I read an example of the word "lump" in Merriam Webster dictionaries which was:

When we lumped all of our pocket change together, we found that we had just enough a buy a carton of ice cream.

Shouldn't there be "to" after enough in the sentence instead of "a"? I am asking this because I think I am too amateur in linguistics to find a mistake in a dictionary.

  • Note that while some of the example sentences can contain errors (I'm not even sure if quotations should never contain errors) , it's far less likely that any of the actual definitions themselves will contain errors, which are really the only authoritative part of dictionaries. Commented Apr 28, 2019 at 6:33

1 Answer 1


Yes, you're right; sometimes dictionaries make mistakes as well. I can't find the sentence in the online entry though. Merriam Webster does include a disclaimer:

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'lump.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors.

There's probably some curation process to exclude example sentences with typos or grammar mistakes, but all humans make mistakes.

Incidentally, yesterday I made a spelling mistake since I trusted a dictionary to better know the spelling of euphemism than I do myself.

  • For the record, you trusted www.acronymfinder.com, a database of abbreviations; thefreedictionary.com compiles various dictionaries, thesauri, and other related stuff (like Wikipedia). It's true that dictionaries sometimes contain mistakes, but that (the one you linked to) is not the best example.
    – user3395
    Commented Apr 27, 2019 at 13:37
  • I usually prefer Merriam-Webster or the Oxford Dictionaries, I'm aware of the shortcomings of some of the other sites.
    – Glorfindel
    Commented Apr 27, 2019 at 14:46

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