Collocation refers to the appearance or occurrence of groups or pairs of words, particularly when more frequent than random chance would suggest.

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2
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5answers
131 views

A word meaning collaborate [closed]

Looking for a short(ish) word approximating "collaborate." The word might also be a clever metaphor or symbol for the idea of collaborating / working as one.
1
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2answers
116 views

Rephrasing “patient with suspected cancer” [closed]

Is it possible to form a sentence like A patient who is suspected for/with/?? cancer and if so, what is the correct preposition after suspect?
3
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4answers
2k views

“To be assigned to” usage question

Many years ago I translated a document and wrote "he was assigned to an operation" (context: hospital operation, the assignee is undergoing one). An English professor who volunteered to copyedit my ...
12
votes
11answers
2k views

“School Students” — what, like there's any other kind of student?

I think this might be a Pennsylvania thing: every so often, you'll see a van or small bus labeled, not "School Bus" or anything sane normal like that, but "School Students". Whenever I see a van ...
1
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3answers
150 views

The wrong group to be “in” Or “on”?

'They either participate with some decorum, or recognise this is the wrong group to be on!' Is that sentence idiomatically and grammatically correct? Can on and in be used in this sentence?
0
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2answers
115 views

Which preposition to use with “forum”

I would hugely appreciate your help thinking through the tagline for a new online forum we are creating. The current version reads: A Forum on Our Economy, National Security and Sustainability. ...
0
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1answer
50 views

GOT: “twins to the first”

Yo, I got stucked in reading game of thrones song of ice and fire at prolog part on this sentence: They emerged silently from the shadows, twins to the first. Three of them....four...five... ...
1
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2answers
262 views

Is “release stress” acceptable in English?

Would it be correct English to say "release stress", for example: "If you do not find a way to release stress, you will get tired, you may even fall ill." Is "release stress" an acceptable ...
0
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1answer
165 views

What do “a bare foot” and “flat on his belly” mean in this context?

In the opening prologue to the novel A Game of Thrones, two sentences left me with questions: The great sentinel was right there ať the top of the ridge, where Will had known it would be, its ...
2
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2answers
826 views

Do I take a small nap or a light nap?

I heard a friends say that he's going to take a small nap. Is this correct usage? I thought we only take light naps.
1
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3answers
1k views

Use of preposition “with” after the word “marry”

Is it right to use the preposition "with" instead of "to" after the word "marry or married" under any given circumstances if we change the position of gender being mentioned? For example: "She is ...
0
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3answers
1k views

Is there a difference between “anatomic” and “anatomical”?

I want to say "anatomical context". Google tells me that anatomical in that context is preferred. An online dictionary claimed that American English does not have anatomic but only knows anatomical.
0
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4answers
564 views

Is it right to say “before since”?

I wonder if "before since" is right in my sentence. If not, could you please help me improve it? This company provides products since 2010. Consequently, there is no record of this product before ...
1
vote
3answers
103 views

Any reason why the collocation “the wound healed” is more common than “the injury healed”?

"The wound healed" gets 890,000 hits when googled, whereas "the injury healed" only gets 525,000. Is there any reason for the difference? Whether the damage to someone's body is deliberate – wound – ...
1
vote
1answer
114 views

“Appear” instead of “look” in compounds (good appearing, cheesy appearing, etc.)

As far as your English variety goes, is it OK to substitute "appearing" for "looking" in compounds without altering the meaning? ... for a business to want good appearing, well dressed, healthy ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Which is correct — “email me [on/at] x@y.com”? [duplicate]

Which variant is the correct one: email me on xxx@xxx.com email me at xxx@xxx.com email me to xxx@xxx.com Or should another preposition go there?
2
votes
1answer
2k views

“Take on responsibility” vs. “take up responsibilty”

I now have to take _ additional responsibility. Are both on and up grammatically correct? Is there a difference in meaning? When to use which one?
1
vote
3answers
538 views

Dreams come true or they are fulfilled. What about 'hopes'?

Let's say things went the way we had hoped they would. Would it be appropriate, then, to say, 'our hopes were fulfilled' or is there a more acceptable or better expression? Apparently, 'things went ...
2
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2answers
1k views

What is the difference between the adjectives/adverbs “broad” and “wide”? the nouns “breadth” and “width”? [duplicate]

Broad and wide are near synonyms but only near, since "a broad smile" is a more common collocation than "a wide smile", and you can say "eyes wide open" but not "eyes broad open". Breadth and width ...
2
votes
3answers
745 views

Do you “hit” or “press” a button?

I am currently writing an user manual for a software tool, providing step-by-step usage instructions. I am aware that pressing a button is a perfectly fine expression. However, I'm trying to find ...
1
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2answers
58 views

'Blowback' with 'much'

Jawad Sukhanyar & Rod Nordland, In Prison Release, Signs of Karzai’s Rift With U.S. (NYT): The amount of people advocating for a long-term relationship with Afghanistan is pretty small in ...
3
votes
3answers
180 views

What preposition do we use with the adjective 'telling' when it means 'revealing'?

Example I: "How telling this is [of/about] the way international students continue to be perceived by their American peers on U.S. campuses?" Example II: "Public opinion is telling ...
0
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2answers
3k views

“Following a suggestion” vs. “taking a suggestion”

I am going to be following your suggestion. I am going to be taking your suggestion. Do they mean the same thing? If not, what is the difference between them? If they do mean the same thing, ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

“Enter a market” vs. “break into a market”

Could you please shed light on the difference, if any, between "enter" vs. "break into" a market? Are they synonyms and interchangeable, or does the latter of the two imply more force?
2
votes
3answers
1k 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 ...
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votes
2answers
544 views

Can a regret be expressed? [closed]

I know that interest, dissatisfaction, condolence, apologies can all collocate with express, but I am not sure if regret can. I am thinking about the following sentence in particular: I would like ...
6
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5answers
4k views

“desert island” versus “deserted island”

What is the difference between "a desert island" and "a deserted island"? Are they synonyms?
0
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2answers
62 views

“Get a scare” or “catch a scare”

A friend of mine insists that you can 'catch a scare', but I've only ever heard 'get a scare'. I googled the expression and mostly got 'catch a scare card' or 'catch a scare crow', with only one ...
0
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4answers
1k views

Do you shoot a gun or fire a gun? [closed]

He shot a gun. He fired a gun. Do these sentences mean the same thing? I often hear the former, but it has always felt wrong to me (as if another gun were the target). 
4
votes
3answers
11k views

“Excel at something” vs. “excel in something”

I've come across a question while writing an exam Roger really excelled ___ sports A) at B) on C) in D) for My first thought was 'in', later I remembered using 'at' also. I've ...
3
votes
3answers
125 views

“Build a PC”, “assemble a PC”, or something else?

When you have all the parts of a PC and you need to connect them into a working PC, which is the appropriate verb to describe this action: build, assemble or something else?
2
votes
4answers
134 views

What do you do to a gap?

I failed to find a way to reconcile the gap between reality and my ideal. I tried two expressions, 'bring down the gap' and 'overcome the gap', but I realized that the gap cannot be brought ...
0
votes
2answers
226 views

What is a better antonym pair than “upmost” vs. “deepest” for blood vessels?

I’m thinking about the opposite ends of a blood vessel, so perhaps the “upmost” blood vessels and “deepest” blood vessels. My problem is that I like neither word quoted in the previous sentence. ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

Does a laser “etch” things, or does it “engrave” them?

Which (if any) of these adjectives would you use for describing a surface that has been cut using a laser beam: a laser-etched surface a laser-engraved surface a laser-(something else) surface a ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

“High aspirations” vs. “large aspirations”

When you intend to say someone has a strong desire to achieve something high or great, is it proper to say they have "high aspirations"? Or would it be "large aspirations", or something else?
0
votes
3answers
106 views

“Seek the truth in X” vs. “seek the truth with X”

Ran into the phrase to seek the truth in love meaning "seek truth without hurting others in the process". I feel it should be "with" rather than "in." No rule in this case?
1
vote
1answer
87 views

Is it correct to say “source to” instead of “source of”?

Is it correct use to as preposition in the following sentence? Books are the best source to knowledge. I have mostly seen of as being used with source, for example "source of knowledge". But I ...
0
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4answers
183 views

does “sluggish” have a negative connotation?

Context: The Processing Speed for situations requiring immediate attention is sluggish I'd like to know if this sounds acceptable in a neuropsychological report, or if there's a more suitable word. ...
0
votes
1answer
118 views

suitable positive alternative to unimpaired (e.g. in neuropsychological function)

I'm translating a neuropsychological assessment report into English and I'm not sure which word/phrase to use here: The neuropsychological functions related to the performance of volitional and ...
1
vote
1answer
183 views

What is the most common collocation to describe the seven trumpets blown in Revelation?

Revelation 8:1-2 (of the Bible) says the following (KJV): And when he had opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven about the space of half an hour. And I saw the seven angels which ...
5
votes
4answers
38k views

“Elder brother” or “older brother”?

I've read both forms in newspapers and online news: elder brother and older brother. What's the difference between them? When should I use which?
-1
votes
2answers
647 views

“Confined in the case”, “confined on the bus”

The preposition “to” is widely used in the phrase “be confined to”. My question is, can I use “in” or “on” in the following sentences? Someone is confined in the case. Someone is confined on ...
1
vote
4answers
967 views

Preposition for “to be qualified”

Would you please tell me whether the following fragment is grammatically correct? ...led me to be qualified in various science Olympiads. For instance, I ranked 21st among... I know that ...
0
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2answers
96 views

“Delinquent” to describe something non-monetary

Can delinquent be used to describe something like a school assignment? You still have some delinquent assignments. Or does the word only apply to monetary matters?
0
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1answer
199 views

we take safety measures, do we also 'take' control measures?

Someone provided me with a PowerPoint presentation and instructed me to convert it into a word document with sentences rather than point form notes. Here is what the PowerPoint slide said: "Control ...
0
votes
1answer
84 views

“is” or “play” for a role?

i heard someone say "Music is such an important role in my life." I have always thought "role" should be used with "play / have / take", so it goes like "Music has an important role in my life." Is it ...
0
votes
1answer
45 views

“Arguments to the topic” or “arguments for the topic”?

I'm not sure whether it is possible to say "arguments for the topic" or "arguments to the topic" when I want to express opinions that would relate to the given topic.
0
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5answers
987 views

Is “almost exactly” correct English?

Is the collocation "almost exactly" grammatical, when one is trying to express that something is almost at the edge of being exact? E.g.: ...and it's almost exactly like...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

Is it “query on …” or “query about …”

Which is grammatically correct? Query on Physics Final Query about Physics Final Say if this was a subject field in an email you're about to send to a teacher. Which would be better ...
2
votes
2answers
9k 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 ...