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Questions tagged [expressions]

This tag is for questions about expressions. Expressions are words or phrases used to convey an idea, or else a particular term used conventionally to express something. Consider phrase-requests and expression-requests if you are looking for an expression, phrase-meaning if you are unsure about the usage of a given phrase.

5
votes
2answers
47 views

Does “expecting” mean “pregnant” exactly?

The term expecting is often used as if it means "pregnant", as shown by Merriam-Webster (for the verb expect) 3 : to be pregnant : await the birth of one's child —used in progressive tenses she's ...
2
votes
2answers
1k views

'The picture hung crooked on the wall'

Is it more correct to say 'The picture hung crooked on the wall' or 'The picture hung crookedly on the wall'? My instinct is that the first one sounds better to me as a native speaker, but someone ...
0
votes
3answers
40 views

What do we call a person who adapts easily?

I know that my mother will be fine after reaching there, she is a person who knows how to adapt very easily.
0
votes
0answers
35 views

Honest with minor things but dishonest with bigger issues

Looking for a proverb/saying that describes a person being honest about/with little things but dishonest about bigger issues. A board of directors of s non for profit organization ran a transparent ...
0
votes
0answers
10 views

Can a “paradigm state that…”? [on hold]

Which is more correct: a. "This breaks the paradigm which states that every Roman comes from Rome", or b. "This breaks the paradigm according to which it is assumed that every Roman comes ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

What is the meaning of an expression “Tufted titmouse”?

I watch the show "The Good Doctor". It was used in season 2 episode 4. In flashbacks, Shawn had with his mother/caregiver (couldn't quite figure it out), she was dying and he had to move. They used it ...
-3
votes
0answers
32 views

what do English people say instead of FOLKS ? thank you [on hold]

.. what do Englisch people say instead of FOLKS ? thank you
0
votes
1answer
38 views

Unpleasant situations happen?

Unfortunately sometimes things don't go the way we want. Unpleasant situations happen. Is the phrase "Unpleasant situations happen" correct? Maybe instead of happen it would be better to use '...
1
vote
1answer
85 views

Is there an opposite phrase for “The apple never falls far from the tree”?

I was doing some research on idioms, and came upon the thought of whether there is an opposite idiom for The apple never falls far from the tree. as in "The offspring have much in common with ...
0
votes
0answers
22 views

What kind of event is “Benefit Ball”?

Here is the sentence: He talked about his wine collection and the people he had seen at the latest benefit ball.
-1
votes
1answer
51 views

What is proper English to rephrase this sentence “I made it as correct answer”? [on hold]

The context is like: Person A: why is "pig" the correct answer? Person B: Because I made it as correct answer! Basically, I want to say I just want it to be the correct answer, that's why it is the ...
0
votes
0answers
19 views
-1
votes
0answers
42 views

What does “drop off the edge” mean here? [on hold]

In the British film 'About a boy' I saw the expression 'If only two people someone drops off the edge'. what does it mean? He said 'Suddenly I realized, two people isnt enough. You need to back ...
4
votes
4answers
6k views

“Full of spit and vinegar” meaning

I was reading a book and couldn't understand the meaning of this: After all, how many times had her father complained that she was full of more spit and vinegar than most boys? I searched, but I ...
0
votes
2answers
55 views

on provision of seven (7) days written notice

I was reading a legal contract and came across this sentence about the termination of the contract: This Agreement may be terminated by either Party on provision of seven (7) days written notice ...
35
votes
4answers
231k views

Should I write “that being said” (vs. “that's been said” or “Having said that”)?

I often write what "sounds" right (being not a native English speaker/writer), and I believe the expression "that being said" to be fairly common, as opposed to a more complete form like "that's been ...
0
votes
1answer
44 views

Which expression means “total number of lecture hours in a course”?

I want a word or short expression that signifies the total number of lecture hours in a course. This is something I want to write in a syllabus along with other relevant data about the course. The ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

Expression or phrase for the maximum amount of people with business knowledge to get in a bus accident without the business failing?

This expression or phrase is often joked about when engineers or developers or people with knowledge pivotal to the business all decide to travel somewhere and they check to see how many of them could ...
-1
votes
0answers
17 views

Is the phrase “They are all my life“ correct? [closed]

Is it correct to say “They are all my life “ When you are describing the importance of your family.
1
vote
2answers
947 views

what does “to which it is a party” mean in this sentence?

I have a statement here, and I dont get the meaning exactly: Each of the Members agrees to make an annual report to the International Labour Office on the measures which it has taken to give ...
-2
votes
1answer
64 views

What is “warm and flat water”?

I heard the expression 'warm and flat water' in the British film when someone gives another water saying There you go, warm and flat. I was told that I can use 'flat drink' to the drinks in ...
0
votes
1answer
56 views

Difference between “taking into account” and “considering” when used as conjunctions of contrast

How do I explain the difference between "taking into account" and "considering" to ESL students and can they be used interchangeably in the following sentences? "Taking into account that my sales are ...
0
votes
0answers
17 views

Is it Asian-inspired or Asia-inspired?

I’m editing something that talks about an “Asian-inspired” hotel. Is this correct? If I were to flip the words and write that the hotel is "inspired by __,” I’d say, “inspired by Asia,” not “inspired ...
4
votes
2answers
40 views

are you decent?

I saw the expression 'are you decent?' in the film 'About a boy' in the situation where a house is locked then a friend who has a key and don't know well there is anybody in the house enter there. But ...
0
votes
3answers
46 views

In the light of the nature of the allegations

I found the phrase 'In the light of the nature of the allegations' in a BBC news article titled 'Jeff Bezos: Amazon boss accuses National Enquirer of blackmail'. The context is: "American Media ...
4
votes
1answer
188 views

“… for all the yolk in your eggs.”

Melville addresses his readers "ye lucky livers, to whom by some rare fatality your Cape Horns are placid as Lake Lemans, flatter not yourselves that good luck is judgment and discretion; for all ...
1
vote
1answer
58 views

Can “I'm passing today” colloquially mean “I'm going to refrain (from doing this) today”?

There's this colloquial expression "I'll pass (on that)" which means "I'll refrain (from doing this)". I'm curious if by saying "I'm passing today" as in "I'm going to pass today" one could convey ...
0
votes
2answers
45 views

Good verb for “to fall over forwards”?

I'm looking for a verb that describes falling over forwards - for example, if you're setting on a chair and someone shoves you from behind. What's the proper word to use here? Thanks a lot! Nicolas
0
votes
1answer
33 views

preposition + the

should “the” be omitted when it is used along with the prepositions: in, on, across, etc.? Like in the following sentences, and I'm speaking generally: 1) some birds live in mountains\the mountains ...
-1
votes
0answers
41 views

warm and flat water [duplicate]

I saw the expression 'warm and flat water' in the British film when someone gives another water saying 'there you go, warm and flat'. I was told that I can use 'flat drink' to the drinks in which had ...
0
votes
2answers
56 views

When referring to two people who have passed on, is it necessary to repeat “the late”?

Which one is correct? A. Authors like the late John Smith and John Doe have … B. Authors like the late John Smith and the late John Doe have … Thanks
3
votes
3answers
5k views

What does “alright” mean when it's at the end of a sentence?

a. Life has no meaning alright. What does "alright" mean in the sentence above? I can't find it in the dictionary!
3
votes
3answers
93 views

English equivalent proverb/idiom for this saying

In Tamil language, there is a proverb for a particular sequence of actions performed. The proverb is, "Pillaiya killi vittu, thottila aatradhu", meaning, "Pinching a child and then oscillating the ...
0
votes
1answer
32 views

What is the expression “ an early ironclad morning” mean?

In Sherlock Holmes stories there is an expression somewhere "on one early ironclad morning" what does it mean?
0
votes
1answer
21 views

Grant somebody access to something or Grant access to something for somebody

Often I have to request access to specified resource for specified person. Is there any error in any of these forms and what is better to use? Grant somebody access to something Grant access to ...
-1
votes
2answers
41 views

How do you correct this sentence to a right one?

I want to travel to Tokyo. If you go, let's travel with Kamakura! -> I want to travel to Tokyo. If you are traveling, let’s do it with Kamakura? can someone help? i corrected the original sentence ...
3
votes
1answer
51 views

Is “paper fiction” a set phrase?

" the rock and the ocean are revealed to be mere paper fictions" - On Evil, Terry Eagleton The text refers to the book 'Pincher Martin'. The rock and the ocean turn out to be quite literally made ...
0
votes
1answer
34 views

Another way to say “The new standard”

What would be another way to say something is "The new standard"? For example "We used to use blank1 but now we use blank2 which has become [phrase here in place of the new standard]" Definition of ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

What “a foot or so” mean? [closed]

I saw a sentence like "Some coastal waters and rivers can have such a high concentration of suspended sediment and floating plant material that light only penetrates surface a foot or so" In this ...
0
votes
1answer
30 views

I'm looking for phrase/proverb about unimportant persons?

The phrase I'm looking for has similar meaning to "in the land of the blind, the one-eyed man is king". When someone is important but the place that person is in not big or important, or when someone ...
0
votes
0answers
19 views

“as much they could”

Is the phrase "as much they could" correct? For instance, The spectators had to endure the heat as much they could.
1
vote
0answers
26 views

Why is the US referred to as “the Union” in “State of the Union”?

I wonder about the use of the word "Union" in the name "State of the Union", which is the US President's annual address to Congress. The phrase appears in the Constitution: He [the President] shall ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

Token hold … does this expression make sense?

I'm writing a poem at the minute and a part of a line goes: "My certitudes not token hold" Alternative "My certitude is more than just some token hold" What I'm trying to convey here is that I ...
1
vote
0answers
2k views

Word for gesture of pinching cheeks

Is there a word / expression for the gesture of pinching someone's cheeks to show affection. It is often done to kids although people with dimples are also a frequent target for this kind of gesture.
0
votes
1answer
23 views

Correct usage of the phrase 'if any'

What is the best position for the phrase 'if any' for the sentence below?Please explain the rationale behind your answer? What could be, if any, the benefits or disadvantages of something? ...
3
votes
1answer
37 views

Are there any words/phrases/idioms expressing light sadness? [closed]

Not sorrow, or depressing kind of sadness. For example, when you remember someone you loved, who passed away, but you're remembering beautiful moments, his or her smile or eyes. You feel sad, but ...
1
vote
0answers
22 views

Word or phrase that everyone knows or has heard of, but no one knows its underlying meaning

What word or phrase can describe terms like: Wi-Fi AM/FM AM/PM RSVP "etc." "i.e." and so on? In other words, what word or phrase could be used to describe a word or phrase that "everyone knows ...
0
votes
0answers
33 views

What does “dodge a wrench” mean?

I was reading some stuff on the internet and I stumbled upon this phrase: If you can dodge a wrench you can dodge a ball. What does that mean?
10
votes
2answers
5k views

Opposite of benefit of the doubt?

"Benefit of the doubt" is a standard phrase in English and is a very useful one in formal discussions. Is there an equivalent expression to denote the opposite of it, formal or informal? For example: ...