How and why certain words are used in varying ways within various contexts.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

3
votes
2answers
3k views

Function of “too” in the phrase “so too” or “so, too,”

I just ran into this sentence in an online article: But as the App Store’s fortunes rose, so too did the iPhone’s, and later the iPad’s. If I were editing that sentence, I would remove the too ...
2
votes
1answer
226 views

“Both are not,” or “neither is?” [closed]

Straight forward question. Are both correct or is one better. "Both are not." "Neither is." Also, are they interchangeable or are there correct times to use one or the other?
1
vote
2answers
82 views

the main usage of the “to” as a prepositional condition

when I was young I wasn't from the English area but I am used to learning English grammar already. Well , I am still thinking about one thing maybe because I had not even got to learn this grammar ...
0
votes
2answers
957 views

What's the difference between “if” and “whether”? [duplicate]

Using whether is far more common. It is certainly more formal. I would like to know whether it is a true story or fabricated. But we can use if as well in the same sentence. I would like ...
1
vote
1answer
185 views

phrase replacement [closed]

I sometimes use common phrases that I'd rather spruce up with a single word or more direct phrase, or perhaps just by using fresher wording. One phrase I'd like to change is: "was the fact that." My ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Meaning of 'within' in “the task has to be submitted within a month” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Within” and “in” when referring to time if there's a sentence : The task has to be submitted within a month Does it mean that the task has to be submitted before ...
1
vote
1answer
807 views

Is “to” inclusive in “I worked at company X from April 2012 to April 2013”? [duplicate]

I have a question about the use of the word to as a time proposition. Is to inclusive in the following sentence? I worked at company X from April 2012 to April 2013.
1
vote
1answer
53 views

What does “good enough to lose” in “Red Sox were either good enough to lose, or just plain bad” in the World Series in the past”?

New York Times (October 31st) reported Red Sox’s victory in the World Series under the title, “Red Sox Rout Cardinals to Win World Series” It begins with the following sentence: For much of the ...
0
votes
1answer
149 views

Is “Take one’s pulse” used as an idiom to mean“research” market, trends, problems / opportunities other than “diagnose" patient’s conditions?

I was amused to find the headline of article, “Just Dropped In to Take Your Pulse” in New Car Reviews section of New York Times October 25 issue, which is followed by the lead-copy: The Scirocco ...
1
vote
2answers
126 views

What's the difference between: people in England, people of England and English people? [closed]

People in England clean glass with newspaper. People of England clean glass with newspaper. English people clean glass with newspaper. I would like to know which one sounds most natural. I would ...
0
votes
1answer
41 views

Word usage in emphatic sense [closed]

Consider the sentence: "The need for lawful intervention is being felt more after the terror attacks in November last year." Shouldn't it be even more instead of just more?
0
votes
2answers
46 views

Phrasal Usage of called on

Consider the sentence: "America's respected Institute of Medicine called for/on nurses to play a greater role in primary care." Which is more appropriate on or for?
1
vote
0answers
21 views

Is the “for + proposition” form still used nowadays? [duplicate]

I am currently studying English and as such enjoy reading English books from time to time; for instance I have recently been reading the fifth book of A Song of Ice and Fire since the French version ...
0
votes
2answers
124 views

Is “It's raining cats and dogs” out? [closed]

My impression is "It's raining cats and dogs" is old-fashioned. Is that right? If I used it, would people think I'm 70 years old, or something like that?
0
votes
2answers
284 views

“it is may happen” is correct or not? [closed]

The meaning of hope given in Simple Wiktionary as When someone hopes that something will happen, it means that they want it to happen and they think it is may happen. This it is may happen is ...
0
votes
3answers
84 views

Is “left for heaven” a common phrase in English?

Is "left for heaven" a common phrase for native English speakers?
8
votes
1answer
322 views

What does“low wattage” mean in “A politician not being mocked for low wattage”?

Time magazine (October 25) carries the article titled “The Populist Egghead” with a caption: “Sen. Cruz isn't being mocked for low wattage the way Palin and Reagan had been. He's being singled ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Should 'good morning' be first greeting irrespective of the time you meet a person. Whether its afternoon or evening [duplicate]

Is there any kind of rule that the first greeting to a person should be 'good morning' irrespective of the time you meet that person. Whether its afternoon or evening. Please clarify with with facts ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

Can “shavelings” be used to refer to Asian monks? Or it only refers to Occitental shaven-headed church man?

Can "shavelings" be used to refer to Asian monks? Or it only refers to Occidental shaven-headed church men? Can a shaven-headed civilian be called a "shaveling"?
1
vote
1answer
91 views

Is the word “mid-shelf” applicable to any merchandize being sold at retail shops more than liquor?

There was the following sentence in Time magazine (September 16) titled “The world according to Vladimir Putin.” The nation that put the first man into space has given the world no distinctly ...
1
vote
3answers
360 views

Did the CIA really introduce 'conspiracy theory' into popular usage after JFK?

I heard that after the JFK assassination the CIA, through assets in mass media, introduced the term 'conspiracy theory', with it connotations of something clearly ridiculous, and only believed by ...
0
votes
1answer
103 views

How to name the supreme power in the universe, in front of various people who believe there is one? [duplicate]

Even in writing this question, I have been deeply embarrassed : should I capitalize some words ? Although not a believer myself, I wish to perturb nobody, whatever his / her faith could be : my ...
0
votes
1answer
83 views

grammar age question [duplicate]

Consider the sentence - "A fifty year old man is walking in the garden." Shouldn't it be 'fifty years old' or 'fifty-year old' or something else maybe? Is the original usage correct?
11
votes
3answers
2k views

When did the term “flip flop” displace the term “thong” in North America for a type of sandal?

To Australians like me "thong" means a kind of sandal such as recently repopularized by the Havaianas brand but we know it means a kind of G-string in other English-speaking parts of the world. To ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

in average? on average? [closed]

I am writing a summary for a facebook campaign, and I want to say "each post reaches over 1000 viewers in average", does it sound right? Should I use "on average" or "in average"?
0
votes
3answers
197 views

“I grip the steering wheel like I grasp TO my memory of that day.” Is that “to” wrong? Omit, or change to “at”?

In the sentence above, is "grasp to my memory of..." wrong? It feels wrong, but I can't articulate why. I might say "grasp at my memory of" or perhaps omit the preposition all together. I fear ...
3
votes
3answers
16k views

“features and characteristics”

In English, the phrase "features and characteristics" is often used. However, I, as a non-native English speaker, can't understand the difference between them. Longman Dictionary of Contemporary ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

When is it appropriate to use “scare quotes”?

For example, is putting scare quotes around "scare quotes" appropriate? Wikipedia says the term means usage of quote marks "to indicate that [a word or phrase] does not signify its literal or ...
1
vote
1answer
774 views

What does “Seeing right through them” exactly mean?

I was drawn to the phrase, “Seeing right through them“appearing in the New York Times (October 5) article written by Daniel Goleman under the title, “Rich people just care less.” It begins with the ...
-1
votes
1answer
130 views

One of the best person I got to work with [closed]

I am trying to write a recommendation. How could I improve the following sentence which sounds too informal and it also sounds like it is in the past whereas I am still working with this person: He ...
0
votes
1answer
92 views

Word being modified by whose

I came across the following sentence: "Kiran is Kishore's uncle, whose paternal grandfather has only two children." I am not clear which person is 'whose' referring to - Kiran or Kishore and why?
1
vote
1answer
71 views

Strive for excellence VS Striving for excellence

"an environment that promotes strive for excellence / striving for excellence" I would like to know which one is correct ? Because I dont quite catch how to use the phrase "strive for excellence".
0
votes
1answer
236 views

What is correct “Other” or “Miscellaneous” [closed]

I'm working on a company Index and want to give users the option to add their company to the index which is categorized by products & sevices. I've got a limited number of main categories and each ...
7
votes
4answers
2k views

Is “on one hand, on the other hand” a cliche? [closed]

We should find a Way of long peace instead of living just for today. On one hand, we have to prevent the community from coming apart and suffering the disasters caused by it, on the other hand, to ...
6
votes
1answer
90 views

Etymology of “rabona”

In association football, rabona is used to describe a specific technique: a method of kicking the football whereby the kicking leg is wrapped around the back of the standing leg—effectively with ...
2
votes
3answers
115 views

“all the way down to” phrase with geographical locations

Is the following usage correct: I drove from Los Angeles all the way down to San Diego. given that San Diego is at the south of Los Angeles? Can it be used for geographical directions?
1
vote
2answers
199 views

'solid' used as an adverb

The Chicago Manual of Style, 14th Edition contains the following (on the hyphenation or otherwise of compounds): 6.38: The trend in spelling compound words has been away from the use of hyphens; ...
0
votes
1answer
107 views

Hyphen omission: a matter of habit or plain error?

I'm not a native English speaker so I'm struggling to get this right. I understand (and this question confirms) that compound adjectives such as well-organized, high-level, Spanish-speaking, etc, ...
1
vote
1answer
7k views

Is the usage of “so as to” correct?

Can "so as to" be used, and if so in what contexts and in what situations? Can it be used formally and in written documents? Edit: I'm looking more at an IT question for example "You can do ...
7
votes
3answers
146 views

How did 'wieldy', the positive form of 'unwieldy', come to be a non-existent word?

I.e., is there a known reason behind why the negative form of the word 'wieldy', 'unwieldy', is so vastly used, whereas the positive form is essentially a non-existent word — MacMillan ...
0
votes
2answers
54 views

Does MLA require intext citations to include author's last name if you introduced his name earlier in your work? [closed]

I'm a bit unsure if I can go about excluding author last names in citations for a paper I've been writing. I have to compare two characters from different stories in the same anthology. I have quotes ...
1
vote
2answers
117 views

Corporates - is there any such word?

The use of "corporates" as a word to mean companies, organizations, etc., has been gaining popularity of late, at least here in India. Although I believe it is standard to speak of "corporate" life, ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

would not vs will not vs can not [closed]

I understand about the conditional, and imaginary, tense but if someone implies something will or won't work, which is the stronger or more definite use? Even if he tries, it cannot work Even ...
3
votes
1answer
52 views

“Fight Academy” or “Fighting Academy?”

What's more accurate, "Fight Academy" or "Fighting Academy" or is it equally correct to use either one. I have seen both being used and when I compare it to "Fight Club," it seems that "Fight ...
4
votes
2answers
461 views

Is there a term/word for using an incorrect homophone

What would you call the following: Speak now or forever hold your piece.
1
vote
3answers
159 views

Can “it” be used as “which” to represent what the previous sentence means?

The priority is to lay down the moral base of this society: including ethical principles and political justice. It means that what we are going to seek out and construct is the “republican virtue” ...
0
votes
1answer
418 views

'Given a choice' vs.'If I had to choose'

Can the phrases given a choice and if I had to choose be used interchangeably? I made a statement like "Given a choice, I would do this," my original intention being to select that over the other ...
1
vote
4answers
110 views

Smart used as expensive, why?

I sometimes see phrases like "smart hotel", "smart restaurant" (especially in guide books). From context I usually understand it as "expensive but worthy". Is it correct understanding? Why is word ...
1
vote
2answers
467 views

How to correctly use double quotation marks at the end of a sentence? [duplicate]

Group A: This is so-called "Moon Cake." // The period is inside the double quatation marks This is so-called "Moon Cake". // The period is outside the double quatation marks I know the ...
0
votes
2answers
169 views

Is “as you need” different from “as you need to” in this sentence?

To utilize things as(when) you need to, but never be captivated by things.(self-made, a translation from ancient text in Chinese) I think "as you need" and "as you need to" is different in this ...