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

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0
votes
1answer
27 views

Can we use “morning” to describe half a day? How to say half a day using an adjective?

I don't know how to use an adjective word to describe the same meaning of half a day. E.g. I have done all the work in the morning. In this sentence, "in the morning" means from 08:00 am to 11:59 am ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Why is it “at twelve o'clock” or “go to market”? [on hold]

Why is it “at twelve o'clock” or "go to market"? Does it have a special meaning? Quotation from The Selfish Giant in The Happy Prince and Other Tales: And when the people were going to market at ...
2
votes
3answers
98 views

What does the slang term “Joe Gland” mean?

In the 1985 novel Footfall by Larry Niven and Jerry Pournelle I came across the following paragraph: They took out identification cards. Clybourne glanced at them, but Jenny thought he looked at ...
0
votes
0answers
22 views

teenage-free - meaning

I would like to dedicate my portions of this book to my wonderful wife, Dawn Etta Riley. She has been supportive of me in my personal endeavors, and although some of them don’t pay off, she still ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

How do the terms “fanboy” and “fangirl” differ from the generic term “fan?”

Prompted by the question: " How did kool-aid come to be the drink of fanboys? " Wikipedia's explanation on "Fanboy (disambiguation)" provides: A fanboy is a person considered to belong to one or ...
0
votes
1answer
17 views

industrial-grade - meaning

The future of PHP looks very bright. Leading platform vendors such as IBM, Oracle, MySQL, Intel, and, most recently, Red Hat have all endorsed it. The new Collaboration Project initiated by ...
3
votes
1answer
31 views

Pre-planning vs planning

The Oxford online dictionary defines "pre-plan" as to "plan in advance". But isn't that generally the point of planning - to do it in advance?
0
votes
2answers
25 views

What does 'to be maxed out' mean?

I want to understand what Chandler means when he says he's maxed out after thinking he's embarrassed by his bunny costume.
1
vote
1answer
49 views

The person who marries for money usually earns every penny of it

The person who marries for money usually earns every penny of it. ...anonymous quote. What does this phrase mean? It seems to suggest that if you marry for money, you will earn all of the money ...
1
vote
3answers
83 views

Does the word “wizardry” have negative connotations?

The Free Dictionary defines wizardry as The art, skill, or practice of a wizard; sorcery. The first part certainly sounds positive, but then the word sorcery is cited as a synonym. This ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

Meaning of “living within means”

Anyone who lives within their means suffers from a lack of imagination.— Oscar Wilde. What does living within means mean?
0
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3answers
52 views

When to use “compatible”, when “incompatible”

I am pulling my hair out on this one! I say... "My explosive is compatible with power supply X" to mean that it works, as required. "My explosive is compatible with salt water" to mean that it does ...
2
votes
1answer
70 views

“The man was either mad or both”

In the delightful Fry and Laurie sketch The Letter, several puns are expertly delivered by Stephen Fry, however there is one I don't understand. At 4:45 in the video, he says "The man was either mad, ...
1
vote
3answers
63 views

Is the definition of browser generally poor? [on hold]

In regards to this question on meta Stackoverflow I had a look at what definitions one find for "browser". My definition of to browse is in short looking for information or things of interest. In ...
1
vote
2answers
39 views

Daycation vs overnight trip

Is a daycation the same as an overnight trip? Do they refer to the same amount of time for a very short holiday?
0
votes
3answers
63 views

When an author lets you decide what happened?

Is there a word to describe when an Author doesn't fully explain a particular scenario, and leaves it rather ambiguous, so that the reader may decide what happened? SPOILERS (Mouseover) So yeah... ...
1
vote
3answers
52 views

Usage of “keenly aware of”

Need help on right usage of "keenly aware of", what are the similar expressions? Can I say: strongly aware of ? thanks
1
vote
2answers
54 views

What does “dish” mean in this context?

In this article about male friendships, there are two references to "dish": "Well, what do you have for me?" Dish, she meant – like maybe some of that marital strife. and: "What do you got ...
-1
votes
2answers
133 views

What does “Eat Lunch or be lunch” mean in this context?

I came across this phrase: The problem facing companies today is that there are too many fishermen and not enough fish in the market. It's a matter of eat lunch or be lunch - or, as stated by ...
0
votes
2answers
27 views

What does absent fraud mean?

I came across the phrase absent fraud in this article. I searched for its meaning on Google but didn't find anything. What does absent fraud mean? I can’t help but empathize with an employee ...
-3
votes
0answers
15 views

“Happens” or “Happened” [migrated]

Two sentences which are given below. which sentence should be correct while conversion? One problem happens, whenever i go to market. One problem is happened, whenever i go to market.
6
votes
6answers
6k views

Difference between “socket” and “outlet”

While translating a technical document I began thinking about socket and outlet. It seems like they're mostly interchangeable. Is that correct? Or is there a difference between the two?
1
vote
4answers
137 views

Indian English use of “only” for emphasis

In my dialect of English (American West Coast), the word only exclusively means exclusively. I've worked with folks from Southern India for a while (and used to live abroad in Dubai), and it seems to ...
-2
votes
1answer
29 views

misguided wager, clearing an exit corridor with and otehr expressions - meaning [on hold]

Source: http://finance.yahoo.com/news/obama-white-house-lost-ukraine-093000155.html Please, help me with the words in bold. I can't seem to get what those expressions mean. No one wants to say ...
14
votes
6answers
1k views

What is the meaning of 'life'? [closed]

Seeing that I have 75 Unicoins, I decided to buy "Guaranteed answer" because it claims "No more need to wait: We guarantee you an answer on all of your questions." I'm very curious to know what ...
0
votes
2answers
49 views

I'm looking for a word that is the noun-form of “poorly-constructed” and ends with the -ation suffiix

I'm going for some alliteration in a paper I'm writing discussing the history and once-current state of a particular navy, and one of the three things I want to talk about is the possibility of ...
1
vote
5answers
78 views

“Feared” or “Scared”

There are two sentences which are given below. i want to ascertain difference and meaning of both sentences. I am not scared of you. I am not feared of you.
2
votes
3answers
60 views

What's the meaning of “in the spirit of”?

The following is a passage from this article: In the spirit of full disclosure, the texter in question turned out to be my editor at Salon. (Hi, Sarah!) She has not texted me again. What does in ...
-1
votes
1answer
34 views

labour v.s. labourer [on hold]

What's the difference between them when I mean "worker"? In other word, which one below is right? Companies can barely find young labours in an ageing society. Companies can barely find young ...
1
vote
1answer
35 views

Difference between a “self-serving individual” and “self-centered individual”

Is being "self-serving" the same as being "self-centered"? While looking for an answer to this question, I saw this previous question on the difference between "selfish" and "self-centered". I ...
12
votes
3answers
24k views

What are the distinctions between “authoritarian”, “totalitarian”, and “dictatorial”?

I'm giving a talk about technology (specifically the Internet) in various governments where freedoms are strongly constrained. I'm a technologist, and I have little experience with words used to ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

what's the meaning of“to be a best approximate”? [on hold]

what's the meaning of"to be a best approximate"? e.g. the coincidence of state and nation is a best approximate, and nowhere more approximate than at their edges, where the offi cial presumption is ...
1
vote
1answer
64 views

How to understand 'flatter to deceive'?

How should you understand the expression: "flatter to deceive"? The Oxford Dictionaries defines flatter to deceive as: Appear promising but ultimately disappoint. Which is all nice and ...
5
votes
1answer
16k views

What does “beggars belief” mean?

What does beggars belief mean, in general and in this sentence? It beggars belief that removing the tag was so urgent that you couldn't wait for a response more than 40 minutes before removing it. ...
6
votes
5answers
13k views

Difference between “accountability” and “responsibility”

I've looked them up in many dictionaries, it seems the two words have the same meaning, right? I don't know when we use each of them properly.
0
votes
3answers
20 views

…if to a reduced degree - meaning, usage

Even so, many of the original advantages of stored programs (such as enhanced security and reduction in network traffic) still apply, if to a reduced degree. The use of stored programs is still ...
1
vote
5answers
81 views

What is the word for “the way a word sounds to your ear”?

I do not mean "Phonaesthetics" or euphony or cacophony which carry a value judgement. Words have an audio 'pattern', mostly unique and different from other words. This is the unique audio ...
0
votes
2answers
42 views

What does it mean to say you are doing something “over the next 3 weeks”?

What does it mean to say "over the next 3 weeks"?
1
vote
0answers
52 views

Meaning of “it is telling to note that” [migrated]

It is telling to note that the language of exclusive territoriality in disputes such as this one originates with local authorities. What's the meaning of "it is telling to note that"?
0
votes
0answers
15 views

Nation experiencing [on hold]

Could you explain please, what does phrase nation experiencing mean? Example: "This relaxed routine is increasingly out of step with a nation experiencing one of the most amazingly quick changes in ...
0
votes
2answers
39 views

What is the meaning of “here” at the end of a sentence and how should it be used?

I have had a few international friends ask about "here" when used at the end of a sentence such as "I could use a little help here!" or "buy me some time here!". I would like to better explain this to ...
1
vote
2answers
201 views

What's the difference between “dissatisfied” and “unsatisfied”?

Is there a clear-cut difference between dissatisfied and unsatisfied?
15
votes
4answers
32k views

How does “pussy” come to mean “coward”?

The word pussy is often used to mean "coward". This guy is a pussy. and I am wondering why. How are woman's genitals related to being a "coward"?
40
votes
23answers
122k views

“Lunch” vs. “dinner” vs. “supper” — times and meanings?

I've seen cases where a noon-time meal is referred to as dinner, and the evening meal is called supper. There's also lunch around noon followed by dinner in the evening. Is there a particular ...
5
votes
3answers
191 views

Limp and Hobble

I have a problem with the word "limp" and "hobble". I do not know which word is appropriately used when it comes to context because I do not know how the words differ from each other. Can we use them ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Origin of the word kowtow? [on hold]

l think it has its origin from the Akan people of Ghana because the Akans have a similar word which means to bow or lay prostrate for a higher person or an authority.
0
votes
3answers
83 views

What is the word to describe something that has hidden meaning?

I'm writing an essay (yay) on I'm the King of the Castle, by Susan Hill. I am trying to explain how the description of the atmosphere may have hidden meanings (e.g. the fact that Warings is a ...
3
votes
3answers
6k views

Difference between “pardon me” and “I beg your pardon”

What is the difference in meaning between "pardon me" and "I beg your pardon"?
0
votes
0answers
51 views

what do you mean by “opening out like a fan”? [on hold]

What is the meaning of "opening out like a fan from the shores"? This sentence is from the ad introducing a city for future travelers.
1
vote
1answer
46 views

Can 'trains' be used as a synonym for 'postponement'

Was solving a cryptic crossword clue recently which reads Coaches for postponement (6) The answer is 'trains' obvious from coaches , but dont get the postponement reference. The solution ...