Try to repair, work aimlessly or unskillfully with, as in He tinkered with the engine all day but it still wouldn't start. This idiom, first recorded in 1658, alludes to working as a tinker, that is, mending metal utensils.
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Is It “With Regard” Or “With Regards”?Recently a couple of readers wrote to Dictionary.com with an issue they had with one of our slideshows from a few years ago. They objected to the following sentence: “Speakers tend to use [obviously] … to emphasize their point with regards to things that aren’t necessarily obvious …” Our users told us that the phrases with regards to and in regards to are incorrect, and …
Quoting Accurately With SicSic indicates that the word or phrase it follows has been written or spelled in the same way it originally was, even though it appears to be a mistake. Writers often use sic (which comes into English from the Latin word for so or thus) when they’re quoting material from another source. The use of sic lets the writer off the hook for any spelling …
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The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.