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

learn more… | top users | synonyms (6)

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1answer
25 views

bleed inside out/got-have got

I've been wondering if there is the expression "I bleed inside out" or if it is correct. For example "someone or something makes me bleed inside out" - as we say "it breaks my heart". And actually I ...
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1answer
48 views

How do you reconcile these definitions of the word 'cynical'?

From the Google Search dictionary (similar definition at oxforddicationaries): 1.believing that people are motivated purely by self-interest; distrustful of human sincerity or integrity. ...
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1answer
34 views

full length of the counter

What does "walk full length of the counter " mean? The original sentence is: "Where all these technologies in looking for the ideal partner err is in having to make one’s selection before walking the ...
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1answer
81 views

Screaming darkness

What does "screaming darkness" mean? The context is as follows: Now the wind was rushing past him, carrying with it loose pieces of clothing, sheets of paper, food from the kitchen, anything ...
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1answer
93 views

Clarification on sarcasm/type of personality-stumped

I am hoping to get some help. I have always been told that I am the most sarcastic person people have ever met. After 20 years, I decided to dive a little deeper to see if I fit the definition. It ...
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1answer
49 views

Is it correct to use the phrase - “he / she fights on”?

Is it correct to use the phrase "he / she fights on" to say that a person is fighting / struggling for a cause?
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0answers
78 views

What does 'lazy' mean in the sentence 'They bought the mansion for a lazy $10 million.'?

It seems to me that 'lazy' in this context suggests a humorous, off-hand attitude to a sum most would consider serious money. Is it a jocular minimisation of the amount, almost the opposite of the ...
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0answers
42 views

What's the meaning of 'do bits'?

In a video, two people are describing a character from a fictional show and they say: 'he loves bits, he's always doing bits' and they move on to another topic. I don't understand the meaning of ...
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0answers
107 views

Is “cause” instead of “because” becoming Standard English?

Nowadays, I'm seeing a drastic increase in usage of cause in place of because, especially in written English. People are in such a hurry, that a statement like below passes off like Standard English: ...
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0answers
72 views

What's the meaning of “I+verb+not+object1+the less, but+object2+more”?

What's the meaning of: I verb not object 1 the less, but object 2 more. Example: I love not man the less, but Nature more.. I've searched Google about the meaning of it, but unfortunately ...
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0answers
36 views

What doe Ev. followed by a number mean in a footnote?

I am reading a document with numerous footnotes providing references to the source of the information in the main text. However, some of the notes just give Ev. followed by a single digit number. All ...
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0answers
21 views

Can you give a clearer definition of “powerhouse” in food industry like dessert powerhouse?

I read an article and the article writer uses the word "dessert powerhouse". I guess "dessert powerhouse" like a big manufacture that makes a lot of dessert and whole-sales to other smaller cake shop ...
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0answers
38 views

'look the worse for'

After a night of profound slumber in Margaret’s bed she looked very little the worse for her fright and her wetting. from Grey Mask by Patricia Wentworth The above expression of look the worse ...
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0answers
33 views

Does the word “writing” denote all forms of using characters to convey information?

In legal practices it is common to deliver a written notice to a defendant. This may be a physical letter or an email. This got me thinking about the meaning of written. The Oxford dictionary defines ...
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0answers
22 views

I'm looking for a psychology term related to behavior motivation or inducement

Its a single word that essentially means motivation. There are both positive and negative versions of it like positive something - motivate by giving reward when someone does a good thing, or ...
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0answers
34 views

What does “doing press” mean in the following context?

From this scan of Paul we were able to turn him into a 3D printable figure. Some of you may already have seen photos of the figure. Paul had them with him whilst doing press for the 'Hope ...
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0answers
43 views

What does “hey, nut” mean?

Does Hey, nut mean "hey, silly?" A is pressing doorbell to look for B. B opens the door and says: B: Hey, nut. You looking for someone? A kisses B. A: Sorry. I just really needed ...
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0answers
22 views

Meaning of should and would

Here's a text: 'I'm going out now. Is it cold out?' 'Yes, I should wear a coat.' It means 'If I were you, I would wear a coat'. So my question is can I just say 'Yes, I would wear a coat'?
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63 views

I've sent an email asking for a reference from a professor, and got a reply which is a bit confusing

I've sent an email asking for a reference from a professor, and got a reply which is a bit confusing. The following sentences are what I've sent: I was wondering if you would be willing to write ...
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0answers
28 views

What does it imply : “you better do the same”?

I am a volunteer in feeding homeless people in Melbourne, Australia. Workers in the kitchen wash the dishes in soapy water and then they don't pour water on it to clean rather wipe them (while a foam ...
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0answers
17 views

Is “Interpose Model” the correct term

I have a question in context of electrical engineering. Imagine a schematic of electrical components or a netlist, where I want to change the behavior of one part by cutting the wiring and adding a ...
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0answers
139 views

How to identify if a word is positive, negative, or neutral?

I am studying for SAT and English is not my first language. I really struggle with vocabulary. I memorized about 1000 words for the test, but only a few showed up on the test. I am planning on taking ...
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0answers
41 views

They are going around you

I just very confused about the women's saying in below video, http://www.voanews.com/content/vendors-showcase-marijuana-products-washington-expo/2666893.html It appears in 2'30'', the women said " I ...
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0answers
56 views

Can the adjective “sexist” be replaced by “chauvinistic” in this context?

Can chauvinistic denote the same meaning as sexist in this sentence? The nature of these rituals generates a sexist mentality among the new members.
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50 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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59 views

What's the meaning of “we couldn't shake it”

I've heard this phrase in a song, but I don't think its meaning lies in terms to get rid off something. I'll never forget you Although at times we couldn't shake it
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0answers
29 views

What does “size availability” mean in the following context?

It's about woods, more precisely about the tree called "Thuya Burr" : USES: Mostly used for decorative veneers as size availability is limited. Many thanks for your help
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38 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 ...
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0answers
36 views

Midnight at the Halls or Midnight in the Halls

I was writing a title for an article and I was curious which version of the title would be more grammatically proper: "Midnight at the Halls" or "Midnight in the Halls" It's trying express the fact ...
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0answers
44 views

Make in-roads - meaning

At Marina Polliack's jewelry stand, Bennett was making in-roads. I am not sure how to understand in-roads. The sentence appears here ...
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0answers
62 views

Is it possible to 'claim' a concession?

Underlying most OED definitions of the word claim, both noun and verb, is some notion of right or entitlement. ( An exception arises in the case of meaning 2c - the loosely used he claimed to be ...
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0answers
41 views

Electronic module or unit?

I make circuit boards with micro controllers that I mount inside plastic cases. I've always referred to them as electronic control modules. But what is really the best word for these? Electronic ...
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0answers
41 views

Difference between discourses and worldviews

I wondered if any one could help me to differentiate between worldviews (see the Cultural Theory of Risk for further information) and discourses (and their interrelation, if applicable). Thanks in ...
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51 views

What's the difference between Earthed Line and the Earth Line?

What's the difference between Earthed Line and the Earth Line? Are they same meaning?
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61 views

Sift and Sieve definition

Recently, while reading a novel, I stumbled upon the word 'sifted'. This immediately got me questioning the difference between the verb 'sift' and the verb 'sieve'. Some dictionaries say 'sieve' is ...
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40 views

It is to the feminine as the hug of a bear is to the scratch of--well;--anything with claws

"A man's sense of humor is a barbarous and a cruel thing, Miss Innes," he admitted. "It is to the feminine as the hug of a bear is to the scratch of--well;--anything with claws. Is that you, Thomas? ...
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64 views

I'll just toss it out again

Every moment of the day feels like a race against the clock. To borrow a phrase from Carrie Fisher, which is in my bio there; I'll just toss it out again -- "These days even instant gratification ...
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0answers
31 views

“relaxed flying fingers” associated with ergonomic keyboard computer interface?

I want to start an open source software project and call it "relaxed flying fingers". The project is about a better keyboard interface, especially for touch typers (people typing with ten fingers). ...
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0answers
113 views

Meaning of “well” in full and meaningful sentences

In everyday English, people use "well" in their speech very loosely. "Well, I don't know." "Well yeah!" "Oh well..." ...etc. I know "well" has different meanings and emotions attached to them, ...
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1k views

Far more … than meaning

Theft of an idea is far more difficult for proving in court than word-for-word plagiarism. Can far more be used in that sentence? What does it mean?
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94 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 ...
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0answers
415 views

Is there a difference between: “The coming year” and “next year”?

If it were now January, would "the coming year" be taken to mean this year? If it were November would "the coming year" refer to the next calendar year or a period running from November to November?
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243 views

What does “trabacaloes” refer to?

The book I'm reading contains the following excerpt: He thought of men he knew, junior to him but with better luck or better interest, who were now lieutenants in command of brigs or cutters, or ...
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89 views

“Comfort me in accomplishing my task”

In a formal letter, can one say comfort me in accomplishing my task as in Your presence will significantly enhance this scientific event and comfort me in accomplishing my task. ...
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172 views

Morpheme Division

I just have a short question regarding the morpheme contextualizes. When I divide it into morphemes, is it: 1. contextual ize s lexical derivational inflectional ...
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0answers
86 views

Is there a proper name for saying something like “stack'em”?

Is there a proper name for saying something like stack'em instead of stack them or any other "'em" in place of "them"? Is it slang or something to do with dialect? UPDATE It is a ...
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0answers
67 views

What does “ be upon mental” mean?

What does " be upon mental" mean? For example in this sentence: "we Both must be upon our mental". Is it somehow about being crazy? It's a story in verse; it refers to Grimm's Fairy Tales. ...
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96 views

What is the difference between “matter-containing media” and “matter”?

I'm reading the english wikipedia entry titled "Radiation". http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Radiation you can find the word in the first paragraph, or by searching. so... What is the difference between ...
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82 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 ...
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86 views

meaning of “Winner quote” - best “saying” or best “offer”?

Since the word "quote" can be understood as "saying" and also as "offer" I have the following question. If you hear someone saying "that's a winner quote", what would you understand? Would most people ...