Questions about words that are created by combining two or more other words together.

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0
votes
2answers
33 views

Timestep, time step, time-step: Which variant to use?

I am writing a piece on integration of differential equations. One of the words that I have to use frequently is "timestep" (however it is written), i.e. a step forward in the "simulated" time. There ...
1
vote
1answer
24 views

Slashes for hyphens in compound modifiers

Take the phrase "a joint FBI-SFPD task force" for example. According to my boss, a slash can stand in for the hyphen. I tend to disagree. Is this grammatically correct? Stylistically acceptable?
0
votes
0answers
19 views

What's the definition of a “compound noun phrase”?

As I understand it "a very hot day" is not considered a compound noun phrase, but "a too-hot day", "a far-out idea", and "the recently concluded meeting" are. The difference is not just a matter of ...
1
vote
2answers
140 views

Possessive form (of) with compound nouns

This is a main difference between the personality of good people and bad people. Is the sentence comparing personality of good people and personality of bad people? or comparing personality of ...
3
votes
3answers
185 views

Plural of “coming out?”

As "coming out of the closet" has become ubiquitous in recent years, what would the plural be? Would it follow the rule of "goings-on" or be a hyphenated "coming-outs" or something else entirely?
1
vote
4answers
640 views

Apartment building - flat building?

Does anyone in the UK say flat building? I live in the US, mind, so I have no clue. It sounds a bit funny saying that. Do they say apartment building instead, maybe? Or is there another word for a ...
14
votes
4answers
26k views

“Real time”, “real-time” or “realtime”

Which of real time, real-time and realtime is correct when you are talking about seeing something as it happens?
0
votes
1answer
32 views

Intermediate level student or intermediate-level student?

Intermediate level student or intermediate-level student? Which one is more correct/preferable?
1
vote
1answer
33 views

Which word is most correct in this case: re-settle or resettle?

In reference to the word settle as it pertains to the specific definition: Determine; decide on: There is some debate internally on whether to use the word resettle which only has one ...
1
vote
5answers
2k views

What word to choose as the opposite of “self-aware”?

What word would describe the quality of not being self-aware? unselfaware unself-aware un-selfaware un-self-aware non-self-aware I am aware that it is allowed to have multiple hyphens in a word. ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

OK to use “capstone” as an adjective?

The term "capstone project" is common. Google tells me there's also something called "Capstone Classroom." The dictionary -- whatever dictionary you might look in -- says "capstone" is only ever a ...
6
votes
2answers
43 views

what is the technical word for a “de-compounded” phrase

I am curious as to what the technical term for "de-compounding" a word is. For example, if I were to change the word "bookstore," and change it into the phrase, "store of books," what would that ...
11
votes
8answers
947 views

What does the “shed” in “watershed” mean?

It seems like a kind of house; if it is, I cannot grasp the meaning of watershed.
0
votes
1answer
663 views

Compounds and Phrases - differences

What are differences of compounds and phrases and what do they have in common? I know there is the "nuclear stress rule" (phrasal stress on the last word of phrase) and the "compound stress rule" ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

Words containing 2 overlapping standalone words [closed]

I'm looking for words that contain at least two other overlapping words. Word category or origin do not matter (in particular, constituent and containing terms may differ in these regards). Of course, ...
1
vote
1answer
79 views

What's the difference between 'single-hand' and 'single-handed'?

What's the difference between 'single-hand' and 'single-handed'? And why? Is meaning of 'single-hand' a subset of 'single-handed'?
24
votes
7answers
3k views

Is a lengthy combination of words with hyphens like “the worst not-technically-in-a-recession year in American history” a new fashion of writing?

I found a hyphenated word , “not-technically–in-a-recession” in the sentence of September 28 New York Times’ article titled “Why Obama Is Winning,” written by co-ed columnist, Ross Douthat. It reads: ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

Why does pluralization of compound words typically occur in the middle as opposed to the end of the word?

As I understand, correct plural versions of passerby and attorney general become passersby and attorneys general. But why? With passerby, the the preposition "by" has been combined with the noun ...
12
votes
3answers
470 views

Term for words like Snowmageddon, Nipplegate and even cheeseburger?

Is there a term for words like Snowmageddon, Nipplegate and even cheeseburger? I know they're portmanteaus (or portmanteaux), but they seem to belong to a special class of portmanteau. In the title ...
0
votes
1answer
43 views

codebase or code base?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Codebase Which is the more canonized version? canonized, not cannonized (although I'm certainly interested in anything that has been cannonized!)
0
votes
1answer
45 views

relative clause with compound antecedent

I wonder what is the general way to create a relative clause modifying a compound antecedent? For example: This data is from many proof of concept environments and production environments that ...
0
votes
2answers
90 views

What is the correct hyphenation of “human skin tissue emulating gel”?

A type of gel designed to emulate human skin tissue. So, is this a "human skin tissue–emulating gel" (en dash)? Or, is it a "human-skin-tissue-emulating gel" (all hyphens)? Does anyone know the ...
3
votes
2answers
2k views

One word for “a one-eyed person”

I've given an English children's story to a small group of Italian kids to read and perform. The story is about a boy who changes into a cat and makes friends with a one-eyed next-door neighbour; a ...
2
votes
3answers
130 views

Is “Thrashing Win” an oxymoron?

According to me, a "crushing defeat" and a "thrashing win" are opposites. I have always seen the usage of these two terms in sports. But I have seldom seen the usage of "thrashing defeat". Is ...
-2
votes
2answers
525 views

Is there another word for a “large family” or “small family”?

I'm searching for another, perhaps more technical term for a large and a small family. To clarify, I simply mean a family with many children and one with very few, if any, children. So I'm not ...
0
votes
0answers
43 views

Nonabelian or non-abelian?

I asked this question on Mathematics Stack Exchange (here) but I haven't had any luck so far. Allow me to copy the question: If I wanted to be scrupulous about correct spelling, is there any reason ...
0
votes
1answer
60 views

How would you indicate a single direction trip?

This question came up today in the office. We sell single direction bus trips through our site (wanderu.com) but have not agreed on which English word(s) should be used in text. Is it one-way or one ...
2
votes
3answers
118 views

Compounds and Phrases

What is the difference between compounds and phrases? How do I know that "watch-maker" is a compound but "steel bridge" is a phrase? Does the "head" have anything to do with it (complement-head or ...
5
votes
2answers
6k views

Noun + participle as adjective phrase

There's a construction in English that allows us to form a compound adjective from a noun and a past participle. Examples: This is a volunteer-built home. Our newspaper is student-run. ...
0
votes
0answers
235 views

Creating Old English compound words for placenames, surnames and weapons

I'm interested in automatically generating (mostly) Old English compound words, for use within a medieval fantasy video game. I have three categories below: Place-names: (using this) Riven-dale ...
0
votes
1answer
141 views

Use and meaning of o between words in blends

First things first: I'm italian, so please apologize me for my poor english. While trying to create a name for a thing, I got curious by the question in the title. Many English words (new and old ...
19
votes
3answers
7k views

“Time zone” vs. “Timezone”

My spell checker shows that both "time zone" and "timezone" are correctly spelled. Which one of these is the correct one to use?
1
vote
2answers
372 views

Sugarcane or Sugar cane? [duplicate]

Is there a difference between "sugar cane" and sugarcane? Is sugarcane wrong? What is the gramatical rule for joining two names like that? I have found 13.500 entries on google for sugarcane, but ...
3
votes
2answers
254 views

What should words be called that can be separated into two or more parts, each of which means the same as the word as a whole?

What should words be called that can be separated into two or more parts, each of which means the same as the word as a whole? I know there are at least three words in English that fit this ...
2
votes
1answer
68 views

Should I use the “correct” form or the form used in the specification

I'm writing about a web framework. Integral part of it is its lifecycle. Apparently (as for example my browser tells me), this is not the correct spelling. I should either use life cycle or ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the difference between a “prefix” and a “combining form”?

According to ODO, mini- is classified as a combining form. How exactly is this different from a prefix (or an affix, in general)? Can combining forms also be prefixes?
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Is it correct to say “Yesterday night”? [duplicate]

I have heard a lot of people say "Yesterday night" is that considered correct? I have always said last night.
5
votes
5answers
196 views

Is “missing person” considered a compound noun?

In the phrase missing person, is the whole phrase a compound noun or would missing be considered an adjective that modifies person? It seems like in many situations when it is used with other ...
0
votes
3answers
65 views

“A nounfull” of something

When I want to describe the amount of water one can hold in a cup, I might describe it as a "cupfull of water." Is is grammatically valid to extend this to other kinds of containers, like for example ...
0
votes
1answer
277 views

use of hyphen to apply an adjective to non-hyphenated compound word

Do I write "non-power of two" or "non-power-of-two", where I assume "power of two" is a non-hyphenated compound word?
2
votes
1answer
129 views

“a while” vs “awhile”

Is there a difference between "awhile" and "a while"? If there is, what is it? I've been wondering this for awhile, but now I actually need the answer.
2
votes
3answers
167 views

Is “webdesigner” a word?

I am a uh, designer of websites, and I would like to use the phrase for my profession correctly. Unfortunately, webdesigner is flagged by Google Chrome's spellchecker as a misspelling, and web ...
13
votes
5answers
1k views

Why is “wavelength” one word when “wave height” isn't?

Why is “wavelength” one word when “wave height” isn't? As another example, wave speed is two words. But wavelength is only one word. What is the reason for this? In Swedish and other contructs, ...
7
votes
1answer
15k views

“Firstname” or “First Name”?

In filling out forms, I'm starting to see a lot of this: Firstname: xx Lastname: yy Is it generally acceptable to join the words like that? Or should we be sticking to: First Name: ...
7
votes
4answers
22k views

Do I keep myself “up-to-date” or “up to date” on something?

Question is quite straightforward. I want to say that "I keep myself up-to-date on the latest technology". Or is it better "I keep myself up to date with the latest technology"? Thanks
5
votes
7answers
1k views

Why is it “materials science” instead of “material science”?

Does anyone know how the "s" at the end of "materials" in "materials science" came about? It seems like "material science" would be equivalent, and is more natural to say aloud. For comparison with a ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

Should the names of different sorting algorithms be “<qualifier> sort” or “<qualifier>sort”?

Should the names of different sorting algorithms be <qualifier> sort or <qualifier>sort? The titles of Wikipedia articles of these sorting algorithms are not consistent with respect to ...
1
vote
1answer
123 views

“Stockmarkets” vs. “stock markets”

I am having trouble with the difference between stockmarkets and stock markets — or should it be stock-markets? In some articles it is introduced as stockmarkets, but that term is not found in ...
0
votes
3answers
109 views

How to handle ambiguity caused by long clause and compound?

I am composing a sentence: People who have children who score A's in school and have good health are very happy. In this sentence, 'have good health' is intended to be a clause of 'people'; ...
1
vote
4answers
302 views

Decomposing “fingerprint”

I somehow ended up in a small argument about the first part of the compound word "fingerprint". The other person insists that the first word "finger" is an adjective, which I cannot agree with. ...