This tag is for questions related to English as spoken in Great Britain, and sometimes Ireland.

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2answers
746 views

When referring to computer coding, would the correct verb spelling (in British English) be “to program” or “to programme”?

I already know that there are different spellings in British and US English for "programme". Usually, I refer to a computer program with the US spelling as all programming is done in US English, so it ...
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3answers
267 views

Résumé as summary vs document describing work experience

Because "résumé" or "resume" as a noun is a false cognate with the French equivalent, I tend to avoid using "résumé" to mean "summary", and only reserve it to mean "that document people bring to ...
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0answers
306 views

Help sheet for determiners and prepositions [closed]

I'm trying to produce a simple help sheet for foriegn speakers on English determiners and prepositions. Specifically, a basic description of when to use each type of determiner, and then the list of ...
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1answer
109 views

Alternative names for a place of trade [closed]

I am wondering what alternative names or nicknames there are for a place of trade. I know of market but I am hoping for others.
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0answers
105 views

Correct use of “ise” vs “ize” at the end of words [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are the endings “-zation” and “-sation” interchangeable? I am writing some software code and the rule is that we use UK English in all comments. ...
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1answer
162 views

Grammatically correct answer to incorrect question [closed]

I'm just curious what is correct to say in this situation. Let's have a person A which can speak English but not very well (like me). Person A is going to ask me whether I work in company X. But he ...
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2answers
1k views

“Named for” vs. “named after”

As a Brit, I'm used to the phrase named after being used to say how something got its name. For example, in Wikipedia's List of eponymous roads in London, we read that Addison Road is named after the ...
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4answers
4k views

Born(e) (out?) of the desire

I'd be most grateful to anyone who could tell me which of the following is right xyz was born out of the desire to... xyz was born of the desire to... xyz was borne out of the desire to... xyz was ...
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4answers
2k views

Is it acceptable to use 'z' instead of 's' for plural form?

I am trying to find an appropriate name for my website but all domains are squattered. So now I think that I can call my site, say, not 'cats.com' by 'catz.com'. Isn't it too informal and 'leet' (or ...
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10answers
3k views

Speaking for the sake of saying something

Is there a word or phrase that describes the act of saying something for the sake of it?
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2answers
315 views

What is the word used to describe a forced choice

I am looking for a word to describe a certain situation where you must choose one option or the other, as in it's either me or her. For example: If you stay friends with her we can't be in a ...
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2answers
12k views

The difference between Cool and Cold [closed]

I am not a native speaker of the English language but have been living in United Kingdom for last couple of years. Once I was with my friend who was an Irish and I said "Its cold outside" and he ...
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3answers
266 views

Is British English Outdated in Technical Writing?

I learnt English as my second language right from my school level and for the British colonial history of my country, my education was mostly in British English. In fact, during my school years, ...
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2answers
1k views

Latin abbreviation to use in English to replace “as such” [closed]

I was wondering if I can use "et al." in order to say "as such" after a list of elements in a sentence given as example. If not: What can be the correct Latin abbreviation to use to replace "as ...
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2answers
4k views

“Records” or “record”?

I would like to know what the difference between records and record is. Which would be correct — John Allen's Records or John Allen's Record?
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2answers
45 views

Un cancel? A word or phrase to say I'd like to cancel my cancellation

Say I have cancelled an appointment, but I then decide that I would like to go after all, so I cancel the cancellation... Do I uncancel the appointment? Seems a bit clumsy even if it's a valid ...
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2answers
173 views

Exact word when we throw a rope in english

What's the exact word for throwing a fish hook or a rope whose one end we are holding. Any help is appreciated.
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4answers
316 views

Which mood is created with “everyone should visit”?

Which mood is created with the sentence, "Everyone should visit..." with the use of the auxiliary verb? I have decided already that it is not the imperative mood.
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2answers
169 views

What's the British equivalent of American “Formica” for faux wood?

In America, the word "Formica" refers to the laminate wood surface of a certain era. (Correct me if I'm wrong on this, as I'm not an American.) This word has a certain retro feel to it. So it would ...
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1answer
86 views

What does the term 'grocer' mean in this song? (British usage)

In the song "Waiting for Margret to Go," which is about the death of Margaret Thatcher, the artist says "Grocers and Methodists lay her down low". What is the artist referring to by "grocer"? Is it ...
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1answer
224 views

Different ways of saying Aluminium [closed]

this is a very short question but me and a couple of friends have been discussing this for a little. Does anyone know why Americans and British people especially insists on saying "Aloominum" and ...
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4answers
614 views

Adjective to describe very abusive language or nature [closed]

I would like to know appropriate adjective(s) to describe a person's abusive language or nature used describe swearing at somebody. Edit: I want a more British and formal English. Something that can ...
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3answers
1k views

Which one is more British: “car hire” or “rent a car”?

I am wondering which one is more commonly used in the United Kingdom: car hire or rent a car?
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2answers
287 views

what does the sentence “You wouldn't know a hospital corner if it bit you on the arse” mean?

The conversation goes something like this: Woman: I'll change the bed sheets. Man: No, I'll do it! Woman: I can make a bed! Man : You wouldn't know a hospital corner if it bit you ...
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3answers
160 views

The other end of an “offer” [closed]

In replying to this email, sender: I believe you were interested in applying for a Moffat Scholarship Award (etc. etc.) my response: Thanks for your email and I appreciate the offer. But I'm ...
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2answers
271 views

Is the English-speaking Internet community moving towards Americanized spelling?

Some of my spelling checking software failed to recognize the American spelling of the words "organize" and "realize" when a British English dictionary is being used. Curious, I looked up the British ...
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2answers
175 views

“Mobile” vs. “cellphone” in AE

I already heard Americans use the term "mobile" for "cellphone" -- which I thought was chiefly BE -- and so I wish you could tell if such usage of "mobile" has any currency in GAE? Unless it might be ...
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1answer
555 views

To whom does “British” refer?

I've seen from sources claim that the word "British" can be used to refer to different things. Some say Great Britian, some the UK, and some even the UK including her overseas territories. Which of ...
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1answer
390 views

Is “be-gruntled” a word? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When does a word become a ‘word’? Someone in work asked about the welfare of my girlfriend, to which I replied "She's fine, a little be-gruntled but fine." People knew ...
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1answer
2k views

“your heart just shrank” vs. “your heart just shrunk” [closed]

If I say: Your heart just shrank two sizes too small. Is the verb shrank correct as is? Or should it be in participle form? Your heart just shrunk two sizes too small. Which one would be ...
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4answers
830 views

What's the Australian or British way to say 'Ticket collector'? [closed]

I know Indians say ticket collectors while in Australia people are confused with this phrase. Please let me know how you would say that.
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2answers
552 views

What does it mean to be “clipping an r”? Why is that a qualification for celebrities to be invited to the royal wedding?

The Washington Post (April 24) ran an article about the royal wedding under the title, “In London, the royal wedding haters have had enough.” I was interested in the expression, “the wedding ate the ...
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1answer
74 views

Does “hosting a dinner” mean it is paid for?

Does "hosting a dinner" (in the UK) mean it is paid for, or just that it is being organised on behalf of the attendees?
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1answer
1k views

word meaning 'the day before'

I am looking for a word meaning 'the day before' that fits within the following sentence: 'day before the day the conference started' Alternatively a neater way of saying the same thing would be ...
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1answer
2k views

“Nice to talk to” or “Nice to talk too”

One of my friends has corrected someone on their grammar on a social media site. And they think they should say "Nice to talk too". I think it is "Nice to talk to", because "too" is an adverb meaning ...
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2answers
408 views

whiskers vs sideburns usage in UK vs US English?

Is the word whiskers more like UK English and "sideburns" more like US English? I see the term originates from "Ambrose Burnside" who was American so the word "whisker(s)" can be older than the word ...
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5answers
349 views

Word for person who was ignored by everyone while alive, but whose importance was realized after he died

Is there a single word for a person who was ignored by everyone when he was alive, but later people realized his importance after he died? It can also be related to his work, teaching or something ...
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2answers
236 views

An expression for law students using “tuppence”

Has anyone heard of an expression, from the Renaissance or older, containing the word "tuppence" which describes a student of the law or someone without a great deal of experience or training in it?
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1answer
88 views

What's the meaning of “I can't imagine why.”? [on hold]

Does it mean "The answer is obvious to me." in a sarcastic way, or does it mean "I really don't know the reason."? I am inclined to go with the former. Surprisingly googling doesn't help. Secondly, ...
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2answers
99 views

“When will you come” vs. “When are you coming”? [closed]

One of my friends will come to my city "Ahmedabad" on 18th May 2015. In a WhatsApp group chat, my friend asked him, "When are you coming to Ahmedabad?" I corrected my friend: "When will ...
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3answers
57 views

`Good/correct English' for a 'pay back the effort' [closed]

I'm looking for a term/expression/word that is less plumb then Introducing the following concept is difficult but will pay back in the end.
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1answer
95 views

what does “withhold no sacrifice” mean? [closed]

Reading Churchill's speech, I don't think I understand the following "withhold no sacrifice, grudge no toil, seek no sordid gain", what does this statement mean?
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2answers
196 views

What's the difference between respected and respectable? [closed]

He is highly [respected/respectable] owing to his good manners and gratefulness. I know the difference but I can't decide which one to choose, either he is respected (the passive form)or he is ...
0
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1answer
45 views

Nuances when returning physical mail in the UK [closed]

“Return to sender” carries very little meaning to the sender: Who returned it? The postal service, the intended recipient, or some other person? Why was it returned? Was it considered spam, was the ...
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1answer
77 views

What does plate mean in “we're running you in two plates”?

I find the following line in Tom Stoppard’s play The Invention of Love. Mark Pattison, Rector of Lincoln College, Oxford, is speaking to entering students in the 1860s: . . . if ...
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4answers
106 views

What's the oral address of “fellow student”?

I have known "fellow student" is a formal address and we used this in somewhere formally. But in oral situation, how to introduce a senior student to my friends when we face to face? If I say "this is ...
0
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4answers
241 views

Did I show you my graduation photo or have I shown you my graduation photo?

So I was on my way home from school, and I overheard two people talking about something. The one asked the other: ''Did I show you my graduation photo?'', I asked my self whether it shouldn't be ...
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1answer
6k views

Does the electricity “go or cut” “off or out”? [closed]

Which of the following choices are correct? While I was reading a book last night, suddenly the electricity ______. cut off cut out went off went out What are the differences ...
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1answer
590 views

“Go ahead” vs. “Carry on” in AE usage

Back when I was a student, I can recall my nonnative English teachers -- after discussing a certain word, or phrase, or passage from a text with the class -- saying for me or some other guy to please ...
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2answers
4k views

What is the difference between the word around and round

When I am writing I come across these two words a lot and I was wondering what is different about them and how they would be used in different contexts