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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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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 ...
22
votes
4answers
17k views

Suffixing by “-rama”, “-orama” or “-arama” — how did this begin?

Suffixing by -rama, -orama or -arama — how did this begin? I mean words like futurama, foodarama, etc.
19
votes
6answers
4k views

“Anachronism” is to “time” as what is to “space”?

Is there a noun for something that is "out of place" in space, like an anachronism is "out of place" in time? E.g., an old-timey barber shop in a chic neighborhood.
14
votes
30answers
166k views

What do you call a person who keeps on going despite setbacks? (in one word, a noun)

I'm looking for a word (a noun) to describe a person who faces the challenges of life (small and large) courageously despite the risk of failure. It would be nice if this noun does not necessarily ...
10
votes
5answers
10k views

Past participle used as a noun?

Some examples include: We fear the damned. He honored our fallen. This is a given. You are the chosen. The lost were among us. They obey the venerated. My beloved kissed me. (TIL “...
10
votes
5answers
70k views

“State” vs “country” as “nation”

I came across an article talking about the difference between state and country, when they mean nation, like United States of America, United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and ...
10
votes
3answers
88k views

Is “pair of scissors” more correct than “scissors”?

My wife always gives me a hard time when I say scissors; she insists the only correct way to refer to that cutting device is "pair of scissors". Is "pair of scissors" more correct than "scissors"?
3
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2answers
6k views

“[adjective] and [adjective] [noun]” — Should the noun be singular or plural?

In a scientific paper I submitted, a reviewer suggested that I change the sentence The operation just substitutes "(m, l)" with "m" on both the sender and the receiver side. to The operation ...
30
votes
2answers
5k views

What is the name for the process which turned “iced cream” into “ice cream”?

There are several words (mostly related to food) which are shortenings of their historical forms. For example, the cold treat ice cream was originally known as iced cream in the 1680s. The -ed ending ...
21
votes
9answers
27k views

What is a good, short, word to describe a software engineer?

What should I call a person who write software, computer programs ? I know he/she is a software engineer, can I call him/her as "Coder"?
12
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4answers
4k views

Why do we use the plural “heads” and “tails” when describing sides of a coin?

Head or tail sound fine to my ESL ears. What's the reasoning behind the plural usage? I looked it up on etymonline but didn't find anything interesting.
11
votes
4answers
8k views

What is the origin of the phrase “you've got another thing/think coming”?

What is the origin of the phrase "you've got another thing coming"? And — perhaps more importantly — is it more correct than the alternative "you've got another think coming"?
10
votes
6answers
25k views

'Home' in 'Ben and Jen went home.' Can an adverb be a noun at the same time?

In this sentence: Ben and Jen went home. Is home both an adverb and a noun?
9
votes
11answers
191k views

Word for someone who pays attention to details

I know I've seen a word that describes a person who has a high perception of details (for example, seeing specific information in a log file), but I can't recall it now. Insights?
17
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3answers
11k views

What is the name of this castle part?

What do you call these? Please provide a reliable source with your answer.
14
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5answers
45k views

What is the difference between “photo” and “image”?

What is the difference between photo and image?
13
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6answers
174k views

If I drive a car and ride a motorcycle, what do I do with a boat?

Once we have specific verbs to refer to the action of operating a vehicle, my question is: What verb should I use to "drive" a boat/ship?
10
votes
2answers
12k views

Rules for nominalizing a verb

To nominalize a verb, you sometimes use the gerund. to happen --> a happening Sometimes it's a different word. to arrive --> an arrival so we don't write to arrive --> an *arriving Is ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Why can't “thanks” ever be singular as a noun?

While looking at the part of speech of the noun "thanks" in an online dictionary I noticed that it was a plural noun and wondered if it could be used in singular form. Glancing at the origin it ...
7
votes
4answers
6k views

A word for something you didn't know you'd like

I need a noun that succinctly describes the enigmatic concept of something that, based on your tastes, you would probably like, but didn't know you'd like. Anyone game? Edit: If it can be understood ...
5
votes
6answers
57k views

Word for someone who sleeps during the day

People are sometimes said to be a morning person or a night person. I also know that the term for something related to night is "nocturnal". Is there a specific word for a person who sleeps during ...
4
votes
3answers
76k views

In what contexts would I capitalize “city” and “county”?

In the following context, it is obvious that County is a proper noun and deserves capitalization. Currently, Albemarle County has four main reservoirs. However, in these other contexts below, I ...
3
votes
6answers
81k views

What is a polite substitute for badass (used as a noun)? [closed]

Badass and BAMF are both modern words with approximately the same meaning: "Someone who is awesome to an extreme level, thereby leveraging unquestionable authority." Is there another noun or title ...
1
vote
2answers
3k views

Questionee? Inquiree? Interrogatee? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: What do you call somebody who asks a question and somebody who answers a question? What do I call a person who is participating in a survey? What's a proper but simple one-...
12
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2answers
1k views

How come “John is friends with Jane”?

The usage in the question title seems common enough to me, though it may be more common in Britain. But I can't exactly see what "part of speech" the word friends is here, and I can't come up with ...
8
votes
4answers
13k views

Word for “a person who quickly gets interested and quickly loses interest”

I have googled but didn't find. "A person who gets interested in anything very quickly and loses interest in it sooner." What is such a person called?
6
votes
5answers
40k views

Is the word “management” singular or plural? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Is a company always plural, or are small companies singular? Which one of the following is correct? Management gets its ideas from its employees. Management gets their ...
5
votes
1answer
556 views

Is “programming” not a noun?

Recently, I was told that the word "programming" in the phrase "programming thoughts" is a verb in the gerund-participle form and that the term "gerund" by itself is obsolete in modern grammar. I was ...
4
votes
1answer
861 views

Rules for the usage of “me” VS. “myself”? [duplicate]

What are general guidelines for the use of "me" and "myself"? Did I describe me or did I describe Maria? OR Did I describe myself or did I describe Maria?
3
votes
4answers
2k views

Nouns of plural form preceding another noun

I was reading Computers, Communications, and Information A User's Introduction (Seventh Edition) by Sarah E. Hutchinson and Stacey C. Sawyer. The authors consistently used such terms as ...
1
vote
2answers
21k views

Correct punctuation with two nouns? [duplicate]

There's an old play on words that goes like so: Grammar: The difference between helping your uncle Jack off a horse, and helping your uncle jack off a horse. I've been told that it should instead ...
1
vote
4answers
5k views

One that is holding a conversation [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Shorter way to say “conversational partner” What's a good word for something or someone who is holding a conversation? Or perhaps a bit broader, someone who knows how to hold ...
0
votes
3answers
1k views

Why is “police” referred to using the singular pronoun “it” in this sentence?

With reference to this question Collective noun "police" — singular or plural? and as per my understanding police is always plural. But I got shocked after seeing police used as a singular ...
0
votes
2answers
917 views

When do you use the plural form for nouns that are generally considered uncountable?

When should the plural form of the nouns combustible, material and liquid be used?
192
votes
7answers
292k views

What is the plural form of “status”?

What is the plural form of "status"?
34
votes
6answers
79k views

“Use” vs. “usage”

When should one use usage instead of use? Examples?
28
votes
4answers
95k views

What's the difference between “egotism” and “egoism”?

I am interested in the difference between these two seemingly synonymous terms.
40
votes
2answers
70k views

Is “authentification” a real word?

My professor used the word authentification in a lecture. I have always used authentication. Is it a real word or is authentication the correct term?
27
votes
24answers
135k views

What's the opposite word for “sin”?

I would like to know if there is an opposite word for sin in English. I mean, how could I say the opposite of I committed a sin other than using a negation?
26
votes
6answers
9k views

How can I prove a word is a noun?

When I read a sentence, I can identify nouns. But now I need to give proof that they are indeed nouns, and that is where it goes wrong. I can think of one or two things sometimes (like combining it ...
55
votes
2answers
94k views

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

I keep writing dataset. Is that correct, or should I write data set?
33
votes
4answers
4k views

Is there any noun in English which changes the first letter in the plural?

Plenty of nouns change the second letter to become plural (man->men, goose->geese) but does anything change its first letter. I've hunted high and low over the internet, and spent ages browsing the ...
31
votes
3answers
125k views

Why is “idea” sometimes pronounced as “idear”?

I know that idea is pronounced as /aɪˈdiə/, but I've meet several people in real life who put an 'r' at the end of the word. How come?
18
votes
5answers
11k views

How do you form the 'north' and 'south' versions of 'occident' and 'orient'?

How does one correctly form the "north" and "south" forms for which occident and orient are "west" and "east"? I found boreal and austral, but those look like adjectives and I'm after the nouns. ...
51
votes
9answers
262k views

What is the origin of the term “ginger” for red-headed people?

I'd like to know the etymology of the word "ginger" in reference to red-headed people. In particular, if "ginger" in this context is related to the plant root used in cooking, I'd like to know how ...
29
votes
7answers
34k 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 ...
24
votes
6answers
112k views

“Hooker”, “whore”, “prostitute”, when to use which?

"Hooker", "whore", and "prostitute" all mean whore; what are the differences between them?
18
votes
7answers
47k views

“peak” vs “summit”

According to the dictionary: peak — the pointed top of a mountain; a mountain with a pointed top summit — the highest point of something, especially the top of a mountain In the picture of the “...
6
votes
2answers
1k views

Can 'home' be an adjective as well as an adverb or a noun?

All the dictionaries I've consulted say that 'home' is an adverb and a noun, depending on context. For example: (1) He went home. [adverb] (2) He is at home. [noun] Also, there's this answer ...
5
votes
4answers
11k views

The article “a/an” with uncountable nouns

Sometimes I read in books sentences where uncountable nouns are used with the article "a/an". For example She fades like a dew before the sun. Is it out of the common rules? Sorry if this ...