“Swath” is probably also going to be more familiar to audiences. Their first appearance was around 888, the OED says, an Old English word for a “track” or “trace,” now considered obsolete. Although this spelling may be etymologically justified, it should properly be a spending scythe rather than an axe. The verb swathe means “to wrap up, swaddle or bandage.”. Swath vs. swathe. Because, the OED says, “Swath” and swathe” are “phonetically ambiguous,” though they sound very different. Swath is only a noun. But the OED says the phrase is “Now frequently to cut a wide swath.” Americans always like to supersize things. What does swathe mean? “Swath” and swathe” are so close, in fact, that they share an entry in the Oxford English Dictionary. The noun and verb meaning ‘a bandage or wrapping’ and ‘to wrap in bandages’ is spelt… Even though a scythe is not that wide, “swath” seems to have grown in scale. Our direct support platform is free and simple to use so that together, we can make a difference every day. 1 : to bind, wrap, or swaddle with or as if with a bandage. The first: 1. This is aimed at Jamey, but I would be interested to hear others' opinions. It’s also likely to “cut a wide swath” in the slang sense, appearing pompous, and could mow down a “swath” of your readers. ( Log Out / Searching The Guardian online reveals that this is true of that paper too. This spelling is etymologically justified, since the word descends from Old English swæþ, with a short vowel. OED lists swath by itself, thus: 1 swath1, swathe . That spike in the use of “swatch” starting around 1980 may be tied to the introduction of “Swatch” watches in the late 1970s. Definition of cut a swathe through in the Idioms Dictionary. ing, swathes. Looking back to the original edition of Modern English Usage (1926), we find that Fowler was uncharacteristically liberal, allowing either swath or swathe, and tolerating both the “sworth” and “swaithe” pronunciations, as well as a third one with a short “o”: “swoth”. Like Liked by 1 person The spelling swath stood out to me – I would spell this word swathe. If all you want from this article is to know how to pronounce swath and swathe, please skip the middle and read the part that begins, “My advice to speakers.”. This disambiguation page lists articles associated with the title Swath. As a noun, swathe means “a band of linen, woolen, or other material in which something is enveloped.” As a verb, swathe means, “to envelop in a swathe or swathes; to wrap up, swaddle, bandage.” Learn more. A photo accompanying the article shows a typical tornado scene, a long strip of damage that looks as if a scythe had cut through it. Fowler’s Modern English Usage (1996) gives only the swath spelling; even more curiously, he claims that it is pronounced “sworth” (as if it rhymes with southern British “fourth”). Het verschil is dat een SWATH de oppervlakte van de waterlijn zo klein mogelijk is. Today, it’s usually used in the third, figurative sense. I was looking at the WeirdNet definitions for swath (here) and swathe (there). If like me you enjoy exploring changes in pronunciation, read the middle as well. Good thing, too, since the citations are spelled “swæð” and “swæðe,” which would be hard to master today. Today’s Guardian newspaper has an article alerting its readers to the threat of smog, which begins: ‘People across large swaths of England and Wales have been put on high alert over severe levels of air pollution smothering the south coast and several major cities’. A swath is a wide strip of something or a wide are of land.Swath may refer to the width of a row of vegetation that may be cut with one swipe of a scythe or a mower. Searching The Guardian online reveals that this is true of that paper too. swath, swathe The word meaning ‘a ridge of grass left after mowing’ and ‘a strip’ is spelt swath (pronounced swawth; preferred) or swathe (pronounced swaydh). The OED says the etymology of “swatch” is unknown, so it may or may not related to “swath.”. ( Log Out / [swäth, swôth] n. [ME swathe < OE swathu, a track, akin to Ger schwade, space covered by a scythe swing: for IE base see SWATHE1] 1. the space or width covered with one cut of a scythe or other mowing device 2. Another word for swath: area, section, stretch, patch, tract | Collins English Thesaurus Using “swathe” as a noun is likely to have readers thinking for a second that it’s the verb “swathe,” meaning to wrap in “swaths” of bandages. As is often the way when consulting dictionaries and usage guides, things are not much clearer than when I began. Either that, or the gentleman in question merely pronounces the word differently. The United States, as is often the case, has come up with its own slang for a “swath.” “To cut a swath” is “to make a pompous display, swagger, ‘cut a dash,’” the OED says, tracing that usage to 1848. 3 : a … But did you know that “swath” has a fraternal twin, “swathe,” which rhymes with “bathe”? Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. To wrap or bind in bandages. It refers to (1) the width of a scythe stroke, (2) a path made by mowing, or (3) something likened to a path made by mowing. to bandage. It seems that the high winds cut a swath through our neighborhood last night, blowing down trees and power lines on nearly every street. 1 a : a row of cut grain or grass left by a scythe or mowing machine. NOTE: The noun swath denotes the narrow path of cut grass made by a scythe or mower. Despite its Style Guide’s restriction of swathe to the word for strips of material in which something is wrapped, or swathed (like a baby in swaddling clothes), this spelling is frequently used in place of swath, as in this headline from 2010: ‘Public spending axe to cut swathe through private sector’. lit. 2. Obs. Change ), For anyone interested in words and spellings, Spelling Trouble prepares to bring in the harvest. That scythe indirectly gave us “swath.” A “swath” is “a row of cut grain or grass left by a scythe or mowing machine,” Merriam-Webster says, and by extension, a long strip of something that looks like a scythe had been there. As a verb swatch is to create a swatch. To wrap, as in layers of cloth: swathed herself in towels. I always figured there must be a tiny difference in meaning between the two that I didn’t understand; good to know that they’re interchangeable! Definition of swathe in the Idioms Dictionary. cut a swathe through phrase. Verb (swath) To bind with a swathe, band, bandage, or rollers. The noun and verb meaning ‘a bandage or wrapping’ and ‘to wrap in bandages’ is spelt… Additional information. swathe 1 (swoᵺ, swāᵺ), USA pronunciation v., swathed, swath•ing, n. v.t. Astute readers might remember that we talked about “swath” and “swathe” in a column on how adding the letter “e” can turn a noun into a verb, and that we noted how both “swath” and “swathe” mean strips of things. * Archbishop Abbot ; Their children are never swathed or bound about with anything when they are first born. Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English의 정의 swathe swathe 1 / sweɪð $ swɑːð, swɒːð, sweɪð / (also swath / swɒθ $ swɑːθ /) noun [countable] 1 a long thin area of something, especially land swathe of The bomb had left a swathe of the town centre in ruins. Most modern dictionaries prefer swathe: Oxford Dictionaries online has swatheand labels swath ‘chiefly N. American’. to wrap, bind, or swaddle with bands of some material; wrap up closely or fully. to wrap, bind, or swaddle with bands of some material; wrap up closely or fully. Swathe is usually a verb, meaning, primarily, to wrap or bind with or as if with bandage. ing. Old English swæth, swathu ‘track, trace’, of West Germanic origin; related to Dutch zwad (e) and German Schwade. To enfold or envelop. In some local English counties, a “swatch” is “A passage or channel of water lying between sandbanks or between a sandbank and the shore,” the OED says. * 1898 , , (Moonfleet) Chapter 4 The head was swathed in linen bands that had been white, but were now stained and discoloured with damp, but of this I shall not speak more, and beneath the chin-cloth the beard had once escaped. But since the sixteenth century this word has been pronounced with a long vowel, and spelled accordingly; early spellings include swaithe, sweath and swathe. noun Word forms: plural swaths (swɔːðz) or swathes 1. the width of one sweep of a scythe or of the blade of a mowing machine 2. The verb swathe means “to wrap up, swaddle or bandage.” If all you want from this article is to know how to pronounce swath and swathe, please skip the middle and read the part that begins, “My advice to speakers.” If like me you enjoy exploring changes in pronunciation, read the middle as well. swathe definition: 1. a long strip or large area especially of land: 2. a large part of something that includes…. b : the sweep of a scythe or a machine in mowing or the path cut in one course. Why? swathe: 1 v wrap in swaddling clothes Synonyms: swaddle Type of: bind make fast; tie or secure, with or as if with a rope n an enveloping bandage Synonyms: wrapping Type of: bandage , patch a piece of soft material that covers and protects an injured part of the body ), But most people don’t think of a “swatch” as a row; it’s a patch, as in a “swatch” of fabric, which is Merriam-Webster’s first definition. It seems that the high winds cut a swath through our neighborhood last night, blowing down trees and power lines on nearly every street. Definition of swath. This is endorsed by the American Merriam-Webster dictionary, which spells this word swath. What does swathe expression mean? 2 : envelop a mountain swathed by clouds. In 1937, Sterling A. I think aesthetically I prefer swathe. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. In Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania, a tornado “carved a swath through the Arena Hub Plaza” in June, a local newspaper wrote. In some local English counties, a “swatch” is “A passage or channel of water lying between sandbanks or between a sandbank and the shore,” the OED says.
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