A phrase is a group of words that make a unit of syntax with a single grammatical function.

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24 views

Which one is correct to show that “the fan” in not the only one?

Which one is correct? a big fan of yours in millions or a big fan in millions of yours Tanx
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1answer
52 views

Is it just me or is “I can't tell them apart” odd?

As I understand it, "tell" usually refers to talking or explaining something to someone. If you "can't tell", it means you don't have enough information to determine what to say. However, this ...
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1answer
36 views

Synoyms: one-time-purchase (business model) / one-shot deal businesses

What phrases describe a one-time purchase business plan or a one-shot business deal? For instance: a restaurant is in Times Square, the food is atrocious but it doesn't matter because there are ...
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6answers
673 views

Is “straight from Kafka” an idiom?

I am working as a translator and in one of my projects, which was about strategic management , I came across this sentence: " In scenarios that come straight from Kafka, the simplest problems take ...
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2answers
46 views

What's the meaning of “When you rock the boat, there will be waves”?

Does this phrase mean "When you cause a problem, people get upset."?
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1answer
60 views

Come out of the closet

'Come out of the closet ' derives from the phrase 'a skeleton in the closet'. Why is it perfectly OK to say come out of the closet but not come out of the cupboard as a follow-on the British phrase ...
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1answer
47 views

what does 'live up to the buzz' stand for?

I recently read an article about honey As I was reflecting on all the health benefits of honey, it suddenly occurred to me: I don't think I've ever seen a sick bee. Coincidence? Probably. But ...
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1answer
72 views

“Let it will be” [on hold]

"Let it be" is an easy phrase to understand and to use. It's widely used and it's a set phrase, so it's hard to make mistake here. Why would a native speaker say "Let it will be"? Is it the same ...
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1answer
63 views

“all the virtues in the calendar”

Does anyone know the origin of the phrase "all the virtues in the calendar"? Doing a phrase search (with quotes) gives many example usages. Questions: 1. Is there an actual calendar of virtues ...
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4answers
67 views

Up Hill vs. Down Hill [duplicate]

The expression "It's all up hill from here!" and "It's all down hill from here!" mean that things will only get better or things will only get worst. Metaphorically going uphill can provide for a ...
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0answers
37 views

Send me your address so that i can send u my laptop ? Is it correct statement? [on hold]

Send me your address so that i can send u my laptop ? Is it correct statement ?
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5answers
96 views

A word for extreme care, attention, dedication towards words or a language

I'm looking for a word or a phrase which suggests the treatment of words or a language with extreme care, attention, and devotion -- like on StackExchange for example. I thought of pamper e.g. words ...
2
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2answers
77 views

Is “I'll be John Brown” a common phrase?

The phrase: I'll be John Brown! is an occasionally-used term in North Carolina. Mostly thought to replace taking the Lord's name in vain (GD). Is it used elsewhere? How long has it been ...
2
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1answer
91 views

Meaning of “hound” [on hold]

I came across this sentence: "He believed that whatever he planned to do was hound to end in failure." I looked up the meaning of the word "hound" in my dictionary. But either the word in this ...
6
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1answer
115 views

A frog in the throat

While the French refer to the temporary hoarseness caused by phlegm in the back of the throat as having a cat in the throat, the English version of the expression is to have a frog in the throat. I ...
6
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3answers
150 views

A saying that means “our best friends are those we have known for a long time”

We don't yet know what our new friends are like, and our best friends are those we have known for a long time. I am looking for a phrase, traditional saying or idiom that expresses this idea.
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10answers
3k views

What's the word for 'busting the myth'?

Suppose, I want to say that you need to bust the myth that girls are not good at sports or any other stereotype for that matter..What's the word to prove wrong an old, established stereotype? Is it ...
5
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10answers
94 views

Phrase for something that isn't as good as it once was [closed]

Specifically a relationship which fell apart as time wore on.
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4answers
67 views

What's a word or phrase to describe literature that builds upon topics discussed earlier?

If I were teaching a class, how do I say that the topics currently being discussed build upon the topics that were discussed in earlier classes? I'm looking for colloquialisms but if you know about ...
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3answers
62 views

What do “leaps of faith” and “get the best of somebody” mean? [on hold]

I came across these two phrases when reading The Da Vinci Code. Why not-if we're assuming the Church was able to uncover the identities of the Priory members, then certainly they could have ...
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6answers
273 views

Is there a phrase in English for moving your forefinger close to someone's face in a bossy way?

This picture shows clearly what I'm looking for. Is there a phrase for that? In French there is a phrase for it, with the French word for finger, "un doigt remuant" Is there any in BrE and in AmE? ...
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4answers
75 views

Where does the expression “at a crack” come from?

The phrase at a crack is sometimes used to mean at one time. For example §§: Companies that have had generations of employees growing up under a no-layoff policy are now dumping 10,000 ...
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1answer
616 views

What does “Empedocles’ sandal” mean in terms of English usage?

I first heard the expression “Empedocles’ sandal” a long time ago without knowing what it referred to. It seems to derive from the legend of the ancient Greek philosopher Empedocles (who was ...
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1answer
97 views

Is there a slang word or phrase for a middle-aged woman who serially dates much younger men? [closed]

Such practice is observed more often in the artistic world and among socialites. Is there a slang word or frase for these ladies?
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1answer
54 views

mistakes in set phrases; “…you have to celebrate the victory of your spoils…”

Is there a word for mistaken use of a set phrase? For example, I heard an interview with an athlete in which he said "...you have to celebrate the victory of your spoils." Of course, this is not how ...
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0answers
38 views

Witty ways of saying Happy Birthday [closed]

Not sure if this is entirely relevant, but can anyone out there suggest any witty, pithy, humourous birthday wishes. I'm utterly hopeless with birthday cards and end up trotting out the same droll ...
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3answers
247 views

What does “talk to the hand” mean?

I saw the phrase "talk to the hand" on many funny stickers which seems like expressing the idea that you want to stop the topic or conversation which you feel uncomfortable or not interested in. But ...
2
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4answers
55 views

Informal phrase for finally doing something pending - very specific

What would be an informal saying of phrase for finally doing some chore or running some errand that was pending for some time? It maybe something you are avoiding, or something you forget all the ...
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2answers
142 views

meaning of “fallen little short of a mother in affection” in Jane Austen's Emma, Chapter I

She was the youngest of the two daughters of a most affectionate, indulgent father; ad had, in consequence of her sister's marriage, been mistress of his house from a very early peroid. Her mother ...
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1answer
40 views

What is the meaning of “gassed for”? [closed]

I was reading a comment on ELU and it is... ... when you've been gassed for your oral surgery. Is it an idiomatic thing to say "gassed for or gassed up"?
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1answer
56 views

What is the difference between “Whatever/What ever happened to Sandra?” and “What happened to Sandra?”

Sandra's been missing for a while, so we ask: Whatever/What ever happened to Sandra? What happened to Sandra? Is there any difference between these two questions and the situation to ask them in?
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0answers
42 views

Is there any difference between “told to” and “told to do so”

I will release a new version when I'm told to. I will release a new version when I'm told to do so. Is there any difference in the meaning of the two sentences and which one would I use in an ...
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1answer
44 views

Is it correct/idiomatic to say “got informed there?”

I thought the phrase was common/idiomatic. So I was surprised when I got 0 results on Google Books. The school was filled with gossip. So Anna probably got informed there (about someone's ...
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1answer
35 views

What's the meaning of “off to an early start” in this context? [closed]

The context as below: but violent clashes between riot police and students at the end of September got the action off to an early start
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0answers
53 views

Help understanding a sentence/reference

The introductory paragraph of the book An Introduction to Mathematics, written for general audience by the great British mathematician Alfred North Whitehead goes like this: Chapter 1: THE ...
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2answers
50 views

Is it grammatically correct to say “John, good morning to you” [duplicate]

Two hosts on the Today Show constantly say "John, good morning to you" when starting to speak with someone on air. The others usually stick with "John, good morning". Adding the "to you" seems to ...
16
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11answers
2k views

Antonym for 'preaching to the choir'

I'm looking for a phrase which essentially means questioning a belief you share with someone, but that other person has an almost unshakable faith in that belief, so your misgivings fall on deaf ears ...
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2answers
31 views

Sentence interpretation

I have been accused of a lack of reading comprehension in the following statement: Irgun later on became part of the "Jewish authorities", specifically the IDF by a self-professed wordsmith. To me, it ...
5
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0answers
60 views

Origin of 'the new normal' as a freestanding phrase

This morning, in a New York Times article called “Waters Warm, and Cod Catch Ebbs in Maine,” the following sentence appears: Fishermen, scientists and regulators often disagree over whether the ...
8
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1answer
271 views

Who originated “Merry Christmas”?

The first reference I can find in the OED to "Merry Christmas" is from 1534. This date very roughly corresponds with the English Reformation and Henry VIII's breach with Rome. From that time the ...
13
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10answers
3k views

I’m looking for a word or phrase that describes the feeling that something very bad or catastrophic is about to happen

It may be something that will happen to the person who is having the feeling but it may also be to several persons, as might occur with a highly destructive earthquake, for instance. The word or ...
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2answers
42 views

Is there any phrase 'use to" in english [duplicate]

phrase use to I want to know is there any phrase use to in english if yes then how to use it
0
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1answer
50 views

What is the difference between “extended from” and “extending from”?

Scenario 1: part A is extended from part B Scenario 2: part A is extending from part B Is there any difference between these two descriptions? Would any one so kind to help me about this? Thanks in ...
0
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1answer
48 views

How would you phrase this sentence?

If I'm talking about, say, an exhibition, and it's going to last for a few months, which one would you say? "The exhibition will continue through to May." "The exhibition will continue through May." ...
5
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2answers
191 views

19th century American English “slang”?

As I was doing a bit of research online I stumbled on this Children's Corner page 311 from the American Farmers' Magazine 1858. And, frankly, there are a lot of words that look totally foreign to me. ...
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1answer
49 views

Care about and Care for

Whats the difference between "care for something" and "care about something". English is not my first language so just looking for clarity. Can i use them interchangeably?
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1answer
14 views

Events calendar/activities calendar or event calendar/activity calendar? [duplicate]

Which is correct (or more commonly-used) Events calendar/activities calendar or event calendar/activity calendar? Thanks!
3
votes
2answers
140 views

Torturing oneself by emotions is called?

People who love emotions, they love to torture themselves by emotional feelings. Be it real or vicarious. Often see people reading love stories and getting emotional, listening to sad song and watch ...
0
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1answer
55 views

“To tell the truth” vs “to tell you the truth.” [closed]

What's the difference between the two? Which one is more common? When should I use the former and then the latter?
0
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1answer
32 views

“Kick off tracking time in the notepad” means start making notes or stop making notes

I'm not sure for 100% if "Kick off tracking time in the notepad" means to start or, otherwise, to stop tracking time in the notepad. Could anybody explain? Thank you.