A vocabulary is the body of words used in a particular language.

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31
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21answers
22k views

What is the word for the emotion I feel when I see someone being humiliated?

When I see someone else being embarrassed / humiliated, for example a singer forgetting their words in a concert, I would say something like "I feel embarrassed for them". But is there a better word ...
1
vote
7answers
2k views

Is technical copywriting jargon or style?

I became confused by comments to my answer insisting that Technical writing is jargon using incorrect English words. I also looked through definitions of "prepend" in internet, all with inserted ...
2
votes
4answers
890 views

What is the shortest term to refer to people whose mother tongue is English?

What is the shortest term to refer to representatives of peoples and cultures whose mother tongue is English? Mothertonguers? Update: Can't I call them joe?
6
votes
3answers
8k views

To what reading level does a specific word like 'verbose' belong?

How does one determine the reading level to which a specific word belongs? For example, I want to use the word 'verbose' in some software. So, if I want to determine if it is appropriate to use the ...
1
vote
1answer
1k views

What's the origin of the swear words like the 'F' word? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How long has the f-word been in use as an abusive term? Sometimes I wonder what is the origin of some of the swear words such as the 'F**K' word which English speakers ...
4
votes
4answers
639 views

Equivalent word which represents 'Team' or 'Individual'

I am developing a coding contest project with multiple contests. The participants can be a team or an independent individual, depending on the contest setting. I want to define only one model for the ...
11
votes
7answers
23k views

Word for “someone who does the same job as me”

Is there a word that means something like "someone who does the same job as me"? I've thought of colleague and co-worker. These both indicate that someone works at the same place, or some other kind ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

What are the criteria to adopt new words into English?

Long time no see is a typical example for Chinglish, though it is said that long time no see has been accepted by the mainstream English speakers. Recently, there is a neologism movement in the ...
8
votes
3answers
339 views

Verbs of inaction

It seems to me that most English verbs always convey some action. That is, no words (to my knowledge) convey that absence of an action. Let me explain. Let's assume that I wanted to say that a certain ...
6
votes
5answers
38k views

What are the conventional words for characters (A-Z)?

I have just read the newest post of DOGHOUSEDIARIES, and I am wondering whether the words for characters are fixed in the USA or the UK, as I am not a native English speaker. For example: A as in ...
10
votes
5answers
2k views

Variations of the word “Schadenfreude”

Schadenfreude is pleasure derived from the misfortune of others. Is there a word which means to take pleasure in the misfortune of another when previously that misfortune was inflicted on you by that ...
4
votes
3answers
459 views

Curriculum vitae: Proper qualifiers for skills

I am updating my curriculum vitae, and there is a section where I list my experience with several technologies and programming languages. I would like to group my experience in two categories; namely, ...
5
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2answers
1k views

“To increase competitiveness in” or “to increase competitiveness on”?

Which phrase is the correct one? to increase competitiveness in the EU labor market to increase competitiveness on the EU labor market
3
votes
5answers
1k views

Does the verb “Unstar” exist?

I'm creating an application for the iPhone where the user has the ability to star an item, i.e. adding a star to the item. Now I am wondering whether I can also use unstar? Or should I go with ...
5
votes
3answers
2k views

Why is “ass” considered obscene?

Spam filters replace obscene "Ass" for "butt" Meanwhile, in literature, newspaper articles, forum posts, sayings, proverbs, etc. I am encountering many more expressions with ass but not with butt. ...
0
votes
3answers
2k views

When do the “-uple”s end? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to form single, double, triple… and uni-, bi-, tri-… words? There's single, double, triple, quadruple... — what's next? Is there an end to the ...
4
votes
5answers
684 views

Antonym to “news”

I have very old info. Is there a concise term like "news" that I can use to describe this? Update: I am looking for the antonym for news. Can I say oldies?
0
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2answers
222 views

And lead raptivity captive

What do raptivity and "And lead raptivity captive" mean?
2
votes
4answers
501 views

Aren't adverbs related to the closest word? What about other modifiers?

Aren't adverbs related to the closest word? Does nightly in nightly business report refer to business? Update: I am still confused. Is relation of non-adverb modifiers different from that of ...
1
vote
1answer
997 views

Singular form of the biblical magi

I was working on a crossword puzzle with the clue bearer of gold, frankincense, or myrrh. I immediately thought that the answer is obviously either "magi" or "wise man," but then realized that the ...
17
votes
6answers
35k views

Cell phone? Cell? Mobile phone? What's the “correct” term?

What's that type of phone called that you don't need a cable for and you can use everywhere in the world (provided there's coverage ;-))? And what differences are there between the regions? ...
6
votes
2answers
9k views

What is “hoolihan” in “Old Paint” song?

Lyric is: I ride an old paint, I lead an old dan I'm goin' to Montana to throw the hoolihan They feed in the coulees, they water in the draw Their tails are all matted, their ...
4
votes
2answers
518 views

What is the jukebox musical?

What is jukebox musical and its origin?
317
votes
6answers
89k views

Did English ever have a formal version of “you”?

From the top of my head, Danish "De" (practically never used), German "Sie", Chinese "您", French "vous", Spanish "usted" are a formal way of addressing someone, especially if one isn't familiar with ...
10
votes
2answers
387 views

Is there a term that means “oft-used misquotation”?

There are some quotations that people always seem to get wrong: Alas, poor Yorick, I knew him well. [Real quote from Hamlet: "Alas, poor Yorick! I knew him, Horatio."] I have nothing to offer ...
2
votes
1answer
144 views

Is a question the only thing that can be asked?

I will admit that I am clueless about all grammar-related terminology (prime example right there), but I'll try to explain as best as I can. Conceptually, there's a difference between these two ...
5
votes
3answers
14k views

What does the term “crack-a-lacking” mean?

In the Gorillaz song Welcome to the World of the Plastic Beach rapper Snoop Dogg uses the term crack-a-lacking. I've done some searching and can't find a reliable source for the origin and exact ...
2
votes
4answers
359 views

More colloquial term for “confidant”

Is there a more colloquial term for a "confidant", or someone who has been entrusted with sensitive information to be disclosed only under certain conditions? This is related to my previous question ...
8
votes
3answers
953 views

What do we call this kind of recursive expression?

A metaphor is like a simile. Is there a name for the kind of statement that suggests an infinite recursion? It is in a way similar to a paradox such as the one with a statement written on each ...
3
votes
5answers
868 views

Word to describe “when sensitive information is given to a trusted proxy in case of untimely death”

What's a good word to describe the situation when sensitive information is given to a trusted proxy (such as a lawyer), to be released only when a certain event occurs, such as a person's untimely ...
2
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3answers
2k views

Can ‘although’ be used in this way?

We still haven't got a sponsor although the fact that we've written to dozens of companies. What's wrong with ‘although’ in the sentence above?
6
votes
1answer
580 views

Who inflects “innit”?

I'm quite surprised there doesn't seem to be a question about this yet. Depending on where you hail from, you've probably heard the word innit, an abbreviation of isn't it or ain't it. You may also ...
5
votes
3answers
55k views

Response when your boss thanks you [closed]

What should be your response when your boss thanks you for using his own resource allotted to you and you respect your boss and cannot respond him like It's ok or you're welcome.
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vote
3answers
3k views

Difference between “abase” and “abash”

It seems as if both words mean to humiliate and degrade?
7
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6answers
22k views

What is the difference between “Class of 2004” and “Batch of 2004”?

What is the difference between "Class of 2004" and "Batch of 2004"? I have a feeling that one means the students who joined the university in 2004 and the other means those who graduated in 2004. Is ...
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2answers
2k views

Can you give me five good words beginning with the letter D? [closed]

Can you give me five words which start with the letter D? These five words should reflect professional attitudes or qualities for success in business. For example, determination, discretion, and ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

What are the limitations on the “there + preposition” construction?

I use words such as thereof, thereupon, and thereafter relatively often, but I occasionally find myself wanting to use this construction with different prepositions. Most times it's therefor, which I ...
2
votes
3answers
253 views

Is Administratium an actual word?

We commonly use this word in office, and the definitions point to its meaning. But is this an actual word? It's not in the Oxford English Dictionary.
4
votes
4answers
4k views

What is the name of the condition when I temporarily cannot speak because of shouting too much?

What is that condition called in English when I can't say anything, "lose my voice", due to shouting a lot? I think it is related to my vocal chords. The usual treatment prescribed is just to stay ...
3
votes
3answers
452 views

Is there a name for the relationship between two unconnected hypothetical arguments?

I was watching the Sound of Music and the song "How do you solve a problem like Maria" was playing and then they say "How do you keep a wave upon the sand" and "How do you catch a moonbeam in your ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Use of “parley” meaning to convert?

I sometimes use the word "parley" as a verb effectively meaning "to convert from one language or system to another". Such as Stargate parleys the Egyptian deities into villainous star-faring ...
3
votes
1answer
3k views

What is “soft skill”?

Please elaborate what does it mean by soft skill in term of English language.
3
votes
1answer
174 views

“crenelated” writing?

What would it mean for writing to be "crenelated"? From this review: Lisa Zeidner of The New York Times Book Review elaborated: As usual, Gibson's prose is ... corpuscular, crenelated. I ...
21
votes
1answer
11k views

Words pertaining to the senses and the corresponding disabilities

I need help on finding words relating to the senses/perception. I mean this in a neuronic/biological or philosophy-of-mind kind of way. A word for... pertaining to the senses (Is it sensory?) ...
2
votes
1answer
318 views

What is a word processor and a type setter? (and a “powerpoint” type program)

What would you call: latex (a type setter) MS Word (a word processor) iWork Pages (a word processor) What about: latex MS Word iWork Pages Powerpoint Excel Is there a term for these ...
13
votes
3answers
38k views

What's the difference between 'subway', 'metro' and 'tube'?

When I watched the "American Album" program, Susan and Henry talked about New York, and she used the word 'subway'. When I listened to BBC's '6 minutes English', I heard 'tube' used in the ...
2
votes
1answer
547 views

Official/legal address

In Russia and the former Soviet Union there is such thing as propiska/registration - an official address of a person where he is entitled to live. It may be a place owned by that person or the place ...
13
votes
4answers
43k views

When would one use “burnt” and when would “burned” be more appropriate?

More out of curiosity than anything, when would one use "burnt" and when would "burned" be appropriate? For example, This coffee tastes burnt. This coffee tastes burned. or They burnt ...
10
votes
4answers
212 views

“The program is functional, fast, and finds a solution…”

This triple appears wrong to me: The demonstrations show that program A is functional, fast, and finds a solution that program B misses. Because functional and fast are adjectives and both ...
14
votes
5answers
3k views

The place where the railroad crosses the road

What do you call those places where a railroad crosses an automobile road?: Of course, I've heard what they are called in English, but I suspect that they are referred to differently depending on ...