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

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Opposite of a requiem

The definition of a requiem is a song which plays on one's funeral. I was wondering, is there a word which means the opposite - a song which is used as a celebration of one's birth? Thank you!
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5answers
48 views

What does “to have something to them” mean?

I've been reading god is not Great by Christopher Hitchens which is from time to time hard to understand for me. I came across a sentence majority of which makes sense to me, but I lose the track at ...
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0answers
24 views

A Proper Answer to “Hello, I'm Dr. Stephen Newdell, How do you do?” [on hold]

The proper exchange, which apparently alludes everyone is as follows: 'Hello, I'm Dr. Newdell, How do you do?' 'I do well, doctor, and how do YOU do?' 'Quite well thank you. How can I ...
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4answers
61 views

What is the expression for a list of low importance items, part of a more important speech?

Summary: I am trying to find an expression equivalent to annonces parafiales in French I am looking for an expression which means "list of items of low importance, appended to a more important ...
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0answers
37 views

get off having sex [on hold]

I read an article talking about the movie "Nine and a 2/1 week " and found an expression " They get off having sex in public places". What does "get off" mean in this sentence?
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4answers
41 views

Words for adding to beginning and end of list, and beginning and end of node

Say, I have a small list of numbers: [2,4]. (I'm using a bit of math/code notation, but the idea is the same) If I were to add '0' to the beginning I would have [0,2,4]. I believe this is known as ...
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1answer
33 views

What's the origin/etymology of the phrase “regular old”? Does it have a clearly defined meaning?

It seems to me that the adjective phrase "regular old" seems to have a few distinct usages, but a confusing conversation and some fruitless searches as to a specific definition have me coming to ...
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1answer
463 views

Use of the word “definitive edition”

Can I use the phrase "definitive edition" to explain that a product has the most up-to-date and highest quality in the field as opposite to mean "last edition of the same series"? Thank you for your ...
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1answer
217 views

is the phrase “leave all worries” correct?

Is the phrase "leave all worries" right ? Or should it always be "No worries" when saying to someone who is disappointed with something ?
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2answers
50 views

Usage of touch the wood?

I've started using English language about 4 years ago after I moved to England. I came across this practice a few times: when people speak about their health or similar things they say this and touch ...
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2answers
81 views

A word for an amused surprise?

You tell your friend about a person's funny habit and that person shows it right away without knowing. You tell your friend "See!". You are surprised but you were right. What is the verb for that kind ...
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2answers
58 views

Is there a word or expression to describe a desperate act of “trying to be different”?

In the introduction of my paper/letter to a scientific journal, I would like to describe that, in a particular area of research, there are a lot of new methods presented during the last years, that ...
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7answers
2k views

Word/phrase for “treating the problem rather than the symptom”?

Is there a word that means the equivalent (or close to) the expression "treat the problem rather than the symptom" ? If not, is there a concise way to say this? For example, in discussing ...
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2answers
1k views

Term for words like “Hanky-Panky” [duplicate]

Is there a name for these kind of doubled words? For example: hanky-panky flim-flam hoity-toity boo-hoo zig-zag Note that some rhyme and others do not.
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3answers
152 views

Priscilla = a girl who prefers to stay home: who might this term have been based on?

From Flappers to Rappers, a book of American youth slang, records "Priscilla" as a 1920s slang word for a girl who prefers to stay home. I'm curious to know why the author chose that name. Is there a ...
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2answers
10k views

Origin of “for the birds” (Trivial; worthless; only of interest to gullible people.)

I really have looked, but the best I can come up with is this To say that something is "for the birds" is to call it horse manure. Dating from the days of horse-drawn traffic, the expression is ...
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0answers
63 views

Can the word “Sails” in any meaningful way equate to the number Six? [on hold]

Either historically, or even up through leetspeak, can it be understood by a group of English speaking people to stand-in for the number 6, and if so, how? It's understood that – for example purposes ...
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2answers
28 views

Near-universally vs nearly universally

Concerning style, usage, and correctness: what is the difference in meaning (and therefore usage & correctness) between these two phrases? A quick search reveals both are in use. Also, what ...
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2answers
128 views

Term or expression which best describes a problem that goes away when an expert attempts to diagnose it?

There is a phenomenon which I've seen happen across many circumstances. Generally, it goes something like this: The complainant has a recurring observable problem. The complainant contacts an ...
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2answers
86 views

Did I hear rightly – “Shiite Houthis are stated in to return the President to office.”

The answer would be very likely "No." I’ve been listening to AP Radio news, and heard the news of May 15 reporting the outcome of cease-fire negotiation between Saudi-led forces and Shiite Houthis as ...
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1answer
51 views

From/Since time immemorial

Which is correct? 'From' or 'Since' when applied to 'time immemorial'? I have seen both around, and have a feeling it might be 'from', but would like to check.
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0answers
36 views

What does the word 'brow' mean in descriptive prose or poetry? [on hold]

The dictionary says that it can refer to the eye brows or the forehead. But when writers talk about a person's 'furrowed brow', or 'wrinkled brow', what exactly are they referring to? Clearly, ...
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10answers
1k views

I need one word that describes something as both (1) necessary/essential and (2) not sufficient/non-comprehensive/lacking

I need one word that could roughly describe or imply something as both (1) necessary/essential/fundamental/foundational and (2) not sufficient/non-comprehensive/lacking/in need/primitive The word ...
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6answers
649 views

Can you sort by random?

This is the quote from Linux sort utility manual: -R, --random-sort sort by random hash of keys Isn't this a form of oxymoron? How can you sort by random, if usually random lists are ...
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3answers
438 views

How do you write the expression of disgust that sounds like “er”?

My daughter said to me this morning (the context is irrelevant): Er, it's all wet! The interjection I have written here as Er was synonymous with Yuck. Its wetness did not cause great happiness. ...
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3answers
33 views

Phrases with “To work”

Can I say this? I am not sure about the two phrases with "to work" "my aspiration is to live and study in a pluralistic environment and, then, to work towards a career in working with the main global ...
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4answers
2k views

“You belong to me” or “You belong with me” [closed]

What's the difference between the titular expressions? if any, at all. Oxford and Cambridge dictionaries could not help!!
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0answers
50 views

Is “And this X?” a common English expression?

In Spanish we say, "And this X?" as a short form for "And who is X?" Example: When I entered the room with Billy, Tom looked up and said, "And this high school brat?" Is this also a common ...
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3answers
104 views

A formal synonym/expression for “saying that”

I need a more formal expression for "saying that" here. I couldn't find another formal expression Saying that rape culture is an environment where emotional and physical violence against women ...
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0answers
34 views

Origins of “from the outside” (to mean from the beginning)

I came across a sentence that went something like this: I wish I'd known about this from the outside - I would have done a better job. I've heard "from the outside" used like this before a ...
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1answer
56 views

What does it mean to “wash [your] dirty linen in public”? [closed]

Such as in this example: "There’s too much shouting and screaming on the news channels these days. The only thing that people do is to wash their dirty linen in public." What does this ...
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2answers
46 views

“Tell apart” with “Could” [closed]

I'm familiar with phrase "Tell somebody apart" used with "could" in negative, i.e. : They were so different that I couldn't tell them apart. My questions are: Can "Tell apart" be used with ...
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3answers
78 views

Is there an expression to describe “thin”?

Is there an expression in English for a thin old woman which corresponds to "Dry as a root" in French?
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1answer
83 views

How to express combinations using “any […] by […]”

I'm writing a text in which I need to repeat combinations of k out of n - for example, "any 2 out of 6" - but I think something the likes of "any 6 by 2" would be more appropriate since the subject is ...
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5answers
121 views

Is there a specific term for when you get offended by a criticism which wasn't meant for you?

For example, person A says something not directed towards anyone in particular, but it was a criticism nonetheless, and it was intentionally meant to indirectly tell off some people. Person B takes ...
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2answers
40 views

What are the different resources to announce a digression?

I'm writing a paper, and I want to add a digression to enrich the line of argumentation. I can't find good figures or resources to announce that I will introduce a digression. I came across eggresion ...
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6answers
183 views

A simile / metaphor for the concept that an entity is formed from a wide range of factors

I am trying to explain that health is not simply determined by biological factors. Instead it is shaped by a whole host of variables: lifestyle, education, culture, attitudes, socio-economic factors ...
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4answers
746 views

Is there a word for lying on the bed peacefully, all your muscles relaxed?

Is there a word or an idiom for lying on the bed peacefully and happy? Throwing yourself down on bed arms wide open, all your muscles relaxed and staring at the ceiling with a happy smile like ...
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1answer
63 views

Is it correct/idiomatic to omit “once” in some cases?

Example: Once again, I traveled three hours just to sit alone. Again, I traveled three hours just to sit alone. We decided to go to the balcony. Once there, we leaned on the ...
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1answer
129 views

Is there a phrase, word or saying when one 'has the thought or feeling of causing hurt of mischief" despite never dreaming of acting on it?

For example I was assisting my sister in photographing a wedding. We were taking pictures as the bride was getting ready and I noticed a ketchup bottle on the kitchen table and the following popped in ...
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3answers
1k views

Use of “parley” meaning to convert?

I sometimes use the word "parley" as a verb effectively meaning "to convert from one language or system to another". Such as Stargate parleys the Egyptian deities into villainous star-faring ...
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4answers
80 views

Is there a term for extracting a cultural element from its originating environment and placing it in a foreign and contrived context?

I have a nagging feeling there’s a word or term for this practice. The example that lead to this question has to do with a food truck. A bar/restaurant in my city has apparently had an actual truck ...
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1answer
40 views

“Going above and beyond to assist” is this correct?

I'm writing a thank you note to a colleague who came in from vacation to assist me. Is this correct grammar: "Thank you for going above and beyond to assist in resolving the matter!"
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3answers
2k views

Is there a word or phrase for a nursing mother not biologically related to the baby she breastfeeds?

Nowadays he have human milk banks. In the olden days, however, it was not unusual to see a woman nurse the child of another mother who couldn't produce her own milk. Is there a word or phrase for a ...
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1answer
73 views

“Sir or Madam” vs “Madam or Sir” in formal letter

In a formal letter addressed to one or more unknown recipients, "Dear Sir or Madam" is the customary salutation. As a German native speaker, who is used to "Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren", writing ...
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3answers
2k views

“I, for one, don't know ”

I am curious about the precise meaning of for one in the expression "I, for one, don't know." This came up in a discussion about the amount of social efforts society should be willing to put in ...
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10answers
1k views

Is there a word or an idiom for barging in a room with anger?

Opening a door frustrated and rushing in like you are about to scold someone inside... Barging in a room with anger. Is there a word or idiom for that, other than storm in?
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9answers
781 views

English equivalent of saying “Don’t get in between the nail and the flesh”?

The saying “Don’t get in between the nail and the flesh” from my own language is typically addressed to someone who likes to provide unsolicited help by barging in on a heated conversation between two ...
2
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1answer
44 views

Is “Chicago sunroof” a real expression?

The expression is from "Better Call Saul". It was defined in the season finale: defecating into a car through an open sunroof as a prank So far, the only resource I've found that corroborates ...