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

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1answer
45 views

Usage of Too… to

In school, I learned too... to... as an expression, like I am too tired to stand or It is too early to sleep. But sometimes I want to say something like I think 30 days on trip is good, it is not ...
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2answers
87 views

Is it rude to call a woman “ma'am”?

I use to call ma'am to women showing respect, but as there is some people that find annoying the "Mrs", I don't know if my respectful tone using ma'am they do aside and find it rude.
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5answers
137 views

What does “a bookstore-counting mood in Paris prompts soul-searching over Amazon’s 41 % share of new book sales in America” mean?

In the article titled “The French do buy books. Real books” appearing in New York Times (July 9), the author, Pamela Druckerman writes: “Recently when I was strolling through my museum-like ...
3
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1answer
69 views

Is the meaning of **I'll keep an eye out for it** understood outside of the UK ? [on hold]

I sometime write in emails : I'll keep an eye out for it OR I'll keep an eye out for your email Im in the UK and i think that the majority on english speakers in the UK would understand this, ...
4
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2answers
65 views

What is a word for something that you desperately want and/or craved for, but NEVER GOT?

Take this situation; Everyone was given ice cream at the birthday party, except for Todd. After Todd got home, he felt very disheartened that he never got the chance to taste the ice-cream there. He ...
4
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1answer
40 views

Source of “miscarriage of justice”

What may be the source of the phrase "miscarriage of justice"? I keep hearing this phrase being used for cases where an innocent has been convicted. While the phrase paints quite a picture, I'm not ...
2
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2answers
4k 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".
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4answers
192 views

“defeat Trump badly”

In a live-streamed speech, the Vermont senator made it clear he is no longer actively challenging Clinton and that the goal is to ‘defeat Trump badly’ … “The major political task that we face in ...
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0answers
6 views

“Shipping cost” or “shipping price”?

While building an ecommerce website, I'm writing the labels for the checkout process. I'd like to use the words “price” and “cost” correctly (I understand that a product on the shelf has a price, but ...
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0answers
33 views

How is “Elementary” Correctly Pronounced? [on hold]

I'm trying to get a basis on how most people pronounce the word "elementary." I've personally heard 3 pronunciations: "Elemen-tree," "Element-er-ee," & "Element-air-ee." Similar to "Military" for ...
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2answers
51 views

Can “take a shot at [someone]” be used as “try to court [someone]”?

I know that the expression "have a shot with [someone]" means "to have a chance in successfully wooing [someone]". And I know that "take a shot at" might mean to have a try, but also literally ...
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0answers
19 views

When to use close vs closest? [on hold]

The sentence would read "Select a center close to the user..." or "Select a center closest to the user..." I prefer the first because it reads better to me but I would like to see what others think.
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2answers
182 views

Is having sex a hobby? [on hold]

Wiktionary defines a hobby as An activity that one enjoys doing in one's spare time. Other dictionaries tend to have similar definitions. Viewpoint 1 Some people believe that the word hobby ...
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2answers
64 views

Equal vs Equivalent: Finer differences in meaning and usage? in 4 distinct scenarios outlined?

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 ...
20
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4answers
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 ...
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2answers
7k views

“Balconies”, “porches”, “decks”, “terraces”, “verandas”, “lanais”, “galleries”, and “piazzas” in GAE and dialectal AE

In AE, a porch is apparently just about the same structure as a veranda, i.e. an open or enclosed gallery or room attached to the outside of a building. http://www.thefreedictionary.com/porch ...
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1answer
120 views

What's the difference between “Thanks anyway” and “Thanks though”?

To me, they seem to have almost identicial meaning, but I believe there's a difference in usage. Could you please decribe the difference with specific examples?
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1answer
53 views

Past tense means politeness? [on hold]

Questions asked using past tense, some examples like: "Would you mind...?", "Could you please...?", "Should I do...?", "Did you want...?" It seems people are using past tense in these sort of ...
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1answer
85 views

What does “drop and give me zen” mean? [on hold]

What does "drop and give me zen" mean? Maybe it's some kind of idiom. Can you explain it to me?
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1answer
93 views

Does “nails” imply painted nails?

A google image search for "nails" displays almost exclusively painted nails, whereas searching for "fingernails" displays almost exclusively unpainted nails. Is this due to a difference in the meaning ...
3
votes
1answer
43 views

An old (19-20th century) usage of “but”

Here's the sentence "Not a wrong in this world but had him as its champion ; not a cause of liberty or reform but gained his support." The statement falls in a paragraph of introduction of a ...
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1answer
46 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 ...
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0answers
21 views

The use of 'of' at the end of a sentence

Is this sentence correct? 'I know about things you don't know of.' Or should I dismiss 'of' from the sentence? Is there a better way to form the sentence? Thank you.
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0answers
17 views

Which / That problem in a bullet point [on hold]

In the following fragmentary bullet point it is not clear to me which word should be used: • Investigation of available tools and systems which/that can potentially be integrated Should "which" or ...
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1answer
94 views

What is the origin and extent of the Indian English usage of “only” to emphasize something?

I live in southern India, and for a long time I've been curious about this phenomena that I've observed. Indian English uses the word "only" in a special way. They use it to emphasize things. Sort ...
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0answers
31 views

Which is correct? Try to … or - Try and [duplicate]

I hear and read people saying for example - "Try AND do it" or "Try AND do that" instead of the way I learned it - "Try TO do it" or "Try To do that". I thought Strunk & White told us to use - ...
3
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1answer
35 views

Origin of “even you” without connotations of surprise/insult/praise? (Indian English)

I live in southern India, and I've noticed that in a Indian English, the word "even" can be used without indicating surprise, as it does elsewhere. Some examples: Even you should be able to ...
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1answer
69 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 ...
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1answer
2k 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
131 views

“crash” vs. “wreck” for [road/air] accident in AmEng

What's the difference between those terms in relation to a road or air accident? crash verb (Aeronautics) to cause (an aircraft) to hit land or water violently resulting in severe damage ...
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0answers
30 views

How to know if a word formal or not? [closed]

If I want to write a formal letter, how can I choose the best words for this task? Is there a software can help me in this, a website...etc?
1
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1answer
63 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 ...
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2answers
35 views

The usage of “it is recalled that”

My professor (whose first language is not English) keeps adding "It is recalled that" at the start of different sentences describing facts/products. I do not think it is used appropriately. What ...
1
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1answer
147 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 ...
1
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2answers
465 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 ?
15
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7answers
2k views

Why doesn't English have a separate word for “head hair”? (head hair vs. body hair)

The answer can be "Because it doesn't!" or "It wasn't needed!" in short but there might be a historical or linguistic explanation behind this. (Of course, every language might be lacking a word that ...
0
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1answer
32 views

Why does “face” turn to “faced” when used as a compound adjective? [closed]

I ask this question out of curiosity more than anything. We use the word "face" as a noun, but when it is used in a compound adjective, it turns into "faced": The features of his face hardened. ...
4
votes
5answers
3k views

1 o'clock in the morning OR 1 o'clock at night?

Could you help me on this? In my native language I would speak about the "night" starting from around 11 pm till 4 in the morning. So every time I see an English phrase like "2 o'clock in the morning" ...
0
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1answer
28 views

“Responsible for” vs. “responsible to” [closed]

1.Method responsible to retrieve active offices by country. 2.Method responsible for retrieve active offices by country. For and To when to use? That's right ?
0
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3answers
78 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
3
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1answer
93 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?
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0answers
77 views

Past Continuous signal word from.. to [closed]

please clarify me on the usage of Past Continuous tense. Some grammar books (written by non English authors) suggest using signal word from.. to.. with Past Continuous. e.g. We were plaing tennis from ...
-1
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5answers
275 views

What's the reason for using the ‘passive voice’? [closed]

I would like to know the why and when the 'passive voice' is used instead of the 'active voice' in English. The following definition did not help me very much. passive voice the voice ...
1
vote
2answers
327 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
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1answer
173 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 ...
3
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2answers
135 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 ...
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2answers
197 views

What is the correct grammar: “we” or “us”

What is the correct grammar for this sentence fragment: She needed we the taxpayers to pay.... She needed us the taxpayers to pay.... because without "the taxpayers", the correct sentence ...
1
vote
2answers
47 views

“Answers arrive in a piecemeal fashion”

I am being told that this sentence is not in a proper construction: "Answers arrive in a piecemeal fashion." Neither Book Google nor standard Google search yields a single result using quotation ...