Be on the ball

“A synonym is a word you use when you can’t spell the other one”

–  Baltasar Gracián

The caption is an idiom which means to be quick to understand and react to things. The words which we are about to discuss mean the same as the given idiom, and are more or less synonymous. These words are acumen, insight, and acuity. Although all these words refer to a strongly developed mental ability to see or understand what is not obvious, yet there exist some nuances which set all these words apart from one another in meaning.

They pool their financial resources and their business acumen.
The prince inherited some of his father’s acumen but none of his money.
Words which frequently collocate with acumen are following:
Political/ business/ financial/commercial + acumen.

The word insight means the ability to understand how people or situations are really like. It implies, the power of mind to understand the most basic form or principle that is engendering people or things to behave or operate the way they are e.g.
The research provides some illuminating insights into how we process new language in the mind.
We help troubled teenagers gain some basic insight into their own problems.
A flash of insight, is a phrase related to the word insight.

The word acuity is solely associated with senses. It means the ability to see, hear, and think clearly e.g.
He has a perfect visual acuity.
His legal acuity enabled him to win such a convoluted case.

“Don’t use a five-dollar word when a fifty-cent word will do”

Mark Twain

2 thoughts on “Be on the ball

  1. I really appreciate the efforts made by such a young and inexperience boy. This article is much informative and helpful for those who are are interested in increasing their vocabulary. The debutant has marked the board at his first instance. I wish him all the best for his rest of the journey.

    Liked by 1 person

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