, quasi-continually, uncontinually
Noun: continuality, continualness
Adverb: continuously, noncontinuously
Noun: continuousness, noncontinuousness
|History of the Word:|
|Middle English from the Old French continuel, from continuer meaning continue, which is from the Latin continuare, which is itself from continuus.||Mid 17th century from the Latin continuus meaning uninterrupted, which is from continere meaning hang together (from con- (together with) + tenere (hold) + -ous.|
C’mon, get it out of your system, bitch, whine, moan…which words are your pet peeves?
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The Hart Bridge, Jacksonville, Florida, is Excel23‘s own work under the CC0 license, via Wikimedia Commons, and Vintage Mickey Mouse Manual-Wind Alarm Clock By Bradley Time by France1978 is under the CC BY-SA license, via VisualHunt.