Some words are just weird. You think you're using them correctly, but then there's that moment of doubt. Does that word mean something else entirely? One of the ironies of the English language is that occasionally, both meanings are correct — even if they're wildly different.

A contronym (also called a contranym or an autoantonym) is a word with two meanings that happen to be the opposite of each other. Specifically, according to the grammarly blog, "a contronym is a word with a homonym (another word with the same spelling but different meaning) that is also an antonym (a word with the opposite meaning)."

Got that?

Contronyms are also sometimes referred to "Janus words" after the two-faced Roman god. Here are 30 contronyms and their contradictory, two-faced definitions.

bolt means to clamp down but also to fleeBolt

To separate by fleeing or to hold together (as with a bolt)

Bound

Going toward a destination or restrained from moving

Buckle

To fasten together (with a buckle) or to bend or collapse from pressure

Cleave

To adhere firmly and closely or to split apart

Clip

To fasten (as with a paperclip) or to detach with shears (clipping your hair or your hedges)

Consult

To give advice or to get advice

Custom

A common practice or a specially made item

dictionary and contranyms

Dust off your dictionary. Some words (like dust) can have clashing meanings. (Photo: d8nn/Shutterstock)

Dust

To cover something with a fine power or to make something clean by brushing or removing dust

Enjoin

To order someone to do something or to prohibit someone from doing something

Fast

Firmly fixed and unmoving or able to move rapidly

Finished

Completed or destroyed

Garnish

To add decorative touches (to food or drink) or to take/withhold from (as in wages)

handicap is a contronymHandicap

An advantage given to equalize chances of winning (as in golf) or a disadvantage that makes equality difficult

Lease

To rent property or to offer property for rent

Left

Departed or remained behind

Model

The original, perfect example or a copy

Off

Not operating (turn off the light) or operating (the alarm went off)

Out

Visible (the stars are out) or invisible (the lights are out)

Overlook

To watch or to fail to notice

Oversight

Watchful, responsible care or a mistake made due to forgetfulness or poor supervision

Peruse

To skim or to read very carefully

Ravel

To separate or to become entangled

Rent

To lease something or to offer an something for lease

Sanction

To boycott or to approve

Screen

To hide or to show (like a movie)

Seed

To add seed ("seeding the lawn") or to remove seed ("seeding a watermelon")

Strike

To hit or to miss while trying to hit

Trim

To add (decorations) or to take away (extra hair or fabric, for example)

Wear

To endure or to deteriorate

Weather

To withstand or to be worn away

Related on MNN:

Photos:

Bolt and nut: Jaing Hongyan/Shutterstock; to flee: 007Nataliia/Shutterstock

Golf ball: Franck Boston/Shutterstock; wheelchair symbol: veronchick84/Shutterstock

Mary Jo DiLonardo Mary Jo writes about everything from health to parenting — and anything that helps explain why her dog does what he does.