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Stories We Like: A Guide to the Comma

On purpose, deliberately, as in Whether by luck or by design, his application was accepted. This term, originally put as on design, uses design in the sense of “plan.” [ First half of 1600s ]
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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