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Apr
21
comment Any equivalent to this Persian proverb “The yellow dog is the jackal's brother”?
Cambridge Dictionary of American Idioms agrees with wiktionary, but William Cobbett’s Rural Rides (1823) seems to use it in the sense that your quoted definition does.
Apr
21
comment Any equivalent to this Persian proverb “The yellow dog is the jackal's brother”?
This could be a really apt idiom, but there seems to be disagreement as to whether it really means having, regarded as having or even unjustly characterized as having the same faults. See collinsdictionary.com/dictionary/english/… and en.wiktionary.org/wiki/tar_with_the_same_brush. The wiktionary definition was what I thought it meant, but I don't know for sure.
Feb
19
awarded  Autobiographer
Feb
11
comment “To science the sh*t out of something”
I read the book, and Mark didn't really do much science (hypothesizing, experimenting, etc.) but just lots of engineering (applying existing knowledge, including math, chemistry, etc. to solve problems). Since engineer is already a transitive verb, it would work just fine instead of "science" in this sentence. It just wouldn't have as much punch or flair. Yes, he did testing, but it was testing of his technology designs, not testing of the properties of matter or the laws of chemistry.
Feb
4
comment Is there a word “dramaticness”?
I would agree that dramatism doesn't fit the meaning in the OP's phrase very well. The drama of the day makes more sense. I think dramatism applies more to a person who is behaving dramatically. But I couldn't prove it.
Oct
12
awarded  Civic Duty
Sep
4
comment If we have a “second” of time, what's “first”?
@AndyT: I get it... you're focusing on the "what's first / but not a first" part of the question. I had totally missed that. My bad.
Sep
4
comment If we have a “second” of time, what's “first”?
@AndyT: True, but that was not part of the OP's question.
Aug
18
comment Is there a name for an argument that is also a counter-argument?
This dialogue refers to a contradictory premise or argument, which doesn't support any position. How is that the same as an argument that could be used to support two opposing positions?
Jul
17
comment Is “certainly possible” an oxymoron?
The 2nd paragraph of this answer links to a definition of oxymoron ("in which apparently contradictory terms appear in conjunction") but then argues on the basis of a criterion that is not present in that definition: that the terms not refer to "different, non-exclusive, non-dependent things." The linked dictionary defines "in conjunction" simply as "together." There is no requirement that the apparently contradictory terms refer to the same thing, or to dependent things. Therefore by the linked definition, "certainly possible" is an oxymoron.
Jul
17
comment Is “certainly possible” an oxymoron?
Ben, I'm with you on this one. Oxymoron (in the more traditional meaning) is a figure of speech, intended to produce an effect. So a phrase that can be (mis)understood as incongruous qualifies as oxymoron. Of course the more noticeable the incongruity, the less "contrived" the oxymoron is.
Jun
24
comment “Thirsty, we drank.”
I don't think this is the same construction. Your Latin example is ablative absolute ("an independent phrase with a noun... both words forming a clause grammatically unconnected with the rest of the sentence"). But the examples in the question don't have a noun, and they share the subject with the main clause of the sentence.
Jun
24
comment “Thirsty, we drank.”
My first reaction was that of @AndrewLeach, that the "absolute" adjective phrase does not modify the subject. But I learned that meaning of "absolute" from Latin, as maybe Andrew did. From the other sources listed here, it's clear that "absolute" has been defined in (a variety of) different ways for English.
Jun
19
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
An attempt to "call out" could fail for other reasons, e.g. that the call went unheeded. So "attempt" doesn't clearly put a neutral tone on the content of the "calling out." On the 2nd count, can you cite a source for meeting the burden of proof on the irrationality conclusion? Again, being wrong, or even being evil, doesn't imply irrationality, unless "irrational" becomes broadly defined and loses much of its force.
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
I would agree more with this answer if "alleged" were inserted in front of "irrational[ity]," since irrationality is a judgment of one party against another. People can be wrong without being irrational.
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
@ghoppe: How does your "I know..." sentence contradict the sentence you disagreed with?
Jun
16
comment How did phobia ever come to mean hatred?
@J.R.: Yes, and also, "You're not comfortable with me; therefore, you must be irrational." That's not always a rational conclusion.
May
27
awarded  Pundit
Jan
19
comment Is there any English/American equivalent for the Hungarian phrase “beating the nettle with someone else's penis”?
When I have heard this phrase, it has always meant blaming something on (someone): using (someone) as a scapegoat.
Jan
16
comment What does “datum (sed) non concessum” mean?
Let us continue this discussion in chat.