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

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Grammatically correct, vs archaic, vs grammatically incorrect ?

So i'm new here just to start this out to begin with. So I hope you can understand my grammatically incorrect sentences. So any ways let me explain the context of this question, I am writing a short ...
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2answers
16 views

Résumé: Additional details can be provided (if required / on request)

I'm a freshman applying for internships. I previously had a detailed résumé with appropriate information regarding my projects and areas of expertise. However, I want to tailor it down and keep it as ...
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1answer
61 views

“Suffer from” use for non human contexts

Is it normal to use "suffer from" for subjects other than humans? For example is it acceptable to say: "this old building suffer from irregular electricity"
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2answers
57 views

“But for all his foolish pranks, he was worshipped in the ranks”

But, for all his foolish pranks, He was worshipped in the ranks The Green Eye of the Little Yellow God As a native English speaker, it was always clear to me that Mad Carew was worshipped ...
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2answers
3k views

What does the phrase that 'I've all but..' mean in this sentence?

I found the sentence below in a book I'm reading: I've all but given up dating because I'm so tired of the pain and humiliation. What does I've all but mean in this context?
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3answers
62 views

meaning of 'greasy dangers'

"....and I'm hungry, and I don't like to eat alone, and I'd be glad to have you face the greasy dangers of a meal at the Finn's with me.” It's a part of 'Nightmare Town' by Dashiell Hammett (1924). ...
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2answers
60 views

Never perhaps did any man suffer death with more justice, or deserve it less

Source: From Alexander Hamilton to Lieutenant Colonel John Laurens, 1780 October 11 ... [Major John André] he ought to be considered as a spy and according to the laws and usages of nations to ...
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2answers
48 views

Contact us as you find convenient

The context is that clients can use means of communication convenient to them. One employee at my work proposed the phrasing below. Contact us as you find convenient. Does that sentence make ...
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23 views

a nomadic though punctual disposition?

Mrs. Cornett, who spent much time at her toilet table, and whose complexion was reputed to be of a nomadic though punctual disposition, looked as ill at ease as the Major. The citation is a part ...
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1answer
198 views

“Touring team” vs. “Exhibition team”

When we are not playing competitive games, our three touring teams play against three exhibition teams. What do the bold terms mean?
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2answers
319 views

What does “bar hate” mean?

The controversial law will also bar hate speech and harassment. What does it mean in the example above?
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3answers
99 views

Does “Romantic” have to do with Roman Empire or Romania? [closed]

I was reading the biography of Mihai Eminescu, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mihai_Eminescu, and in the first line it said that this guy was a romantic poet. I didn't know what a romantic poet ...
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2answers
38 views

Question about ellipsis

"Are you sure that your men will find much to release? I have men, too, in the forest to-night, close behind me, and THEY will be here first and do the releasing." (a quote from 'Interloper', by ...
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2answers
54 views

Can “capable of being hurt…” mean a kind of ability?

"I think that’s what it means to be “real” as a parent or a teacher – to be vulnerable, to be capable of being hurt. The only way to avoid the pain of vulnerability is by shutting out all emotion and ...
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2answers
100 views

What is the difference between “could not get to” and “did not get to”?

Take, for example, this sentence: Away from Vatican City, Tome was quiet as authorities ordered all public offices and schools to close (close), and banned (ban) cars from the roads. Millions of ...
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1answer
18 views

Differences between expressions including [not/no + more/less + than~]

I have read an article on English expressions of comparison on a website in Japanese, however I am still unsure about the content and would like to check if it is correct. It gives 4 examples as ...
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1answer
39 views

What does 'IN' mean: 'IN your own person or IN the person of any other'?

Source: Prof Michael Sandel, Justice: ..., Episode 06: "MIND YOUR MOTIVE" 47:30 and here Kant distinguishes between persons on the one hand, and things on the other. 47:38: Rational beings are ...
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2answers
134 views

How to determine which definition of 'contingent'?

This quote was revealed to exemplify Definition 1, but working backwards, how would you determine the meaning of contingent? Even after seeing the context, I'm still vacillating between definitions 1 ...
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3answers
800 views

“The Moving Finger writes even in Heaven.”

Following is an extract from a Rabindranath Tagore story called, "A Wrong Man in Workers' Paradise". I need help in understanding the contextual meaning of a line in it. The story is about a man who ...
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4answers
102 views

“Your chance to dream has arrived” - National Lottery. How do you read this?

To me, that means: I can start dreaming after buying a lotto ticket. This is weird because without the lotto ticket, I can have my day-dream anyway. Shouldn't this be something like "your chance to ...
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2answers
83 views

What does “What a make!” mean?

Stumbled across this on a photography forum. All the bells, dials and whistles on this one. I handled her once. Nice! But surprisingly heavy. The impression of weight (and a lasting impression ...
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5answers
3k views

What is the meaning of “paint it black” and when to use it?

I stumbled upon the phrase "paint it black" in a tv series (Elementary) and was wondering what does it exactly mean? Also, in which situations would you use it normally? Except when you tell the ...
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2answers
58 views

Usage of “take somebody to somewhere”

As I understand, the phrase above can mean to invite someone to somewhere, then to give someone a lift/to provide transportation for someone. Do I get it right? As I am not a native speaker of English ...
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1answer
62 views

Right meanings of 'form'?

When legal decision-makers like Justice Peckham, who are actually ... making a policy or political choice act as if there were no choice to be made—when they treat a policy choice as simply ...
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3answers
97 views

What does “rules are not decree or routine so much as the starker demands of what’s possible” mean?

What does the emphasized part (the sentence in bold) mean? The hackers are the technicians of this science - “It’s a term of derision and also the ultimate compliment.” They are the ones who ...
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2answers
77 views

How can “in touch with” be used figuratively?

I am sure that we can say “get in touch with someone”, to mean figuratively that we are in good contact. Can I go further to use it more figuratively, e.g., to say that “my brother is not in touch ...
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1answer
120 views

Meaning of “it” in “it [. . .] settled into its unbreakable parts”

Please help me understand the meaning of “settled into its unbreakable parts” as used in this excerpt below from Flannery O’Connor’s The Violent Bear It Away: He was sitting forward on the seat, ...
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4answers
150 views

Antecedent of “it” in “it fared with him as with the storm-tossed ship” in context

When on that shivering winter's night, the Pequod thrust her vindictive bows into the cold malicious waves, who should I see standing at her helm but Bulkington! I looked with sympathetic awe and ...
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2answers
78 views

Antecedent of “velocity u” in “particles moving in a medium with macroscopic velocity u”

In the following sentence, whose velocity is u—the particles or the medium? For particles moving in a medium with macroscopic velocity u: The normalized Maxwell’s distribution function (Eq. ...
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1answer
42 views

“The Dude abides” — what does “abide” mean in that context? [closed]

Has anyone considered the meaning with reference to George C. Stewart's 1949 fiction, "Earth Abides"? or Stephen King's "The Stand" ? In the post-apocalytic work, "Earth Abides," civilization falls ...
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5answers
4k views

What does the following phrase mean: “pursuing invariably the same Object”

Given the following sentence in the American Declaration of Independence: But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them ...
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Meaning: 'as it were' (1690 UK)

Source: Sec 32, The Second Treatise of Civil Government, 1690, by John Locke As much land as a man tills, plants, improves, cultivates, and can use the product of, so much is his property. He ...
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34 views

“This isn't the place for you” meaning?

Would you say that this line is an indirect way of telling someone they shouldn't come/be somewhere? Or if not indirect, maybe some other adjective?
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2answers
859 views

What is a wheal?

Indulging some idle curiosity about Cornish mining I noticed that many of the mines are named wheal: Wheal Kitty, Wheal Jane and East Wheal Rose, among others. But the only dictionary definition I ...
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61 views

What's the meaning of “dash” in “you've left all your s**t on my dash.”? [closed]

What's the meaning of the word dash in you've left all your shit on my dash. ?
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2answers
46 views

‘Influence’ vs. ‘effect’ [closed]

Johnson has a lot of influence on film producers. He is intellectual. Should I replace influence with effects?
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2answers
26 views

What is the difference between 'related'/'relation' and 'associated'/'association'

I am coming to this from a very technical background. I am basically trying to figure out when to use which of those terms to describe the associations/relations between classes in an UML class ...
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2answers
173 views

The meaning of ETA - to origin or to destination?

I'm writing an application with the embedded Uber taxi app functionality. In short, when the user points to a point near his or her location in our app, a Uber button appears, with the following text: ...
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1answer
57 views

What does it mean when someone say “He is politically correct?” [closed]

I am often hearing in the office that someone says this sentence "He is politically correct?". What's the difference between "He is correct" and "He is politically correct?".
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5answers
358 views

In “That patient merit of th'unworthy takes”, what does merit mean exactly?

In the famous Hamlet's soliloquy, I am not quite clear on the role/meaning of merit in the following: The insolence of office, and the spurns That patient merit of th'unworthy takes, My ...
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2answers
235 views

Does “Should I wash my hands of this?” suggest a bribe?

Should I wash my hands of this? Has this expression ever been used as a way of suggesting a bribe?
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1answer
37 views

how can Use the title 'Mr'

Use of titles in English language, can we use title Mr if we use the designation like Secretary Sports Mr Saleem Akhtar, etc, or we skip it. i am asking in reference to make a news report or news ...
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11 views

On the shift in the context

What is the meaning "on the shift" in this context: The Climate Group works with business and governments on the shift to a low carbon economy, and Kenber issued a stark warning on the choice for the ...
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2answers
138 views

is saying “white bread” to the white considered as racist in everyday conversation?

I have just watched "Top Five" played by Chris Rock. In this movie, there is a scene that Chris Rock saw a white actor and here is the conversation: The actor (played by white male actor): Hey, ...
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1answer
407 views

What's the meaning of “I'm slinging mad volume and fat stacking benjies”?

Recently I was watching the television show Breaking Bad. There's a sentence of dialogue from season 2, episode 6 that confused me: Jesse Pinkman: You got something for me? Skinny Pete: Yeah, ...
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0answers
22 views

Circumstance usage with grammar [duplicate]

Would it be better to say: “If I was in your circumstance, I hope, I truly hope, I’d do the right thing.” OR “If I were faced with your circumstance, I hope, I truly hope, I’d do the right thing.”
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2answers
65 views

differentiating between all that and what

Original-- extracted from the book Scarlet Letter: Like all that pertains to crime, it seemed never to have known a youthful era. My own rephrased sentences: Like whatever that pertains to crime, ...
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1answer
56 views

Making sense of a sentence in a politcal economy article

Reading this critical geopolitical economic article, I found myself troubled understanding this sentence: "Markets have priced in nothing bad from here to as far as the eye can see." Here's the ...
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1answer
156 views

Meaning of “broken” in a phrase “broken hallelujah”

What does "broken" mean in a phrase "broken hallelujah"? E.g. in Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah song? "it's cold and it's a broken hallelujah" In my opinion, the best match from the dictionary is ...
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11answers
45k views

New (slang?) meaning of bass?

I have come across the song "About that bass" by Meghan Trainor, and was wondering what "bass" and "treble" mean in the chorus, which goes: Because you know I'm all about that bass, 'Bout that ...