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4
votes
3answers
139 views

Difference of “I am just an ABC” vs “I am but a XYZ”

As far as I (non-native speaker) can tell, these two sentences have the same meaning: I'm just a humble merchant I'm but a humble merchant However I wonder if there is some subtle ...
1
vote
3answers
574 views

Good Luck **in** all your endeavors' versus Good Luck **to** all your endeavors'

What is the difference between 'I am currently busy with family stuff so I really don't know when is a good time to catch up. Good Luck in all your endeavors' versus 'I am currently busy with family ...
0
votes
2answers
58 views

Does the past participle always imply that an object was, at some point, not in its current state? [closed]

When someone says This is a dried handkerchief It is usually implying that, at one point, the handkerchief was not dry. However, does this apply to all past participles? If I say : I ...
16
votes
10answers
4k views

A hypernym for 'insects', 'worms' and the like

From Oxford: insect: any small creature with six legs and a body divided into three parts. Insects usually also have wings. Ants, bees and flies are all insects Insect is often used to refer ...
-1
votes
1answer
32 views

“In” and “and” when describing a relation

I recently noticed this in various titles of things (books, articles, etc.): Language and the brain Technology and society These make sense and are grammatical, but why not use in in ...
1
vote
1answer
86 views

Nuances for 'craving'

Consider the following sentences: 1a) I crave solitude. 1b) I crave for solitude. 2a) I miss home-cooked food. I crave it. 2b) I miss home-cooked food. I crave for it. Oxford ...
4
votes
2answers
156 views

What is the difference between “You are looking well” and “You look well”?

What is the difference between: You're looking well! and You look well! Assuming that both refer to a specific occasion, what is it that the continuous aspect indicates here? The ...
1
vote
0answers
82 views

Is there a nuance in meaning between 'non-managed' and 'unmanaged'?

Context: I am writing about 'devices not managed by professionals' and debating the subtleties between non-managed devices vs. unmanaged devices
1
vote
1answer
57 views

“Put on a show” vs. “put on an act”. What's the difference?

What's the difference between "put on a show" and "put on an act"? Are they interchangeable? They look similar in meaning to me. Is there any nuanced difference? Examples sentences from ...
0
votes
0answers
34 views

“data on my iPad” or “data in my iPad” [duplicate]

Which is correct and are there any differences in meaning or nuance? I have the data on my iPad I have the data in my iPad I searched data on my iPad and data in my iPad on google, and got many ...
0
votes
2answers
93 views

What is the difference between “at least as surprising as” and “more surprising than”?

According to Wikipedia, P value is defined as the probability that data at least as surprising as the observed sample results would be generated under a model of random chance Why is it stated ...
1
vote
4answers
137 views

“lending support” vs “extending support”

I am in a little debate with myself, arguing the difference between "lending support" and "extending support" while trying to write a diplomatic email. So some people got promoted into highly ...
0
votes
1answer
211 views

How to avoid using redundant words like “not so”, “quite” or “sort of”?

Today I find an interesting table in Writers Write: I wonder do we have the same table, but for the words "not so", "quite", "sort of", etc?
4
votes
3answers
826 views

Uniqueness vs. Unicity

Uniqueness and unicity can be synonyms when they are used to describe something that is “unique”, meaning something that is distinct from all other things. Are these terms interchangeable, or do they ...
2
votes
2answers
124 views

‘Imbibe’ — What does it look like?

I’m trying to determine the visual expression of ‘imbibing,’ with the presumption it describes a particular attitude or energy in the act of drinking. (I make this presumption because it gives reason ...
1
vote
2answers
86 views

Is “Perl Monger” derogatory when used by non Perl programmers? [closed]

The two most common uses of the word "monger" I've heard of are rather derogatory: whore-monger and warmonger. Wiktionary reflects this in its second definition: A person promoting something ...
5
votes
2answers
454 views

What is the meaning of “What a box to sweat in!”?

I have started to read "The Sun Also Rises" by Ernest Hemingway. I stumbled a lot shortly after the beginning, as I'm a middle-aged Japanese dude who is struggling to learn English. I need someone's ...
0
votes
1answer
172 views

“Can” vs “Able to”: People/Animals vs. Inanimate Objects

I’m wondering if the English grammar “rule” given below, which I have heard from numerous non-native speakers, has any validity. “can” is used for people, animals, and inanimate objects. ...
2
votes
1answer
95 views

How to translate the German term “Selbstverständnis” with respect to organisations?

The German term "Selbstverständnis" can be used in the context of (typically) not-for-profit / non-profit organisations to denote the aims they have and the (typically social) changes they try to ...
0
votes
1answer
31 views

Larger organization – usage

What would be the correct verbiage for referring to an outside organization? For example: “Your team provided an opportunity for this division to derive change within our larger organization”
3
votes
2answers
821 views

Is there a neutral word for an olfactory impression?

While creating this proposal I was struggling to find the right words for olfactory impressions. Is there a neutral word for an olfactory impression? smell seems to have a negative connotation ...
1
vote
2answers
73 views

'Closest Healing' or another phrase for a book title?

I have written a book and will publish it. I have suffered a lot from a disease over a decade, but after I prayed to God in fasting I found its healing was very close, not far from me. Therefore, I ...
0
votes
3answers
2k views

A lot of people seem to be 'working for the man'. Who is this guy? [closed]

I have heard the expression 'working for the man' a lot. Mostly in podcasts made in the US. What does that mean? Does it express an opinion about the employer? Something along the lines of big, ...
1
vote
1answer
343 views

“The key doesn't work” vs. “The key is not working” [closed]

Here's a situation. You go to your hotel room and the key that you have is not working. When you go back to the reception, should you say: The key is not working, can you fix it. Or The key ...
3
votes
1answer
437 views

difference between suffixes '-ish' and '-y'

Recently Prince Charles used the word 'Hitlery,' in the sense of "possessing some properties of Hitler." Is there any difference between the suffixes -ish and -y ?
5
votes
1answer
103 views

Must cookies contain chocolate in BrE?

In British English, my friend informed me that my use of the word cookie was incorrect in referring to a baked item having no chocolate bits in it. Instead the appropriate term would have to be ...
2
votes
1answer
106 views

Nuance of “Intellectual Bad Ass” [closed]

To me as a non-native to the English language, it reminds funny, geeky, nerdy hero, like Tony Stark (Iron Man) excluding his riches and Iron Man suit. But what are the nuances of "intellectual bad ...
3
votes
2answers
222 views

Connotation of term autodidact

I would like to know if autodidact has a positive, negative, or neutral connotation behind it. These questions asking about usage imply: A neutral connotation: Autodidactic as a Verb What would ...
1
vote
1answer
58 views

Difference between “in” and “to” in this context

My friend is taking an English conversation class. In it, she said I have been teaching math in high schools for more than 10 years. Before that I taught math in junior high schools. However, ...
1
vote
3answers
14k views

“Given that” vs. “Granted that”

Understanding that "given that" and "granted that" are both used to mark the premise of an argument (or conditions that are assumed to be true), and the actual meaning is almost identical, I have to ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

any differences between fund and funding when used as a noun?

Are there any differences between fund and funding when used as a noun? They seem both to have a meaning of "money made available for a particular purpose", and I was wondering why we need "funding" ...
1
vote
1answer
128 views

PrP Continuous vs. PrP | Nuance?

I have a question regarding the usage of the Present Perfect and the Present Perfect Continuous. So first, here's the context: I was playing an online game with a couple friends and in this game you ...
0
votes
3answers
168 views

Why use “what is … to/by me” rather than “my … thing”?

I noticed that in English we say, "My favorite thing", and it's okay, but we don't say, "My well-liked thing". Why is this? Why use, "What is well-liked by me ..."?
2
votes
1answer
177 views

What’s the difference between “kerfuffle”, “commotion”, and “fuss”?

What’s the difference between kerfuffle, commotion, and fuss? For example: What’s all this kerfuffle about? What’s all this commotion about? What’s all this fuss about?
-2
votes
1answer
7k views

“the very best” vs. “by far the best” vs. “much the best”

What does the following sentence exactly mean? He is the very best student in our class. Is it any different in meaning from the following? He is by far the best student in our class. ...
5
votes
5answers
2k views

Does a laser “etch” things, or does it “engrave” them?

Which (if any) of these adjectives would you use for describing a surface that has been cut using a laser beam: a laser-etched surface a laser-engraved surface a laser-(something else) surface a ...
4
votes
5answers
17k views

“visceral” vs “emotional”

What's is the difference in nuance between visceral (relating to deep inward feelings rather than to the intellect) and emotional? How do we decide when to use one over the other?
3
votes
2answers
1k views

“in order to” vs. “for the sake of”

These two phrases seem to be interchangeable in most cases. But I found one case where it seems that "in order to" works, and "for the sake of" sounds like it's not as good a choice of words. ...
0
votes
2answers
3k views

“Never” and past tense

Considering these two sentences in the past tense, using "never": The film has never been released The film was never released Are they both correct? If so, is there a difference in the ...
3
votes
1answer
5k views

Any difference between “Are you done?” and “Are you done yet?”

I see people in movies saying Are you done? and Are you done yet? And I wonder what that the addition of yet might mean or suggest in the second version which is absent in the first ...
0
votes
2answers
366 views

“Protagonist in” or “protagonist of”? [closed]

If I were to write an intro for a protagonist in say, a game, would I say he/she is the "protagonist of [title]" or the "protagonist in [title]"? Or does it matter?
0
votes
1answer
545 views

“Inspect” vs. “control” [closed]

Which of inspect or control is more appropriate when referring to action checking the operational state of something? Context: Workers are checking the operational state of a billboard with regards ...
4
votes
3answers
967 views

Is ‘anything in a skirt” a popular idiom? Does it have special overtones?

I came across the words, ‘anything in a skirt” in the following sentence of Jeffery Archer’s “The Fourth Estate”:- Page 202. “(Captain Armstrong is entitled to a car and driver) if the brigadier ...
5
votes
4answers
15k views

Self-Learner vs Self-Taught vs Autodidact

Which of these three terms is the most relevant in a resume? Should any be avoided? For clarity, I do understand the irony of pretending to be a self learner posting questions on StackExchange, ...
2
votes
2answers
466 views

“Crisis”, “drama” and similar words in the news

Today I read the economist headline: On to the next crisis. Automatic spending cuts took effect on March 1st; more drama is to come I startled at the word ‘drama’. It would be regarded as ...
-2
votes
1answer
178 views

Is “all of your everything” common English?

Is the phrase “all of your everything” proper English? It seems to mean “all of your belongings”, but what special connotations does this phrase have? It can be found here but the search engine of ...
0
votes
2answers
370 views

“What need is there to …” vs “Is there a need to …”

Is a question that starts with "What need is there to" grammatically correct? For example: What need is there to tell a lie just to make a joke? If so, is there a difference in meaning or ...
18
votes
6answers
7k views

Time and tide wait for no man

In the old proverb: Time and tide wait for no man. Our first record of the proverb is from St Marher in 1225: And te tide and te time þat tu iboren were, schal beon iblescet. When it was ...
1
vote
3answers
5k views

Does “absent friends” have definite association with deceased family/friends?

Having gotten married this year and acting as best man for my brother, one of the responsibilities for speeches was a toast "to absent friends". With some of our family no longer being alive, for us ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Is there a word to describe female between 'girl' and 'woman'?

I've been trying to find a word that describes someone that's older than a 'girl' but not yet a 'woman'. It seems the connotation of girl is an immature female that's still growing up. Whereas a woman ...