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

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0answers
121 views

Why does written English have more variations in pronunciation than other languages? [closed]

According to my experience, in languages like German, French, Chinese, Japanese, etc., there are not so many exceptions in pronunciation as in English. For example, given a word in German or French, ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Convolve vs. convolute

I understand that for common usage these words have distinct meanings. However in mathematics there is a process called convolution, and sometimes you hear "you need to convolve X" and sometimes "you ...
13
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2answers
2k views

When do you use middle and when center?

The other day I was talking to a friend about when to use "middle" or "center". I was using it in the context of top, middle, bottom, as a listing, and he suggested it should be top, center, bottom. ...
14
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5answers
29k views

What's the difference between “rent” and “hire” in British and American English?

The tip I used to teach was the verb, hire, should be used for things which are transportable hence, you hire a car, sports equipment, a boat, a bike etc. Rent, on the other hand, is primarily used ...
-2
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2answers
203 views

No one knows or no one know? [closed]

Can you tell which of the following sentences are right? And explain why the others are wrong? No one knows the answer. No one know the answer. There is nobody anwering the qustion. There is nobody ...
0
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3answers
71 views

Is there a difference in pronunciation between grandma and grammar? [closed]

? Also is there a difference between morning and moaning? Assuming British as spoken in London ("Jafaican") but also interested in other dialects
3
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1answer
96 views

To light a cigarette

I've heard "to light a cigarette" being used a couple of times, but I am still in doubt about two things: Is this common both in American English and British English? Are there other ways to say it ...
0
votes
1answer
146 views

Which English to use in Portugal: British or American? [closed]

I'm not sure this is the right place to ask this, but any help is appreciated. I'm Portuguese, but I also use English for my work. For that, I use dictionaries in my computer. My question is: which ...
1
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1answer
175 views

In British English, is there a difference between a match and fixture in football?

Or are they synonyms? My guess is that fixtures are matches that haven't been played yet...
9
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2answers
11k views

Sorted vs Sorted out

I'm an American and I refer to a situation which is settled as "sorted out." My English family would just say that it's "sorted". Which is the earlier expression? Did Americans add the preposition ...
1
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2answers
3k views

Can you begin a sentence with an emotion?

Is it incorrect to begin a sentence with an emotion? For example: "Afraid and alone, he no longer wished to continue on." I'm translating some work from a foreign language into English, but I ...
5
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2answers
188 views

“Milk in first and Indian”—what does it mean?

Reading A Murder of Quality by John le Carré, I came across the following remark by Mrs. Hecht, a detestable upper-class Englishwoman (emphasis mine): "Though, of course, the Midlands are ...
1
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1answer
95 views

The usage of “Despite the fact that” [closed]

Can I add "such as " in front of the clause like this: Despite the fact that cognition may affect many different facets of ecology in wild animals, such as, dominance, sexual selection and ...
8
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2answers
258 views

Why “paediatrics” but “pedagogue” in British English?

There's an account of the British ae/oe and American "e" spellings (as in diarrh(o)ea, f(a)eces, and other fun words) on wikipedia. What I'm wondering is why, even in British English, pedagogue/...
1
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2answers
87 views

Heel of Italy in Wikipedia? [closed]

Who can describe it for me? what does mean Heel and relation to italy? the region situated on the "heel" of Italy.
0
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3answers
90 views

Is there an English word that means “to feel the call of the homeland”?

I seem to remember reading it once, sort of meaning the opposite of diaspora - once you have spread far, you would feel the X, the call to return to the homeland?
10
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3answers
3k views

Where does the word “snogging” come from?

Where does the word snogging come from, in the sense of canoodling? I’m looking for it etymology, not for its connotation or phonoaesthetic properties, as the answer of the other question provides. ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

In British English, do you say “in high tide” or “at high tide”?

In American English you would say, for example, "At high tide the water level would be here." Is it different in British English? I'm reading a document that says, "In high tide the water level would ...
14
votes
3answers
68k views

“Invite” vs. “invitation”

I hear a lot of people saying "Send me an invite". I always thought that it was an 'invitation'. Is "sending one an invite" accepted usage? Or is it incorrect? If I need to get my wedding invitation ...
7
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4answers
5k views

“S'il vous plaît” = “If you please”?

In Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot detective stories, Poirot uses the phrase “if you please” a lot. Does this come from the French phrase “s’il vous plaît”?
0
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0answers
29 views

Where in the world is the term 'flatmate' used?

Here in New Zealand the term 'flatmate' is the most commonly used term to refer to the people who share a rented living arrangement, much the same way that Americans would use 'roommate'. According ...
1
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1answer
114 views

“They saw the bus to come to the station.” What is wrong with this sentence? [closed]

Please, correct (if it needs) this sentence: They saw the bus to come to the station. Should I use to here?
9
votes
5answers
8k views

“If I knew you're coming I wouldn't have come”

Is the statement If I knew you're coming I wouldn't have come correct? Should we use If I had known you're coming, I wouldn't have come instead? Please consider American-British ...
4
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2answers
3k views

Is the term “city boy” a commonly used appellation for London bankers? Does it only apply to them, or is it colloquial for other London denizens?

I was watching the British series Sherlock Holmes and I noticed a couple of times they referred to bankers Sherlock was investigating or talking to as city boys. How common is this usage? Would the ...
0
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2answers
158 views

One Word : What do you call who chill / relax a lot? [closed]

I need one word for people who chill / party / relax / play games / travel and just chill most of the time. Some Word like 'Freizeit' , but it needs to be used as a noun for persons (eg, traveller, a ...
1
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3answers
66 views

Operating System Concept, A Translation is need? [closed]

Who can translate the following sentence in a simple manner? Between garbage collections free space will build up, which cannot be reclaimed until the next time the garbage collector runs. This ...
2
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2answers
40 views

"Proper Cheerio”: Proper?

A call to BrE speakers: A television outlet in NE US is advertising a gala fundraising event coinciding with the finale of the Downton Abbey television series in the States. Sunday, March 6, 2016 ...
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0answers
77 views

How do the British pronounce these names? [closed]

Leif, as in Leif Ericsson; Elise, I know the British pronounce Denise like "dih-'neez"; Gisele; and Gisela
12
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2answers
1k views

Is “chaperon” versus “chaperone” a US versus British English thing?

I've noticed that "chaperone" can also be spelt "chaperon", without the "e" at the end. Is this a case of American English simplifying a British English word, or something else? The original French ...
0
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0answers
157 views

I wouldn't vs I'd not

I'm defending my word choice to an editor in a novel I've written. There are two points of view: one is a native Irish speaker, and the other, an American born and raised here. They're both eighteen. ...
1
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1answer
94 views

Is there a British slang word for “company man”?

I remember coming across a word that was British, and seemed to be a more specific reference to what we call a "company man" in the US. But this was a while ago and I forget it.
16
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7answers
9k views

“to bath” vs “to bathe”

Recently, I came across the verb to bathe written as bath in two English coursebooks used by Italian students. The first time I saw it, I dismissed it as a typographical error and told my private ...
9
votes
4answers
545 views

“[a/the] equivalent of” vs. “[a/the] equivalent for” vs. “[a/the] equivalent to”

Which of the following constructs sound more idiomatic to you? Is there any British/American equivalent to the French phrase "broyer du noir"? Is there any British/American equivalent for the ...
3
votes
2answers
193 views

must vs have to: British usage and academic rules

I am teaching 'have to' vs 'must' (British English usage) and, according to the book, the difference is as follows: must: it's necessary to do it (because the speaker says so) have to: it's ...
15
votes
5answers
36k views

Why is 'forty' spelled without a 'u' in Canadian/British English?

I was writing in Word today (with the Canadian English dictionary enabled) and it kept putting a redline under "fourty" which I couldn't understand. A bit of searching says that, even in British and ...
58
votes
8answers
38k views

Is there a reason the British omit the article when they “go to hospital”?

Why do British speakers omit the article in constructions like "go to hospital" or "go on holiday"? Pretty much all American speakers would rephrase those as "go to the hospital" and "go on a holiday",...
0
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0answers
39 views

Why do some people drop “the” when saying “At The Hospital”? [duplicate]

Frequently I hear friends saying "He was in Hospital". Here in Texas, and elsewhere in the US, we typically say "He was in the hospital". Any reason for the discrepancy?
-2
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1answer
97 views

Why 'Germanic Languages' and 'Germanic Tribes'?

I've never been a fan of the word 'Germanic' and it's use to cover all Northern European (except the so-called 'Celtic Fringe') Tribes due to it's overtly political connotations. Can anyone tell me ...
4
votes
4answers
13k views

How do they express the time, in American and British English?

I don't know if this is a good question. But as far as I know, and as I do it, American English also say "after" other than "past" in expressing times. For example, a quarter after six instead of, a ...
0
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1answer
61 views

Present Perfect Simple vs Past Simple [closed]

How much has it cost? My father has paid for it. That's why I don't know its price. vs How much did it cost? My father paid for it. That's why I don't know its price. Which one is more ...
6
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2answers
19k views

“courgettes” vs. “zucchini” under a historical perspective

In this TimLymington's answer it is said: Interestingly, there is another vegetable with the same identity problem; what the British call courgettes and the Americans zucchini. What is the ...
0
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1answer
36 views
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3answers
129 views

What is the etymology of the term “form factor”?

I'm a theoretical physicist, and am doing some work on quantities called form factors. To an expert, a form factor says something about scattering particles from fields. This probably originated from ...
3
votes
1answer
67 views

What does it mean to “take the mickey out of” something?

I am a Yank. I have a friend who lives in the UK, in Sussex. She writes: Mike and Rose are pretty good, but they tend to take the mickey out of my inadequacies. Mike and Rose are her ...
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5answers
1k views

How to express someone's height in metric

If someone is 169cm tall, what is the most common way of saying their height in metres and centimetres in American/Australian/British English? I'm not interested in converting metres (meters) and ...
1
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1answer
92 views

What are the levels of proficiency in english and the vocubulary subsets at each level [closed]

What are the levels of proficiency in english and the vocubulary subsets at each level. As in how many words should a person know at each level of english proficiency and is there a reference list of ...
0
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2answers
43 views

Do noun phrases comprise prepositions too?

Do noun phrases comprise prepositions too? For example: The apple in the fridge is mine. Here the noun phrase is "The apple in the fridge" or just "The apple"?
31
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8answers
10k views

When talking to American clients, should I say “smoothie” or “milkshake”?

We have a client visit planned to our service center (in India) and I am in-charge of Food and Beverages for our client's entire itinerary. I am writing to my client's Travel coordinator(an American) ...