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

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1answer
24 views

Pant legs or pants legs?

With all this I don't see the answer to which is the correct form "He rolled up his pant legs" or "he rolled up his pants legs."
2
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2answers
22 views

Use of the word competent

Can you use competent in the context of an inanimate object such as an instruction manual, or a voltmeter? e.g. "In my opinion Standard 12345 is considered a competent document." or "The potentials ...
0
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3answers
1k views

“most” vs “the most”, specifically as an adverb at the end of sentence

Which one of the following sentences is the most canonical? I know most vs. the most has been explained a lot, but my doubts pertain specifically which one to use at the end of a sentence. Do you ...
-2
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1answer
39 views

'Everyone make' or' everyone makes'? [on hold]

Which one's the correct one? 1. Everyone make mistakes. 2. Everyone makes mistakes. And why?
1
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2answers
39 views

Equal vs Equivalent: Finer differences in meaning and usage?

Equal vs Equivalent: Finer differences in meaning and usage? What would be the subtler differences & similarities? Examples & scenarios where: Only one can be used Both can be used One ...
0
votes
1answer
17 views

Present Perfect usage in a sentence; continue with the same tense or move to Past Simple?

I've been rewriting a known quote: Curiosity killed the cat, but satisfaction brought it back. I used the Present Perfect and turned the quote into: Curiosity has killed the cat, but ...
2
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4answers
69 views

Can you be ill from an injury (I don't mean an infection) [duplicate]

This is something that crops up on the BBC a lot and irks me. For example, from a story today: One woman is critically ill and three others have been injured after they were stabbed near a ...
0
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1answer
40 views

Is this correct? : “Tenji that was, died in his sisters arms.” (Kind of like 'powers that be') Also is 'have a claim to' correct' or 'hold a claim to'

Full quote for context "I have no claim to life, yet I walk. I have no claim to valor, yet I fight. I have no claim to love, yet I mourn. I am not the dragon, for Tenji Minamoto that was, died in his ...
0
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0answers
39 views

“If I have some questions I will write you” [migrated]

I need to know if it's OK to use have and some in this sentence, and why? If I have some questions I will write you. I've been told it is more typical to use any here instead of some. Is there a ...
-1
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1answer
2k views

Usage of Lets vs Let's for 'Let us' [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Let's” vs. “lets”: which is correct? Lets now see how it can be done. Let's now see how it can be done. Is sentence 1 wrong? If so, why? ...
8
votes
2answers
331 views

“the 'first/last' of the [day/night/week, etc.]” for "the 'beginning/end' of the [day/night/week, etc.]

Where in the U.S. and Canada do they say, at the first/last of [the day/night/week, etc.] for at the beginning/end of [the day/night/week, etc.]? Luck had it that they only experienced a very ...
30
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6answers
6k views

What is the difference between Ukraine and the Ukraine?

Time magazine (March 5th) carries the article titled, “Ukraine, not the Ukraine: The significance of three little letters,” in which the following comment of William Taylor, who served as the U.S. ...
1
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1answer
67 views

Should “something, and therefore something” be referred to as singular or plural?

For example, if I have the sentence Due to the improvement of our algorithm, our model, and therefore simulation, becomes more realistic. Should the becomes be instead written as become? Does ...
1
vote
1answer
60 views

“Handling of Task 1” or “Handling Task 1”

I am working on my thesis and included is a subsection in which I describe how a part of a class of my program handles the task I have been assigned for the thesis. To give you an idea of what the ...
2
votes
3answers
70 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 ...
1
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1answer
141 views

Usage of “imperative to [verb]ing”

From what I learned, we could use imperative to [verb]ing, but when I read my book, I see this sentence: An accurate analysis of surveys is imperative to building a good understanding of customer ...
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0answers
17 views
10
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5answers
1k views

“He's unarguably the best” or “He's arguably the best”

I keep hearing the phrases unarguably the best and arguably the best. Some people say one, some people say the other when they mean he's the best. However which one is actually correct? If he's ...
1
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2answers
45 views

Question on Garner's explanation of subjunctive

I'm puzzled by an example given in Garner's Modern English Usage illustrating correct use of the subjunctive mood. In this example, Garner offers both the incorrect and the correct usage: "But the ...
0
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3answers
58 views

How do you write “and” in short form?

How do you write "and" in short form like w/o as in "without"?? It's not "&" but some other form. I used to write it but I forgot since I dont live in the US. Please help me remind it. Thanks
2
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0answers
80 views

Does “mouse” in the computer sense come from nautical slang?

Computer "mouse" is an English term known and used worldwide. Reference about its origin appears to suggest that the term, which obviously refers to the shape of a small mouse, may actually come ...
3
votes
1answer
53 views

Is the usage “how many ever” correct?

Eg : You may use it how many ever time. I know the sentence can be phrased better but I just wanted to given an example. So my question is, Is "how many ever" a correct usage?
0
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2answers
68 views

What our students have to say. Grammar question

I often hear the phrase "what our students have to say" in testimonials, and I am confused with the grammar here. It can be taken in two ways as follows. 1) Our students have something (what) to say ...
-1
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1answer
33 views

Dealing with usage where nouns or pronouns are treated as adjectives

"That is so Dave!" I had a discussion of this on another forum where I said that 'Dave' is being treated here as an adjective. The only responses I got were on the lines of "'Dave' is a noun." And to ...
-1
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0answers
28 views

A people - is it correct? [migrated]

Puls Biznesu reported that the idea of the book was to give a people an opportunity to communicate abroad in a universal language - pictures. Is it right to place the indefinite article "a" before ...
1
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1answer
70 views

Speaker Paul Ryan said “encouraged with” but media is saying “Ryan encouraged by”. Why?

*Note: The first half of this question, in bold, is streamlined and expresses the gist of my message. You can skip the second half of the question if you would rather not slog through all my ...
1
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2answers
306 views

Dedicated to producing vs dedicated to the production - use of gerund in place of noun

- A factory famous for the production of. . . - A factory famous for producing . . . - A farm dedicated to the cultivation of . . . - A farm dedicated to cultivating . . . - The firm focused on the ...
0
votes
1answer
19 views

Western end or West end? [closed]

"I proposed on the west/ern end of the beach" Which one's correct?
4
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1answer
97 views

Colloquial use of “to dip”

So, "dip" has come to mean "leave" in American slang. As in, "Let's dip," i.e. "Let's get out of here." How did that happen? The best I could come up with is: a dip in the road obscures vision, so if ...
0
votes
1answer
166 views

As to grammar and idiom, is the following extract correct: “… if you know the man or are him, call …”?

Obviously, my questions refers to the pronoun him. Am I wrong to suppose that the use of the subject case pronoun he instead of him would not improve the previous statement? What about this one: “… if ...
0
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0answers
47 views

In what contexts is the word fertile used in this manner, and is it ridiculous or at best misleading?

I have seen a very strange definition for fertile. OED fertile: 1. Bearing or producing in abundance; fruitful, prolific. Const. of, in, rarely to. a. lit. of the soil, a district or region, ...
17
votes
5answers
22k views

the USA vs the US

I am writing an essay where I need to make a reference to the United States of America. Often I hear this shortened to the US, but sometimes people also say the USA. Are there any difference between ...
1
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0answers
42 views

Different usage of had [closed]

Do we always have to use a particular time of a past event when we use 'had'. As I have heard its a past in past. Because I have come accross many statements where the writers donot use had with a ...
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1answer
46 views
20
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3answers
3k views

Is it “chalk it up to” or “chock it up to”?

Grammarist & Our beloved StackExchange both say that the phrase "Chalk it up to" dates back to, among other things, debts being tallied on a chalkboard. However, when I hear the phrase "chock it ...
2
votes
1answer
17 views

May / might usage based on the probability of the event happening [duplicate]

I just taught may / might and the book tells the students that, "you use 'may' with things that have around a 50% chance of happening and might with a 30% chance". Is this true? I, for one, use ...
0
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0answers
12 views

Is it okay to omit “a” with “going for”? [migrated]

Is it okay to ask: Are we going for film? Or is it compulsory to add "a"? Are we going for a film?
1
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2answers
47 views

The colloquial use of the pronoun “you” followed by “adjectives”

Utterances like you pig!, you bastard! or you silly! are quite common but it is hard to find grammatical explanation about them as they are prevalent in the colloquialism. I would be glad if ...
1
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0answers
23 views

“Watched any” vs “saw any” in a sentence [migrated]

Have you watched any new movies? Is this the correct way to ask? Or is it better to ask Saw any new movies?
3
votes
1answer
60 views

Deadlines as instants or periods with various verbs and tenses

I was wondering whether a deadline is more of an instant or more of a period. It seems to have some of both aspects, but with more of an emphasis on the instant. I thought that this should be ...
1
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0answers
19 views

It is + (time) + to + (verb)?

Actually, I'm asking for an another way to say "it takes + (time) + to + (verb)". For example, is "It is 1 hour to go to the hospital" correct or the "it takes + (time) + to + (verb)" construction is ...
3
votes
5answers
2k views

Usage of “pragmatic” vs. “practical”

As adjectives in general usage (not in jargon terminology), are the words pragmatic and practical synonymous? If not, how do their meanings and proper usage differ?
2
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1answer
19 views

Need to understand the difference

1) Jo will have been waiting for an hour by the time i meet him 2) Jo will have waited for an hour by the time i meet him
-1
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0answers
14 views

Need to know if these future perfect tenses are correct

I want to know if the below usage is correct: 1)By next year we will have married 2) he will be tired when he gets here, he will have travelled all day Thanks
1
vote
1answer
131 views

Usage of “coruscating”

Can coruscating be used as a one word adjective to describe "interesting and exciting"? Basically the usage is "his interesting and exciting research work" which will end up as "his coruscating ...
0
votes
2answers
102 views

How many is a zillion?

1 million = 1,000,000. 1 billion = 1,000,000,000 or 1,000,000,000,000 depending on if using the long or short scale. How many is a zillion? Although Wikipedia redirects "Zillion" to "Indefinite ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

Simple past v. present perfect (case)

At least in AE is common to say Did you watch that movie? When I would expect people to say Have you watched that movie? The later sounds correct to me because it's the experiential usage of ...
1
vote
1answer
52 views

My editing software calls out an error “initial -ing”

ProWritingAid software flags the following type sentences as an error called initial -ing. Frowning, he rose and walked in his bare feet to the door. I've tried to find a grammar rule ...
1
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0answers
37 views

“He has a wedding today” or “He is attending a wedding today”? [closed]

I am not a native English speaker, so I am not sure what the correct way is? Can anybody tell me the correct usage?
51
votes
8answers
8k views

“To science the sh*t out of something”

In The Martian movie, Matt Damon (Watney), when left stranded on Mars with very limited resources to survive, says: Mark Watney: In the face of overwhelming odds, I'm left with only one option, ...