Every month, we take a look at a word in the headlines, in English, for your English. See more at The Word of the Month.
To slap (sbdy): to strike with an open hand, usually in the face.
A slap in the face(figurative): a grave insult; a shocking event.
A slap on the wrist (figurative): a light punishment or penalty.
Slaps in the news
This month, French president Emmanuel Macron was slapped in the face during a public appearance.
Though the perpetrator will only receive a slap on the wrist, it was a slap in the face for decorum.
Don’t confuse “slap” with:
Clap: To applaud. Do this to show support, appreciation, or call a servant into your chambers.
Snap: To make a sound with your thumb and finger; it’s what separates humans from apes.
Spank: To strike the bum (as punishment). Gymglish was very naughty and needs a spanking please.
Reasons for slapping
More hygienic than kissing: Guys, we still need to be careful. Covid isn’t fully behind us yet.
Express political disapproval: The old-fashioned way to politely disagree, before Facebook and Twitter.