This tag is for questions about the meaning of a longer passage of English.

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Logical inconsistency

“Tokens from your friends and admirers,” said Dumbledore, beaming. “What happened down in the dungeons between you and Professor Quirrell is a complete secret, so, naturally, the whole school ...
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2answers
46 views

What does figures mean in “facts & figures”?

I Didn't find any figures in "facts & figures" of something, i only find is words which means facts, then What does figures mean in "facts & figures" ?
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1answer
26 views

Meaning in context of “to fold something together”

“Add the option -f to fold upper and lower case together, so that case distinctions are not made during sorting; for example, a and A compare equal.” Excerpt From: Brian W. Kernighan. “The ...
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3answers
121 views

Good but thirsty

I was reading the novel Dracula when I came across the following phrase related to a dish that the narrator wrote in his diary. I had for dinner, or rather supper, a chicken done up some way with ...
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3answers
325 views

What's the origin of “lit”?

Since June 2015, use of the word lit has exploded on Twitter. Here's some recent examples. Nena Marie: My Year is starting off lit af👌🏼 ...but is gonna be TD by Monday morning Nick: Jason ...
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3answers
160 views

What does it mean to “sabotage an agenda”?

There was the following passage in Time magazine’s article (Nov. 15, 2015) that came under the title, “Is Iran finally ready for change?” “The arrests of prominent Iranian Americans are widely ...
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2answers
55 views

What does this sentence from a Computer Book mean?

I read a book and am stuck with a particular sentence: One other significant change is that the Pentium Pro processor uses three execution engines, so it can execute up to three instructions at ...
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2answers
73 views

Can “dystopian” be accurate for artistic works based largely on truth?

For example: It seems to me a bit sketchy to categorize the movie The Lives of Others (2006) as such, even though it is a work of fiction and set in a negative world - - because it is largely based on ...
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1answer
19 views

Explanation of the phase in relevance to the context

At last, a great crunching noise announced Hagrid’s return. Malfoy, Neville, and Fang were with him. Hagrid was fuming. Malfoy, it seemed, had sneaked up behind Neville and grabbed him as a ...
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1answer
74 views

Usage of the word “typical”

Some friends and I have been debating for a while now the significance of the word "typical", more specifically the pejorative connotation that, they insist, is inherent to this word. To them, for ...
3
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3answers
326 views

Meaning of the sentence, “she is the kind of lawyer most skilled at finding reasons not to do things”

I have read a passage from wikileak: AIT/T has had regular contact with Tsai Ing-wen on economic, political and cross-Strait issues (ref B). She is a savvy insider on formulating and ...
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2answers
44 views

What is “large sort”? [closed]

Can anybody help me describe this word? The American ambassador in Berlin described him as "a very jolly, large sort of German". (the author is talking about Arthur Zimmermann) Source: History ...
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1answer
67 views

What is the meaning of “only other time”? [closed]

What is the meaning of “only other time” in the sentence: But it’s only been a month since we met and the only other time I’ve said those words out loud to a girl was over a year ago.
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2answers
63 views

What does “exit onto” mean? [closed]

I don't understand exit onto in the following sentences: Target is east and north of you, looks like Highway 56 to 17. Will intercept him if he stays on 17. Go east on 56 off Highway 2. What? ...
5
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2answers
66 views

Word for making an implication with tone

Sometimes when people use the name of the person they're talking to in a statement it's used to dismiss the discussion at hand. For example, "Because the sky is blue, Alice" or "If you have two two's, ...
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1answer
90 views

Unless, of course, we are all zombie manifestations

What does the specified sentence mean? How can it be rewritten without "unless"? I can not understand the role and meaning of "unless" here. Context: But in reality he has still not resolved ...
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3answers
87 views

Word to define person with bad social skills

How would you define a person without (or with very bad) social skills? I don't mean a totally anti-social, but one that struggles to behave in a social context, and feels awkward or out-of-place ...
7
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3answers
555 views

What does “Swish” mean?

According to Oxford Online Dictionary, the word swish means among other things: Basketball, informal: a shot that goes through the basket without touching the backboard or rim. It sounds like ...
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4answers
729 views

How to interpret this text from year 1847?

If context is needed, I'm happy to supply it.. The sentence I want to rephrase: Some selection of this kind has for some time been imperatively called for, by the wants of the gardener, farmer, ...
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1answer
103 views

What does “It was – get the kind of the. Any way” mean in Mr. Jeb Bush’s speech?

There was the following passage in New York Times (December 25th) article describing Mr. Jeb Bush’s subtlety or lack of humor under the title, “Hear the one About Jeb Bush’s humor? You have to listen ...
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1answer
60 views

What does “that” refer to?

This is my context: Sculptures must, for example, be stable, which requires an understanding of the properties of mass, weight distribution, and stress. Paintings must have rigid stretchers so ...
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2answers
60 views

Why movie actors also called as artist ? [closed]

Definition of Artist: a person who creates paintings or drawings as a profession or hobby. Definition of Actor: a person who acts in a play, film, broadcast, etc There is huge difference between ...
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1answer
72 views

Meaning of the word “Dog” in this sentence

This is a conversation between two individuals that I found on Twitter: A: Is it necessary B for several countries to bomb Syria? B : Dog I sure hope so. (In reply to Person A) Both A ...
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1answer
1k views

“Schlong” and its etymology

Donald Trump used a vulgarity to describe Hillary Clinton's loss to President Obama in 2008 Democratic presidential nomination as follows: Even a race to Obama, she was gonna beat Obama. I don't ...
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3answers
74 views

About “will” and “promise” [closed]

Is saying that you will do something equivalent to saying that you promise to do something, such that not doing strictly what you said (e.g. late for 15 minutes with reasons) would be something as ...
2
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1answer
85 views

What does “base passions” mean? [closed]

What author means by "base passions" in following sentence: Philosophy titans such as David Hume thought that base passions powered moral decisions. Above sentence is from Book "Brain Rules for ...
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1answer
22 views

“Redline” explanation [closed]

Expedite the process by requiring the Customer to “redline” any changes to drafts throughout the review process, and be careful not to send any contract drafts to the Customer that contain internal ...
3
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1answer
35 views

Meaning of “having moved the application” in a court context

Here is the text with the preceding paragraph: Without much hesitation, the then Attorney General of Kaduna State, Mr. Rabo Barde stood up and informed the court that of the state’s decision to ...
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1answer
120 views

Meaning of the phrase “worked off”

"She came by way of Archer, Bridgeport, Nanuet, worked off 95 in jeans and a denim jacket, carrying a plastic bag and shower shoes, a phone number, waiting beneath an underpass, the potato chips long ...
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3answers
171 views

Clarify some archaic idioms (“but that” and “as the crow flies”) in Dickens' “Bleak House”

I have a question about a difficult paragraph in Bleak House by Charles Dickens. In chapter 2, I came across the following paragraph containing a couple of idioms which I can't understand ...
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0answers
36 views

Unnamed vs Nameless

I've scouted around and found that: Unnamed defined is "not having being given a name" Nameless defined is "not having a name / unknown as to what the name is My main question is what is the term ...
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1answer
36 views

What are “Willie boys”?

St. Pete is what folks calls the town, though they also call it the Sunshine City, as they claim they's no other place in the country where they's fewer days when Old Sol don't smile down on Mother ...
0
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2answers
38 views

Deal-killing surprise? [closed]

Origin : Communicate company’s positions completely and accurately to the Customer to avoid deal-killing surprises once Legal is engaged to support negotiations. Q: what does "deal-killing" mean?
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3answers
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Is “Can’t be too careful” an idiom?

He walked forward and shook the centaur’s hand. “Good evening to you, Hagrid,” said Ronan. He had a deep, sorrowful voice. “Were you going to shoot me?” “Can’t be too careful, Ronan” ...
3
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1answer
74 views

why the following answer is not correct?

Which of the following statements is the best paraphrase of the highlighted sentence? On a more optimistic note however, humans are fully capable of overcoming limitations once we have identified ...
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0answers
38 views

vast lived mythology of terror surrounding cancer

Does the bold part mean "disease cancer that has killed a lot of people in modern days, which sounds like mythology but it is reality" Context: The work may offer satiric comment on science’s ...
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0answers
25 views

What is the meaning of active service and active services in the context of corporations?

Can anyone explain to me what's the exact meaning of "active service" in the context of corporation? Does it mean full-time job? And what are the "active services of a corporation"? Following is the ...
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1answer
72 views

“Move on” vs “Move ahead” [closed]

What is the meaning of following phrase? It is ok. We will need to move on. What is meaning of following phrase? it is fine, we can move ahead. What is difference between both of them?
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2answers
241 views

What is the meaning of “did time”?

What is the meaning of "did time" in this context? Then my heart did time in Siberia. More context: When you come back I won't be here She said and gently pulled me near If you ...
3
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1answer
88 views

What's the meaning of “designs” in the clause below?

The undersigned agree that this Fee Protection is assignable and transferable to the beneficiaries, designs, heirs and assigns upon written notice of all parties, and shall not be amended without ...
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2answers
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Could someone please explain this usage of “limb”?

Amendment V No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or ...
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1answer
54 views

He “clipped on” vs. “clicked on”

TV Show Friends – the United States, sitcom. (Season 3 Episode 22) Rachel: Oh, Phoebe, are you still on hold? I was supposed to call my Dad back like two hours ago. Phoebe: Oh, yeah, he ...
4
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1answer
31 views

meaning of “self-parodying”

Does "self-parodying" imply that some of Rockman's artworks are parodies of his own previous artworks? Does "puncture" imply that his self-parodying works lack the romance found in his previous ...
3
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3answers
207 views

Is there a positive connotation for “along came [someone]”?

As far as I understand, along came is used when one needs to describe an event of less importance. However, can I use this phrase with a positive connotation? Example: I want to state that it is ...
3
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2answers
131 views

odd sock drawer

What does "humbling" mean in this context? Does "the eye had to be educated to its rightness" means "the eye had to get accustomed to its right and wrong formats"? Does "odd sock drawer" mean a ...
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2answers
67 views

Which one sounds better— 'cannibalism' or 'eating human flesh'? [closed]

I was going through a text about ancient civilization. There, I found a sentence which says, "Some ancient human being recognized even cannibalism." After reading that sentence, I started to think ...
1
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1answer
36 views

Is the meaning of terrific in “He is terrific” context-dependent?

As many dictionaries suggest, the word terrific could mean frightening in some cases Collins Dictionary, however it seems that most of the time it means very great or very good. Now I want to know if ...
3
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1answer
84 views

What does “Brooklyn“ mean in “Everyone need to move to Brooklyn. If we don’t stop wasting our time, the economy is going to be in real trouble.”?

There was the following passage in a bit old article of Time magazine (November 18, 2013) under the title, “Step Away From the Phone Game, Mom” with a sub-headline: People are wasting a lot of time. ...
3
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2answers
65 views

What does “sliders” mean in this context?

I am reading the book "Moneyball" by Michael Lewis and in Chapter3 - The Enlightment, there is a paragraph: "His teammates might as well have been a different species than the high school kids he ...
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1answer
69 views

What is the intended connotation of addressing somebody by 'lovely' in a letter or an email?

If as a man I got emails from a woman with: "Thank you, lovely!" and "Good morning, lovely!" what would the connotation of the addressing word 'lovely' be in English ? Is this word in English common ...