WOTW: button

| - Gorka Dieitz-Sanxurxo |

triplo word of the week - button


今週の #WOTW は 'button’ です。’Button’ is most usually a noun, but it can also be a verb and it’s to be found in a couple of phrases too. So let’s start with the noun, shall we?


- I learnt how to sew a button because every time one fell off I had to buy a new shirt and I couldn’t afford it. (A small disc or knob sewn on to a garment, either to fasten it by being pushed through a slit made for the purpose or for decoration.)

- It takes quite a long time to cover the cake with chocolate buttons, but it looks amazing when it’s done. (A small round object resembling a button.)

- Somebody removed the button before the match and that’s how he got injured. (In fencing, a knob fitted to the point of a foil to make it harmless.)

- It’s worth a button, really, but I love my bike. (Used in reference to things of little worth.)

- People got so mad when Apple removed the home button from their phones. (A small device on a piece of electrical or electronic equipment which is pressed to operate it.)

- I was surprised to see people wearing AOC buttons in Park Avenue. (In North America, a badge bearing a design or slogan and pinned to clothing.)


Time for the verb and a phrasal verb, which is build with ‘up’.


- I didn’t button my shirt because it was so hot. (Fasten clothing with buttons.)

- Yes, it’s a lovely dress, but I need someone to button me into it every time I want to wear it. (Fasten the buttons of a garment being worn by someone.)

- It’s quite unusual to see a man wearing a shirt that buttons at the back. (Be fastened with buttons.)

- [button up] We would all really appreciate it if you could kept your remarks buttoned up, thank you. (Repress or inhibit something.)

- [button up] A: That’s pretty much done, don’t you think?
B: Yeah, it’s buttoned up. (Complete or conclude something satisfactorily.)


And it’s with the phrases and expressions that we will leave you, as usual. This time they’re all informal.


- [button it] I don’t want to hear you, so button it. (It means “stop talking”.)

- [button one's lip] I have to button my lip around my boss. It’s difficult though, because he’s often so wrong. (Stop or refrain from talking. It’s similar to “bite one’s tongue”.)

- [push someone's buttons] That’s really going to push his buttons if you do that. I wouldn’t do it. (Arouse or provoke a reaction in someone.)

- [press the button] I told my mother-in-law her roast was good but that I’ve had better ones. That was what pressed the button. (Easily initiate an action or train of negative events.)

- [on the button] They always deliver on the button. (Punctually.)

- [on the button] I like to read her column. She’s always on the button. (Exactly right.)