Questions tagged [terminology]

This tag is for questions seeking or discussing a term (or terms) belonging or peculiar to a science, art, or specialized subject (e.g. linguistics, mathematics, physics, biology, finance, theatre, music, philosophy, astronomy, medical, nautical etc.). Consider adding [single-word-requests] and [phrase-requests] tags also if relevant.

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22 votes
9 answers
6k views

Precise word to differentiate "major" and "minor" in music

In a similar manner to the way that we use "sex" to differentiate male and female, I want to find the best word to differentiate major and minor. The Wikipedia page on the subject did not use any ...
-1 votes
0 answers
32 views

Tuplets, decuplets, and whats after

So, I’ve been looking into tuplets and decuplets, such as in multiple births (2-19). I’m seeing a pattern in these, and I’m severely wondering if this is a continual pattern. From 2-3 there is no real ...
0 votes
0 answers
35 views

Term to quantify a parameter in a decision-making procedure which affects multiple individuals?

Suppose a group of people are purchasing ice cream, and a flavor must be chosen for each member of the group. One possible procedure would be for a single, trusted member to decide which flavor each ...
0 votes
0 answers
42 views

What words should I use for unpaid internet artists if they're offended by the word ''amateur''? [closed]

What kind of words should I use for unpaid internet artists if they are offended by the word "amateur"? I'm talking the type of artists that you see on DeviantArt, regardless of what skill ...
7 votes
5 answers
48k views

What is the word for the corner where ceiling and wall meet in a house?

In a square room in a house, what is the word for the corner where one of the walls meets the ceiling? I kept thinking it was a word like "eaves", but that turned out to be the overhang. I have ...
3 votes
4 answers
14k views

'Horeca', is it English? Alternatives?

In Dutch there's a quite commonly used word that denotes the commercial sector around selling food and beverages for immediate (or near-immediate, e.g. take-out meals) consumption: horeca. (This ...
0 votes
2 answers
75 views

Verb for "swapping" non-commuting operations and modifying them appropriately (commute?)

In mathematics, computer science, physics or any other field that has the concept of commutative operations (or operators), is there a verb to describe the action of taking a sequence AB of two non-...
0 votes
0 answers
64 views

Can any member in this group kindly explain to me the meaning of 'Storying' in the context of narrative qualitative ethnographic research? [closed]

I keep coming across the term storying in articles on narrative research. The authors however do not explain how the term storying is different in meaning and connotation from the term storytelling or ...
1 vote
1 answer
55 views

What do you call the person or character being spoken to in a poem or song?

This question asks what to call the person who is speaking in a lyric poem. The terms "narrator", "speaker", "persona", etc. may be used to refer to the "I" in &...
4 votes
2 answers
167 views

Etymology of 'Priscilla' to refer to a type of curtain

Squashed between Priscian and Priscillian in Merriam-Webster Online, there's a peculiar entry, priscilla. It's not just a Biblical name, it appears, but also some sort of curtain. priscilla: [noun - ...
0 votes
4 answers
570 views

Mailshot or Newsletter?

I'm developing a web based application that allows people to send email to many customers, for advertisement purposes. What's the correct name for that? newsletter or mailshot? EDIT: to avoid ...
3 votes
2 answers
186 views

A noun for the act of misinterpreting a word

When someone says a word that is superficially similar to, but means something different from, what they really mean, we call it a malapropism. I'm looking for the counterpart to this—a word for the ...
0 votes
1 answer
64 views

Is there a better word for the sound of a mechanical "whirr"?

I am struggling to find an adequate word that represents the buzz or whirr of mechanical movement, I want something that feels more technical. If anyone is familiar with engineering jargon that might ...
6 votes
7 answers
2k views

Is there a name for letting something get worse until it is so bad it has to be addressed properly?

I see this idea a lot: Something is bad and people want it to be better There's no way for those people to make it better without a huge investment by others Instead of trying to fix it themselves, ...
8 votes
6 answers
2k views

Is there a (current or historical) word for the extremes on the left-right axis?

Is there, or has there ever been, an unambiguous word for "the leftmost extreme" or "the rightmost extreme"? Such words exist for the other two dimensions. Imagine you are ...
-2 votes
2 answers
49 views

Is there a term for websites that answer a question contained in the domain name?

There exist sites such as https://shouldiblamecaching.com/, https://isitdns.com/, and https://isitchristmas.com/ that use the domain name to ask a question and show a simple yes or no answer. Is there ...
1 vote
1 answer
55 views

A term (or phrase) for when a person tries to represent the rarest scenario as the most common

For context: This term or phrase is what it's called when a person (very often used in political debates) will try to take the rarest occurrence of any particular topic and present it as if it's the ...
2 votes
0 answers
46 views

A hole carved out in wall for a wooden crossbeam

I once saw a word for a hole carved out in a wall on purpose to accept a wooden crossbeam that fits into the hole. I think it had a "p" in it, something like "pit hole" ?...
0 votes
0 answers
33 views

Term for words which can have the same or opposite meanings in same contexts [duplicate]

In Term for words which can have the same or opposite meanings in different contexts?, hot and cool are opposite temperatures, but can also both be used to mean fashionably attractive/impressive. I ...
-1 votes
2 answers
155 views

Is there a term for a coined word that gives meaning by association?

Bear with me as this is hard to articulate. Is there a word or term that describes when a coined word has obvious or intended meaning by being similar to another word, or having a certain "feel" to it?...
-1 votes
0 answers
75 views

What is the English term for this type of high-crowned military cap (pictured)?

I am using AI image generators and I want to make some pics. How do you call this headgear? In Russian it is called "фуражка с высокой тульей" and Google search returns exactly this. But if ...
10 votes
3 answers
8k views

Why are bacteria referred to using botanic terms (flora, blooming)?

I've seen a lot of information lately about intestinal flora or gut flora but I was under the impression that flora refers exclusively to plant life. So how did bacteria come to be called flora? I ...
4 votes
1 answer
113 views

What does it mean 'to reference' and what are the requirements of 'coreferentiality' in the context of descriptive grammar?

I would like to understand exactly what is meant in a grammar discussion when someone uses the word "coreferential". I understand it to mean that two or more constituents (e.g. a noun and ...
13 votes
3 answers
1k views

What is the origin of the verb 'foxed' in reference to book condition?

I ordered a book online, unseen, and the invoice told me the book, or at least its pages, were 'foxed'. I had never come across the expression, did not know the word could be a verb and discovered : ...
2 votes
1 answer
4k views

What is the term used to describe the space under a roof that joins two buildings?

Sometimes architects will take two tall (say 8-10 storey) buildings that happen to be near each other, and build a glass roof between them. Down on ground, the area which originally would have been a ...
5 votes
6 answers
3k views

Is there a name for words which are pronounced differently depending on which definition is being used?

I was thinking about the word "fillet" recently. When I teach high school freshmen about the word (in a machining/engineering context), they refuse to believe that it is pronounced "...
11 votes
2 answers
1k views

Is the language used in patents archaic or intentionally obtuse?

Example: [f] moving said second cart to said proximate end of said scanning device so that said trays in said second cart be passed through said scanning device at said proximate end. Is the ...
2 votes
0 answers
40 views

“Core” as the name of a class in school

When I was in middle school (roughly ages 10–13 years old) in the US in the early 1970s, they combined English—or what might now be called language arts—with social studies into a single class that ...
1 vote
2 answers
69 views

What are the things with information that are under or next to museum exhibits called? [duplicate]

I'm trying to figure out what the things the arrows are pointing to are called. (For a school assignment.)
2 votes
2 answers
143 views

What are these kinds of classifications called?

While browsing EL&U I sometimes see people pointing out in their answer that some words have been used in an unusual way (or should I call it structure?), producing sentences like "the writer ...
0 votes
1 answer
102 views

Is there a better term than "Jargon" to describe words like Phishing, Vishing, Smishing, and Qishing? [duplicate]

Assuming "phreak" is a portmanteau of "phone" and "freak," giving us the term "phreaking" to describe the illicit act of hacking telephone networks, and "...
1 vote
4 answers
702 views

Is there a word for fans making excuses for their favorite artist? [duplicate]

The example I'm thinking of is Bethesda and Starfield. Other than the graphics it's not a well designed game, but people keep making excuses for it, when smaller teams have done far more with far less ...
1 vote
1 answer
68 views

What is the grammatical structure of {the + superlative substantive}?

Example 1: This was the deepest a submarine had ever dived. Example 2: The longest a person can hold their breath for is... I've looked at a couple grammar resources including "the Cambridge ...
2 votes
2 answers
75 views

Is there a word for discrimination at a level higher than species?

Richard Ryder coined the term speciesism to describe discrimination on grounds of species. This is concept is explored by Peter Singer in Animal Liberation Now and described by nature: Singer rests ...
1 vote
0 answers
42 views

Referring to the winter period [duplicate]

Since the winter period passes over the end of the year, which is the correct way to refer to the winter period which starts at the end of, say, this year 2023? Is it "this year's winter" or ...
-1 votes
1 answer
49 views

What is the grammatical name for “the countless flashes of red from swords and spears”? [closed]

What is the grammatical name and function for this string? the countless flashes of red from swords and spears
0 votes
1 answer
991 views

What is the single word for <1/3> (one-third)? [closed]

The word "quarter" means <1/4> (one-forth). Is there a single word that means <1/3> (one-third)?
0 votes
2 answers
73 views

Term for a false implication trap like "if you're smart you'd agree with me"?

I hear this kind of false implications pretty often, e.g.: If you're smart you'd agree with me People who understand the situation would all agree that ... Anyone who says something else must be ...
10 votes
4 answers
5k views

First use of the expression "Spandau Ballet"

Am wondering about the known history of this term. I assume that Spandau refers to the German MG08. The term as a whole refers to the behaviour of massed troops being hit by machine gun fire. The ...
37 votes
21 answers
84k views

What do you call a response which does not address the question?

When some one is asked a question, sometimes if they are trying to avoid answering the question, they respond with something unrelated. What is the word for that response? Eg. A: Why were you late? ...
6 votes
7 answers
16k views

Why do we use back and forward instead of backward and forward?

In some English language user interfaces, both virtual and physical, the words back and forward are used instead of backward and forward. An easy example is the web browser, where the buttons to ...
0 votes
2 answers
146 views

A word describing someone's preference to have a lineally/genetically-related child

I'm looking for a word that effectively conveys an attitude showing a preference for having a child related to oneself ... ie, a lineally/genetically-related child. In particular, a word that would ...
0 votes
1 answer
42 views

Is there a term for the device of repeating the exact same word twice immediately to emphasize its sincerity or power? [duplicate]

I already know the term anaphora exists for repeating the same word for emphasis. I'm specifically interested in a term for repeating a word twice without additional clarification to express that ...
2 votes
0 answers
48 views

How to characterize Machiavelli's phrase, "The ends justify the means"? [closed]

This question has been raised and thoroughly discussed: "How to characterize the phrase, 'The ends justify the means.'" I wish to add a thought. As I was writing a book for publication, I ...
1 vote
2 answers
181 views

What are the exclamation and question marks/points called in variants of English?

As regards !, wikipedia reads The exclamation mark, !, or exclamation point (American English) but it doesn't use a corresponding wording for ?: The question mark ? (also known as interrogation ...
4 votes
2 answers
1k views

What are the long metal things in stores that hold products that hang from them?

What are the long metal things in stores like Walgreens that hold things like gummy bears or nuts or hair clips? The metal things are straight and then at the end they curve up, and they are connected ...
9 votes
1 answer
706 views

Is there a specific word for a cross-language mondegreen?

A mondegreen is a mishearing of a phrase (usually in a poem or song lyrics) as something else; the word itself is one of the best-known mondegreens: it comes from a mishearing of “And laid him on the ...
-1 votes
1 answer
53 views

-normative word for practices and institutions that privilege or value being a parent?

Is there a -normative word like heteronormative or mononormative for practices and institutions that privilege or value being a parent as fundamental or 'normal' within society? I suggest ...
0 votes
2 answers
131 views

What is the overall-encompassing term for the "fruit-like" plant growths that we use for harvest and consumption

What is a good term for plants whose parts, either as tubers, roots, or fruit/seeds are harvested and consumed? I exclude plants such as hemp and flax whose fibres are used, or, for example, poppies ...
0 votes
0 answers
51 views

Word for terminology related to mathematical premises

I have seen some mathematical texts that use words like Lemma, Theorem, Corollary, etc. What would be the appropriate description of such terms? Do they fall under some linguistic category? Is ...

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