Part of speech:
(Countable nouns, like “bottle,” “piece,” and “decision,” are words for things that can be broken into exact units. You talk about “a bottle,” “three pieces,” and “many decisions.”
Likewise, talk about one qualm or multiple qualms.)
A qualm is a sudden, nervous, worried feeling. In particular, a qualm is often a little feeling that what you're doing (or what you're about to do) is wrong.
The plural, "qualms," is very common.
You can use "qualmish," "qualmishly," and "qualmishness," but those all sound clunky to me.
How to use it:
Talk about having qualms about doing something, as in "She was going to snatch some Post-it notes from work, but then had qualms about it" and "I have no qualms about correcting ungrammatical signage." You can also leave out the word with "-ing" and just have qualms about a thing or activity, as in "qualms about the legalization of pot" or "his qualms about their earlier argument." You can have qualms regarding something, qualms with something, or qualms in something.
Also, you can talk about a minor qualm or a major qualm, a new qualm or a nagging qualm, an ethical qualm or a professional qualm, and so on.
I don't download music illegally anymore, but as a teenager, I had no qualms about it.
As for extremely wealthy folks who donate nothing to those less fortunate: do they just suppress their qualms, or do they truly have none?
Look away from the screen to explain the definition in your own words. You’ll know you understand what "qualm” means when you can explain it without saying “stab of conscience” or “worried feeling."
Think of a situation in which you're willing to bend the rules a bit, and fill in the blanks: "I'd probably _____, but I'd have qualms about _____."
Example: "I'd probably drive five or ten miles per hour above the speed limit, but I'd have qualms about going any faster than the flow of traffic."
Spend at least 20 seconds occupying your mind with the game and quote below. Then try the review questions. Don’t go straight to the review now—let your working memory empty out first.
Playing With Words:
Messages that go through an automated translator into several languages and back into English again often end up sounding funny and garbled-- but still somehow meaningful. We’re having fun with that phenomenon this month as we play our game: Guess the moral from Aesop’s Fables after it has been translated into a few foreign languages and back again by a computer program. Some of the morals may be very familiar to you, others not so much. You don’t need to quote Aesop verbatim but rather just understand the message being conveyed. Try it out each day and see the right answer the following day.
Yesterday’s answer: The translation-babble said, “The return is a liar, even if he speaks the truth, no one.” Aesop said, “This is how liars are rewarded: even if they tell the truth, no one believes them.”
Try this one today: “On the other hand other people's actions, what happens to him.”
A Point Well Made:
Eddie Izzard: “Comedy is a great weapon of attack. It’s not a great weapon of support.”
1. The opposite of QUALM is
A. MORALITY or ETHICS
B. BEFUDDLEMENT or WORRY
C. CERTAINTY or COMFORT
2. My qualm with the story I've just written is that _____
A. the characters evolve in believable ways by the end of the tale.
B. I've borrowed too many details from the experiences of my friends.
C. it is well-timed to enter the market for publication.
Answers are below.
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Disclaimer: Word meanings presented here are expressed in plain language and are limited to common, useful applications only. Readers interested in authoritative and multiple definitions of words are encouraged to check a dictionary. Likewise, word meanings, usage, and pronunciations are limited to American English; these elements may vary across world Englishes.
Answers to review questions:
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