This tag is for questions about correctly using a word.

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-2
votes
3answers
1k views

Usage of “even if” [closed]

Could you please suggest me the usage of "even if" in the English sentence? For example, is the following statement correct grammatically? Even if this approach scale for a large number of ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

Is “dispreferred” a mainstream word in English?

I just recently came across the word dispreferred in a linguistic document. I have never heard the word used before, rather I generally hear something like "preferred something else" in everyday ...
1
vote
3answers
290 views

Is it correct to use “but” as a positive connecting word?

I'm wondering if it is correct to use but as a positive connecting word. Below is a small example: ... is the perfect opportunity to improve my knowledge but also gain new experience with ... Is ...
-1
votes
5answers
115 views

Alternative for “seats” in expressions such as “40% of the total seats are reserved for students of backward cast”

All of the leading educational institutes have 60% of their seats reserved for students of backward castes. It is a fairly common expression and a sad fact in India. What would be an alternative to ...
0
votes
2answers
98 views

“He knows his counterparts in each branch”

Can I use the word counterpart this way: He knows his counterparts in each branch. The context is that he works as the marketing manager in one of the company branches. And the counterparts ...
-1
votes
3answers
713 views

Are there any alternative words that can be used to refer to a particular thing?

I usually write new words I learned or found on a website to help me remember them better. For example, I learned the word "holster" and I wrote "A holster is a thing used to cover a gun." This is ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Usage of the word “demise”

Is it appropriate to use demise in the following sentence: it is with deep sympathy that we announce the sad demise of ... It sounds archaic and I was not sure whether it was used correctly. How ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

If someone thinks like you, can he or she be your 'alter ego'?

Wikipedia explains alter ego thus: An alter ego (Latin, "the other I") is a second self, which is believed to be distinct from a person's normal or original personality. A person who has an ...
1
vote
1answer
404 views

Can “lend” and “borrow” refer to money?

I'm not sure how to use the following words correctly in finance. Until now, I've used lend and borrow to represent acts that are relative to loans. Today, one of my friends told me that lend or ...
5
votes
3answers
197 views

Is the “Beltway Stop" a popular metaphor meaning a concurrence of events or things?

I'm interested in the phrase, “Beltway Stop in the Oscar Race” which is the title of an article appearing in December 21 New York Times. It comments on the concurrence of movies focused on the ...
4
votes
2answers
697 views

Using the word 'kind' for a category

I found on englishplus (accessed on 23 Dec 2012) that the phrase 'kind of animal' refers to a category of animal. If you are using an expression like kind of, sort of, type of, or variety of, ...
2
votes
3answers
182 views

Is the phrase “produces meaning” valid?

Please consider these sentences: The word X produces meaning Y The word X produces meaning Y in sentence Z Is "produces meaning" valid in that sentence? If so, which seems to be more valid ...
3
votes
4answers
428 views

Can we use “off-chance” in a scientific paper?

In an article that I'm writing, I would like to say that some special ideas are at a disadvantage concerning their consistency in producing results. In other words, we use those approaches in the hope ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

What is a good word for the identifying characteristics of something?

For example, let us say we were conducting a study of facial features and we were comparing hair color, nose type and eye shape. Those three characteristics would identify something or someone. What ...
2
votes
2answers
282 views

Is is right using expressions like “before her coming here” in place of “before she came here”

I often use expression like these I came to this place before him getting here (rather than using before he got here). We were having a lot of fun before before her getting here (instead ...
-1
votes
2answers
3k views

Right usage of word “Galvanize”?

Please consider below meaning of dictionary Galvanize: shock or excite (someone), typically into taking action What is the right usage of this word? Please consider below sentences A sudden ...
5
votes
3answers
491 views

In natural disasters: died or killed?

What is appropriate to use in cases of death in natural disasters: killed, or died? Lets say, I wanted to say, "Earth destroyed this morning, everyone [died|got killed] in a parallel universe." I am ...
2
votes
1answer
6k views

pride vs. proudness [closed]

Until yesterday I did not even know that the noun proudness exists. I always thought pride was the only possible noun for the adjective proud. Is there actually a difference between the two nouns ...
26
votes
4answers
882 views

Can “née” be used for entities other than people?

The qualification née is typically used to signify the name a woman previously had, most likely before her marriage. However, today I've seen it in a Spiegel article applied to a company name: ...
1
vote
1answer
240 views

Incorrect usage of “prevaricate”? [closed]

Today, while reading an online article, I came across the following comment: Young people regret their mistakes. Old people regret not deciding. In the contest of prevaricating between which ...
0
votes
2answers
92 views

Usage of the word 'coordinate'

Have a look at the context: Contents | |--- 1. Fundamentals | | | |--- 1. Browsers | | | |--- 2. Servers | | | |--- 3. ...
1
vote
2answers
395 views

Usage of “sitting still”, “standing still” etc

I'm occasionaly came across the phrases: "sitting still"; "standing still"; "lying still"; etc. For most cases the usage is clear (humans for example). But sometimes it is not clear what verb to ...
1
vote
1answer
141 views

Is it appropriate in a sort of business related mail using “'em”, contracted form of “them”? [closed]

I was writing an email today, and I was supposed to write a phrase like this "did it for all of 'em", even though I eventually changed it to them as them as that looked a little informal to me, I am ...
5
votes
5answers
1k views

When should “such forth” be used?

I was just having a conversation with a friend and I said "see how far from the access point each device is, so that I can do some relocation and such forth". She said that using such forth at that ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

Is it common to use “grocery” as a verb?

My favorite NY-Times columnist Maureen Dowd who consistently supplies me the material for posting questions in EL&U site begins today’s (December 8) article titled “A Lost Civilization” with the ...
0
votes
1answer
559 views

What do you think if you see an image with its description “last night at New York”?

I saw that a friend of mine who moved to New York City 3 months ago posted a picture on Facebook. She described it as "last night at New York." The first time I read it, I thought she meant that it ...
-3
votes
1answer
82 views

Looking for a word that states an instance is immutable [closed]

If I have something that I don't want to change, is it proper to attach "candidate" to the end of it? So if someone applies for a job with an application, I would consider them to be a candidate, but ...
1
vote
1answer
12k views

Can the word “personnel” ever be singular? [closed]

Can personnel be used in reference to a single person? See the example below: Testing must take place by a qualified personnel other than the requestor.
5
votes
3answers
205 views

Usage of the word “genocide”

I am wondering whether the word genocide can also be used for the killing of a group of people based on their religion, for example: 'the Sikh genocide'. I have never seen it used that way, I have ...
1
vote
2answers
308 views

What is “there” in expression “Are you out there?” [closed]

What does there signify in expressions like "Dude are you out there?" or "I am there for you"? It is not referring to any previously mentioned location, right?
5
votes
1answer
994 views

How do words become derogatory or politically incorrect?

I know how words can become racist but I'm not sure how a word becomes derogatory or politically incorrect. If seems as though once one does, a new term is created to replace it that is not derogatory ...
0
votes
1answer
143 views

How one refers to a third person without specifying the sex or number? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is there a correct gender-neutral, singular pronoun (“his” versus “her” versus “their”)? Is there a generalized way to do this. Who is it used in modern media ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

What is the origin and scope of usage of the phrase “So long…” used to bid goodbye? [closed]

We often colloquially use the phrase so long to say goodbye. For eg. So long, we'll see you next week or He said so long and left. What is the origin of this phase? Rather, how did it come into ...
-1
votes
2answers
218 views

Is it common to say “something was coming from front?” [closed]

I usually say it when I am supposed to describe something coming from front on roads. But somehow it does not feel natural even though it syntactically it is correct. so what is the natural expression ...
-2
votes
2answers
786 views

Which meaning is more common for expressions like “over the bridge”? [closed]

While asking for the location of my airport’s window in the United States, I was told that it was over the bridge. My first impression was that it must be above the bridge, but since there was ...
7
votes
9answers
4k views

Is saying 'who cares' rude or maybe even disrespectful?

Two people are talking about what tasks should be finished on time, and what tasks should be put off until later. The conversation was like below: A: I don't think those tasks are important. We ...
4
votes
2answers
3k views

What are “up” and “down” in “up there” and “down there”?

"Up there" and "down there" are two of the most frequent expressions that I, myself, use often. I really don't know whether they are just expressions used to refer to a place to go ("I went down ...
10
votes
10answers
2k views

What is it called when you “refill” a debit card?

How it is called (in the US) when you go to the bank or an ATM to add cash to your VISA/MasterCard debit card? That is, when you add cash to the bank account which is tied to that card. Is it ...
0
votes
0answers
60 views

What to say when someone says, “What's up?”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What is an appropriate response to “what’s up” greeting? Response to “What's up?” in various conversations I recently came back from US, Over there I noticed people ...
1
vote
3answers
774 views

Is “my place” correct and common in British English?

I was recently told that "my place", such as in "let's go to my place" is not commonly used in British English? Is that the case and what would you say instead?
3
votes
4answers
3k views

“Planning for next year” vs. “planning for the next year”

I would like to start planning for next year. In the above sentence, there is no definite article before the words next year. Should it be present, as in the following sentence which sounds far ...
2
votes
1answer
4k views

“Times of their choosing” or “times of their choice”

Should we use choosing or choice in the sentence below? You may find that engaging the required range of participants requires traveling to participants' home or workplace, at times of their ...
1
vote
2answers
169 views

What's the reason behind using “innings” more frequently than “inning”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Where did the singular “innings” come from? Is there any difference between inning and innings? I think both can be used interchangeably. But I haven't seen inning ...
1
vote
4answers
6k views

Is it appropriate to use “sport”, “champ”, or “kiddo” to call a child (e.g. your son)?

I'm Spanish, just in case some of you think this question is kind of silly. I watch TV series in English very frequently to practise my listening skills. The words I've heard in relation to children ...
12
votes
5answers
518 views

The use of “real” in the following cases [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Real quick question If you listen real close... Can you swing by real quick... Sentences like the above two are what I often hear in daily life. If I didn't ...
6
votes
4answers
1k views

Can “zealot” have a positive connotation?

A zealot is a person who is fanatical and uncompromising in pursuit of their religious, political, or other ideals. I have never seen this word used with positive connotation, but could it (without ...
6
votes
2answers
6k views

Reason vs. purpose

Just now I wanted to explain why I was doing something, then I wrote "the purpose of doing something is blablabla". Immediately I wondered why I didn't write "the reason of doing something is ...
4
votes
1answer
545 views

How do I use the word “obtain” together with mathematical formulas?

Until now, I thought that one can use the word "obtain" together with "that", as in By ... we obtain that a²+b²=c². (Many mathematicians who like me are not native speakers are doing this!) Now ...
1
vote
0answers
628 views

What is a “group of managers” called? [closed]

What is the term used for a "group of managers"? For example He has a fleet of managers or He has a legion of managers Though the sentences above might not be correct. I want to know that ...
0
votes
1answer
165 views

the use of both to show emphasis and experimentalist and theoretician communities [closed]

In your opinion is both superfluous in the following sentence? Efforts from both experimentalist and theoretician communities, started to increase over the last decades in order to turn the ...