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I wrote this sentence: "I buy a bottle of beer and slump on/onto the last stool."

A native English speaker told me that "slump" doesn't work here. That you can't slump on a bar/barstool.

Is this correct? If so, why?

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Your use of slump is fine and fits with the definition of the verb form.

  • Thanks for the answer. So the native English speaker I mentioned is wrong? – alexchenco Nov 16 '18 at 19:26
  • @alexchenco I suppose so. Here is the example from the dictionary I linked: "Exhausted, he slumped down into the chair." – Tashus Nov 16 '18 at 19:36
  • No. Slumping down into a chair is entirely possible. Slumping on a stool is not. There's no sides or back on a stool; one must balance on a stool, and has nothing to slump on, in, onto, or into. One would slide off a stool if one tried to slump on it. – John Lawler Nov 16 '18 at 23:59
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    @JohnLawler I don't see anything in the definition that would make it impossible to slump on a stool. Nowhere does the definition mention that you must be leaning against the back or side of anything to slump. If you can slump standing, why would you not be able to slump sitting in a stool? – Tashus Nov 17 '18 at 6:39
  • Definitions in a dictionary do not constitute the language. One must especially not conclude, from what is not included in a dictionary definition, that something is not included in the meaning of a word. Depend on native speakers. For instance, for some information on slump that you won't find in a dictionary, check out the phonosemantics of the SL- assonance and the -UMP rime in English. – John Lawler Nov 17 '18 at 17:34

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