I’m not sure how many of you out there know about this trick but if you don’t… Yes, you can use Google as your dictionary and thesaurus.

First off, using it as a dictionary. Enter the search term: “meaning [word]” and Google returns a dictionary definition of the word. In this example, I typed in the search phrase: “meaning writer”. Apart from giving the definitions, it also pronounces the word (just click on the speaker icon).

You can expand the result by clicking on the gray arrow. This lists additional information about the word.

You can also use Google as a thesaurus. Type in the search phrase, “synonym [word]” and you guessed it–Google returns a list of synonyms for your word. In this example, I typed the phrase: “synonym writing”.

As with asking Google to return the meaning of a word, you can expand the result to view the origin, use of the word over time and a translation.

If you type in the search phrase “antonym [word]”, Google returns your word with a list of opposite meanings. In this example, I typed the phrase: “antonym fast”.

If you haven’t used this Google feature before, give it a try, because it’s going to save you time and angst if you need a quick reference while you’re writing.

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