1
vote
1answer
49 views

On the Existence of the Word 'Grousily'

Is 'grousily' a word? I would like to use it in a sentence to mean 'grumpily, as if in imitation of a rumpled grouse' but don't think it's okay because of how I couldn't find it in either OS X's ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

Curious words that make me suspicious

I'm curious about that curious object. I'm suspicious of that suspicious stranger. I'm dubious about that dubious plan. I can't think of any other words that allow this: using the same ...
0
votes
1answer
23 views

Are “a perfect fool”, “a proper fool” and “a precious fool” the same kind of “fool”?

Is there any (subtle) difference in meaning and usage when these adjectives qualify "a fool"? Are these adjectives perfectly interchangeable "A precious fool I would look, if I did that." "The ...
6
votes
3answers
280 views

The horribility of English language

Pretty much every adjective that ends in the suffix -able or -ible gives rise to a related noun: corruptible becomes corruptibility mutable becomes mutability respectable becomes respectability ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

Is there a difference between negligible and neglectable?

According to wiktionary.org they are synonyms. However, most words have a slight difference in the way or in which context they are used. I would like to know those differences. For example, when one ...
0
votes
3answers
60 views

Is “willfully disingenuous” a tautologism?

It seems to me that definitions of disingenuous such as the following might imply willfulness: adjective lacking in frankness, candour, or sincerity; falsely or hypocritically ingenuous; ...
0
votes
1answer
101 views

“Unavailable” vs. “not available” [duplicate]

What is the difference between unavailable and not available? In my opinion, unavailable is something that will never be available, while not available is something that is not available right now ...
9
votes
3answers
641 views

Connotations of “quixotic”

Would you say quixotic has more of a positive connotation or more of a negative connotation? The definition for quixotic given by Merriam-Webster is: hopeful or romantic in a way that is not ...
0
votes
2answers
89 views

What does “in-flight” mean in this context?

Below is the context. Do we need to create a table to catch any in-flight data during the cut-over? I looked the word in-flight up in several dictionaries and almost all of them state the ...
2
votes
1answer
235 views

What is the difference between “super” and “superb”?

I have seen usage of both super and superb. I also searched for meaning of these two words and found they are almost identical. Example sentences - She is a super girl. His performance in the last ...
2
votes
4answers
354 views

“Worried person” vs. “concerned person”

According to H. Stephens, "There is a great difference between worry and concern. A worried person sees a problem, and a concerned person solves a problem". But ODE seems to be disagreeing with him: ...
-3
votes
3answers
297 views

“Evocative” vs. “provocative” [closed]

I am starting to use evocative and provocative interchangeably. I would like to understand the difference between these words and when one should be used instead of the other. although the ...
2
votes
1answer
104 views

Can “nice” when used about people mean “beautiful”? Can a nice woman be ugly?

Can nice used with a person be about his/her look? Can I use a nice woman and mean (sexually) attractive, like in a beautiful woman? Or is it always only about their behaviour and kindness, when used ...
3
votes
5answers
522 views

Is the word “classless” neutral in its implication, or does it have a derogatory tone?

I was drawn to the word, “classless” in Carolyn Hax’s answer to a reader in the counseling corner of Washington Post (June 7), which comes under the title, “How do you get back at a loudmouth? By ...
-1
votes
1answer
83 views

“Putative” vs. “surrogate” [closed]

How similar or different is "putative" to "surrogate"? The term "surrogate father" is common, "putative father" is fairly so, too. But what may be the difference in connotation?
0
votes
1answer
82 views

“Despising look” vs “despised look”

Peter gave me a despising look. Peter gave me a despised look. Are the two statements above the same? My understanding is that in statement 1, I may have done something that Peter thinks ...
2
votes
2answers
92 views

Non-aerodynamic meanings of 'vane'

I tried to look for other meanings of 'vane' not related to aerodynamics (weather vane, vane of a feather, etc), and I wasn't really successful. Oxforddictionaries.com gives an example of adjective as ...
-5
votes
2answers
180 views

What does Pedantic mean when used as an adjective [closed]

According to Dictionary.com, Pedantic can mean ostentatious in one's learning Ostentatious means to show off , to attract attention. The way I interpret it is that one is so focused on ...
2
votes
1answer
109 views

Can someone provide an explanation regarding the etymology of the adjective “hell-bent?”

It's etymology is given as: hell-bent, 1835, U.S., originally slang, from hell + bent How do the the words "hell + bent," when taken together, form the definition "determined to achieve ...
0
votes
2answers
639 views

What does “candid” mean besides being honest?

According to various unnamed dictionaries, candid means "being honest, telling the truth". However, when I googled the word, a lot of pictures of women in bikinis popped up! Can someone tell me why ...
3
votes
6answers
1k views

Difference between “funny” and “strange”/“weird”

I noticed that in English the word funny is sometimes used in the meaning of strange or weird. What's the exact difference? What is interesting for me is that you have a single word meaning at the ...
2
votes
2answers
850 views

“Conventional” vs. “traditional” [closed]

What is the difference between conventional and traditional? E.g.: My grandfather used to live a conventional/traditional life.
1
vote
1answer
213 views

“Kafkaesque” vs. “Kafkan”

Is there any difference in meaning between the adjectives Kafkaesque and Kafkan, or are they synonyms?
2
votes
4answers
216 views

Can we use “morning” to describe half a day? How to say half a day using an adjective?

I don't know how to use an adjective word to describe the same meaning of half a day. E.g. I have done all the work in the morning. In this sentence, "in the morning" means from 08:00 am to 11:59 am ...
3
votes
1answer
771 views

What does “wishy-washy” mean?

Question: What does it mean when something is "wishy-washy"? Is it informal? Is it American English, British English or both?
-5
votes
1answer
165 views

Antedecent of “naked” in “I would like to paint a picture of you naked”

You’re such a pretty person, I would like to paint a picture of you naked. Does this mean "you’ll undress while I get my brushes", or does it mean "strike a pose while I take my clothes off"?
2
votes
2answers
228 views

Where does the word “button-down” come from?

I was wondering where the term 'button-down' comes from. I tried to do some research but I was not very successful... How was the word button-down formed? Is it a compound ? Does it originate from ...
0
votes
5answers
362 views

I want to know the difference between “you are false” and “you are wrong” [closed]

What is the difference between false and wrong? Is there any difference in meaning?
0
votes
1answer
65 views

Use of the adjective Nearshore

I'm working on a web page which target are American companies interested in hire Mexican Engineers for work in USA (in place or remote). I have a version of the web page headline: "PAINLESSLY HIRE THE ...
0
votes
2answers
93 views

Adjective association

Is there a rule that states what word adjectives in a sentence will link to? If I say I have a big cookie jar it's still a correct sentence. The word "cookie" isn't an adjective, but "cookie ...
3
votes
1answer
873 views

What is the difference between “graduate students” and “postgraduate students”?

I am reading about finding a good university for master studies and I am really confused if graduate students are the same as postgraduate students. Are the terms synonyms, or do they refer to ...
1
vote
3answers
184 views

Modern use of “bourgeoisie”

How can I use bourgeoisie properly in this day and age? I understand that at one time it meant part of the wealthy "middle class". Back then the middle class owned the means to production (merchants ...
2
votes
3answers
381 views

“Brunette” vs. “brown” and “blonde” vs. “yellow”

Why is that we never use these terms interchangeably? I.e. one wouldn't say "I've painted my walls a deep brunette". Why is it that "brunette" and "blonde" are used exclusively in reference to hair ...
0
votes
1answer
414 views

“Artificial” vs. “faux” vs. “fake”

Do these words have a different meaning? Should we say artificial sugar or sweetener? Should we say artificial fur or faux fur? Is there a rule that defines the border for artificial/faux/fake? ...
1
vote
2answers
209 views

Why does “forgetive” mean “creative”, not “easy to forget things”?

As the title says. It surprised me when I found this online dictionary entry at the time I tried to express "easy to forget things" and "forgetive" appeared in my mind. What is the history or ...
1
vote
1answer
70 views

What is the difference between 'The Germany National team' and 'the German national team'? [duplicate]

I can't say I get it. I think the difference is: 'The Germany National team' is team which represents Germany as a country. And it is its formal title. 'the German national team' is team which ...
3
votes
1answer
113 views

Why is there “Germany National Team”, not “German National Team”?

Why is the team from Germany called "Germany National Team", not "German National Team"? On official Internet sites, it is the same for every official national team; Germany National, France National, ...
0
votes
1answer
85 views

Usage of “extensive participation”

What exactly does 'extensive participation' mean? Can I use this phrase in a sentence like this: Due to her extensive participation she hardly got time for her studies.
-2
votes
1answer
67 views

antiquarian (adjective) misuse re: dictionary definition

multiple choice ... "antiquarian book" refers to: 1. an antique book about anything 2. any age book about old books 3. a book about people who deal in old books 4. a book in the antiquar language or ...
1
vote
2answers
4k views

“Nervous” vs. “anxious”

Are these words interchangeable? When would you use one over the other? For example, is it correct to say you "feel nervous" or "feel anxious"? Is it correct to say you are an "anxious person" or a ...
2
votes
2answers
93 views

A word for “nobody depends on me”

If I do not depend on anybody, I can say: I am independent And if nobody depends on me. Is there a monoword to describe that?
3
votes
2answers
94 views

a person with a fossilized mind

How to describe a person who have a fossilized mind? whatever he hears he will not (get it into one's head)
1
vote
2answers
722 views

“Extended” vs. “extensive” [closed]

What's the difference between these two? I found the following after some research, “Extended” has to do with time, “extensive” with space. An extended tour lasts a long time; an extensive tour ...
1
vote
1answer
252 views

Does an adjective apply to both nouns when joined with 'and'?

Can you grab the blue shirts and socks? Is the above sentence stating that both the shirts and the socks are blue? Or only the shirts? At this stage, I am leaning towards the earlier (only the ...
2
votes
2answers
214 views

What does “buggy” mean in “a hot, buggy August morning”?

While reading a short story, I came across a use of the word "buggy" that I'm not familiar with: It’s a hot, buggy August morning, too early for lunch, so we find a deserted picnic table without ...
0
votes
1answer
178 views

“a high enough” vs. “high enough a”

After editing a question recently, the OP undid those edits stating he did not like the bad changes I made with regards to the grammar of the post. The author originally wrote: Nobody in this ...
9
votes
7answers
1k views

Prefix or adjective meaning “one and a half”

Is there a prefix or adjective that means "one and a half", as "tri-" or "triple" is for "three"? The exact usage I have is to describe "18" in terms of a dozen. Where I live they've started making ...
2
votes
4answers
382 views

Adjective meaning “that can be tied”

What is the most common adjective used to describe objects that can be tied. I would think of tieable but it does not seem to exist in the wiktionary.
3
votes
1answer
155 views

It was established on a rocky foundation [closed]

It was established on a rocky foundation. Does it mean steady or shaky?
3
votes
0answers
64 views

Words that are members of multiple classes of words (without changing form) [duplicate]

By "class of word" I mean a noun, verb, adjective, adverb etc. This notation came from reading the definitions of these words themselves. For example noun grammar any member of a class of words ...