This tag is for questions seeking a phrase that fits a meaning. If you're specifically seeking only a single word, see the "single word requests" tag too.

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0
votes
3answers
62 views

An alternative word for “non-evaluativeness”

I'm looking for an alternative word to use instead of "non-evaluativeness" which is long and not very common. Any ideas are appreciated. Example: Non-evaluativeness: Abstract should report the ...
2
votes
5answers
88 views

Word/phrase for negative side effect(s)

In an essay I want to enumerate and describe negative aspects of using a popular and working tool. Since such issues are usually overlooked (or even underestimated), I call them negative side effects. ...
-1
votes
3answers
33 views

Has your turn approached vs. Is it your turn [closed]

Which one of the following is the right way to ask someone about his turn or number for an interview etc: Has your turn approached/reached? Is it your turn yet? Thanks
5
votes
5answers
395 views

Single word describing a person new in something [closed]

What is a word for someone who is totally new in something or participates in something for the first time?
1
vote
1answer
88 views

Expression for “a place where you could settle and live without having to ask for permission, pay taxes, …” [closed]

On the History Stack Exchange they were talking about “white spots”. Is there a proper expression, a single word, or a phrase for such a place? By "white spot" I mean a place where you (if you ...
1
vote
5answers
111 views

How to describe a person who puts down others to make themself feel superior [closed]

I am trying to describe a character who insults and degrades everyone around her to feel better and to give the appearance that she is superior to everyone else. This character doesn't actually ...
13
votes
13answers
3k views

Is there an idiom for being consistently unlucky through no fault of one's own? [duplicate]

Not quite sure how to word this, but I'm looking for an idiom or phrase/saying that describes when somebody who's done nothing to deserve it has hit a streak of bad luck. Wish I could be more ...
0
votes
3answers
60 views

Is there a word or phrase for the moment while taking a picture when there are no tourists (e.g unwanted distractions) in your viewfinder?

This came up during a trip and was thinking there must be a word to capture the moment while taking a picture and waiting for tourists to move out of your perfectly framed building/fountain/status ...
10
votes
9answers
2k views

Are there good English expressions for “raison d’être” and “joie de vivre”? [closed]

I know the two phrases have been adopted into the English lexicon, but raison d’être and joie de vivre are phrases, not words. As phrases they certainly sound better in French than would their ...
1
vote
4answers
52 views

More formal alternative for “get a handle on sth.”

In a text I am writing (paper in the sciences), I find I would like to use the phrase “In order to get a handle on this problem, …”, but it seems a little informal. The intended meaning is “gain a ...
0
votes
3answers
95 views

Idiom for “wanting a long-term relationship”?

Example: Because he just wanted a one-night-stand, he told the girl he had a girlfriend, to make sure the girl [...] Meaning that the guy told the girl he had a girlfriend so that the girl ...
1
vote
2answers
71 views

“I hope it will be useful for you like” + verb

I'm writing down few notes about a technical argument, I'm doing it also to understand them better, so in my intro I'm saying: If you are reading this, I hope it will be useful for you like ...
14
votes
4answers
2k views

What do you call psychological diseases that affect many people at once (or many people of a society)?

I am talking about diseases such as the Jerusalem syndrome, the Paris syndrome, and the Dancing Plague of 1518. Is there a general name for such diseases?
18
votes
11answers
4k views

What do you call an 'unselfish' action made with a selfish reason?

There are many examples of this, and I'd like to give a few: A person who puts a lot of effort to help the community and earns reputation points. But that reputation is the motivation behind helping ...
8
votes
11answers
1k views

“Calling a spade a spade”: synonymous expressions?

I'm looking for expressions that are equivalent to "calling a spade a spade." In some environments and verbal contexts, this phrase needs to be avoided -- please take my word for it. Thank ...
1
vote
1answer
140 views

The word/phrase for the person who makes all the profit while others are suffering?

"I hate this war." "Me too. It's bad for everyone" "But you know who is profiting from this - the coffin seller." How do I define that coffin seller in one or more words?
1
vote
6answers
134 views

Idiom for “something is not as bad as they say”

I am looking for the way to translate the Russian saying that goes something like this " the Devil is not as dangerous as he was described, or, in direct translation, painted". Please help! I look ...
0
votes
0answers
59 views

What do you call a person who completed prerequisite classes for a master's degree but didn't finish their thesis?

I don't necessarily mean a single word, but a short, precise and neutral-sounding phrase that can be used in a CV. The goal is to signify that the only reason for the lack of the degree is the thesis, ...
0
votes
1answer
61 views

Word/phrase for non-human agent

What do we call a non-human (virtual) agent in computer science domain? I'm looking for a word/phrase other than bot or artificial agent.
1
vote
3answers
78 views

Word or small phrase for an object owned by a customer on which you will do work

The word or small phrase needs to fit into both of these sentences: I've created a new job to install our product into this _______. This ______ is owned by Joe Bloggs. I'm creating an IT system ...
1
vote
5answers
176 views

What would an 11-year-old say that means “appropriate”?

I need a similar word that may be used by a 6th grade girl; e.g.,“That kind of behavior is only appropriate for little girls of six or seven.” It is not to tell her (may be used by), it is for her ...
7
votes
12answers
2k views

A verb meaning “Answering question in a way that doesn't answer it” [duplicate]

Take an example: Me : Where can I find the best pizza in the city? Friend:1000s of people are dying of hunger and all you care about best pizza. In this case he does reply to my question but it ...
0
votes
3answers
84 views

What is a word for getting an award in a competition or being one of the top three?

I am writing about a competition I won in which I got third place. I want to say that I am the first out of my school to get an award in this competition, with a third place award but that sounds a ...
2
votes
2answers
86 views

Word or Short Phrase to Describe Standing In Relation to One's Own Past Performance

I'm working on a website for encouraging habit change that includes a table consisting of the user's current streak and two of that same user's better streaks and two of his or her worse streaks, ...
2
votes
2answers
98 views

Word or phrase for beautiful music going unheard?

I can't think of a word or phrase describing this scenario: Someone is singing beautifully and it has meaning but no one is there to hear it so it is useless. Please help!
2
votes
3answers
90 views

Respectful way to refer to people with some disabilities

In the context of usable security (related to computer science), a major challenge is to provide security means in such a way that all of the people including those with some disabilities (e.g., ...
1
vote
7answers
153 views

What’s a better way to say “lots of discussion”

I'm drafting meeting notes from a steering committee that is attended by several c-more level executives. What’s a better way to say “lots of discussion”
6
votes
12answers
1k views

Idiom for describing an unintended benefit

I am looking for an idiom to describe an unintended benefit that results due to an action taken.
6
votes
4answers
154 views

Like onomatopoeia, but visual

Onomatopoeia is defined as: The formation of a word from a sound associated with what is named (e.g. cuckoo, sizzle). Is there a term for describing the formation of a word from a shape/image ...
1
vote
1answer
48 views

A dream in which I remember “real” events

I wonder if there is a word to describe a dream in which my conscience bridges reality and I remember real events in my dream world. I recently had a dream like this. It was not a lucid dream, ...
4
votes
7answers
122 views

Ambiguous (and maybe euphemistic) word or phrase for romantic partner

What is an ambiguous word for a romantic partner, which doesn't make it crystal clear that they are in fact a romantic partner rather than just a friend? A euphemism might be a rough approximation of ...
14
votes
12answers
3k views

A verb meaning “to look around making sure no one sees you”

Imagine a group of people trying to rob a safe, or two people having sex where they should not. Afraid of being caught, they look around every few seconds to make sure no one sees them. Is there one ...
2
votes
1answer
106 views

Idiom for: “We should attend it even if we have to borrow money.”

I'm translating a script and I should cut this line down by about half it's syllables. I should match to the lip movement of the actors on video, and so that would be about 7 syllables. It doesn't ...
3
votes
1answer
57 views

What is this scenario of denying responsibility called? [closed]

What is this scenario called? Someone says something or tells you to do something or wants something but nothing goes as planned. They completely blame the other person, saying it was all their idea, ...
2
votes
2answers
51 views

Word for a description of the physical characteristics/range/habits of an animal or plant species?

i.e. is there a word for something like an entry in a natural history dictionary? I poked around trying unsuccessfully to find one, and I'll probably just use "description", but I still have a nagging ...
0
votes
0answers
36 views

To “close the circle” or not to “close the circle”…?

For my thesis title, I'm thinking of using a phrase that underlines the work I do, which is to bridge the beginning and end of a workflow, to create a perpetual analytical process. To give a bit ...
2
votes
12answers
847 views

Phrase to mean “fully prepared”

I am looking for a phrase to mean that one is fully prepared for the task ahead. I was originally thinking of "all the pieces are falling into position" but that implies things are presently coming ...
0
votes
2answers
62 views

Word/expression for inclination toward using disadvantageous tools

What is the best word/expression to describe a phenomenon or tool that, despite its disadvantages, is used by people? In fact, there are some alternatives for them, however, there is a weird ...
5
votes
5answers
100 views

Is there a name for letting something get worse until it is so bad it has to be addressed properly?

I see this idea a lot: Something is bad and people want it to be better There's no way for those people to make it better without a huge investment by others Instead of trying to fix it themselves, ...
6
votes
8answers
1k views

Someone who is cunning but depicts themselves as innocent to others [duplicate]

What can you call a person who is cunning but depicts themselves as innocent to others?
0
votes
4answers
330 views

How to frame a sentence which means that someone has passed the day idly lying back on the couch? [closed]

I want to frame a sentence in English which means that someone has passed the whole day lying back simply on the couch idly and doing nothing. But I cant frame that in an appropriate manner.
13
votes
10answers
3k views

What word means “explicitly forbidden by the most fundamental laws”?

I am working with engineering equations in a vacuum system and want to emphasize that a certain set of parameters will not work. Usually, this is due to real world effects (friction, pump efficiency ...
3
votes
5answers
47 views

Noun/verb to describe strong belief in a company as evidenced by joining it?

Is there good noun verb to describe strong belief in a company as evidenced by joining it? For example, we know that company X is amazing because of the endorsement it has received from ...
4
votes
2answers
238 views

Is there a word or term for one who is obsessed with names?

This is for a piece I am currently writing. Since I could not find anything from a Google search, I figured it would be wise to enlist the knowledge of the smart cohort of Stack Exchange. My question ...
-2
votes
2answers
54 views

Alternatives to “The following (standards) shall be followed:” [closed]

Can anyone suggest a good alternative to "The following (standards) shall be followed:"? I'm trying to avoid using "following" twice in a sentence.
1
vote
1answer
84 views

Opposite of a requiem [closed]

The definition of a requiem is a song which plays on one's funeral. I was wondering, is there a word which means the opposite - a song which is used as a celebration of one's birth? Thank you!
5
votes
2answers
87 views

Is there a more literary term for a “parallel” in a story?

Right now I'm writing an essay on Death in Venice, and I'm having trouble finding the right word or phrase to express how Aschenbach is parallel to the old man on the boat to Venice (both dress up to ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

The summer equivalent of “winterize”?

I winterize my car in preparation for the harsh winter. I want to say I summerize my snow blower for summer storage. But "summerize" seems not to be an English word, and in any case, it is homophonous ...
1
vote
5answers
197 views

What's a word that describes acting coldly to hide the fact that you are hurt?

Someone who acts cold and impassive to mask the fact that they are actually hurt. I've been trying to come up with the word for hours, but came up with nothing.
0
votes
2answers
97 views

What is a word or phrase for how you feel when you discover something that you don't think you can have [closed]

The title is relatively self-explanatory. For example, I have been introduced to something that I want but only a few people will get one (e.g. winning the lottery, finding a four leaf clover, or ...