This tag is for questions related to the English language as used in the United States of America.

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1answer
5k views

“Did you” vs “Do you” for questions about the past

Which of these is more correct for American English in a professional context: Did you have any other prior marriage that lasted at least 10 years, or any other prior marriage that ended due to your ...
1
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3answers
43 views

Need word for “remove duplicates and keep unique instances”

Here is a sentence. Combine all Points and keep unique Points. For example: Points-> 1,1,1,1,2,3,3,3,4,4,5,5 Remove duplication and keep uniqueness Unique Points-> 1,2,3,4,5 I need a word ...
10
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9answers
317 views

“bucking for” .. like Klinger

In the culturally referrent 1970s USA TV show "MASH", about the Korean war, character Corporal Klinger acts "crazy", specifically wearing female clothing, ... because he is bucking for a section 8 ...
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0answers
26 views
20
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6answers
9k views

Dialects where days of the week end with “dee”?

Someone recently posted a question about the pronunciation of Wednesday, which reminded me of a different question about pronouncing the days of the week I've had floating around in my head for a ...
1
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0answers
26 views

In terms of poetry, what is the Thomas code?

I was reading a book review of Wittgenstein's Mistress on goodreads, and I came across the sentence, "Without such accessible lecture notes, I may not have ever cracked the Thomas code and may never ...
3
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5answers
204 views

Collective “linens” vs. “linen” in AmEng vernacular

What's the difference in using the uncountable noun linen either in the plural or in the singular to refer to articles or garments, such as sheets, tablecloths, or underwear? How did originally ...
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0answers
23 views

How to communicate two elements of different syntactic/semantic type in the same sentence?

I have the following sentence, NAME is a community that helps each other code better by rating each other's efforts and helps managers pair with other fellow developers I was suggested by the ...
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1answer
75 views

Pronunciation of the state name Illinois [on hold]

I've been to the US recently and noticed that Americans usually pronounce Illinois as "Illinoy", with the ending similar to the one of "annoy". This looks very illogical to me because there's an "s" ...
0
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1answer
36 views

How is the term “African-American” politically correct?

First, a note: This question is meant to have no explicit or implicit political/sociological connotation whatsoever, and is indeed born of actual and deep curiosity as to what is in the author's ...
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0answers
27 views

Changing Spelling in Titles Based on AmE and BrE

For companies or corporations that have names that differ whether you are using AmE or BrE, should you change the title? For example, if I was referencing the the CDC, the Centers for Disease Control ...
0
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1answer
59 views

“call someone/something” vs. “call someone/something up” for "make a phone call to someone/something

What's the difference between call and call up to mean make a telephone call to? Is the latter any more informal than the former, or is it mainly a regional thing? call someone or something up ...
2
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0answers
39 views

Use of “trying to” in place of “wanting to” in the US

Is the use of "trying to" in place of "wanting to" occurring nationwide or regionally? What is its prevalence and when did it start? I'm in my late 20s and live in New England. In the past 2-3 ...
1
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1answer
52 views

What does the word “penty” mean? [on hold]

And the word pent ? Are they very used in the british/american english ? Thank you for your help :)
20
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7answers
8k views

Where does “pizza pie” originate?

The Italianissimo pizza—pronounced /ˈpiʦ:a/—is not always spelled or called pizza around the world: In Bosnia, Belarusian, Macedonia, Serbia it's spelled pica but pronounced /pîtsa/ In ...
4
votes
1answer
110 views

What is this US accent found so often in instructional videos?

What is this accent or register? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B0E4PX3e3RE It seems to me to include extensive creaky voice a broad range of pitch rising question intonation This question is ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

American English equivalent of “revise” (as in studying)

Today, I discovered that the meaning of revise to do with studying is used in British, Australian and New Zealand English, rather than American English: (UK, Australia, New Zealand) To look over ...
1
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2answers
175 views

Centre of competence

I have seen this expression several times (Google search gives 67M answers), but it seems mostly used by French or Swiss institutions, while Wikipedia mentions centre of excellence or competency ...
2
votes
3answers
46 views

Hyphenating “process” in the meaning “series of actions” in AmE

Where to break the word "process" at the end of a line in the meaning "a series of actions" in US English? Dictionaries disagree on this (or I am misinterpreting what they say): Merriam-Webster ...
2
votes
3answers
123 views

Femicide vs feminicide

While using the term femicide I realised that the is another term, probably a synonym, feminicide. From the following Wikipedia extract, the two terms appear to be synonyms: Femicide or ...
1
vote
1answer
34 views

What should I call classwork at the start of a period?

So as far as I can remember, whenever a teacher gives you work at the beginning of a class period, they are called "Drills" or "Warm-ups"; however, friends that I have talked to from other schools ...
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0answers
34 views

Use of plural forms when using “Multi-xxx”

Which one is correct? A multi-languages university or A multi-language university? A multi-outlet socket or A multi-outlets socket?
12
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4answers
368 views

Usage of “hysterical” meaning “very funny.”

One meaning (I am personally not very familiar with) of the adjective hysterical is: causing unrestrained laughter; very funny: Oh, that joke is hysterical! (Dictionary.com) No other ...
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0answers
29 views

The United States. Possesive is its or their?

The United States made no secret of its/their hope to absorb the provinces... http://grammarist.com/usage/united-states/ "Although United States is usually treated as a singular noun, it’s treated ...
10
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5answers
3k views

When someone praises me awkwardly too much, how to reply? [closed]

When someone praises me awkwardly, as in too much, to make me happy or to get some help or something else from me, how to say "don't do that". Like, "I'll do that for you, you don't need to --- me." ...
7
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1answer
2k views

Distinctive features of English diphthongs

I am looking for a table of distinctive features for English dipthongs along the lines of that available for other vowels here. I don't trust my purely book learned linguistic skills to produce an ...
2
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1answer
85 views

Usage, origin and the possible Hollywood influence on “terminate” meaning “to kill.”

Terminate is an old term, but its connotation meaning "to kill, assassinate" is quite recent ("to assassinate" is from 1975. ) unlike finish, whose meaning "to kill" is from 1755, according to ...
1
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1answer
36 views

Difference between elegancy and elegance

I recently saw someone use the word "elegancy" for the first time in forever, and it set me wondering about (and wandering about) why the synonym "elegance" appears to be the preferred noun. I ...
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0answers
37 views

Can anyone rate my IELTS academic writing? [closed]

I am preparing for IELTS exam and i would like to know how good is my writing and how can i make it better. If possible please point out my mistakes and tell me how can i avoid them. Question My ...
0
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1answer
13 views

To encounter someone/something or to encounter with someone/something?

I have seen both forms and I don't know which one is the more appropriate (if there is a difference). The actual sentence in which I want to use it is "particles can encounter (with) the atoms of the ...
0
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0answers
42 views

What is contemporary English? [on hold]

If it belongs to a category then what are other types of categories?
1
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1answer
64 views

Meaning of “Students in all majors” versus “Students of all majors”

I would like to know the difference between these sentences: I want to send an email to students of all majors I want to send an email to students in all majors How did of/in change the meaning of ...
3
votes
4answers
72 views

Word that describes many common household purchases

I m writing a research paper about the over consumption. I am struggling to find a word or words that describes the things we normally use in our daily lives like toothbrush, dish washer liquid, ...
0
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1answer
30 views

Does this make sense? [closed]

"Although one might not think so, animals perpetually yawn for a reason." Does this sound correct?
0
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1answer
36 views

Different-colored or different colored? UK vs US English

Can I write "differently colored" instead? What expression most British or Americans would rather use? "socks, different in color" "socks of different colors" "a different color of each sock"
0
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1answer
295 views

What is the origin of “Act your age, not your shoe size”?

I have been thinking about this saying a lot in the past week (and yes I saw Prince in concert 30 years ago, and the Ramones the same night), but I have heard it since I was a child. I guess I find it ...
3
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8answers
3k views

Which of “chafing at the bit” or “chomping at the bit” is more accepted/proper?

I've used "chafing at the bit" for quite some time, but have also heard "chomping at the bit" as a way to indicate impatience, etc. Which of these two is the more "proper" or accepted variant?
1
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1answer
34 views

Spend on or spend?

Which is correct? The average time spent on reading in my country is disappointing. Or The average time spent reading in my country is disappointing Generally for this sentence, do we ...
5
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1answer
117 views

Which words or grammar forms are likely to cause a collision between American and British English?

For all the Mickey-taking on both sides of the water I suppose British and American speakers understand one another 99% of the time. Can anyone think of any areas of vocabulary or grammar where ...
4
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2answers
28 views

what is word used to describe that “meaning has lost from originality”

I remember that many words on time get separated out from its actual meaning and people start using it for random cases to express different emotions or cases. There is word that describes this ...
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0answers
23 views

When writing about an Indian office (“councillor”) in an American context (“councilor”), which spelling should I prefer?

I am writing about councilors in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi. The work will be published in an undetermined American academic journal. Should I use the spelling “councillors” (Indian English) ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

Thanks for reaching out vs other “Thanks for contacting us” greetings

Hi I have noticed that more and more American companies respond to enquiries with "Thanks for reaching out to us" To an Australian it seems a little dramatic like it is implying that I have a major ...
0
votes
2answers
79 views

“Please join me, my family and [my] crew.” Can the second “my” be left out? [duplicate]

Is it proper to say: Please join me, my family and crew in celebrating my Bat Mitzvah? Or should there be a 'my' before crew?
0
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2answers
57 views

Piece of time/fragment of time/portion of time/bits of time

I have a question regarding the use of certain words to express an idea that implies portions of time. Is a “piece of time” an idiom or does it literally mean a “fragment of time”? I would really ...
0
votes
1answer
32 views

At the heart of the party/in the center of the party/at the center of the party

I have a questing regarding space prepositions. For instance, if I want to specify that a woman and I are dancing at the central part of a room where a loud party is taking place, would it be correct ...
7
votes
2answers
624 views

Can “tact” be used to replace “tack”?

Fellow Republican Rep. Michele Bachmann of Minnesota took a similar tact as she spoke at the rally. I believe the CNN writer meant to use the word 'tack' like in the phrase ‘take a different ...
5
votes
2answers
106 views

How do I know if I have the Northern Cities Vowel Shift?

I grew up in Kalamazoo, MI, where (according to Wikipedia and other sources), many speakers have something called the Northern Cities Vowel Shift (NCS). So I'm trying to figure out if I'm one of them. ...
23
votes
9answers
6k views

Is the phrase “I just sucked it out of my thumb” used in American English?

I was born and raised in South Africa. We frequently used the term "to suck out of one's thumb", implying that an answer was just a wild guess or the notion had no evidence but was rather just ...
0
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4answers
1k views

If Americans go to the toilet in the bathroom, where do they take a bath?

As far as I am aware, in the US it is very common to refer to the room that contains the toilet (device for disposing of human waste) as the bathroom. If this is a separate room from the room that ...
2
votes
2answers
36 views

Commissionaire in American English?

As I understand it a "commissionaire" is only used in British English (or so says the dictionary), but then what is the American English alternative?