This tag is for questions about correctly using a word.

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4
votes
2answers
105 views

Males, Females, Girls and Guys

Is there a predominant pattern of usage of the terms girls and guys based on age of the described individuals? Are the patterns the same in the US and UK? At about what age is it considered ...
1
vote
3answers
40 views

Equivalent phrase/single-word for `prognosis (without intervention)`

Consider a situation when without any effort/intervention into the process consequences are predefined to be bad. How do you call such a bad-prognosis?
2
votes
2answers
64 views

Necessity of “that” as a conjunction

A simple Google search reveals that the word that can be used in many ways: as a pronoun, determiner, adverb and conjunction. I'm wondering about its usage specifically as a conjunction. Take the ...
1
vote
3answers
81 views

Degree Certificate and Diploma

I am hoping to apply to a master's program in the USA. They ask for a "Diploma/Degree Certificate", but I don't really know what that means. When I looked for the definition I found only "Degree", as ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

As a noun, “abandon” is almost always preceded by the word “reckless”. [duplicate]

Feel free to correct me if you don't share the same experience, but in my own experience, usage of the word "abandon" as a noun without being apart of the phrase "reckless abandon" is extremely rare. ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

The usage of … number(s) of [closed]

Here we wish to make sure the usage of ... number(s) of ..., which one below is correct? An even number of people An even number of cards Even numbers of people Even numbers of cards An odd ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

“okay” vs “good” in questions starting with “Is it okay/good” [closed]

Is it better to use "good" instead of "okay" in question starting with "Is it okay/good", or isn't? For example, Is it okay/good to eat tonight? Is it okay/good to break the rules? (I ...
5
votes
8answers
1k views

What words do you use to describe an unmatched couple? [closed]

What words do we use to describe an unmatched couple, for instance, the female is much more attractive than the male, or the other way around? If we found that a girl is out of the league of her ...
0
votes
1answer
48 views

Another 'me' versus 'myself' usage question

I am quitting a job. I wrote a letter of resignation and have come upon the following sentence: "Moreover, I believe [name of restaurant] will be better suited to have an employee that is different ...
-1
votes
2answers
33 views

captilization of words with abbreviation

I always used to capitalize first letter of words that have abbreviation. For example, Methicillin Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus (MRSA). I do this more often when i mention the ...
0
votes
1answer
40 views

Is “pejorative” used correctly in “no pejorative bone in his body”?

He doesn't have a pejorative bone in his body. This is meant to describe a timid, non-confrontational person. Is pejorative being used correctly here, in a figurative sense?
1
vote
2answers
44 views

Usage of the adjective “smooth”

Smooth is a very common term and has a lot of meanings; my question is on smooth meaning: Ingratiatingly polite and agreeable. Is smooth commonly used with that meaning and is it a synonym of ...
0
votes
2answers
38 views

Usage of the term 'non-reproducibility'

Studies on genetic factors of schizophrenia are characterized by high heterogeneity and non-reproducibility. Is the usage of term 'non-reproducibility' appropriate in the above sentence? Is ...
1
vote
1answer
50 views

usage of terms “as well as ” and “as well” [closed]

Can anyone describe the usage of the terms "as well as" and "as well" in sentences? Are they interchangeable?
2
votes
1answer
42 views

Can I use the word “softworks”? [closed]

I see Bethesda Softworks, a well-known video game publisher, uses the word as a part of its name, and I'm pretty sure it's made up, but I like it. I would like to use it in the same sense as they do, ...
10
votes
6answers
2k views

Perception of the phrase “kindly let us know…”

Recently, I talked to a native speaker about the proper usage of the word “kindly”. I frequently use phrases like “kindly let us know whether you agree with the suggested approach” in business ...
19
votes
5answers
2k views

Is ‘hero’ applicable to females?

There was the following sentence in today’s (June 4) New York Times written by its Op-Ed columnist, Nickolas Kristof under the headline, “There’s a Kind of Hush.” “Aung San Suu Kyi should be one ...
0
votes
0answers
42 views

looking for appositive that-which phrases

I asked sentences having an appositive that-which phrase like the following sentence in English Language Learners. The insect propagates best near "disturbed land," that which is being cultivated ...
2
votes
2answers
57 views

Usage of “As …” in the beginning of a sentence, Any alternatives?

I use the following type of sentences a lot, because I do not know any alternatives: E.g. As my child grows over time, I become older. By which I mean that I my child is growing, and I am ...
0
votes
1answer
336 views

What's the difference between “someone” and “somebody”? [duplicate]

What is the difference between "someone is waiting for me" and "somebody is waiting for me?" Please make it clear for me.
0
votes
2answers
78 views

What does “rooster tail”(ing) mean?

"The Winnebago galumphs across the landscape, scattering cows. It catches a wheel and sprays a rooster tail of red dirt." "catches a wheel"? And "rooster tail"? If "Catches a wheel" means the ...
7
votes
5answers
142 views

What is the plain alternative to “fossilized language”?

I was drawn to the word, “fossilized language” appearing in the following sentence of the New York Times’ (June 13) article titled, “Southern politicians try to hold back the tides.” “It’s always ...
1
vote
0answers
40 views

Upside word usage [closed]

Suppose I wrote a word and underlined it but that line is not immediately below that word,It has left little space between word and that line. So I want to say, "The line should not be at lower ...
4
votes
4answers
55 views

Is “behind” the correct use

When I spell my name, I usually say it's "Marie" with "ke" behind it. (My name is Marieke, I'm from Holland). Is this correct? I just think of it as the first letter of a word is in front so the ...
0
votes
3answers
56 views

Usage of “along with”

Python, along with its related packages numpy scipy is / are used to make the statistical analysis. What should it be, is or are ? I was pretty confident it would be is. But someone more ...
0
votes
0answers
19 views

Usage of Process's and process' in technical writing [duplicate]

What is the difference between Process's and Process' . Please mention the usage as well.
3
votes
4answers
290 views

Correct use of “x times lower”

In scientific writing numbers are often compared and if something is twice the size of something else, let's say A is 13 to 17 times the size of B this can be written as A is 13-17 times ...
3
votes
3answers
180 views

Explain something: anything [closed]

Any seems synonymous with some in some examples, such as "Is anyone home?". And any seems synonymous with every in some examples below, and definitely not in others. On the internet I encountered a ...
0
votes
1answer
42 views

“Communiqué”? English?

Is the word "Communiqué" an English word? It originated from French but does it have mainstream English usage? I have used it in my scholarship essay for an English writing course - Well I intend to ...
1
vote
2answers
73 views

What does “honking” mean in this context?

Joel Spolsky: We started with Stack Overflow, a Q&A site for programmers about programming questions. StackExchange is an attempt to bring that same technology to other fields besides ...
2
votes
1answer
95 views

conceived of as vs. conceived as

When I want to write that some something has been "taken to mean" or "understood" or "interpreted as" XYZ, I sometimes use the phrase "to conceive of something as XYZ, where XYZ usually is a longer ...
4
votes
5answers
314 views

Etymology of “Feeding the dragon”

I have heard the phrase "feeding the dragon" used to describe pouring time, resources, and energy into a situation that is self-perpetuating, caught in a positive feedback loop with negative ...
0
votes
4answers
106 views

Can we use “eat / bite” metaphorically in place of “accuse / slam”?

Time magazine (May 27) reported that Mrs. Obama accused House Republicans of their weakening school nutritional standards at White House meeting with school leaders and experts. I was drawn to the ...
0
votes
4answers
352 views

Polite swearing words? [closed]

I hate to swear, i.e to say "fuck you" or whatsoever of those words. However sometimes I get angry and I wish there are words that could be a polite replacement for those swearing. I wish there's a ...
1
vote
1answer
55 views

A person who can read lines of “hand”? [closed]

A person who can read lines of "hand" ? Is there a word of such a person. As far as I am concerned there is that I am missing?
2
votes
2answers
102 views

What is opposite of “Love”? [closed]

In a argument with my friend who lost her love, I came across her experience of life and what she said is : Opposite of love is NOT Hate. why, Because in love people have feeling and think about ...
0
votes
0answers
24 views

Usage of 'USED TO' : part 2.different than existing question [duplicate]

Another question about used to does exist here. But this question is slightly different. It concerns with two types. Which is more appropriate? First, doing or do? Second, were or did? Which of ...
2
votes
5answers
60 views

Term used for a quantum or package of medication

Whats the best term to describe how medication is counted? for instance, "these pills come in 12 per pack 24 per pack or 100 per pack". I'm trying name a column for a database, Im trying to have a ...
4
votes
1answer
70 views

Can the term “G-Man” be used to describe a Government official who is not an FBI agent?

Earlier today I was doing Merl Reagle's crossword and one of the clues was "Fraud fighting Fed." The answer turned out to be "T-Man," being short for "Treasury Man." So, this got me thinking... ...
1
vote
1answer
35 views

How can I properly reword: “This particular ”X“ is not unique in this regard.”

Editing an essay, I recently found myself stuck trying to rewrite the sentence: "This particular journal publication is not unique in this regard." It "sounds wrong" to use the word "this" twice in ...
5
votes
2answers
348 views

Can “mode” be used as “mean” and “median” are?

It'd be normal to hear sentences like these: The mean ticket price for the concert was $56.50. The median ticket price for the concert was $61. But what about: The mode ticket price for ...
4
votes
1answer
55 views

Kvetch - Meaning

I was just reading a book (The Help) and came across a usage of "kvetch" that didn't quite fit with how I thought it was used. A publisher is talking about a person's writing style and comments that ...
4
votes
3answers
510 views

“the above” is correct, “the below” is not?

I have often read "None of the above" at the end of multiple-choice questions (and I guess this is shorthand for "None of the above items"). Recently, in answering a help center email with my answer ...
0
votes
1answer
67 views

Is there a gender-neutral pronoun? [duplicate]

I've noticed a tendency in recent technical literature to use feminine pronouns, instead of the more traditional masculine. For example one might write she [the user] enters her password. It's not ...
0
votes
2answers
60 views

Explaining the structure of a thesis

The following sentence, and in particular the bold part, has no entry in google. Does it sound natural to native speakers? The work in this thesis is organised around three research themes of ...
0
votes
1answer
565 views

Is “humbleness” a word? [closed]

I am curious if "humbleness" is a word that can be used in place of the word "humility." Example usage: A certain amount of humbleness is necessary to fit in with the office environment.
1
vote
4answers
568 views

Alternative ways of saying “hope life is treating you well”

In a letter to an acquaintance, what's the best way to express literally hope that everything is good at their end? "I trust you are well" sounds a bit too formal?
6
votes
2answers
72 views

What is a “small minority”?

I can see this being argued either way. 1% is a small minority because 1% is a small number. 49% is a small minority because, albeit a minority, it is only barely.
1
vote
4answers
103 views

Sprung or unsprung trap?

When a trap is set up to be active, is it "sprung" or "unsprung"? I'm confused by the ambiguity of the verb "spring". That is, a trap that is set up and active could be "sprung" in the sense that a ...
2
votes
3answers
97 views

Orc vs Ork: What's the difference?

I'm hoping for clarification on some fantasy-based terminology. I've read a number of websites that refer both to "orcs" and"orks", occasionally in the same sentence! Previously, I had only ever seen ...