Hi, Folks! Marcia again. Hope you guys are in the mood for another Why Write Wrong post, because I’ve got one that’s short and sweet, and I can’t wait to share. Some of you will be familiar with the difference between today’s two words, but for those who aren’t, I hope this will be of help. (And will make you smile along the way.)
HELP IS ALWAYS GOOD.
HELP WITH SMILES IS EVEN BETTER!
Let’s get to it, shall we? Maybe some of you have heard or read something like this now and then: “It was such a sad thing. Downright heart-rendering.”
Look or sound familiar? Here’s the deal. Unless you are using a very strange recipe for lard, hearts are not rendered. Honest. The correct phrase is actually “heart-rending.”
Let’s take a closer look, just so you know I’m not making this stuff up. 😀
REND (Past tense: RENT)
- Tear (something) into two or more pieces.
- Cause great emotional pain to a person … or to their heart.
If someone has suffered painful tragedy, their heart has been rent (torn apart), figuratively. More commonly, they are said to have suffered “heart-rending” pain.
Example 2: In some cultures, mourners may rend their garments lamenting a death.
RENDER (Past tense: RENDERED)
- To present or submit accounts, etc, for payment, approval, or action: The electrician rendered an invoice for the work he completed on the remodeling job.
- To give or provide aid, charity, a service, etc: The rescue worker rendered first aid at the scene of the accident.
- To show obedience, as due or expected: The knight rendered his obedience to the king.
- To give or exchange, as by way of return or requital: to render blow for blow.
- 5. A cooking Technique: “Rendering the fat.” (And this is the one that always springs to my mind when I hear someone mistakenly say heart-rendering. 😯 )
Rendering is what happens when fat is cooked slowly over low heat and becomes a liquid, rather than crisping up. We call rendered fat “lard,” and it is almost always made from pig fat, with nary a heart involved.
In times gone by, people rendered lard by cooking it in a cast-iron kettle over a slow fire. It was used in frying and baking and for flavoring foods, but went out of favor when Crisco came along.
So now, hopefully you will never get mixed up and decide to make lard from someone’s heart. I mean, that would be truly painful and … well … icky.
On that note, I’ll turn the floor over to you guys. Have you ever made this error? If so, I hope this little post has been helpful. If not, YAY, you, because a lot of folks get these words mixed up fairly often. Let us know what you think below. As always, inquiring minds wanna know.
Thanks so much for stopping by SE today! Hope you’ll check back every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday to see what the rest of the gang will be talking about. And I’ll be back in a couple of weeks with something else up my sleeve. But now it’s time for you to head out and write with happy (and totally un-rendered) hearts! Those are definitely the very best kind.
I am not an English teacher, grammarian, or expert on all matters of this nature. I don’t even play one on TV! But I promise I have consulted with those in the know before posting anything in this series.
(All images above were either created by me, used with permission,
or obtained from Pixabay.)