One of the delights of the English language is that its extensive vocabulary facilitates nuance.

The recent overuse of the word “unprecedented” is to be deplored.

Today I illustrate with a little help from Peter Mark Roget.

Hasn't the last six months been amazing?

Whilst you could not say that the bushfires which devastated Australia were without warning, the extent of the damage was unforeseen.

It was surprising that the Prime Minister chose to holiday in Hawaii at that time. Just as it was unusual not to appoint his deputy while he was away. How unaccountable was that?

Then came the shocking news...

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