For questions on how and why certain words are used in varying ways within various contexts.

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2answers
57 views

Should “riffraff”, when used as a subject, be treated as a singular or a plural noun?

riffraff (noun) people who are not respectable : people who have very low social status. Merriam-Webster doesn't say anything about number. The Free Dictionary says it can sometimes ...
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1answer
78 views

“If I were..” usage [closed]

"If I were at your place then I wouldn't have done that" Is the usage of sentence written above fine?
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2answers
29 views

Is this correct? [closed]

I was wondering if the instructions given for an essay test is correct. "Choose one from the topics listed below."
-1
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3answers
104 views

“Sorry about that” - Usage

A few months ago, I was down with jaundice, and when I let my friend know about it, he sent me a text saying "Sorry about the jaundice", expressing sympathy. Like this one incident, we frequently ...
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2answers
1k views

What is free-form data entry?

If you are creating a column for free-form data entry, such as a notes column to hold data about customer interactions with your company’s customer service department, then varchar will probably be ...
0
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2answers
6k views

How to use “where do you put up”?

Recently one of my friend asked a question "Where do you put up?". Initially I didn't understand the question and later i came to know that its nothing but "Where do you stay?". Is it a right ...
0
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3answers
31 views

What is considered “best practice” when making a quote memorable?

So I have this quote I'm working on: Information has moved from the tip of the tongue to the tip of the fingers. There is an alternate version I've made that reads as follows: Information ...
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2answers
4k views

“I know“ or “I do know”

I have seen people using I do know that instead of I know that Is this usage correct?
4
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2answers
1k views

Are prior, previous, and preceding interchangeable?

If I have four moments in time (A, B, C, D), where moment D is the present, would previous, preceding, and prior be interchangeable as adjectives to refer to moments A-C? Is one of them more likely to ...
3
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1answer
178 views

Usage of “until after” vs. “until” vs. “till after” vs. “till”

India was a British colony. Britishers wrote several laws for India. One such law was the Registration Act, 1908. Section 25(1) of the Act says: If, owing to urgent necessity or unavoidable accident, ...
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2answers
38 views

About the adverb “whilst” [duplicate]

I looked it up. It means "while" and is used mostly in Britain. Could anyone explain to me how to use it?
0
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3answers
127 views

what is the difference between “imagine” and “envision”? [closed]

I kind like a word "envision" so, Can I use it exactly in same way as a word "imagine"?
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2answers
1k views

Using “on” before days or dates

I've noticed that on many American TV shows, the speakers generally don't use the word "on" before names of days or before dates. For example: I'll see you Monday. Shouldn't it be: I'll see you on ...
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1answer
129 views

Watch and see usage

When should be used see and when watch? For example: if you look at a mirror you see you or you watch you? The same as if a camera is recording you an it appears in a tv in real-time, are you seeing ...
2
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1answer
45 views

“Issue of” or “Issue out of” [closed]

Don't make an issue of inconsequential things. Don't make an issue out of inconsequential things. Which of them is right and why?
4
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3answers
589 views

Is there a name for words which are pronounced differently depending on which definition is being used?

I was thinking about the word "fillet" recently. When I teach high school freshmen about the word (in a machining/engineering context), they refuse to believe that it is pronounced "FILL-it," rather ...
1
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1answer
57 views

credit for vs credit on

As it happens, fertility rate declines in China have been close to what we would expect on the basis of these social influences alone. China often gets too much credit from commentators on the alleged ...
-1
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2answers
28 views

Word choice and usage [duplicate]

Can I today use the word 'thrice' or is it completely out of date and shouldn't be used? Dusan
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1answer
74 views

Is “automatically eraseing” or “being erased automatically” correct? [closed]

Please tell me which sentence is correct: My file is automatically eraseing. or My file is being erased automatically.
0
votes
1answer
151 views

“Best ” vs “Most well”

It drives me up a wall when people use "most well" instead of "best." However, it's such a common habit, I'm wondering if I'm missing something. Is it grammatically correct to say "This is the most ...
7
votes
1answer
651 views

Homogenous versus Homogeneous

I've always used the word (spelling) homogenous to describe things of similar nature. However, when I started university I heard everyone use the word homogeneous (pronounced "homo genius" or "homo ...
3
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1answer
317 views

Use/non-use of articles before Adjective + Abstract noun

I have confusion regarding use/non-use of articles before adjective + abstract noun. Eg. competent handling, prolonged tread life, enhanced durability Providing COMPETENT HANDLING and PROLONGED TREAD ...
5
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6answers
287 views

Pending tasks and goals

I am trying to communicate that I wish I could have done something. That "something" would be a ____________ for me. Since I speak Spanish as a first language, I am biased to think of the direct ...
1
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3answers
76 views

In “Dear X” what function does “X” serve?

I answered a question (Should I use capital or small letter here? "Dear All" or "Dear all"?) about capitalizing "all" in "Dear All," In answering this, my thinking was "what ...
0
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1answer
112 views

Use of “courtesy of…” when citing?

There are a number of systems for citing various materials (MLA, APA, etc.). These vary by discipline, country, journal, level of formality, and so on. Obviously one should know which system should be ...
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0answers
20 views

“As per …” vs. “Per” [duplicate]

"As per" is phrase finding a common use in English writers and speakers in India. "Per" is perhaps the correct word that could be used instead. I use "per" only. But, people in India tend to find a ...
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2answers
431 views

Should we avoid a “double passive”?

Does it sound strange to say "An emergency meeting is expected to be held soon." or "The new highway is proposed to be built across the swamp." Should we avoid this type of construction ?
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2answers
52 views

Usage of Any or Every [closed]

Which one of these is more correct: "The process of adaptation is different in any case" "The process of adaptation is different in every case"
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3answers
103 views

Is the use of the word “that” in the sentence below correct?

A light fall of ash, that it may destroy one year's crop, often pays the farmer well in future years with the fertility it adds to the soil.
3
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1answer
29 views

past tense and/or conditional [closed]

e.g. I didn't get to where I am now unless ... or I wouldn't have got where I am now ... Are these both correct? The first sentence I found in a EFL series New English File. I have never heard this ...
2
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3answers
1k views

Can we use “shore” referring to river?

I saw the usage of "shore" with "river" in a modern American book, however my dictionary says that we should use "bank" with "river". Are there any difference between using "shore" and "bank" or maybe ...
1
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1answer
50 views

“what with” use [closed]

Example: His sweet tooth finally got the better of him, what with all the confections surrounding him. Sounds awkward, but is it correct usage?
6
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4answers
224 views

Term for derogatory words that are only “offensive from the outside”

In this post, Dan Ray notes that the word "Jew" may be offensive but "only from the outside". I can think of many other examples of terms that are neutral (or even affectionate) if spoken by ...
1
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1answer
52 views

“Metrics” definition and usage

Does the term "metric" (or plural "metrics") apply only to the metric system, or can it be used to define something that does not apply the metric system?
0
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0answers
14 views

Implied “to” … Is it okay? [duplicate]

Can "to" ever be omitted and implied? For example: "Nonverbal cues help me [to] assess mood and behavior."
2
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2answers
84 views

Why do we say “apologies to” when we quote someone?

I just replied to a comment on StackOverflow, writing: "I know of nothing but miracles (apologies to Walt Whitman)" But then I got to wondering: why do we apologize to someone for quoting them? ...
0
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2answers
80 views

“Accessory” vs “included” as adjective (BE)

I'm wondering about the use of the word accessory as an adjective. Would it be preferable in BE to say something like "This DJ controller comes with accessory headphones"? I feel that "This DJ ...
0
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1answer
40 views

Is the `that` in phrase `Only the best product that can survive` properly used? [closed]

I searched online that the word that has a function of stress/emphasize. And this usage comes up to my mind when designing for our company motto. Is it proper here? The colleague edition: Two ...
1
vote
1answer
25 views

Business English: contracted forum?

I would like to know your opinions regarding the use of the term "contracted forum". The context is a long-term project for which steering committee meetings are being conducted. At one time, the ...
2
votes
2answers
7k views

What is a relish tray versus a veggie tray?

I have heard both of the terms "relish tray" and "veggie tray" used somewhat interchangeably. It seems as though there is some overlap between the two based on some simple Google Images searches ...
1
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1answer
35 views

Non-Medically Necessary?

I'm working under contract for an insurance company, can't divulge much more due to NDAs. On one form they state they will cover a service if it is "medically necessary" but not if it is ...
30
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13answers
4k views

What is the “fundamental” difference between ‘search’ and ‘seek’?

So why do human beings spend so much time playing? One reason is that we have time for leisure; animals have very little time to play as most of their life is spent sleeping and (2)________ food. ...
12
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6answers
3k views

Is there a word for “an only child”?

Some languages (Aramaic and Arabic for instance) have a word for someone who's an only child. Does English have a word for it? Perhaps it's obscure or "extinct"? "Sole child" and "sibling-less" are ...
4
votes
3answers
20k views

What's the difference between “content” and “contented”?

What's the difference between "content" and "contented"? I feel content with my present condition. I feel contented with my present condition. When she calls me by my name sweetly, I ...
0
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2answers
59 views

Appropriateness of usage of the phrases “and such forth”, and “so hence forth”

I have a colleague who frequently uses the phrases, "and such forth" and "so hence forth" in conversations with clients. I find particularly the use of "and such forth" to be nonsensical and ...
32
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9answers
4k views

Is “best” still a superlative in “best friend”, as in can you have more than one “best friend”?

I was speaking to a 15-year-old native English speaker (in Australia), who referred to someone as her "best friend". Later, she revealed that this wasn't her only best friend. She had four best ...
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2answers
1k views

“In back of'' vs. ”back of“ vs. the spatial sense of ”behind" in AmE

What's the difference to these expressions, as in "The little girl was hiding in back of the tree" vs. "The little girl was hiding back of the tree" vs. "The little girl was hiding behind the tree"? ...
3
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1answer
113 views

Usage of the word “hand” in the context

We're using a textbook called "English for Management Studies" by Tony Corballis and Wayne Jennings at our English classes at university. I'm saying this so that you know that the following sentence ...
1
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1answer
57 views

Do vulgarity and linguistic flexibility actually correlate? [closed]

Regarding “fuck”, Wikipedia states: [it] has a very flexible role in English grammar, which stems from its vulgarity; the more vulgar a word is, the greater its linguistic flexibility. I ...
2
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4answers
128 views

What does the west wind signify to New Yorkers?

The New Yorker carries the archives of entertaining old articles. Among them there was a short piece titled “The street and into the grill” written by E.B. White and published in October 1950. A man ...