Thursday, August 14, 2014

partake/participate: Common Errors in English Usage Entry for Thursday, August 14, 2014

“Partake” looks like it might mean “take part,” and that’s how many people mistakenly use it where they should say “participate.” The main modern meaning of “partake” is “consume,” especially in relation to food. One can partake of the refreshments at a party, but one can also partake of Twinkies at home alone, without any thought of sharing.

So don’t ask people to “partake” in a planning process when you mean to ask them to participate.

Partake of Paul Brians' latest blog post—it is not substance-free!

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