wile away vs while away : Common Errors in English

About wile away vs while away

”Waiting for my physical at the doctor’s office, I whiled away the time reading the dessert recipes in an old copy of Gourmet magazine.” The expression “while away the time” is the only surviving context for a very old use of “while” as a verb meaning “to spend time.” Many people substitute “wile,” but to wile people is to lure or trick them into doing something—quite different from simply idling away the time. Even though dictionaries accept “wile away” as an alternative, it makes more sense to stick with the original expression.

while away Meaning(s)

  • (v) spend or pass, as with boredom or in a pleasant manner; of time

wile away in News

  • Man Photographed Wrestling Shark Ashore

    Nantucket in July, the perfect place to wile away the long summer days taking in some sun, flying a kite, building a sand castle or wrestling a shark. Good Morning America reports Elliot Sudal, 24, was captured in an incredible image wrestling a seven-foot shark onto shore on Sunday. He said it is his favorite hobby. “First of all, I’m obsessed with fishing,” Sudal told ABC News. “I’ve caught ...
    on July 17, 2013 Source: The Oklahoman

while away in News

  • In harm’s way and then home again

    FLORENCE, S.C. — Most parents would agree keeping up with children while away at school can be a challenge. Imagine what it would be like keeping up with six sons, all serving in the military at the s
    on June 21, 2013 Source: Lake City News & Post

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