This tag is for questions about correctly using a word.

learn more… | top users | synonyms

14
votes
2answers
666 views

How (and when) was it that the verb 'go' began to mean 'say' in common usage?

i.e. "So then she goes, 'Hey!' and I go, 'What?' because I was on my way out..." I was musing about this the other day, so I decided to try to find out. Unfortunately, my skills lie in different ...
6
votes
2answers
856 views

Are there “X -scolds” formula words that go current other than “deficit scolds”?

I was interested to find the word, “deficit scolds” in Paul Krugman’s article titled “Hawks and Hypocrites” in New York Times (November 11). It appears in the following sentence: Back in 2010, ...
1
vote
3answers
5k views

Is there any word for 'do not' or 'do not have'?

I was trying to test my algorithm to create sentences that express the lack of something. I found saying for instance: I lack 5 apples weird as compared to I do not have 5 apples While ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Can “You are an officer and a gentleman” be used to praise a good deed done by a person completely unrelated to armed forces?

Can "You are an officer and a gentleman" be used to praise a good deed done by a person completely unrelated to armed forces? I would like to praise a friend of mine for an act of kindness. Is it ...
2
votes
1answer
278 views

Is this usage of “luxury of knowing” correct?

I would like to use "luxury of knowing" phrase. I searched for its meaning in internet. It seems that it is used in a song Lori McKenna – The Luxury of Knowing and a movie A Few Good Men Lori McKenna ...
0
votes
3answers
22k views

“My hand is paining” or “my hand is hurting” [closed]

After a series of pull-ups, Mr P tells me my hands are paining my hands are hurting What is the rationale behind using paining and hurting? What is the difference? Is one of them more appropriate ...
1
vote
5answers
1k views

“Expect to” vs. “Expect will”

Which of the following is correct? How many sales do you expect to make more than $470? vs. How many sales do you expect will make more than $470? If both are correct, which is ...
1
vote
1answer
171 views

Can a gunfight happen when only one person has a gun?

Dictionaries (M-W) commonly define a gunfight as an exchange of gunfire. However, the OED defines a gunfight as "a shooting affray". {paywall link} Several stories & film describe or depict a ...
0
votes
3answers
479 views

What is an easier word than “serendipity” with the same connotations [closed]

A word that a majority of high schoolers would know. Unless, of course, there is significant evidence that most high-schoolers know the word “serendipity”. It shows up somewhere between 35,000 and 36,...
-1
votes
2answers
88 views

Correct? “We make no prescriptions …”

Can I use "We make no prescriptions about ..."? This dictionary doesn't give any definition of the word "prescription" apart from Medical or Legal jargon.
3
votes
1answer
70 views

Are legs a choice? [closed]

Legs are a choice in that we could choose not to have them by cutting them off. Is it correct here to use the word choice meaning "an option"? Is it correct to say that legs are a choice I could ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

'Sorry, have you got the time, please?'

In this programme from BBC sorry is used in addition to excuse me to get one's attention: Sorry, have you got the time (please)? So I am wondering: 1) Is sorry common for a native speaker to ...
1
vote
4answers
6k views

What is the difference between “stiff” and “rigid”?

Could an object be stiff but not rigid or vice versa? When is each one used? And what is the opposite of each of them?
2
votes
2answers
808 views

Plastic or rubber stretched too much is (hardly/strongly) stretched?

If you want to describe a stretched plastic cable, would you say that it was hardly stretched or strongly stretched?
4
votes
6answers
723 views

Honorary gifts?

Is it correct to use the phrase honorary gifts to describe gifts that are given to honor someone? The normal usage of honorary is “given as an honor without the normal duties” (as in an honorary ...
2
votes
1answer
146 views

Usage of begrudge

While looking up this word, I found a weird usage, for example: She begrudged Martin his affluence She begrudged her friend the award. Applying common sense, it's clear that she envied her ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

What is the role of “virtually” in this sentence?

It is virtually impossible to escape this place! I don't really understand what is virtually doing there. First, I can hardly tell what it means to be virtual, and second, I still don't see any ...
20
votes
4answers
2k views

Can I use “US-American” to disambiguate “American”? If not, what can I use?

Based on this question, I wonder: as an alternative to USAian (which is very nonstandard) is it OK to use US-American to more clearly indicate "inhabitant of the USA"? According to Google Ngram, this ...
7
votes
4answers
1k views

Is this noun used as an adjective?

I read this recently in The Economist: At the end of the summit, the French and European officials had claimed a points victory over the Germans by getting them to agree more firmly to a ...
-2
votes
1answer
340 views

At what usage level does a grammatical error become acceptable? [closed]

Is there any rule for the usage level of a grammatical error above which it is no longer treated as an error?
4
votes
2answers
548 views

Can “installation” be used to mean software installed in a computer?

Can "installation" be used to mean software installed in a computer? (e.g. portable or stand-alone USB installation) Example sentence: This feature works in my standard installation of the software, ...
3
votes
4answers
12k views

“Parishioner” vs. “congregant”

I've always thought that the words parishioner and congregant meant the same thing and could be used interchangeably within the context of someone who attends a place of worship. Are there any ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

What is the difference between 'framework curriculum' and 'curricular framework'?

I know that curricular is an adjective and curriculum a noun, but are they both used in exactly the same meaning? Or are there some differences concerning what they imply or apply to? Being a non-...
2
votes
2answers
115 views

“Renewal meeting”?

What do you call a meeting which has the goal to renew the delegates/members of an association/organization/board? Renewal meeting/re-election meeting? Or is assembly the word I'm looking for? I just ...
-2
votes
2answers
1k views

Exact definition of “vehemently” [closed]

My work mates and I are arguing about this term since none of us can comprehend its exact definition. Can I use the expression "I have been struggling vehemently to get this email sent since last ...
8
votes
2answers
68k views

“Fall”, “fell”, “felled”

How is the causative form of fall used in English? In the present tense, often enough, A tree falls in the woods, but a logger falls trees as well. but in the past tense, A tree fell in the ...
1
vote
1answer
116 views

Use of sequences like “In modern's US” [closed]

Is it correct to use possessive case for referring to the time in consideration, like in in today's US in modern's US in last century's England etc?
2
votes
3answers
5k views

Usage of the word “denominator” [closed]

I have heard many historians use the word denominator. I know its significance in maths but when and why is the word used in other contexts? And what are its synonyms in those contexts?
1
vote
2answers
126 views

Can I say, “Choose your true, new flavour”? [closed]

What the phrase is expressing is, "Choose what's truly your favourite flavour". Can I say, "Choose your true, new flavour"?
0
votes
2answers
6k views

Adjectives to describe the word “questions” [closed]

I'm writing an ad for yoghurt. It's about telling the truth about the consumer's new favourite flavour. I would like to say, You'll need to answer some _____ questions. They're personal ...
-2
votes
1answer
2k views

A song “by” a singer or “from” a singer or “of” a singer

For example, I want to recommend a song of Adele to my friend. Should I say: The Someone Like You by Adele is fantastic. or The Someone Like You from Adele is fantastic. or The Someone Like You of ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Is this correct usage of the word “resist”?

Is it correct to say "People resist to learn new things."? By saying so, I intend to convey that most of us are not willing to learn new things. Also, which one of the following do you think is better....
10
votes
2answers
2k views

What does “adorkable” mean? How popular is this word? To what kind of objects and occasions can I apply “adorkable”?

I happened to find the paperback book titled Adorkable, by Sarra Manning, on the GoodReads site. There is no entry for adorkable in the Cambridge, Oxford or Merriam-Webster dictionaries, or in ...
2
votes
2answers
304 views

Can I use “adjournment” as antonym of “inauguration”, is there a word for “last time use”?

I would like to know if there is an antonym to inauguration? By inauguration I mean "first time use of". I googled this and thesaurus provided me with "adjournment". Can I use it in the following ...
4
votes
5answers
401 views

Referring to my husband as my son's dad?

I received an invitation for a session at my son's (John) school. The teacher had asked us to confirm our attendance for the event. I wrote the following John's Dad and I will be attending the ...
4
votes
1answer
468 views

Are there any nice synonyms for flavour?

I did some research, and found several synonyms for flavour, including: Taste, savor, tang, seasoning, tastiness, tang, relish, bite, piquancy, pungency, spice, spiciness, and zest However, ...
0
votes
2answers
2k views

Using “henceforth” to refer to future events, but from a “past perspective”

The title isn't great, sorry, I couldn't really come up with anything better :D Here's a bit of context: I'm working on my thesis and am currently writing down the historical evolution of a certain ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

How does one use 'moue' properly in a sentence?

I don't understand how to use moue in a sentence. I know the definition of moue: noun - a little grimace : pout It says it is a noun, but whenever I've seen it used, it always comes off verb-...
5
votes
4answers
4k views

Usage of “been to” in perfect tenses and in other tenses

"been to" (be to) is used in perfect tenses - in sentences like the ones below: I have never been to the opera. I have never been to a baseball game I have never been to a Pentecostal ...
4
votes
4answers
590 views

Question as a Retort? [closed]

I'm a huge Pulp Fiction fan, and the following is one of my favorite scenes, but it also irks me. (source: IMDB) Jules: [Jules shoots the man on the couch] I'm sorry, did I break your ...
1
vote
0answers
27 views

Is the word utilisability correct [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Utilisability” vs. “usability” The word utilisability seems to come from the french utile (useful), utilisabilité (usability). I checked dictionary....
4
votes
1answer
11k views

When to use “we” and “us” — specific SAT example [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: I can run faster than _. (1) him (2) he? I am confused about the usage of the words 'we' and 'us'. I am using a Princeton Review 11 SAT tests 2011 edition, practice test 7, ...
1
vote
2answers
4k views

Is it okay to use the word “behooves” in this way?

Your patience on this matter behooves. Is it okay to use the word "behooves" in this way?
1
vote
2answers
108 views

Is this use of “rollback” mis-leading or out-and-out incorrect?

Suppose you are working with a system that keeps track of edits to a file and can show you a list of the versions. In this system, available actions are shown following each version, e.g.: 3 Edited ...
2
votes
1answer
97 views

Usage relating to a new word [closed]

I have often heard people use the word "paramount" to mean "the most important", which I think is correct usage. However, I have also heard them use "parmountacy" or "paramountcy". e.g. The changes ...
1
vote
1answer
931 views

“I worked in a chemists” vs “I worked in a chemist's” vs “I worked in a chemist”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Store names & possessive What is the correct grammar for saying that I worked for a chemists (that is, a shop that sells medicine)? Is it I worked in a chemist ...
0
votes
3answers
3k views

Since more than six months

As per English grammar, 'Since' is used to show the time period in the past from which the event is happening. So, is the sentence given below correct? "Since more than six months, I have been ...
0
votes
1answer
129 views

“Every” being used instead of “ever”?

Occasionally I'll see a comment on the internet along the lines of I don't think I have every heard of such a thing. Maybe not exactly that, but something equivalent where I would think that ...
-3
votes
2answers
307 views

'Fill an appeal' or 'file an appeal'? [closed]

I encountered both expressions but I am not sure which is correct. Should I use "fill an appeal" or "file an appeal"?
-1
votes
3answers
632 views

Does the word “government” in English mean the courts as well? [closed]

Does the word "government" in English refer to the cabinet and the ministries, or the courts and legislature as well? Is there a difference in usage depending on country? Can you say "the government ...