1
vote
2answers
51 views

Is the term “fresh and original” redundant?

I see this phrase all over the place. Fresh in this usage appears to be in the usage: not previously known or used; new or different. And directly lists original as a synonym. And original in ...
1
vote
0answers
50 views

Flattering vs. flatter [closed]

Of two sentences You are flattering me. You flatter me. Which is correct? Are both correct, or is one better than the other?
4
votes
2answers
329 views

Awkwardness around 'go live' phrase [closed]

Context: software company training documents. We commonly use the phrase "go live" when talking about making a system operational. I'm fine with using it as two separate words, but it becomes awkward ...
1
vote
1answer
236 views

About the meaning of “light smattering of applause”

I expected "light smattering of applause" to mean "few applause" because "light" has the meaning of "small, not heavy". However, the phrase seems to mean "a lot of applause" in the context. For ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

“integer multiple” vs. “integral multiple”

Nine is an integer multiple of three. Nine is an integral multiple of three. Which is more common? If both are accepted, what's the subtle difference between them?
1
vote
2answers
306 views

Which of these is the correct use of this phrase

I frequently encounter this in technical documents and I am wondering which one is correct. In the figure below or In the below figure
14
votes
11answers
36k views

“The point is moot”

I was recently called out for using the phrase "the point is moot" incorrectly. My intent was to indicate that I felt that the point wasn't really worth debating or discussing. I was then shown that ...
2
votes
1answer
302 views

Three-word phrase stress (“little straw house” vs. “small wooden house”)

I'm interested to learn why the following three-word phrases have stress on different words. "little straw house" (stress is on little and house) "small wooden house" (stress is on wooden) Here ...
0
votes
2answers
265 views

Is “faster speed”, “faster performance” correct? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is 'low speed' finally proving its merit? Recently in a mayor presentation of upcoming product I saw slide talking about "faster performance". Then in BBC ...
3
votes
2answers
580 views

Is “put together” an adjectival phrase?

When someone says "He is smarter than I and she put together," what is the function of the phrase "put together"? Is it considered an adjective?
4
votes
3answers
896 views

Turning 'free of charge' into a noun phrase

I am helping a PhD student who makes constant reference to an Internet application he is studying by using a string of noun phrases, specifically ...its ease of use, general applicability and ...
2
votes
6answers
729 views

Is 'low speed' finally proving its merit?

Technically, you should expect the term low speed, not slow speed (which is obviously illogical). However, it seems the two phrases co-existed as long as one can look back: with low speed fighting ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

“Sour cream” versus “soured cream”

Does anyone besides my husband insist on adding an -ed to sour cream? Etymonline dates "sour cream" to 1855, but has no mention of "soured", so I don't think this is analogous to "iced tea" or "ice ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

“How big of a problem” vs. “how big a problem”

Quite a few phrases in English are constructed like so: How [adjective] a [noun]...? This is the question form of the construction, which is often answered with the negative: Not that ...
5
votes
3answers
474 views

Is it common to use the borrowed noun-adjective form for borrowed French phrases?

Lately, something has struck me. I've been hearing several expressions in English, some clearly borrowed from French and preserving their noun-adjective form. Some examples are: Attorney General ...
3
votes
2answers
611 views

Multiple comparatives of different types: how to choose?

I have an eight-month-old daughter. Her experiments in mobility led me to contemplate phrases like the dirtier and messier, the better. What happens if one (but not both) of the adjectives ...
4
votes
4answers
10k views

Meaning of “I feel so helpless”

What is the phrase "I feel so helpless" supposed to mean? Is it "I feel as though I am unable to offer help" or "I feel as though no one could help me?" I saw it in a movie, and always thought it ...
6
votes
2answers
10k views

Is it correct to say “I feel painful” to mean “I feel pain”?

Is it correct to say "I feel painful" to mean "I feel pain"? Please note that I mean only those cases, in which the phrase is a complete sentence. There should be no words after the last word in each ...
3
votes
1answer
207 views

What does Bloomberg's 'concessionary tone' mean?

I found the phrase 'concessionary tone' in today's New York Times: Bloomberg Is Criticized on Storm Response as He Tours City Beyond Manhattan The mayor on Thursday delivered the message that ...
8
votes
5answers
2k views

What other alliterative phrases have become inseparable? [closed]

Just asking out of idle curiousity. There are some words that just always seem to be found together, such as strong, silent type cool, calm and collected cheap and cheerful Can you ...
4
votes
5answers
4k views

Can “prior” or “previous” be used to describe the same month of last year?

If I want to show the comparison between rate in 2010 Jan and 2009 Jan, which of the following should I use? Comparison of rate between 2010 Jan and its prior month. Comparison of rate ...
14
votes
2answers
837 views

How to connect a word and a phrase with a hyphen?

For example, "file system" and "related". Is it "file system-related"? It will appear as if it is a compound of "file" and "system-related", won't it?