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

learn more… | top users | synonyms (6)

0
votes
1answer
54 views

Word for belief or prejudice that is held, but it is not conscious

I remember reading about an idea of a belief or prejudice that is subconscious. It had a prefix, and it was something like: belief -> alief or prejudice -> ajudice But I can't remember the ...
6
votes
3answers
457 views

Reverse relation of role model

If A is a role model to B. B is what to A? I assume there is something more focused than fan or follower.
1
vote
6answers
2k views

Can we use “dynamism” as a noun for describing the amount of change and changeability?

According to dictionaries, one of the meanings of the word dynamic is: a system with continuous change http://www.thefreedictionary.com/dynamic http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dynamic ...
1
vote
3answers
1k views

Meaning of “needful”

I am trying to find alternative ways to refer to a very necessary thing or thing that someone must have. Can I use the word needful for this purpose? A person said that needful means the thing needs ...
2
votes
1answer
88 views

Meaning and usage of “to be done for”

(Not to be confused with "to be done with stng") I've seen several times the expression "to be done for", not followed by anything. Here is an example not so far from what I could actually read or ...
0
votes
2answers
51 views

can I replace “data” with “pieces on information”

"Pieces of information are transmitted across the Internet in packets of limited size called datagrams."
4
votes
1answer
112 views

Meaning of “Bump” on forums

A guy posted something on (or in?) a forum. Another one posted "bump". Sometimes it's the same guy. What does it mean? In dictionaries, bump is typically defined as (as a noun) a small raised ...
3
votes
3answers
5k views

“Conformity” vs. “conformance”

I am curious about the differences in meaning, connotations, style, and correctness of using conformity vs conformance. I haven't been able to find much using a simple web search, only a single ...
9
votes
8answers
44k views

Should we use “in terms of”?

I have came across this reference: https://www.e-education.psu.edu/styleforstudents/c3_p35.html This phrase is virtually meaningless, but we often hear it on the news and in bloated speeches. “In ...
9
votes
7answers
7k views

Is “IMHO” a rude thing to say (or type)?

The initialism1 IMHO stands for "in my humble opinion". It's commonly used in text-based communication (chat clients, forums, popular Q&A platforms). Here's an example: Person A: What do you ...
-1
votes
1answer
47 views

what does sentience mean in the given context [closed]

Before we give doors and toasters sentience, we should decide what we're comfortable with first. Please explain the bold part.
0
votes
1answer
61 views

What does permeate mean in this sentence?

"I like girls who are just as confident without make-up on than when they are when it permeates their face." I saw it on Twitter. In this sentence, does permeate mean when makeup covers the whole ...
1
vote
2answers
209 views

“simply”, “merely” and “only” - Are they interchageable in formal writing?

In the following sentence: "They are ....... wasting their time." Would "simply", "merely" and "only" be interchangeable? When I was a student of English I was taught the use of "simply" in formal ...
0
votes
2answers
66 views

Word meaning both create and update?

I'd like to know if someone has a better word than these (authored, produced) , for both creating and updating something. Context: I'm a software developer and I'm trying to think of a clever way to ...
2
votes
1answer
45 views

Memorable or Recall or what

I used in a sentence: your most memorable dream. I meant it as the dream I thought of first. It was interpreted as the dream which is remembered with the most detail. Memorable means, "worth ...
1
vote
2answers
36 views

Contribute vs assist [closed]

How is it correct to say - I contributed in your achievements VS I assisted in your achievements. I will explain what I want to say - I dont way to say that I help, because a man can consider that I ...
3
votes
3answers
298 views

What is the definition of a word? [closed]

I'm wondering what the minimal requirement for a word to be an actual word is. My opinion is that a word is a word if it can be understood and defined by everyone who hears it in conversation. For ...
0
votes
3answers
122 views

Is “haha” a sarcastic phrase? [closed]

So, is that "fake" funny? Is there any difference beetween "hehe", "haha", "huh", "heh", "hahaha", "ha", and so on and so forth?
4
votes
4answers
13k views

What does “shine on” mean?

I've seen some use "shine on" to close a letter. What does this mean?
1
vote
2answers
34 views

meaning of “attempted together ” [closed]

What does "attempted together" mean in the following sentence. The problems of all the stages attempted together are enough to swamp anyone. Also please clarify whether it refers to the stages ...
0
votes
1answer
46 views

“Abusive” vs “invective” vs “vituperative”

What is the different between abusive, invective and vituperative? In the following definitions from Oxford, the last two both contain abusive, which makes me hard to distinguish them. Abusive: ...
1
vote
2answers
108 views

“Don't even get me nests than the client admitted to”

I'm trying to understand this phrase. What does it mean? Is it even grammatically correct? Context: "How was the hunt though? Worth it?" the blond countered. "Don't even get me nests than ...
1
vote
2answers
468 views

frontend, what does frontend mean? [closed]

front means ahead, infront , forward end means last point, finishing point, but what does FRONTEND mean? for example engineering design is clear to me, but "frontend engineering design" what exactly ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

What does the term 'Institutional Cowardice' mean? [closed]

Werner Herzog said this - "Thwart institutional cowardice". I could not get hold of exact meaning of this line. Can somebody help me here?
3
votes
2answers
220 views

One sentence with two meanings! “The door was locked”

I'm learning English. I think the sentence "The door was locked" has two meanings!. I'm very confused. First of all, let's look at this example: I broke the glass (Active) The glass was broken ...
6
votes
7answers
27k views

What is the meaning of “Many a mickle makes a muckle”?

I've heard this phrase, and don't know what a "mickle" or a "muckle" is. Hence I have no idea at all what the phrase itself is supposed to mean.
0
votes
4answers
201 views

What does “Live in one’s own skin” mean?

There was the following passage in Vanity Fair magazine’s (January 7 issue) article under the headline, “Meryl Streep responds to Russell Crowe’s controversial comments about ageism in Hollywood”: ...
0
votes
2answers
84 views

Where does mercurial get its meaning? [closed]

I'm curious where the word "mercurial" derives its meaning? Two guesses I have are the Roman god Mercury, and the chemical element mercury. I'm leaning towards the latter... because the word ...
4
votes
2answers
797 views

Is this expression correct “Don't worry about it; it is supposed be one of the features of this year's release”

I have always been little confused regarding the use of supposed to. One meaning I am clear on is "obligation," another one is "a theory/concept accepted by a group of people," as in This restaurant ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

“Depend just as much on”? [closed]

Moore and Noyce shared a vision, recognizing that success depended just as much on intellectual pizzazz as on Intel's ability to deliver a product. What does this sentence mean? The part ...
1
vote
2answers
103 views

Meaning of “mind is full of red”

What does it mean (from famous song Somebody to love of Jefferson Airplane): When the garden flowers, baby, are dead yes And your mind, your mind is so full of red Especially "mind full of ...
0
votes
0answers
26 views

Do you still “know” something you have temporarily forgotten?

Sometimes people say, for example I know it, but I can't think of it at the moment. But if you can't think of it at the moment, then can you truthfully state that you "know" it? Dictionary ...
1
vote
3answers
13k views

“Do you have” vs “Have you got”

I am studying English and I want to know the main difference between “Have you got?” and “Do you have?” questions. Are they the same? Is one more formal than the other?
0
votes
2answers
213 views

Do these sentences mean the same thing?

Do these sentences all mean the same thing? You are not great because you know many things. You are great not because you know many things. You are great for another reason. As another example, ...
16
votes
3answers
9k views

How did “pumpkin” come to be a term of endearment?

The logic of some terms of endearment is fairly clear. Sweetie, honey, cupcake all refer to food treats. However, the use of the term pumpkin as a tenderness seems somewhat counterintuitive. While ...
0
votes
1answer
45 views

I don't understand the meaning of the last sentence. “He held out his palms as if to have them read” [closed]

A thin dark man in a dirty caftan materialized and spoke to us in a lengthy nasal language. He held out his palms as if to have them read.
5
votes
3answers
335 views

What really is a “Yester” in Yesterday or Yesteryear?

Apparently, Yester cannot be used alone in a sentence, except when accompanied by "day (yesterday) or year (yesteryear)". It cannot be used incombination with other portions of time like; yestermonth, ...
8
votes
3answers
14k views

What is the origin of “when the chips are down”?

I can understand from context that "when the chips are down" means "when things go really badly." But where does the expression come from? Does it have anything to do with casino chips, and being on ...
14
votes
7answers
2k views

What does “they made bones” mean?

Context: an old (70+ years old) Londoner is being interviewed about his past as a lighterman on the River Thames and says the following: Three big wharves there, they've flattened, all gone. One ...
5
votes
4answers
176 views

To outstay vs. overstay one's welcome

I came across the expression "outstayed my welcome" in the following excerpt of a novel I glance around and see that the café has filled up with people ordering lunch and that a couple is queuing ...
0
votes
2answers
70 views

Use inland or foreign

If we want to let the world know about our country, Shall we say "To improve foreign trips" or "To improve inland trips"
3
votes
2answers
101 views

'Orthogonality' in words [closed]

The concept of the opposite of a word is well known, for example black/white, on/off. In mathematics, there is the concept of 'orthogonal', meaning geometrically perpendicular. Is there a ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

The Wider Empire and the wrong parts of Britain

The following quotation is taken from an article by Fintan O'Toole titled This glorious and unruly English that lets everyone in. (The Observer, Sunday 15 September 2013) What do the terms "the ...
33
votes
9answers
5k views

“A cup of hot coffee” or “A hot cup of coffee”

I once had an argument with someone about this. Is the meaning of "A cup of hot coffee" the same as "A hot cup of coffee"? Surprisingly I've often heard people utter either of the two, but not ...
1
vote
2answers
54 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, ...
7
votes
4answers
5k views

Is 'petrichor' the only noun in English that means a specific scent?

I heard that 'petrichor', which is defined as a pleasant smell that frequently accompanies the first rain after a long period of warm, dry weather, is the only noun in English that means a specific ...
1
vote
1answer
62 views

“private reason” vs “personal reason”

Someone turned down my invitation for visit to our university for some private reasons. I am not sure what he meant by that. The situation is like he used to work for a company and there might be a ...
2
votes
2answers
63 views

Meaning of “in so far as” [closed]

Groups such as Hizb ut-Tahrir and Tablighi Jamaat play a peripheral role in so far as both men and women may be radicalised as they gravitate toward their teachings. What's the meaning of the ...
1
vote
1answer
69 views

Meaning of “So yeah”

I often hear that phrase at the end of sentences. Sometimes at the beginning. What does it mean?
2
votes
3answers
5k views

What does “Octotastic” mean?

I've seen people writing : "Have an Octotastic day!". I've tried to search online but no useful results. From the context I feel its a synonym for "fantastic". I couldn't see any details on usage of ...