Both Uses of
Uses with a very common or rare meaning:
- I had never seen anything in that trunk but old boots and spurs and pistols, and a fascinating mixture of yellow leather thongs, cartridges, and shoemaker's wax.†
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- One afternoon in the week before Christmas, I came upon Lena and her funny, square-headed little brother Chris, standing before the drugstore, gazing in at the wax dolls and blocks and Noah's Arks arranged in the frosty show window.†
(meaning too common or rare to warrant focus) More commonly, wax is used to refer to a soft substance that melts when warmed and is seen in candles, crayons, beehives, polishes, and even the human ear. The word can also be used as a verb to refer to rubbing a coat of wax onto something such as a car or floor or furniture to protect it from water and/or improve appearance. Wax put on a surfboard also provides less slippery footing than the fiberglass board.
Wax can also be used as a verb to refer to the process of removing hair from the body by applying warm wax to the area being treated and pulling it off after it has cooled around the hair, so that the hair is pulled out from the root.
Less commonly, wax can refer to a stated manner of speech or writing; e.g., "She waxed eloquent," means that she talked in an eloquent manner. "She waxed on," means that talked more or for a longer time.