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

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-1
votes
1answer
85 views

Can't understand a 'but' word usage [Daniel Defoe] [closed]

Can someone please explain me why Daniel Defoe uses a 'but' word literally everywhere? (See photos, last string in both occasions). Thanks a lot for your answers!
1
vote
1answer
144 views

How do I choose between “was” and “were”? [closed]

Should I use the singular “was” or the plural “were” in the following sentence? The first thing that I noticed was (OR) were the street performers singing near the main entrance of the park. ...
0
votes
1answer
70 views

When did it become common to say “because X” instead of “because of X?” [duplicate]

When did this usage become common, especially in a sarcastic or ironic context? Carnegie Mellon erroneously sends computer science admission letters to 800, because computers. [emphasis added] ...
0
votes
3answers
223 views

Can the word petrify be used correctly in the sentences below? [closed]

Can the word petrify be used correctly in the sentences below? He was petrified with exhaustion! He was so petrified he slept without moving a muscle.
10
votes
4answers
4k views

What is meant by a “two-lane” road?

When people say that a road has "two lanes"? Two lanes total, one travelling in one direction, and one travelling in the opposite direction? Two lanes travelling in one direction, and two more ...
32
votes
7answers
2k views

Can a statement be “hissed” without any sibilants?

Is using hissed as a replacement for said technically acceptable in dialogue without the presence of any sibilants? "You fool!" she hissed. I understand that hissed could be used to indicate a ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

Usage of “so to” in the place of “to” as part of infinitive construction

Example: We make wine by hand in small lots and taste the wines constantly so to profit from its constant change. I would normally drop the "so" and phrase it like "we do it to profit" Are both ...
1
vote
1answer
41 views

Use of 'such as themselves'?

Would it be correct to use the following sentence? The group make for a handsome lot. And that poise of talk can only be found in the most opulent of beings, such as themselves. I have been ...
1
vote
1answer
95 views

Are proper adverbs falling out of usage in current spoken American English?

While watching American movies and TV series, I notice that in dialogue very often the usage of a proper adverb is replaced by the corresponding adjective (in the case where the adverb is formed by ...
7
votes
6answers
3k views

The meaning of 0% and 100% as opposed to other percentages?

Oftentimes, percentages are rounded to the nearest whole number. A $49.99 item may be marked 50% off, even if the price becomes $24.99 (it should be 50.03% off). However, I have come to notice that ...
3
votes
2answers
35 views

What is the difference between “feudal” and “feudalistic”?

They are both adjectives related to feudalism. But what is the difference between the two in actual usage.
1
vote
1answer
98 views

Regional omission of “to be.” [duplicate]

I've noticed that people from the Washington, Oregon area tend to omit "to be" when describing something that needs to be completed. For example, just today one of my consulting engineers sent me an ...
4
votes
5answers
423 views

For computer science, are the files corrupted or corrupt?

Computer files: Are they "corrupt" or "corrupted"? I feel they could be both. What is the standard?
0
votes
2answers
40 views

The second verb of subject should be express according to number or not? [closed]

He is a man who has a bad heart. or He is a man who have a bad heart. Which one is correct? I tried to search "He is a man who have" and "He is a man who has" on Google but I got quite ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

Using “Chances are…”

Here's the sentence I'm wrestling with: "Chances are most of your customers are..." Is this correct? Or should it be "Chances are that most of your customers..." or "Chances are, most of your ...
2
votes
3answers
127 views

What is the meaning of this life quote? [closed]

I am trying (but failing) to understand the meaning of this life quote: Trying is a part of failing. If you are afraid to fail then you are afraid to try. Can you explain what it means?
0
votes
0answers
123 views

Does an invitation to do something “together” imply “with a group”?

I need to know the meaning of the following sentence, if being sent to one person. "Would you be interested in trying out a new restaurant together sometime"? Does this mean that this is a group ...
0
votes
2answers
289 views

“Looks like” in more formal way [closed]

I want to write It looks like I misunderstood Berta's explanation But in more formal way. Thanks
0
votes
2answers
143 views

“…the city of Berlin was divided ________ the USSR, the USA and the UK” [duplicate]

After the second world war, the city of Berlin was divided ________ the USSR, the USA and the UK. Options by with between among My Approach: I am not able to solve this ...
0
votes
2answers
57 views

Why the word “common ground” as noun does not contain or unnecessary to have a hyphen?

Why the word "common ground" as noun does not contain or unnecessary to have a hyphen? Is this compound term correct?
1
vote
1answer
54 views

In anything but…meaning and usage

I am reading some documentation and cannot fully understand the meaning of 'In anything but..' In anything but the smallest applications it makes sense to organize the service definitions by ...
1
vote
3answers
235 views

Which is correct, “to take refuge in” or “to take refuge with”?

Concerning refuge with a higher existence such as an Omnipotent being, what is more befitting to use, English wise: To take refuge in [Omnipotent being] To take refuge with [Omnipotent being] ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Can we say “same to you” in response to “nice to meet you”?

Is it ok to respond with "same to you" when someone says Nice to meet you ? I am getting confused because "you too" can be interchangeably used for "same to you".
0
votes
1answer
96 views

Long-term v lifelong [closed]

Should I say "It's been a long-term dream of mine to do sth" or "It's been a lifelong dream of mine to do sth"
-1
votes
1answer
168 views

Best practices to address a person having the same name? [closed]

I am not a native speaker. I would really like to know how you address someone with the same name as you have. Like my name is Daniel. I met a colleague who is also called Daniel. By the way, we ...
1
vote
1answer
87 views

“sympathetic” : one who “feels” sympathy or “deserves” sympathy?

Can one who others feel sympathy for, be described as sympathetic? I've always believed that sympathetic only describes one who bestows sympathy, not one who receives sympathy. Incorrect Example? ...
0
votes
1answer
172 views

Which future tense for holidays or doctor appointments?

Although I know the general rules when to apply which tense, I'm often confused and do not really know which one to use. I can find pros and cons for each tense. Two examples: In terms of spending ...
0
votes
4answers
134 views

Use of “this was suggested to me by…”

I say to my friend Mark: "You should read this book". Later, Mark talks with another person about this and says: "This book was suggested to me by a friend". Is this correct? Does it sound natural or ...
2
votes
3answers
142 views

How I can use a word of “whereas”?

I looked up Oxford dictionary: In contrast or comparison with the fact that: "you treat the matter lightly, whereas I myself was never more serious" I am still confusing about this meaning. Please ...
9
votes
1answer
385 views

Influence of Spanish and usage of Spanish words in US English

A recent report by Instituto Cervantes ["El Español una lengua viva, informe 2015"] lists the US as the 4th country in the world with the highest number of native Spanish speakers (41.343.921), ...
-5
votes
1answer
65 views

Is this sentence grammatically correct? [closed]

We had our nails done at a salon and afterwards we went to a cafe, where Julie had an indulgent hot chocolate and I had a pot of tea. Please explain your answer. Thanks.
2
votes
1answer
161 views

Is “should” appropriate for polite requests?

I am placing request to a customer for a project and I want him to provide some information. I had worked with them in a previous assignment and they failed to provide me most of the details ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

What is the usage of word “like” here?

Indian elephants are the main contributors to the biogas production, but other vegetarian animals, like giraffes and rhinoceroses, help as well. What is the name of usage of this word "like" ...
0
votes
0answers
53 views

Is “Jap” more commonly used in media with space restrictions?

From time to time, I encounter people using the word "Jap" on Twitter. One explanation I've seen for its use is that it's shorter than "Japanese" or "Japan", so it's easier to write tweets that fit ...
1
vote
1answer
126 views

What is the difference between “acquisitional”, “acquisitive”, and “acquisitory”?

I am actually a native speaker, but this one threw me. "Acquisitory" seems to be associated with avarice/greed, possibly specifically for material goods. "Acquisitive" also seems to be related to ...
4
votes
1answer
114 views

Why does this use of “the” seem wrong?

I'm helping a colleague edit his paper before submission. He is a native French speaker and I am having trouble saying why "the" isn't necessary in "the threads" or in particular "the shared memory," ...
0
votes
2answers
92 views

Correct order of addressing [duplicate]

While writing an email on behalf of 2 other people. Should I write.. Savin, Steve and Myself Or Myself, Savin and Steve.. ? I remember reading somewhere it is always, first person, second and ...
0
votes
0answers
74 views

Grammatical rule for using no article with nouns

I can use "Listing Activation Codes" in an article whose description is the following: Use the following API route to list activation codes and their values. ​In this description, I mean that ...
2
votes
0answers
94 views

Why is the word “fewer” seemingly doomed? [closed]

More and more I see the word "fewer" less and less. It's being replaced by "less" and seemingly falling into disuse. What is the reason for this? Is it as simple as the marketeers believing, "fewer ...
1
vote
3answers
157 views

What does “for comfort” in “too fast (close / hot/ warm / crammed) for comfort” mean?

I was drawn to the phrase, “Too fast for comfort” in New York Times (August 10) article with a headline, “China devalues its currency amid economic slowdown.: The move appeared to be a response to ...
4
votes
1answer
97 views

“Double Clicking” to mean, going in depth

I have been recently hearing the expression "double clicking" to mean 'going in depth'. For example: We will double click on this topic later on when required. I have never heard of such a usage ...
0
votes
1answer
61 views

Does “money laundering” also mean raising funds illegally?

When I looked up what money laundering meant, the dictionary said it meant “concealing proceeds raised from illegitimate sources”. Does money laundering also mean “raising funds illegally”? If not, ...
0
votes
1answer
108 views

Does 'I certainly will not apologize for doing good journalism' make sense?

I recently watched an interview with a terrible journalist and she said the line: I certainly will not apologize for doing good journalism I'm specifically interested in doing good ...
0
votes
2answers
147 views

What does “Failure to fail” mean?

Paul Krugman, economist and Op-ed columnist of New York Times wrote in his article under the title, “G.O.P. Candidates and Obama’s failure to fail" - August 10. The shared premise of everyone on ...
0
votes
3answers
701 views

Preposition in vs. of

Which is correct; "in" poverty or "of" poverty? The children have survived 10 years of poverty. or The children have survived 10 years in poverty. Thank you!
0
votes
1answer
153 views

Meaning of “on the wax” from an article in Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

I do not follow the meaning of "on the wax" below, and do not find its usage in any online dictionary. Yet the original text appears in Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, thus peer-reviewed. So I ...
0
votes
2answers
642 views

What does “work a rope line” mean?

When Presidential race and caucuses are close, the candidates seem to be busy in “working a lope line” as in the following examples:. Wolf needs to work on his rope line speed. - ...
0
votes
2answers
374 views

usage of “Since the last X years”

Is this correct? "Since the last X years, Y is being used as ...". Meaning that Y has been used during the last X years, but also that it has been used for the first time only X years ago. this ...
4
votes
2answers
524 views

What is the difference between “could've” and “could of”? [duplicate]

I have seen people using could of instead of could have. Are both of them correct? Is there a difference in meaning between them?
0
votes
1answer
146 views

is “over the past years” a natural sounding expression?

I have heard "over the past few years" or "over past years", but I just read a document that said "X, Y and Z have been beneficial over the past years". This strikes me as wrong, but I found the ...