The Word of the Month


October 2010

Photo {{link=}}Franck Vibert{{/link}}


Strike (noun):
1. a hit or attack
2. an organized interruption or stoppage of work

To strike (verb):
1. to hit or attack physically
2. to participate in a work stoppage, also to go on strike (idiom)


A strike is a perfect throw in bowling, unless you're over the line, Smokey. Mark it an eight, dude.

To strike out: to fail or not succeed.

To strike a deal: to agree to a deal, to reach an agreement.
Ex: Most strikes strike out unless a deal is struck.

Fun Facts:

- Strikes have been recorded (on papyrus) as early as the 12th century, when Egyptian artisans refused to work on Pharoahs' tombs.

- Strikes are extremely popular in France, where workers often strike for the right to strike.

- The recent Hollywood Writers' Strike resulted in a small pay raise for writers, and many, many crappy episodes of LOST and Prison Break.


To strike is an irregular verb:
We strike in the streets of Paris.
The police struck a person on strike.
We have struck a deal with the people on strike: The police will no longer be striking them.

Although the verb 'to strike' is irregular in English, it is a regular action in France.

Many sophisticated methods exist for counting the number of protesters during a strike. For example, a recent French strike counted somewhere between 3 people and 1.5 million people.

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In partnership with Le Monde