Questions tagged [nouns]

This tag is for questions about nouns. Nouns are words that refer to an entity, quality, state, action, or concept. Add this tag to single-word-requests if you are looking for a noun. Add the tag word-usage if you are asking about the usage of the noun.

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4
votes
4answers
2k views

Contraction for 'are' with nouns

Is this correct? the candys 're in the box, the womens're at the car I know 'you're', 'we're', 'they're' are valid usages, but can it be used for nouns?
15
votes
1answer
37k views

Politics: singular or plural?

Which is correct, "politics is out of scope" or "politics are out of scope?"
5
votes
1answer
3k views

Where can I get the list of diminutive forms of first names? [closed]

As the title suggests, where can I get the list of diminutive forms of people's first names? Like Mike for Michael and Dave for David.
21
votes
2answers
103k views

Are chemical element names capitalized?

Do the names of chemical elements need to be capitalized? For example, in running text should it be hydrogen or Hydrogen?
26
votes
3answers
6k views

Why don't English nouns have grammatical gender?

English nouns — other than those with natural gender, e.g. people or animals — do not generally have grammatical gender, and so are referred to as 'it' rather than 'he' or 'she'. However, modern ...
21
votes
8answers
3k views

Are there sentences in languages which use grammatical gender that lose meaning when translated into English?

English nouns which don't denote people or animals with natural gender do not (apart from a few rare examples) use grammatical gender. So for example, "table" is always an "it" in English, whereas it ...
30
votes
2answers
45k views

“People” or “peoples” when referring to an indigenous population?

Let's say we are talking about the indigenous pukapuka who live in Pluto. What is correct: "the pukapuka people" or "the pukapuka peoples"? I've read somewhere the usage of "peoples" in this context,...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Explanation for “emails”?

This is a thinly veiled rant, I realize, but if anybody can rationalize "emails" for me in such a way that I can stop grabbing people who say it, and asking them if they've ever gone to their mailsbox ...
7
votes
5answers
12k views

A list with only one item

I have a document where someone is suggesting we have a bulleted list with only one item. That sounds absurd to me. Doesn't a "list" imply more than one item?
18
votes
7answers
16k views

When is it correct to capitalise 'earth'?

At the beginning of a sentence is obvious. I'm referring to the following examples: A handful of earth. The earth under this house. The earth beneath my feet. What on earth? The heavens ...
53
votes
2answers
87k views

Which is correct, “dataset” or “data set”?

I keep writing dataset. Is that correct, or should I write data set?
5
votes
11answers
8k views

What's a word similar in usage to “diatribe,” but not as harsh?

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, a diatribe is defined as a forceful and bitter verbal attack against someone or something. I had previously understood it to mean something more along the ...
7
votes
5answers
11k views

Word meaning the reverse of 'Xenophobia'

Xenophobia refers to the irrational fear or hatred of foreigners. But recently I've seen people displaying (in newspaper articles and other places) an irrational fear or hatred of their own countrymen....
3
votes
5answers
4k views

What does the word “cinemaddict” mean?

Please explain to me (non-native speaker) what the word "cinemaddict" means. What synonyms does it have?
5
votes
2answers
907 views

Why is New York City also called “the Big Apple”?

I have heard many times people say the Big Apple to mean New York City. What is the origin of this nickname?
6
votes
8answers
11k views

“Visualized” equivalent adjective for audio

Are there such words as "audiolized" or "audibilized"? EDIT: Merriam-Webster has the word Audibilized indexed with no definition! What I was trying to achieve was to say that something is an ...
6
votes
3answers
145k views

Should the words “city”/“state”/“province” be capitalized (if not followed by the name of the city)?

When referring to an entity like a government body, should it be capitalized if referring to is by classification(?). E.g., if I write: The City of New York requires us to get a building permit. ...
23
votes
3answers
9k views

“User accounts” or “users account”

Is it correct to say user accounts or users account when referring to the accounts any user has on a site like this one? In general, in the case of a noun that is used as adjective for the noun that ...
32
votes
6answers
287k views

How should I ask for a bill in a restaurant politely?

I used to say check please, but my English teacher said that it's wrong, and the proper way is to say something like bill please. What's the truth?
188
votes
7answers
276k views

What is the plural form of “status”?

What is the plural form of "status"?
29
votes
7answers
33k views

Should the words “internet” and “web” be capitalized?

There seems to be some inconsistency on whether people capitalize the words internet and web (as in World Wide Web) as proper nouns. What is the official ruling on when or if these words should be ...
281
votes
10answers
189k views

What is the correct way to pluralize an acronym?

For example, if I wanted to write the equivalent of There are many automated teller machines in this city. Would it be There are many ATMs in this city. or There are many ATM's in this ...
9
votes
3answers
20k views

Why are words ending in “-um” and “-us” pluralized to end in “-a” and “-i”, respectively?

Where does the practice of using -a and -i for plural forms of -um and -us, respectively, come from? Bacteria vs. bacterium Fungi vs. fungus
60
votes
6answers
146k views

What is the correct plural of “octopus”?

What is the correct plural of octopus: Octopi? Octopodes? Octopuses? Something else?
16
votes
2answers
34k views

Is there any difference between “color” and “colour”?

What is the difference between color and colour?
29
votes
5answers
59k views

Difference between “ability” and “capability”

What is the difference in usage between ability and capability?
11
votes
5answers
673 views

When referring to a noun, when does the gender matter? [duplicate]

In most languages, gender plays a much more important role than in English. Nevertheless, it is possible to refer to a noun using its gender. The ship was launched on 4 October 1853. Tayleur left ...
114
votes
9answers
47k views

Plural of “index” – “indexes” or “indices”?

A table can have one index, or, it can have two or more [...]? Is it indexes or indices? I'm just asking since I've noticed they're both used quite often. Even Wikipedia seems to support both ...