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

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1answer
136 views

Meaning of “Would you value the ethics of consequence over means?” [closed]

I've been reading a book for a while and I've stumbled on the following sentence, which I didn't quite understand: Would you value the ethics of consequence over means? The context is the ...
2
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4answers
9k views

Meaning of “If gold rust what shall the iron do”

My teacher asked me to write an essay on this topic, but I have no clear understanding of this phrase. Can someone explain in more simple words? "If gold rust what shall the iron do." – The ...
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2answers
329 views

Difference between “illusion” and “delusion” [closed]

Can somebody please elaborate on the difference between illusion and delusion? Especially in medical terms.
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1answer
222 views

What does the phrase “bounce the moon” mean?

What does the phrase "bounce the moon" as found in this song mean?
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2answers
2k views

What is the difference between “excuse me” and “forgive me”?

I am hesitated when I use the sentence "forgive my fault, please." instead of "excuse me, please." because the word "forgive" has a religious theme and probably carries some additional meanings. Also ...
0
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1answer
173 views

what is the function of “have” in this sentence [closed]

I have a problem to recognize this sentence "I have it cuts every weeks". So, what's the function of "have", and also the name of grammar(if any) or any sentence pattern for similar sentence, and ...
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2answers
1k views

What does “Tell me if you love me” really mean? [closed]

What does "Tell me if you love me" really mean? I have two interpretations, please tell me which one is correct: 1) Tell me whether you are in love with me or not. 2) Tell me about XXX, to prove ...
2
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2answers
1k views

Meaning of “top” in “to sleep as sound as a top”

From "The Early Bird", by George MacDonald. A little bird sat on the edge of her nest; Her yellow-beaks slept as sound as tops; Day-long she had worked almost without rest, And had ...
3
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2answers
942 views

Is “cut against sth” an idiom or just ‘cut’ followed by a preposition?

There was a phrase, ‘the governor cuts against his core argument” on the issue of how to handle undocumented immigrants in the following sentence in Time magazine’s (Nov 23) article titled, ...
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3answers
2k views

“Thou” or “You”? This is the problem!

In some eastern Indo-European languages like Persian specially in its northern accent Gilaki, the words "thou", "thee", "thy",... have a same meaning and pronunciation as English. But there is a ...
0
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1answer
180 views

the mean of “one's bearing” in the sentence [closed]

What is the mean of "one's bearing" in the sentence "To be a conqueror in appearance, in one's bearing, is the first step toward success."? I referred to dictionary and searched but I didn't ...
0
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1answer
689 views

Difference Between “View” and “Viewpoint”?

Suppose the context is people giving their opinions in a discussion. How are "view" and "viewpoint" different? Some dictionaries seem to say they are the same. What do native speakers think?
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3answers
2k views

difference between act and deed

I've been searching the internet, but have not quite found a satisfactory explanation between an act and a deed. Both seem to have kind of a meaning of something done, though through my google and ...
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4answers
618 views

What's the most common word refer to the after death letter?

I am confused between : Will, legacy, Commandment, Precept, Behest, Testament and more. Which word refer to the declaration or the message by which a person ask the world to do certain things after ...
6
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2answers
2k views

What does ‘go nuclear’ mean in “Senate Democrats go ‘Nuclear’ to curb the filibuster”?

There was the following sentence in the article of Time magazine (November 21) titled, “Senate Democrats go ‘Nuclear’ to curb the filibuster”: “During the Bush Administration, Republicans ...
0
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3answers
121 views

Which word is better, damage or defile?

I think I look like Brad Peter. – Oh, you are damaging my idol. (He is far from Brad’s look). I mean my friend’s words made me feel uncomfortable because my idol was compared to something much ...
0
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1answer
150 views

Correct grammatical use of 'persona'?

Is the following the correct grammatical way to use 'persona'? I wonder what persona you have of me?
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1answer
305 views

What does “amortized” mean

In this link I see following: A recent talk about unordered_map in C++ made me realize, that I should use unordered_map for most cases where I used map before, because of the efficiency of lookup ...
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2answers
229 views

What is Mongolian Trait ? when referring to medical scores of a newborn child in USA [closed]

What is Mongolian Trait? I have been unable to find the meaning to this My Niece was classified as having Mongolian Trait ..
2
votes
1answer
327 views

Proper usage of the word “racism”?

It seems that historical definitions of the word "racism" use it to mean something similar to "racial prejudice" and "racial discrimination", without any reference to which race has power or doesn't ...
0
votes
1answer
110 views

What is a “crippled serial flirt”? [closed]

I got this expression from the wikipedia article regarding the novel "Barchester Towers" by Anthony Trollope. The full sentence is: Signora Madeline Vesey Neroni is a crippled serial flirt with a ...
1
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4answers
12k views

What does “he is sorted” mean?

In her book Wedding Night, Sophie Kinsella writes: He's got a cushy number. Nice salary, cottage on the estate... he's sorted. I looked up the meaning of "sort" in [insert dictionary here] and ...
1
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4answers
428 views

Name a group of frequently used items or things

What name would you give to a grouping of items or things that you use frequently? I am preferrably looking for a one word answer please.
1
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1answer
212 views

How should this sentence be interpreted?

So I am reading the essay "On Some Verses of Virgil" by Michel de Montaigne (translation by Donald M. Frame) and I came across this particular sentence. Is there any ugliness in doing wrong that ...
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2answers
237 views

Definition clarification for “effervesce”

I was wondering about one of the meanings of effervesce, "give off bubbles". I wonder if you could use effervesce for a solid, and how it's used in a sentence.
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3answers
4k views

What is the difference between chickens and birds? [closed]

I watched news about turkeys this morning and instead of calling them chickens the news anchor called them birds. In my opinion, turkeys are sub-type of chickens. They are not a bird because they ...
4
votes
2answers
5k views

What does “Not to be a dick, but—” mean? Is “Dickishness” an accepted, stand-alone English word?

There was a recommendation of a new book, How Not to Be a Dick: An Everyday Etiquette Guide in www.Goodreads.com followed by this next sentence: “On the one hand, nobody wants to be a dick. On the ...
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3answers
108 views

What does “organizing a Trust that would skin the taxcollars off the whole herd” mean?

From A Dog's Tale by Mark Twain: He was a renowned scientist. I do not know what the word means, but my mother would know how to use it and get effects. She would know how to depress a rat-terrier ...
4
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2answers
581 views

What is a “mock euphemism?”

I have to make flashcards for my AP Lang class, but I can't find what a "mock euphemism" is anywhere. Can anyone help?
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2answers
642 views

What's the meaning of “Take me for my ride”?

"It's all right with me," she announced, "so long as Goodbody's is hanging the rap on me -- somebody I can sue for a million when it flops. I've got nothing to say. Take me for my ride." It's a ...
4
votes
5answers
2k views

Is there a word for something which will run before and after an event?

If concurrent means two things running at the same time, is there a single word for something which will occur before and after an event? E.g. Running concurrently with the show will be a bar open ...
1
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2answers
719 views

How to use the word 'contrary'?

Is it right to say contrary to our interest to reduce the size of the paper I want to say that we want to reduce the size of the paper but we cannot do it, due to specific reasons.
0
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2answers
384 views

“Even though none of you have yet to believe it” — grammatical?

Is the following sentence from the TV series American Horror Story correct, formal grammar? We are powerful. Even though none of you have yet to believe it. In my understanding, it would be ...
1
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1answer
277 views

What does 'live it for the best good of others mean exactly?

we were sent into this world for a wise and good purpose, and must do our duties without repining, take our life as we might find it, live it for the best good of others, and never mind about the ...
4
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2answers
11k views

Difference in usage of terms “company” and “firm”

In a meaning of officially registered and bounded business unit. Like "Microsoft" or "Apple" or "ZARA" or copy shop round the corner. In some books on management/entrepreneurship authors use both ...
1
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1answer
641 views

“falling due” vs “due”

What's the definition of falling due and how did its sense materialise? Please compare it against "due"? I'm mindful that it's an accounting/business term: here are its matches on Google Books. I'm ...
0
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1answer
2k views

“Needs repairing” vs. “needs to be repaired” [duplicate]

Do the following two sentences mean the same thing? If so, which is more commonly used? My car needs repairing. My car needs to be repaired.
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2answers
3k views

“Made in…” vs. “Product of…” [duplicate]

What is the difference between "Made in..." and "Product of..."? Both are often seen on product labeling; my understanding is that "Made in" is not used for agricultural goods while "Product of" is?
1
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4answers
308 views

Definition of Sin [closed]

Prior to reading Langston Hughes Salvation, I defined sin as something that you have done wrong. But, in reading Langston Hughes essay, it used sin to mean something like not believing in god. So, my ...
2
votes
1answer
225 views

What does “personally identifiable” mean

I was reading a booklet when I came across the phrase "personally identifiable". What does it mean in the following context (emphasis mine): As the common household and business router will often ...
0
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1answer
267 views

what does a three-up mean in below contents?

Print proofing with a three-up: The two sides show the lightest and darkest prints that are within tolerance. The one in the middle is juust right. I can guess what it means by reading the whole ...
0
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2answers
85 views

“String of numbers” vs. “field of numbers” [closed]

I'm trying to choose a name for a variable in my program that includes some number tandem. What is the difference between string and field in this case? For example, which one is better: "field of ...
7
votes
5answers
52k views

Is funner a word? [duplicate]

I am constantly told "funner" is not a word. Even Google auto corrects. Yet "funner" is used very often in spoken English with people I meet. Is funner a word? If not why? What causes it to not be ...
0
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2answers
217 views

What does “desperate sign” mean here?

The one political outlook to which it(general will) remain fundamentally inimical, not surprisingly, was that of royal absolutism-which is not to say that there were no attempts to confiscate ...
2
votes
1answer
392 views

What is the meaning of “the green and blue of the crops”?

I'm reading the My mother never worked essay by Bonnie Smith-Yackel. In the other fields, when the oats and flax began to head out, the green and blue of the crops were hidden by the bright yellow ...
1
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1answer
446 views

Why “Daddy” in this sentence was written with a capital D?

Why is Daddy in this sentence written with a capital D? Her love letters to and from Daddy were in an old box, tied with ribbons and stiff, rigid-with-age leather thongs. This sentence is from ...
1
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1answer
87 views

What is the meaning of “home question”?

I have learned what "home truth" and "home thrust" means. But what is the meaning of "home question"?
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4answers
20k views

The meaning of “Mid or feed”

What does the expression "Mid or feed" mean? I realized it was a quote from Einstein. In addition, what's the meaning of the "mid" and the "feed" in this semi-context? After a Google search, I see ...
1
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2answers
319 views

Is automobiles only a “car”

If we go by the word it should be anything which can move(mobile) on its own. The etymology section under wikipedia suggest so. But dictionary, wikipedia etc. says that its meaning is car. My ...
2
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1answer
18k views

Meaning of “Thanks for your insights”? [closed]

What does "Thanks for your insights" mean? And how should I use this sentence?