Expressions are words or phrases used to convey an idea, or else a particular term used conventionally to express something.

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How to name something that is common for two competing theories?

Geocentric and early heliocentric models of cosmos were different at the very core of theory, but they did share some elements: circular orbits, epicycles, uniform speed of celestial bodies. What ...
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4answers
387 views

What do we say when glue does not stick anymore?

I want to know how can we says to a glue that does not stick anymore, can we say "Glue has faded"? is there any specific word in English for this phenomenon?
2
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2answers
43 views

Hit and miss, or hit or miss?

Are both "Hit and miss" and "Hit or miss" valid English phrases? Hit-and-Miss Misses the Grammar Mark claims that "Hit and miss" is illogical, but I see both in Google NGrams.
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1answer
2k views

Is there a term for a foreign word that looks like an English word but has a completely different meaning?

Examples: gift (German) = poison poisson (French) = fish embarazada (Spanish) = pregnant triviale (Italian) = vulgar
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9answers
812 views

What is the word to describe a situation when rival gangs come together to figure out who is stronger?

a very common situation when 2 hostile groups,gangs come against each other to fight and dominate? It could be a slang word, what is the occurrence of this situation? I can think of gang fight, but ...
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1answer
36 views

Word for arson by secret police

Is there a word or phrase for when, during a protest meeting, the secret police lock the doors and set fire to the building?
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1answer
22 views

Is “prove the advantages of ” right?

I have designed two algorithms, say, A and B. Is it right if I say The following experiments prove the advantages of A over B? Or is there some better method to express the idea that "the ...
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1answer
18 views

All of … use or omit of? [duplicate]

While writing a sentence , I used all of my books , I got stuck with the usage of "of". Which of the two shall I write: all of my books vs all my books
1
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1answer
77 views

“Don't fall in anger”, I heard you say

If the phrase rang a bell, it's because the actual Oasis song lyric is "Don't look back in anger", I heard you say. But did my question title sound very strange or only slightly off? I might argue ...
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2answers
131 views

“I was used”, is it correct?

I want to use the term used, like I was used. I mean when someone used my name or some of my property for his own advantage. Is it OK to say in this context: I was used ?
2
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2answers
47 views

1902 use of phrase “giving a tiger” in the context of paying homage to the King's coronation

In Mrs Aeneas Gunn's autobiographical 'The Little Black Princess : A True Tale of Life in the Never-Never Land, 1905, she writes about previously celebrating the coronation of Edward VII in the bush. ...
2
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2answers
53 views

Arrogancy vs. Humility

Is there a word or phrase to describe a state of mind within an arrogant person who has been overwhelmed in a debate by another person who is humble in his/her demeanor, but armed with the truth to ...
2
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2answers
32 views

How to say that the two dates in two different calendars coincide?

How to say that the two dates in two different calendars coincide? Like, The 24th of Shawwal coincides with 12th of October. Shawwal: The tenth month of the year in the Islamic calendar.
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1answer
40 views

Eytymology of the expression “Pissy Pants McGee.” [on hold]

What is the origin of the expression "Pissy Pants McGee"? Thanks!
0
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1answer
38 views

Is there a name for this type of construction? [duplicate]

2-part question: (1) Is there a name for this type of construction in English? Examples: "We can't go, can we?" "I am here, aren't I?" "We mustn't get ahead of ourselves, must we?" "You are ...
0
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0answers
48 views

What is this type of “double-entry” phrase called?

What are the word combinations called? (Blank AND Blank) they are often used... Law and Order Judge and Jury Cops and Robbers Bait and Switch Cease and Desist Stop and Go Checks and ...
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1answer
40 views

Word or phrase describing on/off state

English is not my primary language so I have hard time with this problem. I am currently writing comments to computer code. There is setting that enable/disable some functionality. What would be ...
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0answers
38 views

Why is “delaying gratification” good? [on hold]

The documentary "Four Horsemen", directed by Ross Ashcroft, ends with the following narration: "A predatory capitalist's truest enemy, and humanity's greatest ally, is the self-educated individual ...
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1answer
65 views

What is the origin of “burning a hole in my pocket”?

It's an old expression, but when someone used it today it made me wonder about how the phrase came to mean what it does. Coinage would not seem to bear an association to being on fire, though if ...
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0answers
16 views

Which sentence is right? [duplicate]

If I want to know who he is, how can I ask? 1.Do anybody know who he is? 2.Do anyone know who he is? Do these two sentences have mistakes? or how can I modify it to make it better? if not, which is ...
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1answer
41 views

An expression for someone who causes “pain” and for those who receive this “pain” [duplicate]

What do you call a person who gives only pain to his dear ones (whom he cares about the most)? What do you call a person who gets only agony from the person he cares most?
0
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2answers
55 views

The correct espression for something’s surface is parallel to the ground level?

Like the title says, I thought it was something like “the kitchen table is now level” but I’m not sure anymore.
0
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1answer
41 views

in fact, in point of fact, as a matter of fact

Today I was tempted to write "in point of fact" and immediately wondered if this expression differed at all from "in fact" or "as a matter of fact." Dictionaries define one with the others. ...
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5answers
803 views

word or phrase for a smell that sparks nebulous memories of times or places past

I sometimes catch a whiff of something that reminds me very strongly, but very vaguely, of a time in my past. Different whiffs for different times. It's not a single identifiable smell and a single ...
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2answers
91 views

How do I respond politely to a salesperson? [on hold]

When a sales assistant asks "Can I help you?", can I respond with "No, thanks" ? Or are there more common ways of responding, instead of using "No, thanks" ?
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0answers
37 views

Common way to express that my guess is right [closed]

How do you say to express your guess is right? Example You guessed Yankees would beat Red socks, and actually Yankees won. How do you express that your guess was right?
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1answer
55 views

How to ask “why would I have regretted it”?

If someone asked me if I regretted something, how can I express if even his/her assumption that I regretted something surprises me? In my mother tongue I would answer with a question like "why would I ...
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4answers
166 views

If I can “fall in” love, can I “fall in” depression?

In Italian we say essere innamorato (to be in love) whereas the English idiom, to fall in love, expresses the idea of abandoning control, of letting oneself go. mi sono innamorato (I am in ...
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4answers
74 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 ...
2
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3answers
78 views

'at the bottom' - Synonym?

On top = atop, so is there a similar shorter synonym for at the bottom? In general, what are some formal terms describing this issue? How can I find resources on such synonyms?
2
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4answers
852 views

What does “If Machiavelli were a hacker, he'd have worked for the CSSG” mean [closed]

Machiavelli is a top guy in the "political science" field and Google shows CSSG as Computer Science Study Group. What does this quote mean? If Machiavelli were a hacker, he'd have worked for the ...
2
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0answers
59 views

poetic effect of segmentation of a group of words

Some poems break a sentence or a clause into two lines at the middle of one meaning group of words, like - ... a blue sky and ... What effect such an irregular line break has? Mr. Garrison ...
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2answers
71 views

WWI Equivalent of “Gotcha!”

I am looking for an equivalent of "Gotcha!", "Made it!" or other exclamatory phrases a World War One Airplane Pilot may use. The specific name is Frank Luke, an airplane ace. He just got out after ...
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2answers
54 views

You are trying to make me emotional

In the course of asking person B to do something (which that person resists, for various reasons) person A is evoking imagery, using flattery or making sentimental appeals with the intention of ...
3
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1answer
34 views

A Term or Expression for Recursion in a Lucid Dream

I occasionally have lucid "false awakening" dreams (the most recent occasion being this past night) where I know I'm dreaming, I have the conscious will to wake up, and when I attempt to wake up it ...
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5answers
669 views

How toffee-nosed is “toffee-nosed”?

Not being a speaker of British English, I was much amused on discovering the new adjective toffee-nosed. The American Heritage dictionary doesn't list it at all, but I found a definition in Collins: ...
2
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4answers
97 views

Is there a common expression for someone who “always holds a mobile phone in hand”?

I would like to know if there is a typical expression or phrase, used by native speakers, for someone who always has their mobile in their hand. I would prefer a spoken expression rather than a ...
1
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2answers
71 views

What's a modern equivalent of “fie on thee”?

Is there a modern equivalent to the archaic expression "fie on thee"? I'm aware of expressions such as "damn you" and the like, but I'm looking for something less strong.
0
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1answer
53 views

What words can I use to express a “great time”? [closed]

What words can I use to express a "great time"? I am trying to write an essay and I just need words that expresses a great time to make the essay sound interesting.
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3answers
43 views

Appointment in one year

I should find appropriate English phrase/expression for very late(?) appointment. Let's take a situation when someone should wait until the surgery operation for a one or too years just because there ...
11
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9answers
3k views

What's an item called that was required to progress in a video game, but now isn't?

This question was inspired by an Arqade question: How do I save a Destiny warp drive?. The premise is this: In order to progress to mission 3 (or 4 etc.) you must complete the second mission. The ...
0
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1answer
21 views

“A motion to adjourn is always in order.” — Lazarus Long

Adjourn means To suspend until a later stated time. But the statement A motion **to suspend until a later stated time** is always in order. does not makes sense. What does it mean?.
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1answer
92 views

Is there a term for saying 'all countries outside the United States' without using the word 'foreign'? (used with international audience)

I have to come up with a short description/label/identifier to describe two geographical groups: United States All countries except the United States The description would be read by a global ...
32
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13answers
4k views

What's a parallel for 'mitigate', for worsening a good situation?

I recently read an article claiming that employing some tactic was OK but could mitigate many of the good effects of the main action. What word should the author have used, as mitigate means to ...
2
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1answer
52 views

“In general,…”: do mathematicians use this phrase oppositely from everyone else?

In mathematical writings, one often encounters statements involving the phrase "in general" in the following sense: After the number 2, the next few prime numbers (3,5,7) are each odd numbers, and ...
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4answers
84 views

Difference between “Talk to me” and “Tell me”

Is there any difference between the usage of those two expressions in a conversation? Thanks in advance.
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0answers
6 views

Is A Expression like “How long does this letter take to arrive at London” unnatural? [migrated]

(Excuse for my broken English) I am Japanese student studying in English. Other day, my classmate was asked to translate above sentense into English by the teacher. この手紙がロンドンに着くまで、どのくらい時間がかかりますか? ...
3
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2answers
36 views

What is the semantical meaning of “To tell you the truth”

In many English literature the phrase-part "to tell you the truth" shows up. But in contrast to the literal meaning, this doesn't mean the characters were first lying about this. In Dutch these are ...
2
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2answers
356 views

to be between apartments

When somebody says that somebody else is between apartments, what do they mean? Take this sentence as an example: My brother lives in Chicago. At the moment he’s between apartments, so he‘s living ...
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6answers
332 views

What does a cat's tail do?

A friendly dog will wag its tail, especially when it's happy to see his owner. Cats can communicate their approval and appreciation too, but I don't remember ever hearing a cat wagging its tail for ...