This tag is for questions seeking a single word that fits a meaning. To ensure your question is not closed as off-topic, please be specific about the intended use of the word. Please use the "phrase-requests" tag instead if you seek a phrase (not a word) that fits the meaning.

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16
votes
11answers
9k views

Opposite of “verbose”

One definition of verbose states: characterized by the use of many or too many words; wordy: a verbose report. Some (including the above link) suggest that the opposite is concise or laconic, ...
16
votes
4answers
20k views

What's the opposite of “oxymoron”?

What's the opposite of oxymoron? That is, two words put together that seem identical?
15
votes
7answers
995 views

A wife who knows and accepts her husband's infidelity

What do you call a wife or woman who knows their spouse or partner is unfaithful but pretends either to (1) not care or (2) to not know? In this scenario it's important that the cheating spouse or ...
15
votes
14answers
5k views

Word for people who live in the same city

What are the people who live in the same city are called? Any words for that? I want to use it in the following context: I and my ____ are happy.
14
votes
3answers
1k views

What is the proper term for a ternary digit?

A binary digit is a bit. Is there an equivalent term for a three-state digit? (e.g., a digit representing true, false, or unknown)
13
votes
19answers
8k views

Single word for a very small amount of time [closed]

In French, if I want to quantify a very small amount of time (but not fixed: it can be 5 ms or 0.1 ms) I can use a pouième. Is there an equivalent in English? I'm not looking for an expression but ...
12
votes
8answers
19k views

A word that describes a process that can be both good and bad

I am searching for a word that can describe an object or process as having both bad and good elements. I realize this is a repeat of this previous question, but I do not believe the suggestions ...
12
votes
3answers
15k views

Difference between “transparent” and “translucent”

What's the difference between transparent and translucent? I am trying to describe this record pressing.
12
votes
5answers
1k views

Arcane/obscure word that represents a person's timeline or daily record

I'm looking for an arcane or obscure word to describe a person's daily record. Words like: account, agenda, appointment book, chronicle, diary, daily record, daybook, engagement book, ...
11
votes
4answers
797 views

Is there a name for the practice of dropping pronouns in written speech?

I’m specifically thinking about emails I receive all day where someone will write: Haven’t seen it yet. Will respond when received. If it were spoken, we would certainly hear: I haven’t ...
9
votes
13answers
1k views

Word or phrase for 'a much hyped discovery which later turns out to be insignificant or of no value'

In the company where I worked before, the team of specialists which handled customer dissatisfaction issues often came up with seemingly brilliant solutions which would initially appear to be key ...
8
votes
10answers
2k views

Is there a word (or phrase) that describe a series of mishaps/misfortunes in one's life?

I don't mean something like 'many hardships' or 'several tragedies'. I'm looking for a word or short phrase that would describe just a really rough spot or time frame in someone's life. For instance, ...
8
votes
3answers
401 views

Is there a term for a word that serves as its own antonym? [duplicate]

For example: "transparent" can mean both "obvious" and "hidden" "aught" can mean both "all" and "nothing" Is there a term for a word which has multiple definitions that are antonyms?
8
votes
3answers
783 views

What is the word to describe a single object to represent the many?

If I am writing a poem, I might use the word peaches to symbolize all fruit. Is there a specific word for this type of symbolism?
7
votes
6answers
8k views

Is there a specific word for describing a person who gets lost easily?

When we travel around, some people get lost much more easily than others, since they cannot remember directions correctly. Is there any specific word for these kind of people?
6
votes
3answers
717 views

Words based on the names of gods [closed]

While the word christen means "to baptise" or "to make Christian", in another sense, it has shed its religious connotations to simply mean "to name" or even "use for the first time". Is there any ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

What word describes our habit to use extremes in language, and what are its implications?

I have heard that in America, and likely elsewhere as well, we are beginning to be more gratuitous with our use of extreme words when not entirely accurate, such as the words "awesome", "always", ...
3
votes
4answers
650 views

Another word for a troll not on the internet

The definition of an internet troll: In Internet slang, a troll (/ˈtroʊl/, /ˈtrɒl/) is a person who sows discord on the Internet by starting arguments or upsetting people,1 by posting ...
3
votes
1answer
198 views

Word regarding a lyric remembered wrongly

I remember having come across a particular word long ago. This word means a part of lyric that has been remembered wrongly, i.e., a section of lyric that has entered one's memory with the words ...
2
votes
1answer
279 views

What is the antonym of 'quoin' — a single word to describe an interior angle

I'm looking for single words to describe interior (as in 'corner of a room') and exterior angles (as in 'corner of a building'). For the exterior angle I found quoin which is (according to ...
1
vote
6answers
27k views

What do you call a person who always has a pleasant smile on his face?

What do you call a person who always has a pleasant smile on his face. Is there anything better than calling him a "Pleasing personality"?
1
vote
2answers
7k views

A word for the person after whom someone or something is named

I believe it's a common practice in some communities to name children after their grandparents or parents or relatives and sometimes even friends and popular people. Places, roads, streets etc., get ...
26
votes
2answers
916 views

What do you call the eating of frogs?

"Herpivory"? "Ranophagy"? Hurry, I need to mock a French friend.
22
votes
14answers
8k views

Gigolo is to man as what is to woman?

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language (Fourth Edition) reads: gigolo, n. A man who has a continuing sexual relationship with and receives financial support from a woman. Is ...
20
votes
7answers
2k views

Does British English have a word for dry, starchy savoury snacks that are not fried slices of potato?

Everyone, the world over, enjoys savoury snacks, particularly dry, starchy ones. Far and away the most popular kind in the Anglosphere are the ones made from deep-fried (sometimes baked) thinly-sliced ...
19
votes
7answers
1k views

Someone who appears more of an expert than they are [duplicate]

I believe there is a term for a person who uses 'expert sounding' terminology and exudes confidence, even when their actual abilities are significantly short of their 'presentation'. Using 'wine' a ...
15
votes
6answers
4k views

What's the most accurate term for phrases such as “storm in a teacup” and “making mountains out of molehills”?

Are phrases such as "storm in a teacup" and "making mountains out of molehills" best described by one of these terms: anecdote proverb saying expression metaphor If not, which term is the right ...
15
votes
7answers
2k views

What is a word for a person who has been initiated into secret knowledge (apprentice, ___, master)?

I'm looking for a noun that can fit well in a 3-level scale: apprentice, ____, master. The scale describes the progress of a person from a layman/uninitiated (apprentice), through being accomplished ...
14
votes
3answers
3k views

Is there a word to describe one who brags by complaining?

Is there a word to describe someone who uses complaints to indirectly brag about themselves? An example would be "I hate going to concerts because people start singing and because I have perfect ...
13
votes
8answers
4k views

What's a good word for a person that's being followed?

Wondering what the correct word to use for a person who is being followed. All I can think of is a followee, which doesn't seem correct. It's being used in a twitter like system of followers and ...
12
votes
8answers
8k views

What word describes someone who offers unsolicited advice?

What word describes someone who offers unsolicited advice? For example I might write: "At the risk of being called a [..........], I will offer you some unsolicited advice."
11
votes
8answers
3k views

Which is the word that means neither “believer” nor “atheist” but somewhere in between?

What word means neither "believer" nor "atheist" but somewhere in between? The word starts with the letter 'A', I tried "agnostic" but according to my instructor there is another one.
11
votes
6answers
586 views

Word for resembling the truth

How do we refer to the act of resembling the truth, regardless if it is indeed the truth? Some context: suppose you are watching a film and the story bears a striking resemblance to "real life". ...
10
votes
11answers
17k views

Is there an expression that means something bad as a precursor to something good?

If someone is the bearer of bad news you might say, Don't shoot the messenger. If you have something that seems unfortunate at first but ends out wonderful you might say it's a blessing in disguise. ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

Is there a word that conveys an extreme distaste to the point nearing phobia?

I'm a strong swimmer, and I enjoy recreational lap swimming in pools. I enjoy sitting by an outdoor pool on vacation, and swimming to cool off. But, I detest swimming in natural water (lakes, ...
10
votes
6answers
7k views

Is there a name for someone who calls someone else what he himself is?

Say person A and person B are having a discussion/argument. Person A tells person B that his views are arrogant, or closed-minded, or some other derogatory adjective. But in fact it is person A's ...
9
votes
3answers
9k views

Word or phrase for literally and figuratively?

Say, for example, you and a group of people were all sailing out in the ocean and something happens...then you say, "I guess we are all in the same boat" You are literally in the same boat with ...
9
votes
6answers
639 views

Is there a straightforward word for “The thing in between first and second”?

Sometimes when writing I find myself looking for a word to describe something in the “³⁄₂th” place — exactly between first and second. I would like to ask, does there exist an easy expression for ...
8
votes
1answer
143 views

What is the term for replacing a name or brand with a funny pejorative / sardonicism?

What is the term for when one replaces a well-known name [(Proper) noun, company, brand, etc.] with one that tries to be funny yet pejoratively descriptive, different but similar enough that one's ...
8
votes
8answers
10k views

Word meaning crying, but not crying?

You know when you see something touching and moving and you feel like tears are about to come out of your eyes, yet you're able to barely control it; how do you describe this feeling or state? i.e. I ...
8
votes
7answers
4k views

How to refer to people of mixed race?

As is commonly known, one of the most delicate question is how to refer to people of mixed race, which can be a matter of condemnation. Some words may have fueled the problem and I never would have ...
8
votes
6answers
11k views

Is there a single word that expresses “music end-users / enthusiasts”?

To help a soon-to-be sister site out here, I was thinking English.SE perhaps could lend a helping hand as this is the best place for "word choice and usage". I'm not looking for "naming", but rather ...
8
votes
7answers
6k views

Is there a word that means “make someone (or something) redundant”?

For example, by improving some system, some function is now redundant. So the improvement XXX that function.
8
votes
5answers
4k views

Odd use of agnostic

I have heard and used agnostic to denote "uncaring". I was recently corrected on my usage of the word which got me thinking. What word should I use? Uncaring seems incorrect. Some examples: This ...
8
votes
17answers
2k views

Is there a word meaning a problem that has to be solved in order to work on another problem?

I work in the computer trade and frequently find that when I'm assigned a problem to solve, it invariably happens that other problems need solving before I can work on the real issue. Is there a word ...
7
votes
8answers
2k views

Word for a moment in time defined with beginning and end

What would be a word for a moment in time defined with beginning and end? This is for a database system where people have predefined time spans that are defined with a beginning and an end point in ...
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 ...
6
votes
6answers
8k views

Short, Politically Correct word for Native Americans [closed]

No more than four syllables, more PC than Indians. EDIT: I arbitrarily chose four syllables because any more seemed like a mouthful. I like to be PC and not have to stumble over 6+ syllables.
6
votes
7answers
30k views

What is a good word for “best example”?

What is a good word for “best example”? I would like to describe a film as the greatest example of its features.
6
votes
3answers
327 views

Better term to put on a label of a bottle of milk to describe that it's 'made' in a particular geographic location

While waiting for the kettle to boil this morning, I was idling and reading the label on the bottle of milk and was struck by the declaration: "Permeate free, made in WA". Here's a shot of the label ...