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

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Word to describe something of something of something

What is a word for recursion/nesting of an entity in English ? I'm looking for a word that replaces the colloquially used -ception suffix. A generic term that encapsulates all nested attributes. For ...
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3answers
81 views

Need polite phrases expressing disagreement with the information/conclusions of another person, especially an educator [closed]

My classmate told me I should always say, "With all due respect," or "I politely disagree," when disagreeing someone - especially an educator - in order to avoid being perceived as rude. For example: ...
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0answers
53 views

I want to know a quote of Ralph Waldo Emerson [closed]

A quote attributed to Ralph Waldo Emerson is, Do what you know and perception is converted into character. I don't understand its meaning well. Would you convert this old sentence into modern ...
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2answers
312 views

How to correctly use the expression “safe travel(s)”?

A colleague of mine recently reached out to me. I asked if he would like to meet up sometime to which he notified me that he would be traveling the remainder of this week. In what context is it okay ...
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1answer
20 views

What is the best and most concise way to Describe a Town and its Surroundings? [closed]

I am creating a Text Based Game. When a character arrives in a Town, they are supposed to describe the town that they are in based on the buildings that are in the town. At the moment I have a very ...
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1answer
30 views

What is the right use for each expression? [closed]

You can call me at my cell phone. You can call me on my cell phone. You can call me from my cell phone. You can call me via my cell phone. What are the differences among them?
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1answer
91 views

How else could you tell a person you “are curious about them”? [closed]

For example, "You induce/promote/inspire curiosity in me." "I am very curious in you." (Sounds awful)
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5answers
78 views

Is there a better way to say “the highest possible”

Here is the sentence I am trying to improve: "How building a culture of Quality results in better care and the highest possible reimbursement revenue." Seems clunky but I'm a bit stuck. ...
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7answers
1k views

What expression to use when a wave hits the beach and fades away?

I am looking for word or expression that refers to the moment when a wave, with all its strength, closes itself, hits the beach and fades away.
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1answer
44 views

Expressions connected to heavenly bodies

Do these expressions,Saturnine personality,mercurial temperament,lunatic,venusian arts,martial arts,attribute their origin to astrology?
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23answers
4k views

Name for someone whose interest might be to discredit one's results by trying to find hypothetical mistakes?

What do you call a person whose interest might be to discredit your results by trying to find hypothetical mistakes? This person does not seem to focus on solving a problem with pragmatism. Is there a ...
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4answers
67 views

Word(s) that emphasize or magnify the separator rather than the separated

One can say, “Trees separated by fences”, or “Posts split by comments”; or use the active, “Fences separate the trees” and “Comments split the posts”. The mind's eye may see posts with the first ...
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1answer
63 views

English equivalent for the Indian saying

Is there an English equivalent for the Indian saying " A wandering monk and running water never get polluted".
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1answer
32 views

History of the phrase 'Nina from Carolina'

According to online dictionaries, the definition of this is "the sum of 8 and 1" or 9. What is the origin of this?
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1answer
49 views

should have instead of could have [closed]

I've heard this on a crime documentary. Two intruders break into a house, a confrontation ensues with the residents (wife and husband). The couple manages to disarm one man and fight off the other. ...
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1answer
41 views

Serving wine/drinks [closed]

You're pouring wine for your friend.If your friend can only drink a little.What expression would you use that means"tell me if this amount of wine is ok for you"?
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2answers
47 views

Asking permission [closed]

If you want to enter someone's bedroom and you want to avoid unpleasant situations(they're changing their clothes,for example) what would you say?
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2answers
47 views

Classic word or phrase for many in one

I am looking for a word which describes many in one in classic english. If possible please provide modern word ideas as well.
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1answer
25 views

Is ‘return good’ an idiomatic response?

Can I reply to someone's ‘Thank you’ with ‘return good’? For example: A: Thank you for all your advice and guidance. B: You're welcome, I hope it will return good on you.
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2answers
28 views

Is “may or may not X” logically incorrect?

Thoughts on redundancy aside, using or in this phrase seems wrong to me. Should it not be and? My reasoning is this: There are only two possibilities on the actions concerning X -- either X will be ...
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1answer
61 views

History of the Expression “Search Me”

The phrase "search me" is so ubiquitous in the English language that it is found on every list of common idioms. It is a situational idiom for "I don't know" in response to any direct question. But ...
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1answer
44 views

Can any old loud noise be called stentorian?

In his book about monsters, "The Foundling," D. M. Cornish describes the arrival of an ettin or giant: "Suddenly the whole forest seemed to burst with a stentorian cracking." A voice can be ...
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2answers
83 views

Cost-benefit analysis: expressions, idioms, phrases or words that convey a sense of whether something is “worth it”. Any suggestions?

I'm looking for any expressions that can be used to convey a sense of "cost-benefit analysis", whether formal or informal, but not necessarily literally referring to a balance sheet. An expression ...
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3answers
108 views

A word for a scrawny, ghastly but wise and academic or studious person

I'm looking for a word, not necessarily a direct “reverse dictionary” sort of word that has the definition above, but even a creative word that can describe, label, or represent that sort of person ...
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1answer
98 views

Meaning and origin - “More on point than a sock”

In TV Show "Elementary" - Season 2 - Chapter 15, Dr Watson starts saying: More on point than a sock What is the meaning of this expression? What is the relationships with "points" and "socks"? ...
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3answers
113 views

The English equivalent of the Arabic: “Something is innocent of you”

It is used when someone claims to be something, and the other person nullifies his claim. It's like saying they are a liar and that particular thing doesn't have anything to do with him or her. ...
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3answers
52 views

How do you properly define and use the phrase, “buy into”?

I found this line while I was reading: That commercial said that this product would help me lose weight in one week. I’m not buying into that idea. While I somehow understood the meaning of the ...
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2answers
99 views

Expression meaning crying in reaction to beauty [closed]

Is there a word or phrase that means crying because of beauty or crying in reaction to beauty?
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1answer
38 views

Can I use “short of being exhaustive” in this case?

I'm making a list and want the reader to know that this list is not complete, that it is only a part of a larger list... Is it correct to say "this list is short of being exhaustive" in this case? Is ...
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1answer
28 views

“Per documentation:” vs. “Per the documentation:”

I am often quoting the documentation of the software I am writing about on StackOverflow. Typically, I use the short phrase: Per documentation: Also serving as deep link to the quoted passage, ...
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1answer
56 views

Why is it “'s” after Let and before a verb, example “Let's go” or Let's do something"? [duplicate]

We often learn the structure Let's do something but Why it is "'s" after Let and before a verb Why does we need 's in this structure? 's =is? or was
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1answer
25 views

What is the difference between the idioms “Feeling guilty” and “State of guilt”

I was reading the meanings of 'Culpability' and 'Contrite' on Magoosh's app, which defines them as a 'State of guilt' and 'to be remorseful' respectively. I then wondered if there is a difference ...
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2answers
73 views

If I were to have or If I should have [duplicate]

I am not native English. My question regards the conditional form of the verb have to, must. I was wondering if I could use in interchangeable way the expressions "If I were to have" and "If I should ...
2
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2answers
67 views

Aphorisms that use two words in reverse order [duplicate]

I've found aphorisms often that play on the meaning of two words and their interaction and was wondering what one might call them. An example is the PJ Harvey song name: The whore hustles and ...
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1answer
53 views

What does “he is kind of big deal” mean?

What does he is kind of big deal mean? In this dictionary, it means an important person In another dictionary, it means A sarcastic way of referring to some one who has had an incredible run of ...
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1answer
42 views

Can we use the expression “1 shot kills 2 birds” to express the idea that you do 1 thing but it can have many benefits?

Ok, sometime in life you do 1 thing but that action can give 2 or more benefits. For example, before owning a car you have to wake up early everyday and have a 10 minutes walking to the station to ...
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1answer
42 views

Verbal compounds such as come-to-be, come-to-know, come-to-X

Reading about intellectual history and the history of natural science, I have very often come across the expression to come-to-be as a synonym for to come into being, to start to exist, to originate, ...
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2answers
68 views

Replacement For “Drive Someone Nuts” [closed]

In the expression to drive someone nuts, I studied that it's possible to replace the word nuts with words like: bananas, crazy, insane, bonkers, ... I'd like to know is this expression polite? If it ...
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1answer
47 views

“Front of action” vs “action front”

Is there any distinction between "fronts of action" and "action fronts", or are these expressions equally correct and have exactly the same meaning? Here are some EXAMPLES I found in the Internet. ...
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2answers
54 views

What is a witty synonym for the phrase “waste of time?” [closed]

Another way to express waste of time?
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6answers
2k views

Word for Secretive Marriage that is not Elope

I'm unsure if there is any term for this other than "A secretive marriage", but figured I would let you smart forum goers decide. I am aware of the word Elope: To run away secretly with the ...
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8answers
2k views

Good expression for “things are starting to work”?

Is there a good and meaningful expression for "things are starting to work"? Italians would say "le cose stanno ingranando", where the verb "ingranare" literally translates "to gear". Can it be used ...
1
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1answer
43 views

Is this girl “piling on agony” or “ throwing a pity party” or what?

Is this girl"piling on agony"? ( I mean she is trying to draw attentions, while her situation is not that bad and scary, she is shedding tears falsely(?), and reacting so exaggeratedly ) What is the ...
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2answers
48 views

On tense: 'realized that the number of something had been increasing'

Why does a sentence like I realized that the number of cars had been increasing sound strange? I googled "realized that the number of * had been increasing", and then I found only three exmples. ...
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0answers
25 views

On the referent of 'during that time' / 'meanwhile'

Can during that time refer to a relatively long time? Or can during that time be used regardless of whether the span is long or short? For example, I think (1) is ok: (1) I waited for a bus for 10 ...
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6answers
2k views

Word/phrase that means a series of problems of increasing severity caused by a small error

Something small goes wrong, and this triggers something slightly bigger, which triggers something slightly bigger, and so on and so forth until you end up with a chain of problems of increasing ...
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1answer
32 views

'In the ranks' OR 'With the ranks'

Which of the following two phrases is correct? I'd put him right there in the ranks of the best anthropologists out there. OR I'd put him right there with the ranks of the best ...
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3answers
94 views

Phrase/Idiom for increasing odds of winning by placing multiple bets

I'm looking for a phrase/idiom that represents when you increase your chances of winning some sort of gamble (or event with multiple possible outcomes) by saturating the field with bets. E.g. ...
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14answers
2k views

Is there an expression or idiom for something convenient that happens right when you need it to?

Especially if it's something unlikely. Almost as if it could only happen in a movie. For instance, you're about to be robbed and a random cop on patrol arrives at that exact time. What are the chances ...
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1answer
54 views

Is there an idiom suggesting the following fact: The name of the book belies the theme in it.

E.g.: I answer a question on ELU based on the subject line, however, I realise later that the body of the question provide a different input altogether. The name of the book belies the theme in ...