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[word-lover] 【整理】2011-03-15 How to Use a Word

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The word of the day for March 15th is continual, spelled c-o-n-t-i-n-u-a-l
Continual is an adjective that means continuing in definitely in time without interruption. It can also mean recurring instead usually rapid succession.
Here is the word used in a sentence.

The continual blaring of the car outside made a very difficult for us to focus on our work.

Since the mid 19th century, many grammarians have a strong distinction between the words continual and continues.
They insist that continual should only mean accruing at regular intervous as in the teacher was annoyed by their continual interruptions, whereas continues should be used to mean continuing without interruption, as in the batteries provided power for up to five hours of continues use.

This distinction of look the fact that the word continual is the older one, and was used with both meaning for centuries before continues appeared on scene.

The prescribe sense of continues became established only in the 19th century, and it never succeed in completely driving out the equivalent sense of continual.

Today, continual is the more likely of the two to mean recurring, but it also continues to be used as it has been used since the 14th century with the meaning continuing without interruption.
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