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

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2
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2answers
126 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 ...
1
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2answers
42 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, ...
1
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2answers
103 views

Meaning of ‘draw out’

I’m translating an English novel into Italian but I’m stuck on the meaning of one sentence and I was wondering if you could help me: Why—his voice seemed to draw out soft and subtle, it penetrated ...
0
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2answers
43 views

hike for the timber?

"I don't know, Aunt Ray," he said dubiously; "this is hardly a woman's affair. If there's a scrap of any kind, you hike for the timber." Which was Halsey's solicitous care for me, put into ...
0
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2answers
99 views

meaning of “some people agree that”

I am discussing with friends the meaning of the following sentence: "while some people agree that there are less women in science because they don't have the skills, others will argue that it is ...
1
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1answer
66 views

Spill the metaphorical beans?

I was reading a comic book and ran into this phrase. Is there any difference between 'spill the beans' and 'spill the metaphorical beans'? here is the context. Talk show host: "But seriously, Reed. ...
0
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1answer
44 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"
0
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1answer
65 views

Meaning of “Her eyes opened, her mother’s blue”?

This passage is from "Should Wizard Hit Mommy?" by John Updike. What does the the italicized sentence refer to? The little girl (not so little any more; the bumps her feet made under the covers ...
0
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1answer
42 views

Great trials have turned on less

What excactly does it mean when in a sentence "It occured to me then that great trials have turned on less."?
0
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1answer
31 views

Who is “he” in the passage?

On Monday, October 13, 2014 about 09:30 hours John Barlow - Male Negro, Age 22 years A Joiner of Lot 194 Pike street Kitty, Georgetown, reported that Mark Jacobs Male Negro, Age 22 years ...
0
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1answer
47 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 ...
-1
votes
1answer
71 views

Ambiguious anaphora in a speech

On October 31, 2014, President Obama spoke on the topic of women and the economy. Here's a section of the speech. Moms and dads deserve a great place to drop their kids off every day that ...
-1
votes
1answer
53 views

What verb goes with “mood” in the context of a polite social inquiry?

How would I best ask someone to share their mood with me? It needs to be snappy and easily understood. For example, given these three choices of verb: share your mood express your mood convey your ...
-1
votes
1answer
48 views

What does “part of a settlement” mean here?

Locke tends to get linked up with rebels...He is a part of the settlement. (heard from an English professor) He was talking about John Locke's life. How to understand "he is part of the ...
-2
votes
1answer
69 views

Do I understand this correctly?

I thanked someone really important for following me on Instagram. his reply: due time pal Does it mean that it was time to do so? thanks
-4
votes
1answer
82 views

How would you interpret this statement?

How would you interpret this statement? It was posted on a social media site. I am looking for impressions of how other readers would interpret the sentences in context to why it would appeal to the ...
1
vote
0answers
54 views

Can a sport team “clinch” a championship in the last regular season game?

This question gets into the subtle shades of meaning of the word clinch, in the context of sporting teams securing spots in the playoffs. My past experience hearing this term on television, or ...
0
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0answers
26 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 ...
0
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0answers
63 views

What is the meaning of “ironically” in this passage?

A rocket launched and shortly exploded on Tuesday. Below is passage from a news article written about it: This was the second launch attempt for the mission. Monday evening's try was thwarted by a ...
0
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0answers
47 views

1610 Meaning of 'occasion'

Source: Journals of the House of Lords (1610) That whereas the House of Commons have already, among their Grievances, preferred a Petition to His Majesty, as of Right and Justice, That the Four ...
0
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0answers
51 views

What is the meaning of the expression 'put in leave'?

I have recently read from a South African person this expression. 'put in leave'. Is it a correct expression? What does it mean? Does it involve a phrasal verb?
0
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0answers
29 views

Referral Campaigns or Your Referral Schemes

I have a referral program which comprises of 50% UK users and 50% US users. Taking into account location, what would be the most appropriate title to use... Your Referral Campaigns Or Your ...
0
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0answers
49 views

The meaning of “Alexis” in Pope's Second Pastoral

"Alexis" comes from Greek, meaning "to help, defend." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alexis_(given_name) Alexander Pope seems to use it in a different sense. His Second Pastoral is entitled Summer ...
0
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0answers
69 views

Meaning of “quantify” in a dating context

Someone said: "You can always quantify things", as in "* Internet and all that stuff is just that. People are people and you can always quantify things." I'm Dutch/American, but am having a really ...