Friday, May 9, 2008

"Complement" and "Compliment"

Level of Distractibility: Who cares? = *. Some people will be distracted from your meaning: = **. Many people will be distracted from your meaning: = ***.

Question: I know what a compliment is. But what the heck is a "complement"?

Answer: A compliment, of course, is praise or flattery. "He gave me a compliment on my skill as a jump shooter."

"Complement" means to complete. "The team's hitting complemented the pitcher's excellent performance." Think of "COMPLEment means to COMPLEte."

Rating of Distractibility: (**). Not many people know that "complement" is a word, so its misuse will probably not distract that many readers. RayS.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Huh? 'Complement' is a fairly
common word, and it means something
that is complementary to something
else. It is also commonly used as
a verb: "her blouse complements her hair color".