Questions tagged [phrase-meaning]

The meaning of phrases.

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What does it mean to “follow every cue”? [closed]

A song has such lines: Saturday night's a lie, I follow every cue Sunday is sanctified, I smile and take the pew What does "I follow every cue" in this context mean? I tried googling for it ...
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Please help me with this line from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows [closed]

From Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Gringotts, chapter twenty-six: It was now packed inside the beaded bag, which, Harry was impressed to learn, Hermione had protected from the Snatchers by ...
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partial global hegemony [closed]

"Global" and "partial" seem to be contradicting to one another. What does "partial" mean in this context? China's international leadership would bear little resemblance ...
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What does this headline from “The Hindu” newspaper mean? [closed]

"Women beat officers bring in sense of security, comfort" The Hindu (1st August, 2021) Q. What does 'beat' mean in this context? Link: (https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Delhi/women-...
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The usage of “WHO” as a conjunction

I've just started reading the Booker Prize-winning novel "The Sellout". I don't know the narrator has omitted " who" here or he is talking about himself when he says "...
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What does “in coming” mean here ? (from “Crime And Punishment” by Fyodor Dostoyevsky) [closed]

It's an exchange between the main character of the book named Raskolnikov and a lady which owns a Pawn Shop: ‘How much will you give me for the watch, Alyona Ivanovna?’ ‘You come with such trifles, ...
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What is the meaning of the phrase “Resolution itself says re- solution”? [closed]

Please answer I am not able to relate the resolution with re- solution..
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163 views

A tick wound its way up his jaw

This sentence is a passage from a novel: A tick wound its way up his jaw. He forced it into a welcoming smile. (The Socialite by J'nell Ciesielski) I know the "tick" is a metaphor, but I ...
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Can I paradoxiacally interpret “there is little room for”? [closed]

I am wondering about the nuance of "there is little room for" in the below context. Some photographers might feel like there is little room for creativity in high-volume photography. ...
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1answer
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«Redeem life» meaning [closed]

I’ve come across a song with such lyrics: Will you redeem my life again? I’m not sure how to understand this phrase… My native language is Russian and regarding redemption we have a phrase “redeem ...
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What's “result in crunch at the end to meet our deadline” [closed]

I got a feedback on a project like this As a result, Project xxx faced a number of issues from the xxx team which resulted in a crunch at the end to meet our deadline. I'm struggling to understand ...
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What does a “weary room” mean? [duplicate]

A Pink Floyd song titled "A Momentary Lapse of Reason" starts with this line: "A restless eye across a weary room" I started looking up the various meanings of "weary" to ...
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'laid out on three levels of elevation 20 feet in height' Help me understand this phrase

The following is the description of the camp. I cannot imagine what it is, because of the ambiguity of the underlined part. The wooden building is 20 feet high? Could anyone be kind enough to explain ...
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“Jump” - “How High?” - mental image and meaning [closed]

Non-native speaker here. I have come across this metaphor quite often: Person X complains / admires that if A told B to jump, B would just ask 'how high?'. What is the mental image behind that? As far ...
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What does this phrase signify 'Better a Live Ass Than a Dead Lion'? [closed]

What does this phrase signify 'Better a Live Ass Than a Dead Lion'? What is the moral of this phrase? What does the writer want to convey through this statement? Please explain and also make a ...
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The phrase “do the lions”

I was recently reading an account of Zola's exile in England after the Dreyfus affair and I came across a phrase I couldn't quite parse: That gentleman, as I had surmised, was a trifle astonished at ...
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Meaning of “to put a cupcake to someone's head”

I'm reading The Sellout by Paul Beatty. It says: "You’d rather be here than in Africa. The trump card all narrow-minded nativists play. If you put a cupcake to my head, of course, I’d rather be ...
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complicated usage of “as something as”

Once, of course, our satisfactions were provided by our parents, or the people who looked after us when we were young. And it is clearly a very significant moment, or series of moments, in a child’s ...
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Meaning of “is the same size and”

The following sentence comes from https://android.googlesource.com/trusty/app/storage/ The key value is a hash of the file name and is the same size and the block number size for the file system. ...
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42 views

What does the expression “a shiver of” mean or imply? [closed]

What does the expression "a shiver of" mean or imply in the following sentence : All of a sudden, electricity flows in an unfamiliar pattern, a shiver of current across a circuit board of ...
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1answer
49 views

what does “glancing about him for support” mean? [closed]

Poppy brought a book. When everyone had been introduced she took the end chair and began to read with her hands round her face like blinkers. ‘This is the last time I let you do this,’ said Philip. ‘...
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1answer
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What is the meaning of this statement? [closed]

In this book 'The Prevention of Suicide in Prison' I would like to know meaning of this statement: It also became clear that within this setting all behaviours came at a price (such as reading/writing ...
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What is the “facility of a question”?

The phrase is commonly used in mark schemes, like so: The facility of the question was 65%, Facility is defined as..."bathroom", "service", or "absence of difficulty" ...
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What do “industry's exposure” mean and meaning in context?

Dong, 2019, page 898 documented: We measure firm exposure to international laws in two ways. First, we rely on the industry’s exposure and define the treatment based on a firm’s exposure to the passage ...
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Is this meaning of “bogged down” correct?

I am reading through a composition with the following sentence: Children rarely get to spend quality time with their parents as both are bogged down with their own demanding schedules Dictionary ...
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What does “limited daylight only” mean?

‘Yes, except this one,’ said Vicki. She crouched down and pointed to a grubby notice right at the bottom of the mass. Athena bent over. ‘To let,’ it said. ‘One room, limited daylight only, $25 per ...
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“You're s**t” vs “You ain't s**t” [closed]

"You're shit" vs "You ain't shit" what do these two phrases mean? Are they interchangeable? if yes then when?
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Can “downstairs” in the phrase “From the street downstairs” be an adverb?

Vicki woke. Elizabeth was still sleeping, with her face to the wall. Her hair, flattened in the night, had formed matted curls which reminded Vicki against her will of what can be seen inside vacuum ...
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Meaning of “…on the week of …”

I got an email to confirm my availability: We would like to know your availability on the week of May 10th from 10:00 - 14:00. Does it mean they are asking my availability for the whole week for the ...
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What does “bent of mind” mean?

I read this in my horoscope. I couldn't find any definition for 'bent of mind'. Please help. "Devout, devoted to parents and having a religious bent of mind, you believe in the dictum that ...
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What is the meaning of 'as with that' in the following sentence?

'As with the stripping down of the former high building of the Hotel Ukrainia, Kiev was the testing bed for a new pared-down form of Metro decoration and, as with that, the first examples just look ...
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Could we use 'lawn-proud' in the same sense as 'house-proud'?

The meaning of the term house-proud apparently has shifted, at least in the US, from meaning very worried about your house being completely clean and tidy, and spending a lot of time making it so (...
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What does the writer mean by “ocean foam” in this context and is it a common phrase and meaning?

I've never heard the phrase "ocean foam" used in this manner, so I'm not sure of it's meaning. I think I can gather a little from the context, but I'd like to know for sure. I can only find ...
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How to define & differentiate, “on hand”, “to hand”, “at hand”?

An English learner asked me a question what's the difference between: on hand to hand at hand in hand And how to identify the difference and use them correctly? All these phrasal verbs are so close ...
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Is this sentence construction wrong, where “going home” has other implied meaning, the origin and span of which isn't known? [closed]

I stumbled upon this article about the origins of some unusual idioms and phrases, as I have heard many of them being used popularly. But I was bit shocked and frustrated when I read this sentence ...
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A hard to understand paragraph [closed]

How can the bolded part of the following text be expressed in the simple language? While the principals are a cut above this level of qualification the incompetence of the American government to do ...
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What does “I have been out late the night before” mean?

What does I have been out late the night before mean? Does it mean that I come back home late?
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“All the way back” vs “All the way in the back”

Are "All the way back" vs "All the way in the back" the same ? I found the explain for "All the way" phrase in here: https://www.macmillandictionary.com/dictionary/...
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“He was a considerable cut above the leagers” meaning [duplicate]

What does the boldened part of this sentence mean?: As it turned out this man (a senior Foreign Affairs Advisor) was a considerable cut above the bush leaguers we had been dealing with.
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54 views

What is 'seven-headed bull' in the dialogue between King and Queen? [closed]

The following is an excerpt from the First Act (The Princess and the Woodcutter) of Make Believe, a play for children, written by A. A. Milne in 1918. Could someone help me understand this play ...
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Meaning of “Know the local drug scene for yourself” in “What Every Kid Should Be Able to Do by Age Sixteen”

From “What Every Kid Should Be Able to Do by Age Sixteen” by Audrey Sutherland: Read a topographic map and a chart Know the local drug scene for yourself Handle a boat safely and competently (canoe, ...
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How to interpret each word in “so as to” separately?

I already know the whole phrase so as to means in order to. but still a bit curious about how to interpret each word in this phrase separately. can I interpret the following sentence like this? He ...
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What does it mean: A utility hookup or work order dated within 60 days before registration? [duplicate]

Does it mean any day in a timeframe of 60 days max to the action, in other words: it could be 1 day or 59 days before?
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79 views

What does “actual food” mean? [closed]

I found this phrase in an article of The New York Review of Books, June 11, 2020, named “The Sickness in Our Food Supply”. The original text is The renaissance of home cooking, and baking, is one of ...
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What is the meaning of the phrase: “to lean on the shovel”?

I have recently come accross this phrase in a movie called The Cube. Here is the excerpt: I leaned on my shovel for months on this one. This was a great job! I couldn't find any dictionary ...
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use of the phrase “as with”

The phrase "as with" presumably stands for "as is the case with." But sometimes it does not fit the sentence: for example, I think "As with any other skill, the art of ...
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What is the origins of the phrase “on the lam”? [duplicate]

After puzzling over this phrase for quite some time I came across the possible answers offered in this site. The one that seemed to show the most promising solution was the longest entry, which ...
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1answer
29 views

“At somebody's bidding” vs. “at somebody's behest”?

Do the following two sentences have the same meaning? If not, what is the difference between them? This briefing session is held at the Commander's bidding. This briefing session is held at the ...
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Missing data: not registered vs not available

I have a scientific paper table that has a few missing values. Values are missing as they were not recorded (written by a doctor) on patients' medical records. Should I address these values as "...
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What's a positive phrase to say that I quoted something not word by word

Sometimes I quote in my writing sombody else, but I do not know the exact words the other person had used. What is a concise and positive(*) phrase to describe this? I found different options on the ...

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