Is it okay to say, `Some of the animals have become extinguished'?
(Naresh Kumar, Pune)
The word that you probably have in mind is `extinct', not `extinguished'. When something becomes extinct, it ceases to exist; you don't find it anywhere on the planet. Any living organism can become extinct. Dinosaurs, for example, have become extinct.
*There are reasons to believe that the tiger will soon become extinct.
*Some of the animals in the rainforests are on the verge of extinction.
The word `extinguish', on the other hand, is usually used along with the word `fire'. When you extinguish a fire or a flame, you put it out.
*The firemen battled for three hours before they extinguished the fire.
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