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TO MOOT IS MOOT. LET’S MOOT!

I’m sure there are more confusing words in the English language, but the word ‘moot’ is, wthout a doubt, one of them.

Having read law, ‘moot’ was first introduced to me as ‘pretend’, as in a ‘moot court’, where we as legal students fought out cases in a pretend court setting to train themselves to be future barristers.

As a journalist later, the word ‘moot’ then became to ‘suggest something for discussion’, as in “The idea of national service for women was mooted”.

Moot also meant a dead end, where if a subject debated was moot, it was an issue without a resolution.

Today, I discovered yet another meaning for ‘moot’, used in a legal context, where a subject ceases to have practical use or meaning. In Cambridge’s online dictionaries (an excellent tool if I may say so), a sentence was given to illustrate this meaning: “The district attorney said if McVeigh is given the death penalty and his conviction is upheld on appeal, the state prosecution would become moot.”

And for us web-sters, pun intended, there is the online etymology game called Moot (well, just a fraction of the offline game, really)!

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