This tag is for questions about correctly using a word.

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2
votes
2answers
302 views

What is not a “coffin” but used to carry the corpse?

Coffin is box in which corpse is buried and is also used to carry the corpse to the grave. But Muslims carry the the corpse in cage sort of a thing, remove the corpse from it and then bury it. So ...
0
votes
2answers
584 views

What is the correct usage of the word “milquetoast”? [duplicate]

The google definition of this word states that it is a noun however in its own example of usage it is used as an adjective: "a frail, milquetoast character". I haven't found any reliable sources to ...
2
votes
1answer
150 views

Can you use “the legislator” as a general term to refer to the legislative power?

In Dutch, the term "de wetgever" (literally "the legislator", "the lawmaker") is often used to refer to the legislative power, the legislature. This is very often translated in English as "the ...
-1
votes
2answers
1k views

Can a regret be expressed? [closed]

I know that interest, dissatisfaction, condolence, apologies can all collocate with express, but I am not sure if regret can. I am thinking about the following sentence in particular: I would like ...
1
vote
4answers
277 views

Do we ask a waiter if we could have or get?

I have noticed a tendency among the younger generation, when ordering in a pub or restaurant, to say 'Please could I get beer-battered cod and chips', whereas I would and do say 'Please could I have ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

How to write previous surname when married?

What is the correct way of writing previous surname when married? E.g. John Johnson (former Davis) Is it correct to use 'former' or should it be 'previous' or any other word, or just '(Davis)' ...
1
vote
0answers
21 views

Might would? if i could? [duplicate]

How accurate is it to say I might would, if I could? Just reading on the intricacies of can and may and it got me curious.
-1
votes
1answer
226 views

“Tradeoff” usage

How is this word to be used in practice when a subject is also mentioned? I am interested in both the static situation of dealing with/being into/being subject to a tradeoff and the dynamic process ...
0
votes
2answers
473 views

Am I allowed to start a sentence with “Composed”?

Composed of an assortment of ten libraries including inhibitor library, stem cell signaling compound library, and anti-cancer compound library, among others, our bioactive screening libraries ...
0
votes
1answer
161 views

Alternative word for pajama?

When I first saw the word "pajama", I felt it doesn't sound like an English word. http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/pajama says it's from Hindi and Urdu and showed up after 1883. I'm just ...
0
votes
6answers
46k views

Is it grammatically correct to say “Many more happy returns of the day ”?

Many people greet me "Many more happy returns of the day" on my birthday. I thought it is grammatically wrong. Can we use "many" and "more" at a time in a sentence. I thought that it is correct to ...
0
votes
1answer
7k views

Can the relative pronoun “whose” be used for animals, things and countries? [duplicate]

When I was a student of English as a foreign language, more years ago than I care to count, I was taught that the relative pronoun “whose” could only be used for human beings, i.e., when someone ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Word to describe a person who expresses his or her feelings frequently?

I'm looking for a word to describe a person (it can be a term of animal behavior) who expresses his or her feelings frequently, particularly through facial expressions.
2
votes
3answers
634 views

Informal Suffix Usage: -ity/ety

Sometimes in very informal or comic book language one will see phrases such as "bonkity bonk", "flippity-flop", and "knockity knock". Other examples include "crunchity", "swirlity", etc, etc. I have ...
1
vote
2answers
93 views

Is “so” always accompanied by “that”?

In the following question, why can’t answer three be the right answer to fill in the blank? The correct answer is supposed to be choice one. The new skyscraper was ____________ the buildings ...
0
votes
1answer
81 views

what will be the alternate word for convey in the following sentence

I am writing my first official email in English which happens to be my second language. I am unsure about the correctness of the following sentence. Please help. The detected error is false positive, ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

Use of less and lesser vs lesser and lesser

The consumer on an indifference curve is willing to sacrifice less and lesser of good y to get an additional unit of good x. This is an answer I got from a model answer paper while preparing for ...
0
votes
1answer
53 views

“Request of modification” vs “modification request”

As the title says, which one is better? The entire phrase should be something like Any [request of modification/modification request] should be sent to the Manager first Thank you
0
votes
4answers
198 views

Part of speech and usage of “in person”

Is "in person" an adjective or adverb, describing the person or the action being done? The artist will be in person, painting. The artist will be painting in person. Which is correct?
4
votes
5answers
4k views

A word describes things that can be used only once

I am wondering if there is a single word that describes things that can be used only once. My focus is links that usually sent to our emails in order to activate accounts or reset passwords. However, ...
0
votes
3answers
661 views

Does “dissimulation” have a positive, negative, or neutral connotation?

I tried checking a few online dictionaries and can't get a feel for whether the word is generally used in a positive or negative sense. What is the connotation of "dissimulation"?
5
votes
2answers
461 views

Is there a medieval term for a highwayman?

What would you call somebody waylaying in the middle ages? I found the term "highwayman" but that doesn't seem to be any older than 1600 something, so way too new for what I'm looking for. An outlaw ...
-1
votes
1answer
97 views

One Step To Backward - Should I Use “To”? Or Avoid it? [closed]

One Step To Backward - Should I Use "To"? Or Avoid it? One Step To Backward. One Step Backward.
-1
votes
1answer
378 views

Does the word “googling” exist? [closed]

I wonder if the usage of googling is proper in the following sentence. I've done a bit of googling and review walkthroughs about this product X available in the market. I have seen this word ...
2
votes
1answer
384 views

Is “acknowledge(accept status) sb + to + infinitive” valid?

When to acknowledge is used in the sense of to admit the gerund is used. I acknowledge having made a mistake. However, I was wondering what is the appropriate form in the sense of to accept ...
1
vote
1answer
197 views

To 'link' or 'relate' two items?

I'm developing a system in which users can 'link' separate items by using a 'Link' button. In the database, this 'link' is called a 'relation'. I'm inclined to change the text of the button to ...
-1
votes
2answers
231 views

Would “aftermath” ever be used to mean “a reaction of crackdown”?

In the context of revolution, there often comes the word "aftermath," usually meaning the bad consequences of a given revolution on the long run. Can I, however, use it to mean the immediate ...
0
votes
1answer
12k views

implement something for/in/on/with something?

Which preposition is correct to use in the following sentence?: Implementation of this technique for/in/on/with complex objects is complicated (meaning: it is complicated to apply this technique ...
4
votes
3answers
801 views

'-gate' as a suffix to coin words related to scandals and corruption cases

I noticed that for corrruption/scandals the usage of '-gate' suffix is pretty common, as we have recently seen with 'datagate' and before with 'watergate' Can anyone explain what the relation between ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

“Ridiculous amount”: semantic change (amelioration) originated from an antiphrasis? When and how?

"Ridiculous" means laughable, laughable because it is obviously and hilariously not good enough. However in English "a ridiculous amount of money" is "a ridiculously large amount of money". In ...
2
votes
4answers
826 views

Is 'she-woman' an acceptable counterpart of 'he-man'?

If this is, as it is, a real English example, I wanted to know what role his women played in persuading him that he was this incredible he-man. can this I wanted to know what role her men ...
0
votes
2answers
91 views

“Get a scare” or “catch a scare”

A friend of mine insists that you can 'catch a scare', but I've only ever heard 'get a scare'. I googled the expression and mostly got 'catch a scare card' or 'catch a scare crow', with only one ...
1
vote
3answers
5k views

What is the practical difference between ignorant and naive?

Defined in online dictionaries, Ignorant means a lack of education, while Naive means a lack of worldly experience. What is the practical difference between these two? When would I use one and not the ...
1
vote
1answer
370 views

some time vs sometime

Is there a rule for "some time" vs "sometime"? For example: Don’t trust your memory to recall noteworthy situations and events some time (sometime) later.
0
votes
2answers
560 views

How to use word “emanate” [closed]

Are these two sentences correct? But it did not take long before the problem started to emanate? But it did not take long before the problem started to emanate itself?
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Can food be described as “nice”?

Can food be described as 'nice'? This food is nice; This dish is nice. I always thought it could be, but I was speaking to a few friends and they argued (and strongly may I add) otherwise.
5
votes
1answer
277 views

Her love letters--to and from Daddy--were in an old box,

Her love letters--to and from Daddy--were in an old box, tied with ribbons and stiff, rigid-with-age leather thongs:1918 through 1920;... Why (Daddy) in this sentence was written with a capital D?
3
votes
1answer
79 views

Is it “the humanities” or just “humanities”?

I.e., would I use "I hate the humanities" or "I hate humanities"? On that note, would the complementary statement be "I love the sciences" or "I love science"? "I love sciences" just sounds wrong, ...
1
vote
1answer
7k views

“What ever happened to” versus “Whatever happened to”?

I recently asked Whatever happened to (some noun from the past)? But then wondered if I should have preferred to split whatever into two words: What ever happened to (some noun from the ...
-1
votes
2answers
411 views

Can I use “progress” in this way? [closed]

I saw the following sentence: Something unknown has blocked the progress of the biggest diameter tunnel. Then, can I replace these words as follows: Seattle has progressed the biggest ...
7
votes
1answer
758 views

Does “abstruse” carry a positive or negative connotation?

Generally, does the word "abstruse" give positive or negative (or neutral) connotations? For example, "daedal" and "profound" would generally be considered a word with positive connotations, whereas ...
2
votes
2answers
368 views

“I beg leave to assure you” — letter by John Marshall

Richmond May 1st [17]99 (Source of Letter) Dear Sir You may possibly have seen a paragraph in a late publication, stating that several important offices in the gift of the Executive, ...
0
votes
1answer
602 views

Meaning of “my having completed my packing” [closed]

I ran into this in a novel: This expedition began this morning almost an hour later than I had planned, despite my having completed my packing, and loaded the Ford with all necessary items well ...
1
vote
4answers
14k views

What is the difference between “responsibility” and “obligation”?

I must admit that I am confused with these two words. For so long a time, I have been using them interchangeably. I have consulted the dictionary (of course) but I can't seem to pinpoint the glaring ...
1
vote
2answers
89 views

Looking for the inverse of “frictional”

Does frictional means "that which is produced by friction"? Or is there a better word that means "that which generates friction"?
0
votes
2answers
473 views

Was the verb “bring” once used as a noun?

In the book of Amos (KJV, Amos 4:1), we find the verb bring is capitalized in the middle of a sentence. This is in sharp contrast to the same verb written in v. 4 in lower case letters. Finding a ...
2
votes
3answers
138 views

Is “iterate over” being used correctly in “we briefly iterate over related work”?

Is this a correct use of the phrase "iterate over'? In Section Three, we briefly iterate over related work.
2
votes
1answer
965 views

go there vs go up there

What is the difference between 'go up there' and 'go there'? Examples: The boys want to go up there. He didn't want to go there. Are they interchangeable in the above examples?
1
vote
1answer
130 views

The Usage Domains of “why” and “how”

This question was inspired by the this thread over at physics.se. What are the correct uses of "why" and "how" as interrogatives? Do questions that begin with "why" necessarily pursue answers which ...
2
votes
3answers
132 views

Can I say that a scientific field has been “polymorphic” if it has changed dramatically over time?

The field of artificial intelligence, abbreviated as AI, has been quite turbulent and polymorphic since its creation. If not, what other word or construct could I use? By polymorphic I meant ...