lightening vs lightning : Common Errors in English

lightening or lightning

Those bright flashes in the storm clouds indeed used to be referred to as “lightening,” later as “light’ning,” but now they are simply “lightning.”“Lightening” has a quite different meaning in modern English: making lighter, as in lightening your load or lightening the color of your hair.

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  • n  descent of the uterus into the pelvic cavity that occurs late in pregnancy; the fetus is said to have dropped
  • n  changing to a lighter color
  • v  make more cheerful
  • v  reduce the weight on; make lighter
  • v  become more cheerful
  • v  make lighter or brighter
  • v  become lighter
  • v  alleviate or remove (pressure or stress) or make less oppressive

  • n  abrupt electric discharge from cloud to cloud or from cloud to earth accompanied by the emission of light
  • n  the flash of light that accompanies an electric discharge in the atmosphere (or something resembling such a flash); can scintillate for a second or more
News & Articles

  • How Two Sound Geeks Created Facebook's Friendly 'Ping' Tone
    That lightening bolt moment resulted in a F Major 7 chord, whose notes (not coincidentally) spell out F-A-C-E.                
    June 13, 2013 - Wired News
  • Volcanic Eruptions Linked to Cold Weather Events
    When a volcano erupts, it's not just the local area and weather that will be affected. In fact, weather and climate around the world can be influenced, as large eruptions throw volcanic ash particles into the stratosphere. Locally, these particles attract water droplets and therefore cause rain events. In addition, higher occurrences of thunder and lightening are observed in the area. But the ...
    June 10, 2013 - Environmental News Network
  • Timberland owners in Lake County get $1.9 million in federal funds to restore burned acres from $1.9 federal funds
    Landowners who lost trees in the Lake County Barry Point Fire last August can apply for federal funds after more than $1.9 million in restoration money was announced Monday. Lightening started the Barry Point Fire, which burned 4,000 acres of private forests from Aug. 6-27.
    June 10, 2013 - The Oregonian

  • Lightning Blamed For Small Fires In Dinosaur National Monument
    Lightning is being blamed for starting a handful of fires near the Dinosaur National Monument.
    June 15, 2013 - CBS Denver
  • Lightning Strike Causes Tank Fire
    Authorities say a lightning strike at a saltwater disposal facility in western North Dakota caused an explosion and a fire.  Fortunately, no one was hurt.
    June 15, 2013 - KVLY - KXJB Fargo
  • Lightning sparks fires in Dinosaur Nat. Monument
    Lightning strikes from Thursday's storm caused wildfires across western Colorado. While crews have contained the Beaver Creek Fire near Rifle, firefighters are still working on two fires in Dinosaur National Monument.
    June 14, 2013 - KJCT 8 Grand Junction