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

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8
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2answers
525 views

What is the meaning of “bunt”?

I was reading about advertiser David Ogilvy, and at some point he gives the following advice: Don't bunt. Aim out of the park. Aim for the company of immortals. What is he referring to? I looked ...
-1
votes
1answer
29 views

What is the meaning of the last 2 sentences?

The last 2 sentences of this article say That's 888-972-SEAL. Tell 'em Frank sent you.. What do they mean? From the definition of urbandictionary, Frank refers to a male who is extremely charming ...
3
votes
1answer
63 views

What is the meaning of “free credit” here?

What is the meaning of free credit at this website? Google translate says that credit means the ability of a customer to obtain goods or services before payment, based on the trust that payment will ...
1
vote
1answer
30 views

at second remove

Does "at second remove" mean "of secondary importance and not as evident as other elements"? There is something deeply moving about such an encounter with nature, even if it is at second remove.
0
votes
1answer
15 views

at the expense of

I have some problem with "at the cost of" here. Does "light reveals itself at the expense of obscuring something else" mean: light reveals itself by lighting other things (because light itself ...
1
vote
2answers
66 views

What does “Pudding for supper..” mean in this context?

Here's an excerpt from the novel "Moby Dick". Emphasis mine. "‘Look at that chap now,’ philosophically drawled Stubb, who, with his unlighted short pipe, mechanically retained between his teeth, ...
3
votes
1answer
70 views

What does it mean to “feel Humpty”?

I was reading a book written in the UK and a character stated that speaking to her sister made her "feel Humpty". I am not sure what she was feeling, as the rest of the dialogue gave no clue. Can ...
-1
votes
2answers
27 views

Meaning meaning [closed]

Could someone please help me out of the misunderstanding problem below? Empowering the underprivileged lies in assuring them that education holds the real source of power
0
votes
2answers
52 views

Does the phrase “waste breath” always indicate talking in vain? [closed]

everyone, I am wondering if the phrase "waste breath" always indicates wasting time and talking in vain. Let's say a teacher said to his class: Since you do not understand this grammar rule, I'll ...
0
votes
2answers
29 views

Toward or towards in this sentence [duplicate]

Which of these sentences sounds correct? These dynamics are used to explain the convergence toward an equilibrium state. These dynamics are used to explain the convergence towards an ...
0
votes
2answers
34 views

use of “how” and “In”

My question is whether "How" can be preceded by "in" in a sentence and if the following instance where it has been used is grammatically correct. One of the major ways in which the current times ...
1
vote
1answer
43 views

Is there anything wrong with my interpretation of this sentence?

I'm not sure about the meaning of Flights arriving on Jet Green Air have been delayed intermittently. This sentence is found on this website. The following is my interpretation of this ...
0
votes
0answers
25 views

what does “considers most” mean here?

The United States signed but has not yet ratified the Convention; however, the United States considers most of the Vienna Convention’s rules as representing customary international law. does it mean ...
0
votes
2answers
42 views

what does “preceding warfare” means? [closed]

Peace treaties concluded after cessation of hostilities were usually considered to be valid because of preceding warfare. preceding means "come before (something) in time" warfare means "engagement ...
-1
votes
1answer
91 views

What does “dangling off turrets” mean here?

It takes me a while trying to understand "dangling off" as well as "turrets" in the following context, have looked up all the meanings of turret in dictionary but none makes any sense here in the ...
1
vote
0answers
16 views

On the use of “Dissent”. [closed]

The moratorium on the use of cars caused great dissent among the citizens. Can I use the word dissent in this sentence? If not, what can I use? Thanks!
2
votes
0answers
49 views

Use of “what” vs “that”? [duplicate]

There is a song titled "Better Not Wake the Baby" by a band called The Decemberists. One of the lines in the song is as follows: Drown yourself in crocodile tears, Curse the god what made ...
1
vote
4answers
107 views

What does “our project has gone to Kan” mean? [closed]

I heard the expression, "our project has gone to Kan", and I thought it has gone to a new location. I was thinking, is there a location called "Kan" or "Can", or is it a short form for Canada? But ...
0
votes
2answers
61 views

Meaning of 'Energy Lease' [closed]

Translating a short story, I'm totally stuck with this sentence: (the landowners) plied the land for energy leases The story happens in an unnamed small city in the Unites States, and though ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Correlation to or between

My Brazilian friend wants me to check his PhD abstract in English. The information of gravimetric and topographic surveys shows the shallow nature of ECSMT with ~ 1.4 km deep, there is a strong ...
0
votes
3answers
31 views

“The feminine expressions could be spotted in ewes” - what does it mean here?

Could you explain following phrase please?: The feminine expressions could be spotted in ewes due to female hormones but not in male sheep. Dictionaries have too much meanings for "to spot" and ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

does “open to charges of” equal to “doing propaganda” here? [closed]

Always open to charges of propaganda and interference in the internal affairs of other nations, public diplomacy challenged both the spirit and letter of the Havana Convention. Book | Diplomacy: ...
8
votes
7answers
2k views

Word for when someone enforces a rule on some occasions but not others [closed]

If you have a set of rules that no one follows due to lack of enforcement, but on rare occasions when a rule is broken, out of convenience for the rule maker, they enact discipline for breaking that ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

Word/term for users who are not experts and scientists [duplicate]

In the field of computer science, what should users who are not experts and scientists be called? I've come up with ordinary users or regular users. Any formal alternative or widely-accepted term/...
1
vote
1answer
77 views

What does “then” mean in this context?

In the book Diplomacy: A Very Short Introduction by By Joseph M. Siracusa, we find the following passage: Prior to World War II, then, diplomacy was essentially a government-to-government ...
0
votes
2answers
66 views

For free vs. free of charges [duplicate]

They are seems to be similar in meaning, however in a specific context Googling vote for the first. ... teaching users for free. I think free of charge(s) is more appropriate choice but I couldn'...
0
votes
0answers
39 views

Who are these people in context?

Text came from preface. I should also be remiss if I did not thank the anonymous Delegates for their thoughtful reports and constructive suggestions. Even those who did not much agree with me gave me ...
2
votes
2answers
55 views

What is meaning of “Apropos acknowledgements,” at start of a phrase? [closed]

Apropos acknowledgements, I should first of all like to express my gratitude to my friend and colleague ... This quotation came from a preface of a book. As far as I understand, from dictionaries I'...
1
vote
1answer
76 views

is “reads as” equal to “similar to” in this context?

For all their efforts, the diplomats at Versailles achieved the precise opposite of what they had set out to do, inexorably, tragically laying the groundwork for the next, more horrible world war. ...
28
votes
15answers
6k views

A strong antonym for “dictator”?

Is there a formal antonym for the word "dictator" other than " democratic" to describe a school principal?
1
vote
1answer
97 views

Meaning of “Immorality” in the 1886 cartoon “The Mongolian Octopus”

The cartoon The Mongolian Octopus: His Grip on Australia from 1886 (presumably referring to Chinese or Asian people, not Mongolians in particular) has "Immorality" as one of the tentacles. In the ...
1
vote
2answers
68 views

A word that defines something that is valuable for its lack of function and productive value?

I'm looking for a word that means "something valuable (intrinsically) because of its dysfunctional nature that makes it unnapealing for profit or production."
1
vote
2answers
80 views

“different” at the beginning of a sentence [closed]

Is it correct to start a sentence with the word "different"? for example: Different table structures are listed below. or should it be: Various table structures are listed below. Does it ...
4
votes
3answers
109 views

Difference between “rule” and “law” in scientific context

In general, according to an article in DifferenceBetween.net The main difference between rules and laws is the consequences associated with breaking them. While each is developed to invoke a ...
2
votes
1answer
48 views

Specific meaning of term “nail-biters” in context of mid-1970s America

The phrase in question revolves around a rather odious quote, so I beseech all reading to please suppress your political leanings and focus instead on the meanings of the phrases employed. In around ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

Can somebody explain “alienating customers” and “on either side” in this context for me? [closed]

"UK banks have been fearful of alienating customers on either side, while eurozone-headquartered institutions can more easily relocate business from London back to their home countries in the event of ...
-2
votes
3answers
153 views

What does “stereotype” mean in: “this movement is very fast, stereotype and for a short duration”?

Please tell me the meaning of stereotype in the following passage Reflexes: This is the behaviour in which movement takes place in a particular organ. This movement is very fast, stereotype, and ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

“For only through assiduous repetition is it possible to redistribute skewed tendencies.” | meaning

To set the quote into context here's an excerpt from Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by H. Murakami. There was little left to do but lean up against a wall and count the change in ...
0
votes
2answers
68 views

The meaning of the word “ Host” in a sentence of a story [closed]

What does the word "host" mean in the sentence below? " father O'Mahoney as the light failed, Blacker than ever in his suit and with the black-fringed stole hanging over his shoulders and the white ...
1
vote
2answers
100 views

What does it mean “ticket puncher” in this sentence?

Mature ticket-punchers are more "adult" or specialized in their interests; Tend to do OK academically but socially they subsist outside the mainstream (they ask less and add less). Here is the link ...
2
votes
1answer
42 views

What does “suitable offerings” mean in the following context? [closed]

What does "suitable offerings" mean in the sentence below? Does it mean the offerings which are fit to be offered to God or the offerings that man must give to God? Suitable offerings for the ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

What does “in a blur” mean? [closed]

What does "in a blur" mean in the sentence below? Is it a slang? Does it mean "very fast"? "I grinned as I counted more quickly and ran the numbers together in a blur." Source: Counting Stars (...
3
votes
2answers
45 views

referent of 'such a conviction'

The following is taken from the novel Frankenstein: At that age I became acquainted with the celebrated poets of our own country; but it was only when it had ceased to be in my power to derive its ...
0
votes
1answer
39 views

What can I translate the word “argument” in this passage? What does it mean?

The brain is an argument. We make different decisions in different ways. In addition, different parts of the brain respond to stimuli in different time frames. Think of two teams of lawyers doing ...
0
votes
0answers
25 views

Does “wealth” only refers to a financial aspect?

For a contest I'm attenting, the organisators uses, in their theme description, the world wealth. I wonder of the meaning of this word... Here is the sentenc where it's used : Europe need to ...
0
votes
1answer
43 views

The Meaning of “Crank” in Scotts slang?

On a train, earlier today I overheard one Scottish guy say to another: "There's nary a hold chap in that bunch of slordy, poofy freeks. All o' 'em is crank in the head, that's what I say". I have ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

written in, written on, written to the file [closed]

Which one is grammatically correct? The statement is written on the file. The statement is written in the file. The statement is/was written to the file. I should mention that I am talking about a ...
0
votes
0answers
28 views

Meaning: 'who would then have the effrontery to say, … however …'

I first encountered the sentences below on p 125, The Words We Live By: Your Annotated Guide to the Constitution (2004; but the newest edition dates at 2015) by Linda Monk JD. Here is an online ...
1
vote
1answer
54 views

Usage of “Have something to do with”

The other day, I was eating at a restaurant with my mate. The food was really good but the waiters seemed to be rather rude. Then when we left there, my mate asked me what I thought of this ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

When you have no money, doesn't that mean you're already bankrupt? Can you use “in general” for a case like that? [closed]

Is the sentence below correct? What would be the best way to write it? "In general, when you have no money, tap water is better than bankruptcy." It says "in general" and assumes a condition "when ...