V vs. N

A Bizarro from 2012 (send to me by a kind friend whose identity I have managed to lose):

The relevant material on the verb from NOAD2:

1 [no obj.] focus one’s attention or mental effort on a particular object or activity: she couldn’t concentrate on the movie.

2 [with obj.] gather (people or things) together in numbers or in a mass: wealth was concentrated in the hands of the governing elite.

• increase the strength or proportion of (a substance or solution) by removing or reducing the water or any other diluting agent or by selective accumulation of atoms or molecules.

The verb in sense 2 ‘bring towards a center’ dates to the 17th century. This is the source of the noun ‘something that has been concentrated’:

a substance made by removing water or other diluting agent; a concentrated form of something, especially food: apple juice concentrate.

The surprise here is that the metaphorical extension in sense 1 (illustrated in the cartoon) dates only from the early 20th century.

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