Merriam-Webster agrees with me on this.

People tend to use the word “literally” in their sentences to give that extra “Oomph!” to a phrase. Then again, the phrases in which this word is used are usually so outlandish that it’s unnecessary in the first place. Need a few examples? Good, because I’ve been slaving all day over this batch of farm-fresh organically-kept sentences.

  • I’m so hungry I could literally eat a horse.
  • If I have a migraine much longer my head will literally explode.
  • This is literally a literal matter.
  • I literally can’t think of any more good examples. (Eh-heh.)

And now I should hope that you’ve looked at that word enough so that it doesn’t look like much of anything. While I find that to be a strange phenomenon, that’s not what we’re here for today. Now, “literal” is most commonly associated with “factual” or “exactness”. As such, there’s been much contest over the misuse of this word. I find that it’s not misuse that is the plague here, but overuse. It’s as if the person using the word is trying to conjure a special mental image, but failing miserably due to the following context of the sentence.

I’m unsure if I’m handling the entire argument against this word in an eloquent manner, here, so I’d appreciate your thoughts on this fallacy of usage in the comments.

And if it bogs down into nothing meaningful, I will literally come over to your location and rip off your fingers.

Have a Nice Day!

Let Misusing “Literally” Die


3 responses to ““Literally”

  1. I literally have this problem.

  2. I literally peed my pants while reading this. I wish I wasn’t using the term properly, but sadly I am. Gotta go.

  3. Pingback: What Does ChatRoulette Want To See Die? « Things That Need To Die

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