One Word Two Ways: Plethora

Every week, we pick a word and each make that word the subject of our post.  The word this week is:

Plethora: An excess of. 

This clip from “The Three Amigos” is exactly how I feel about the word plethora at this moment.

Plethora of Piñatas from Dirk Roth on Vimeo.

And then here is that same scene reenacted dramatically. It’s ridiculous and makes you feel weird.

Plethora from Jason R. Johnston on Vimeo.

Also, here is a lovely picture of a plethora of lights 🙂 Happy Saturday!

I enjoy the passion behind this writing on the misuse of the words ‘myriad’ and ‘plethora’. I was not aware of their distinction but won’t forget it now.

(photo here)

Myriad has company in its misuse, for we also commonly abuse the force and poetry of the word ‘plethora.’ Both words suggest huge numbers, but they are opposites in that myriad has positive connotations and plethora has negative ones.

Plethora implies superfluity and waste. It is the grasshopper blight. It’s too much of something, resulting in crisis. So it should be used to describe only items you wish to be recognized as exceedingly negative.

There may be a plethora of insects, social diseases, threats to wellbeing; but you’d be unwise to refer to a plethora of new styles or a plethora of benefits for your clientele.

Unlike myriad, ‘plethora’ is followed by ‘of:’ a plethora of damaging storms, a plethora of enemy attacks. Listen to the contrasting sounds of the words ‘plethora of’ and ‘myriad.’ The former sounds like a pest, the latter like a miracle.

The poetics of language are myriad; let us not defeat their beauty with a plethora of careless writers.”

(via Business Darlings)

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