3
votes
4answers
4k views

How to affectionately call someone who is always moaning/whinging?

How can one affectionately call someone who is always moaning/whinging? I am looking for a qualifier with minimal negative connotation.
26
votes
5answers
2k views

Are 'accuracy' and 'precision' interchangeable nouns?

The dictionary for accuracy says: The quality or state of being correct or precise. The ability to perform a task with precision. And for precision: The quality, condition, or ...
0
votes
3answers
13k views

“Affordable price” vs. “affordable prices” [closed]

Is it affordable price or affordable prices?
1
vote
1answer
434 views

Does the word “system” have any special meaning in literature?

I'm writing an English rendition of a Farsi passage. There's a word I'm hunting for which means methods of literary styles of writing. I came across with the word "system" in a "Farsi to English ...
2
votes
4answers
534 views

Should I put a definite article before a scientific term?

Which is (more) correct? (I am with the) Laboratory of Biochemistry of Hydrobionts. (I am with the) Laboratory of the Biochemistry of Hydrobionts. Is there any rule for using or not ...
1
vote
4answers
392 views

what does it mean to be cheerleading a project when you are the boss?

I've heard the expression "the boss is cheerleading a project" where the boss is not really managing the project, but is just encouraging their people for the project to happen. Where does this come ...
2
votes
1answer
25k views

“In office” or “at office”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “At” or “in” the office? I am a little confused about which preposition should be used here as in the title. I prefer to use in office. But how about the other one? Are ...
3
votes
2answers
535 views

Is it possible to regard -id as a suffix forming adjectives in Modern English?

The morphemic status of -id can be proved by its regular occurrence in Modern English adjectives (mostly of Roman origin): horrid, stupid, rapid, acid, sordid, valid, solid, etc.
0
votes
3answers
452 views

what does it mean when some one says “ I was calculating your cake penalty”?

Someone sent me an email with the following phrase. I was wondering if this is a known phrase. I was just calculating your cake penalty.
1
vote
3answers
2k views

What does “noon hour” mean?

I came across the following sentence in a book. I wonder how should I interpret "noon hour": "And how shall you rise beyond your days and nights unless you break the chains which you at the ...
2
votes
1answer
528 views

this is the first year + clause

In a sentence such as This is the first year I’ve lived in a house with a yard. Is it all right to have a clause other than present perfect? That is, can you say, for instance, sentences like ...
1
vote
1answer
2k views

What is the literary term used to describe long vowel sounds?

What is the literary term used to describe long vowel sounds? For example in Ted Hughes's "Your Paris" in his Birthday Letters anthology "Eerie Familiar Feeling", what term would be used to describe ...
-1
votes
1answer
788 views

Does this sentence “He's too thin to carry it” make any sense to you? [closed]

Does this sentence "He's too thin to carry it" make any sense to you? This is really bothering me for quite a long time!
2
votes
3answers
6k views

Meaning of “hail from”

Is it same as come from, but use in formal relationship ? This is the context. I hail from commercial division of midas bank.
13
votes
5answers
8k views

Is using “he” for a gender-neutral third-person correct?

I know there are different opinions on this issue. My question: Is using "he" for a general, gender-neutral third person still in common use for formal writing? By common use I mean, can I expect my ...
2
votes
1answer
26k views

Is it “on Facebook“ or “in Facebook“?

For preposition of places, should Facebook, an internet space, be used as in or on? E.g. Find us in Facebook.
1
vote
2answers
9k views

How to ask questions with “how many” in them?

I would like some guidance on how to ask questions with "how many" in them. For example, does one say From how many minutes is the train late? or simply How many minutes is the train late? ...
20
votes
5answers
134k views

When do we need to put a comma after “so”?

I noticed that most of the times when the conjunction "so" is used at the beginning of a sentence, it is followed by a comma: So, this gets published but the fact that it is inaccurate gets ...
0
votes
4answers
829 views

“You ain't able to be sure about anything.”

Does this sentence make any sense to you as a native speaker? The one who said this actually meant to say, "People like you can never be sure about anything" (implying the opposite side is very ...
2
votes
1answer
737 views

Is saying “he's too thin to carry it (some very heavy stuff)” a euphemism?

Thin has a meaning of "not well fleshed," but does it also carry a meaning of "being weak or feeble"? In the Merriam-Webster, it does carry a meaning of "lacking substance of strength," but it uses ...
4
votes
2answers
21k views

Is it correct to ask “what's your father?” when you actually mean to ask about his job?

What's your father? Some said this question even exist in the visa-applying of USA, but I just couldn't understand it. Is it asking about somebody's father's job, his personality, or just what he ...
5
votes
4answers
6k views

Can you say “raise an animal”?

It was said as a way to comfort someone who had just broken up with her boyfriend, and someone said something like "go raise a dog". I know it's okay to say raise an animal; I just feel so weird ...
4
votes
1answer
307 views

Did English ever have an informal version of “we”

Related question: Did English ever have a formal version of "you"? In Portuguese (and probably other languages as well), similar to what happens with the second-person, there are two words ...
3
votes
2answers
21k views

“Who wrote … ?” or “Who did write … ?” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why is there no form of “do” in questions of the type “who knows?” I want to know which is the correct way to ask this question: Who wrote ...
2
votes
4answers
1k views

How to understand “pop” in this sentence?

So next time you pop a blueberry, don’t forget to thank Fred. How to understand "pop" in this sentence? Does it mean "eat" or "have"? I look up into the dictionary, I cannot even find a ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

“It’s the height of the season”?

The question is from the transcript of a podcast: Mmmm, blueberries. It’s the height of the season, and I’ve been tossing a handful onto cereal, into pancakes or just straight into my mouth. I ...
4
votes
1answer
515 views

Which transitive verbs can form notional passives?

Could someone please tell me which transitive verbs can form notional passives? I only know that they are usually formed with intransitive active verbs.
4
votes
3answers
8k views

“Pretension” vs. “pretentiousness”

Is there a difference between pretension and pretentiousness? Merriam-Webster gives the latter as one possible definition of the former. Is one more recent than the other? Is there any reason to use ...
2
votes
2answers
887 views

A word for “to be completely invisible except to those who have been chosen”

I have searched everywhere, but I cannot find a word or two words that define the following: To be completely invisible except to those who have been chosen. Basically, I am in search of a word ...
21
votes
5answers
20k views

Apostrophe-“s” vs “of ”

I gave a quick answer to part of this question which had not been covered by previous answers, trying to clarify the reason you would say time of decoding but not decoding’s time. I said it was ’s ...
2
votes
1answer
340 views

“He loves baseball like his father does” OR “He loves baseball like his father”?

When I was learning English (non-native speaker here), I was taught that there is concept called "parallelism" in English grammar, which in my own understanding means that if I want to combine two or ...
4
votes
6answers
473 views

Can a negative be used to express a positive, such as “mangoes are sweet and so aren't papayas.”

Is it incorrect to use the positive/negative construction when the intent is positive/positive? In other words can these two statements be viewed as equivalent: Mangoes are sweet and so aren't ...
4
votes
3answers
10k views

“Take long/longer/less long”

Which of these are correct English and which ones aren’t? This took long. If we do X, it will take longer. If we do Y, it will take less long.
1
vote
3answers
18k views

Meaning of a “cheap person”

What is the meaning of this, i have tried to search on dictionary but couldn't find it. Context as in image attached. http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=cheap+person Savior is ...
5
votes
2answers
510 views

Is there a reference book that lists words by usage or theme?

Similar to how a Thesaurus lists synonyms, is there a book that groups words (or phrases) together by conceptual usage? For example, this question is looking for words that describe a person's ...
4
votes
2answers
10k views

The correct usage of “too” and “also”

I always have problems in deciding whether to use "too" or "also". For example, if the previous sentence is: Peter ate the cake. Which of the following should I say?: He ate the pie too. He ...
5
votes
2answers
464 views

“If the bowl had been stronger, my song had been longer.”

In the original version of the nursery rhyme, The Wise Men of Gotham, the word 'had' is used in the main clause of a sentence where it seems modern English would commonly use 'would have'. The full ...
2
votes
1answer
471 views

Boundaries for a person's name - danah boyd

How could the name danah boyd come to pass? Why isn't it Danah Boyd? Would it be inappropriate or incorrect to refer to this person as Danah Boyd?
1
vote
1answer
1k views

explanation for: to “playback” media content

How come in English one talks about being able to "playback" media content, like music or movies, instead of just "play"? Why is -back added to the word? What is the origin of the expression?
5
votes
1answer
6k views

Does a comma have to be used before 'because'?

I have a big house because my parents are rich. I have a big house, because my parents are rich. Are there are some exceptions as well?
2
votes
2answers
13k views

“At any moment” vs. “in any moment”

I am not sure what the differences between these two phrases are. Can you explain when I should use one or the other? English is not my native language so maybe it is a silly question.
1
vote
5answers
14k views

What does “CP” stand for? (job name) [closed]

I saw a person had described his position as "CP at example.com" on Linkedin. Not someone who I know personally, but I had been in contact when he asked me to publish my Android application on this ...
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Is it more correct to say “repeat”, or “resay”?

Telling a person to repeat something they have said sounds better to me, but is it more correct to ask them to resay what they said? If I say something then resay it, then I have said it again. I ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Looking forward to follow vs. following [duplicate]

I was reading this today: We look forward to following your progress. Am I correct in thinking that it is missing a be or that -ing should be removed? So We look forward to be following your ...
11
votes
6answers
8k views

“It is me” vs. “It is I”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Which is correct to say: “It's me” or “It's I”? Tonight I watched a movie (The Gospel of John) in which Jesus said (as quoted from the ...
2
votes
2answers
576 views

Is “gets” the correct tense to describe a continuous process in “John gets mentored on a daily basis”?

John gets a mentor to guide him throughout his life. — OR — He gets mentored on a daily basis. I believe this is just as acceptable as the simple past: John got a mentor to guide him ...
5
votes
3answers
5k views

Should it be an “unlike” or “dislike” button on Facebook?

I see an increasing demand for an unlike button on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Unlike-Button/72641866357 Facebook Adds An Unlike Button For Pages May 7, 2010 Facebook "Unlike" ...
2
votes
2answers
291 views

Is it safe to use the British standard for numbering in a novel with a worldwide audience? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Billion and other large numbers Where I am from (Barbados) I grew up knowing a Billion to = 1000 000 000 000, not 1000 000 000, and it was some years before I learned to ...
10
votes
4answers
6k views

The mysterious, unenunciated “w” in the “-wich” of English place names

Doing some reading lately, I've been pondering the strange pronunciations of English place names — namely, that of the 'w' in the "–wich" suffix, which, as I understand it, is not ...
2
votes
2answers
917 views

Meaning of “set such store” (not a shop)

I can't understand this sentence: No other professor in Great Britain set such store by being called Professor. In this case store is not a shop or a place to store something. I guess that the ...

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