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

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A term to describe a phrase that can be changed without having to know the origin [duplicate]

I'm sure I read about this on this website, but I am clueless as to what it was. An example may be adding 'gate' to the end of scandal titles. People understand it enough to use it to describe other ...
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2answers
96 views

Could the “pseudo” adverbial phrases modify the real adverbial phrases?

1)A woman fell 50 feet down a cliff. 2)The project was finished 10 days ahead of the schedule. 3)Emma is 10 years older than Sophie. 4)I finished the project 10 days ago. 1)50 feet/10 days/10 ...
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1answer
30 views

“followed” as a participial phrase

Here's another participial phrase comma question (sorry, just trying to get this right). "The doorbell rang twice followed by the sound of the lock disengaging in the front of the house." Assume ...
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1answer
45 views

What's a word for a statement that's not quite factual?

What's a word for a statement that's not quite factual? Not quite a myth, but not quite a fact either. Like "truthy" but not an adjective? For example, "scientists are still looking for the missing ...
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3answers
463 views

Term for double meanings

What is the term used for a phrase that could have more than one meaning such as "This battery is free of charge"?
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1answer
36 views

Giving Custom to?

A rather old-fashioned farewell after visiting a store would be Thank you for your custom On the other side of the coin, if you're talking about having visited a store and made use of it, would ...
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2answers
71 views

Any words to describe someone who ignores anyone 'mean' to them?

I'm looking for words to describe a person like Mma Ramotswe from No.1 Ladies Detective Agency for my blog - http://aroundtheworldinbooks.weebly.com/. Thanks to anyone who answers!
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1answer
31 views

“will not long go unsold to” meaning?

What does "will not go unsold to" mean in the following sentence? The King of Portugal, Lord of Spices, has set... prices just as he pleases, for pepper, which, at any cost, no matter how dear, ...
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2answers
182 views

a “sound understanding” of something [closed]

I encountered this phrase: ...a sound understanding of [something] and here are my questions: Why is the indefinite article used for the uncountable noun "understanding"? What is the origin of ...
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1answer
62 views

What does “Drag somebody down into your tomb” mean? [closed]

It's a phrase from Rework book written by Jason Fried. Here is the context: They want to drag others down into their tomb. If you're hopeful and ambitious, they'll try to convince you your ideas ...
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1answer
51 views

Is there a term for when you think of a joke in the context of a conversation, but the conversation ended hours ago? [duplicate]

Is there a term for when you think of a joke in the context of a conversation, but the conversation ended hours ago? My friends have told me of the term "l'espirit de l'escalier" in French, and the ...
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2answers
78 views

“That strikes one for me”…what's it mean?

What's the "one" mean here? Is this taken from baseball? Can the idiom be grammatically used in other persons besides the first?
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2answers
58 views

reasons (for) as to why

I just wrote the following sentence: … there might have been interesting reasons for as to why they did. My question concerns the passage "reasons for as to why". While this sounds perfectly ...
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1answer
39 views

The usage of “got out” and the indefinite article “a” in the sentence “if it got out that they were related to a pair of”

I'm a English learner and I found the following sentence which seemed strange to me when I was reading Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Chapter one, the American Edition): "if it got out that ...
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1answer
40 views

Writing Circles Around

Can someone tell me the meaning of 'writes circles around' in this sentence?: 'If I say that he writes circles around everyone else in Comics, it's not simply to put him in a rare class with Gilbert ...
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2answers
94 views

A word to describe the completion of uncompleted work before a vacation

Backlog/noun an accumulation of uncompleted work waiting for you when you return from vacation . It's a pity that we don't have "forelog" as a word for work that is done to clear ...
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2answers
154 views

Formal way to say “doesn't work”? [closed]

I am writing a paper and I feel as if I need a more formal way of writing "doesn't work". Any thoughts? Thanks :)
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3answers
112 views

More professional word for “day to day task”

I’m looking for a more professional term or phrase to describe “day to day task” or a task that is very common for a particular role of work. Thanks in advance!
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2answers
75 views

I can't understand this: You wouldn’t have to spout embarrassing platitude in public [closed]

I was watching a movie in which this conversation happened in a bar: Person 1: You wouldn’t have to spout embarrassing platitude in public. Person 2: The fact is I won't spout platitude much ...
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46 views

Description of Puzzle Type

I am looking for the name of a certain type of word puzzle. A string of letters is given without any spaces between those letters. By strategically inserting spaces into the string, different valid ...
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2answers
69 views

“trip us or trap us” meaning

I'd like to know the meaning of this phrase from a song by TheLastFiveYears: If I didn't believe in you I couldn't have stood before all of our friends and said, 'This is the life I choose- ...
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1answer
35 views

phonics meaning the same [closed]

Which word means the same as the phrase full of sleep in the sentence? The baby took a nap because he was full of sleep. Sleepiness,sleepless,sleepness,sleepy
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3answers
81 views

Is the following sentence correct? A statement followed by a list. Should I use a colon? [closed]

Is the following sentence correct? "My main priority as a tutor has always been to help the learner feel at ease, with me, with themselves and with their own abilities." I feel like there should be ...
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3answers
78 views

what will be a good artistic world or phrase for close cooperation for mutual success

what will be a good artistic word or phrase for close cooperation for mutual success.The cooperation of two parties (one with stronger power, second with weaker power, but huge dedication) where each ...
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18answers
3k views

Uncommon Term for an Excellent Orator?

I'm looking for an uncommon term for an excellent orator that doesn’t include adjectives such as “good” or “excellent,” or the noun “orator.” I've googled this request but haven't encountered anything ...
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4answers
1k views

What's a word or phrase that means “get together with people informally to play music”?

What’s a word, phrase, or expression that means to get together with people informally to play music? Something that doesn’t imply any particular style — could be Jazz, Rock, Classical, Rap, etc.
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3answers
277 views

Origin of 'put your hand on your heart'

What does this phrase mean? How does putting a hand on your heart (at least on the region of chest where your heart is) do anything? Does the phrase have different meanings for men and women? ...
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4answers
257 views

Someone or something small yet capable of having big influence? [duplicate]

What is a word or phrase that means a person or thing which is quite small yet capable of having big influence and impact on society?
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2answers
100 views

A phrase for a tip or trick passed down from one generation to the next

Many use the phrase life hack to describe a novel or clever solution to an everyday problem. Before this expression became popular I remember seeing another phrase in the English language to describe ...
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0answers
35 views

In terms of putting

I heard someone says "In terms of putting this forward,". That was unfamiliar phrase with me, putting "In terms of something" and "Putting this forward" together. When I look in a dictionary ...
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1answer
239 views

Complete the sentences with the correct form of the following words [closed]

I need to complete the two sentences with the correct form of the following words: offer, make. The sentences: Your exam grades _______ a big difference to your future career. The supermarket ...
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2answers
43 views

“Same old story,” vs “old story.”

Example: Maybe it's the old story, maybe he just sees me as a friend. Maybe it's the same old story, maybe he just sees me as a friend. Which version is more commonly used by native ...
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1answer
94 views

did “born and bred” originally have different meaning?

Internet searching suggests the phrase "born and bred in Boston" means the same thing as "born and raised in Boston." But "bred" is the past-tense of "breed." Might "born and bred in Boston" have ...
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16answers
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Is there an idiom for “I'm not an expert when it comes to kinds of feces”

There is an idiom in my language, which literally sounds like "I'm not an expert when it comes to kinds of feces". Which means that one considers all the instances of some group as equally bad, not to ...
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3answers
64 views

is the phrase “available with me” correct? [closed]

I used a bus in which the hostess said that the company magazine is available with me on demand. Is the usage of available along with with correct?
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3answers
74 views

How do you express high proficiency in a succinct way?

I heard the following phrase in movies: -- Do you know how to use A? -- I am a f****g surgeon with A I like it a lot, but I can imagine a lot of people will not understand the meaning. I ...
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1answer
32 views

“Enact” (verb) - Phrase used

I just joined the english.stackexchange.com and I am thrilled to meet you all! I have a question to pose concerning the use of the verb "enact". I would like to know how do we use this verb to ...
4
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3answers
154 views

What does “in the name of…” actually mean?

Whats the meaning of the phrase; "In the name of"? For example : whatever you ask in my name, Ask in my name. Oxford actually has an entry for the phrase, but it doesn't seem to match how it's used ...
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1answer
66 views

Is there a word or phrase for knowing what to say but not how to say it?

As kind of a real-life example, I'm struggling to write a description of the Crusades from the point of view of a Catholic pope. I know that through the Crusades, the Christians basically "rescued" ...
3
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3answers
103 views

A formal synonym/expression for “saying that”

I need a more formal expression for "saying that" here. I couldn't find another formal expression Saying that rape culture is an environment where emotional and physical violence against women ...
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1answer
95 views

Is using a sentence as a subject grammatically correct?

For example: Attack them directly won't do anything "Attack them directly" is a partial sentence. In this sentence, we treat that whole phrase as a subject and make a sentence from the phrase. ...
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1answer
53 views

Alternatives to 'In The Pink'? [closed]

I'm looking for alternatives to 'in the pink'.
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1answer
50 views

Could I say: “my left-reclining body”, meaning that I'm lying down on my left side?

And if yes, would that make it good english? Any suggestions?
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1answer
44 views

What does “The young graduate student was bright and eager, but green to the power of data structures.” mean?

The following sentence is from the "The Algorithm Manual" book The young graduate student was bright and eager, but green to the power of data structures. What does the green to the power of ...
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1answer
81 views

Word or term for propaganda associating truth with crazy people

The corporate media often write pieces about people who are deemed crazy, then proceed to ridicule things these people say or believe, which typically include some very sensible things. For example, ...
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2answers
111 views

“Robust” as a noun

Can an adjective "robust" be a noun in a sentence? And if it can't how would you say with one word "robust fellow" that can be applied to both man and woman? Because as I understand "robust fellow", ...
1
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2answers
727 views

Is half of an amount stated as 50% less or 100% less? [closed]

I've struggled with this concept and have generally interpreted it one way for all of my life, which leads me to believe people are incorrect when they state the other form. And honestly I'm not ...
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3answers
91 views

What is the “theoretical” counterpart to “hands-on”?

Situation: an educational event may have two parts. In the first theoretical part, we explain the approach, big picture, some theoretical principles. In the second practical part, we give the ...
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1answer
102 views

Idiom or phrase to denote unfair use of someone who is nice

I am looking for an idiom or a phrase to denote the situation where someone is unfairly taken advantage of (Ex: Gets a lot of work dumped on his lap on a Friday evening like Harold in Harold and Kumar ...
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49 views

Concise Way to Say “Small Tasks can be as Important as Big Tasks”

I need a concise way to explain this idea: Doing the small and easy tasks can be as noble (or more worthwhile) than doing the hard tasks. Examples: 100 people can be more effective by ...