This tag is for questions related to definitions and nuances of meaning of a word or phrase.

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0
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0answers
33 views

Word definition paradox [duplicate]

Just curious but are there any two words (possibly three in a tri-relationship) in the English language that define themselves with the other, therefore being subjected to a definition paradox? (They ...
4
votes
0answers
84 views

What does 'Roodow (wrongly spelled, only the sound)' mean?

In Australia, I have met a lot of people saying a word (sound like) 'roudow' to respond (mostly to end, like 'alright' equivalent) a conversation. I have been searching around but haven't got any clue ...
0
votes
1answer
32 views

What does the poem “My Cup” by Robert Friend mean? [on hold]

"My Cup" by Robert Friend They tell me I am going to die. Why don't I seem to care? My cup is full. Let it spill.
16
votes
3answers
4k views

What does “balls” mean as a reply word or interjection?

Here’s a question again in the Jeffery Archer’s “The Prodigal Daughter.” The heroine of the novel, Florentina Kane’s husband, Richard finds in the Wall Street in a morning that Jake Thomas, Chairman ...
-4
votes
0answers
38 views

Email of replay to some one ask about me [on hold]

absolutely I'm remember you. I'm doing great, thank you for asking! Now I'm lecturing at Ahlia University
-3
votes
1answer
86 views

Are all Congressmen idiots? [on hold]

Really couldn't resist the question title :-) This question asks about the famous quote by Mark Twain: Suppose you were an idiot and suppose you were a member of Congress. But I repeat myself. ...
2
votes
3answers
26 views

Naming of paragraph subsections [duplicate]

Regarding the questions: What do you call those divisions of a book bigger than a paragraph but smaller than a chapter? Is not such a division best known as a PARICOPE from the Greek PARIKOPE or "a ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

What is a clustermug?

What is a clustermug? I could not find the word in a dictionary. Duke stopped laughing, but he was still smiling. Unabashed. "It's a clustermug," he said. The quote is from the novel Under the ...
0
votes
2answers
59 views

The true meaning of “did not immediately respond to requests for comment” [on hold]

This expression is included in almost any negative news story - stock price decline, corporate scandal, criminality, you name it - but to me, it's frustratingly vague. I see these as "weasel words" - ...
0
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0answers
50 views

Explain Corruption to a Five Year Old [on hold]

How would you explain what the English word "corruption" means in such a way that a five year old would clearly understand your intention? Example: "Because of corruption, the city works project was ...
1
vote
0answers
20 views

What does it mean to “frame an argument”? [on hold]

I have asked this same question on Yahoo! Answers before, but I didn't quite understand the meaning of it. The phrase is used like so: "See how the author framed his argument?; What is he doing up ...
0
votes
2answers
36 views

What is the exact meaning of this sentence?

The encouraging mails were not restricted to readers but also to some of the regular contributors to The Hindu .
0
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0answers
38 views

Meaning of “had had of” [on hold]

The other day someone said to me "If [name] had had of seen that then you never know" and it sounded weird.
1
vote
3answers
98 views

Use of “crack” in this statement?

Michael Leiter, NBC News National Security Analyst, was explaining what he thought would be the most important information in the recent MH17 incident. He stated what was more important than how was ...
-3
votes
3answers
52 views

“Evocative” vs. “provocative” [on hold]

I am starting to use evocative and provocative interchangeably. I would like to understand the difference between these words and when one should be used instead of the other. I would also ...
5
votes
5answers
738 views

Thrice or triple?

There is a fairly well known recipe for Triple Cooked Chips. It involves cooking chips three different ways / times. Is triple cooked correct or should it be called Thrice Cooked Chips as they have ...
0
votes
1answer
71 views

What's the difference betwen perhaps and maybe?

I would like to know how to use them are theres alike? or just two differents words that can be used in the same way?
9
votes
6answers
943 views

What is the difference between a 'rocket' and a 'missile'

Someone pointed out on the BBC News that the Malaysian plane was hit not by a 'rocket' but by a 'missile'. From the dictionary definitions I have looked up I cannot tell the difference. Missile An ...
0
votes
0answers
46 views

What does “Grass for his Pillow” mean? [on hold]

I'm reading an amazing novel, Lian Hearn's Grass for his Pillow, but I didn't understand the meaning of its title; it's the most complicated sentence I've ever seen.
-2
votes
0answers
23 views

meaning of “Subworks” [on hold]

I would like to know the meaning of the word subwork in the following text: Thick black power cables crawled over the street, climbing up the sides of buildings, and disappearing into holes ...
0
votes
0answers
20 views

what is the meaning of “crowded back”? [on hold]

Here is the sentence: Old times crowded back into my mind as I watched her.
-1
votes
2answers
46 views

a definition of the phrase “ On both accounts” [on hold]

hi I have a problem with this phrase " on both accounts". what's the definition? I see this phrase in TOEFL IBT tes 7. the student said two characteristic of something and the teacher said that. ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

What does “Essential Travels” mean? [on hold]

I live in Israel, and at the 12th of August I need to travel to some place in Russia. My travel goes through Turkey, as the place I am traveling to costs more and takes longer if I travel through ...
3
votes
4answers
284 views

ostentatious vs pretentious [on hold]

Looking at the definition of these words it appears they are pretty similar: Pretentious: Having or showing the unpleasant quality of people who want to be regarded as more impressive, successful, or ...
0
votes
4answers
53 views

Something that can not be undone or undo [closed]

A word for something that can't be undone or undo ?
0
votes
3answers
60 views

Difference between “novice” and “newbie” [closed]

I can say "I am a novice in English" or "I am a newbie in English". Is there any difference between these?
0
votes
1answer
50 views

what is the difference between “was” and “had been” [closed]

He was with me for 2 days. He had been with me for 2 days. What is the difference in meaning between these 2 sentences?
1
vote
0answers
32 views

Difference between “Folder version” and “Folder revision” [closed]

I need to know the difference between a "file version" and a "file revision", assuming that they don't have the same meaning, I assume also that a version means that we've modified an existing folder, ...
1
vote
1answer
65 views

What is the basic meaning of 'dozy pillock'?

A character on "Last Tango in Halifax" often calls people a "dozy pillock" (not sure about the spelling for dozy.) I was trying to find a meaning for dozy and a better one for pillock than just ...
0
votes
1answer
38 views

Sophisticated positive or negative

When I searched for the meaning of the word sophisticated ,it does mean well advanced ,highly complicated etc. When I say my project is sophisticated what impression it can possibly make. The project ...
-1
votes
2answers
84 views

What does the term 'spoon' refer to? [closed]

Note: This question is not about the assertion from the Matrix that There is no spoon. There are tablespoons and teaspoons which are two different things. However is there a plain spoon or does this ...
1
vote
2answers
66 views

“A friar's hand”?

I'm reading "To Rise Again at a Decent Hour" by Joshua Ferris, and the narrator/author talks about looking over the shoulder of someone studying the Bible on the subway, and noticing that there are ...
1
vote
4answers
64 views

A word for “hard and diligent work under sleepy-eyed conditions”?

How would you describe one who works hard with full interest and consciousness, including spending sleepless nights. In such a scenario, sleep is deprived deliberately by the person. What is such hard ...
-1
votes
1answer
50 views

Usage of “then” [closed]

We needed to meet with our proffesor to determine our thesis topic. This was our conversation: Me: Before I leave, may I come to your office on Thursday or Friday? I am going to my hometown on ...
2
votes
1answer
35 views

When did 'permission' become popular as a therapy term

Permission has several uses, but somewhere around the 1990s it became common to hear it in the context of therapy sessions as in "you need to give yourself permission to..." do this or that. When did ...
2
votes
2answers
88 views

What does ‘Reverse fig leaf” mean?

I was interested in the word, “Reverse fig leaf” in an article titled, “Should Germans read ‘Mein Kampf” appearing in New York Times (July 7), which deals with the planned publication of Adolf ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

“Stornry” Meaning

I was reading the Tao of Pooh, when I stumbled on this quote from the original Winnie the Pooh: "Can they fly?" asked Roo. "Yes," said Tigger, "they're very good flyers, Tiggers are, Stornry ...
-1
votes
1answer
80 views

What does “dot” mean in this sentence? [closed]

My first language is Spanish and I can't understand this question about a book (The butterfly lion): What dot did he have at school? The story is about a kid who have some troubles in school with ...
2
votes
1answer
66 views

What is this usage of harrumph?

So this question was just asked and it made me realize I didn't understand what was going on this particular movie scene (Mel Brooks' 1974 Blazing Saddles). Transcript: Governor William J. Le ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

Correct usage of “evangelize”

I attended a meeting by a very senior person at my work place. The meeting concerned the theme of Data analytics and Big Data. The presentation mentioned the goal as "evangelize raw data". Is this ...
-1
votes
3answers
46 views

Trouble understanding the meaning of sentences with “unless” [closed]

I am having trouble understanding the meaning of sentences using unless. Here is an example: Unless I hear from you by 6pm Friday I will send the letters to main office. What does the above ...
3
votes
1answer
177 views

Why is the word “so” in the line, “To a ill-informed person I would have so answer yes,” shown in Italic to stress the word?

I am interested in the word, “so” in the following sentence in Jeffery Archer’s novel, “The Prodigal Daughter.” Florentina Kane who is the chairman of an international hotel empire she succeeded ...
2
votes
1answer
61 views

I ain't as good as I once was but I'm as good once as I ever was [closed]

I heard a song "As Good As I Once Was" by Toby Keith. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=kp&hl=id&v=ldQrapQ4d0Y&gl=ID There is this part of the lyric that I don't really know the ...
0
votes
2answers
37 views

What is the meaning of “he is late on his front”?

I saw it in a subtitle of a movie. I searched Google for it, but found nothing. So I thought it might be wrong or it is not quite uncommon. Then I decided asking here. The context is: a guy #1 owes ...
3
votes
2answers
56 views

'to the contrary' - is this definition of 'but' correct?

Merriam-Webster lists 'to the contrary' as one of the senses of 'but.' 3 : to the contrary < who knows but that she may succeed> Being worded like this, I'm having a bit of hard time ...
9
votes
14answers
2k views

A critical situation in which no trick works?

How could one describe a situation in which no trick, no approach, no magic, nothing at all works to change the outcome? One where you have no choice but to accept it. For example, I can't use the ...
1
vote
1answer
35 views

“brain-cramp” vs “blank-out” [closed]

When mind lapses instantly I call it blank-out. Recently I have come across brain-cramp and it is providing almost same meaning as blank-out. Are both same ? Cramp word is not playing big heavy dice ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

Antonym of heartbreaker? [closed]

In one of my short stories, I have to compare a guy who is a heartbreaker to someone who is exactly the opposite of him. Instead of describing the opposite character of the guy, I am looking for a ...
2
votes
4answers
81 views

Being Clever vs Being Wise

A sage is wise. That young woman is clever. Both of them (I think) are good at not getting into unwanted trouble, and both are good at solving problems. So.. Is there a difference between being ...
-4
votes
1answer
37 views

What's the meaning of “The purpose of life is life of purpose”? [closed]

The purpose of life is life of purpose. I think it is a contradictory statement. I read it somewhere and was confused. It's very difficult to understand its meaning .