do's and don'ts
Rules or customs concerning some activity, as in It's important to know the do's and don'ts of diplomatic receptions. This expression alludes to what one should and should not do or say. [c. 1900]
What Does “Literally” Have To Do With “Definitely” And “Totally”?With all the hullabaloo about the figurative sense of literally, language enthusiasts have given much thought to this often maligned term. We've even discussed how the metaphorical extension of literally is nothing new—it's been around since the 1700s—but now we'd like to explore a few other adverbs and their ironic uses. I believe that recent uses of definitely and totally suggest that the linguistic development of literally is not an isolated incident, but a trend.
What Do A.M. And P.M. Stand For?Most English speakers know that a.m. refers to the hours from midnight and noon, and p.m. to the hours from noon and midnight. But what do these ubiquitous abbreviations stand for? The term we associate with the morning, a.m., is an abbreviation the Latin phrase ante merīdiem meaning “before midday”; p.m. is an abbreviation of post merīdiem, meaning—you guessed it—“after midday.” These two terms help …
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.