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Questions tagged [expressions]

This tag is for questions which a dictionary cannot answer asking the meaning of a particular expression.

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23
votes
6answers
110k views

Difference between “in time” and “on time”

I have an appointment at 8 and I arrive there at 7:55, is it "on time" or "in time"? What about "the nick of time"?
6
votes
5answers
156k views

“So am I” or “So do I”?

What would be the correct way to reply to a statement such as: "I belong to this group" Would it be "So do I" or "So am I"?
13
votes
2answers
5k views

Some of you will have met me before vs Some of you met me before

I really do not get how "will" and past infinitive is used here. This comes from an example in a textbook, explaining usage of will in assumptions: Some of you will have met me before. I wonder, ...
0
votes
2answers
128 views

How often is the expression “get on well” used? Is there any difference with “get along”?

I have been talking with a person from US and when I said something like this: They do not get on well with others She didn´t understand me at first, but later she said that was a funny sentence ...
14
votes
3answers
16k views

How is “any more than” used to compare two different situations?

In the following quote by Billy Sunday Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than going to a garage makes you an automobile. Can anyone please explain/elaborate the usage and ...
26
votes
3answers
3k views

Meaning of “8 going on 48”

I don't understand what this expression means: Little adults are the children that parents describe as 'eight going on forty-eight'.
2
votes
3answers
2k views

Why do native speaker tend to use passive voice?

I found native people prefer to use passive voice in a sentence. For example: Tonight's moon can be seen from anywhere worldwide. We have reason to believe that progress can be made. Be ...
14
votes
9answers
7k views

An appropriate term for an overly by-the-rules person

In Swedish, we've got a term that loosely translates as paragraph jockey. It refers to a person, often a clerk or a referee, who is following all the rules, prescriptions and agreements ad absurdum. ...
0
votes
1answer
31 views

Which pair is exchangeable, “besides” and “aside from” or “except for” and “aside from”?

This is one of the examples from cambridge dict. Do you play any other sports besides basketball? Oxford dict consider "besides", "except for" and "aside from" are synonyms. To simplify the ...
0
votes
2answers
468 views

His degree was (hard/hardly) earned

His degree was hard earned. His degree was hardly earned. Which is right?
22
votes
8answers
13k views

English equivalent of “garam” (warming) food?

I want to know how we say in English when we want to say that almonds or other dry fruits are "hot" for our body. I am an Indian, and in India, we use the word garam which literally means hot in ...
16
votes
5answers
212k views

“Hope this help” or “Hope this helps”?

Good evening all, I often see people write "hope this helps" at the end of a communication, especially when they are trying to answer other people's queries about computer problems. Recently, my ...
11
votes
6answers
185k views

Have a nice travel?

I am looking for some kind way of replying to an email when the other person is saying that he will be traveling and asks for more time to complete something. It appears that "Have a nice day" could ...
8
votes
5answers
5k views

What do you call it when someone searches through your stuff?

This is one of the things that I don't really know the proper name for, because I've never heard anyone say it, but I know how to explain it. Let's say a toddler is searching through your backpack, ...
5
votes
2answers
220 views

Why does “will” go before a noun in this sentence?

Why does "will" go before the word "Twitter" while there's no question? Under no circumstances will Twitter be liable in any way for any Content...
4
votes
4answers
3k views

“Literally” Vs “In the true sense of the word”

The Cambridge and other dictionaries say that "literally" can be used as an emphasis on something. But there is another term: "in the true sense of the word", which to mea has a quite similar meaning ...
4
votes
3answers
612 views

Another way to say “We are not relations.”

In the movie Forrest Gump, Lieutenant Dan was asking Gump and Bubba whether they are twin brothers, but Gump said: "No....we are not relations, Sir." Is it also correct to say if I say this? ...
2
votes
1answer
11k views

Meaning of expression “ blanket rationale ”

I strongly agree with this point, and don't buy the blanket rationale that speed trumps everything in a startup. I couldn't find its meaning anywhere, what does blanket rationale mean?
8
votes
5answers
89k views

'recently' with present perfect and past

When do we use recently with past tenses? I came across some sentences in which I couldn't understand the use of recently. I recently wrote to my grandmother. They were working in Canada recently. ...
6
votes
4answers
27k views

Difference and usage between “I dare say” and “dare I say it”

I dare say is defined on Dictionary.com as: to venture to say (something); assume (something) as probable. I've also heard of the expression dare I say it as well; however, I was unable to find a ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Is “Holy” used with anything?

I have heard several expressions e.g. "Holy Shit", "Holy Jesus", "Holy Mother of God" even "Holy Zeus" et al for cursing purposes in different English movies. Some of the phrases are relevant, but ...
4
votes
1answer
592 views

Is it idiomatic to put “nonetheless” at the end of a sentence?

this comes from "NoSQL & SQL Data Modeling" by Ted Hills. The rectangle represents a logical record type. This is not a type in the sense of a generalization/specialization hierarchy. It is a ...
3
votes
3answers
2k views

When I need quarters

Are the following expressions grammatically correct? If not, how should I correct each? Giving 10 dollars to the store clerk: Can I get some change in quarters? Can I get some quarters in exchange?...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

uses of with, at, of

I would like to now if I am using the prepositions correctly: "She was not pleased with her job and was tired of doing the same thing every day, but everybody was surprised at her attitude" I ...
2
votes
2answers
883 views

I don't understand what “that is” means in this passage

It's not a problem to rely on a powerful weapon. If you can find one, that is. I don't get that "that is". Could somebody please explain it?
1
vote
3answers
3k views

“Do you like the color red” vs “Do you like the red color”?

When your favorite color is red, do you say, I like the color red. or I like the red color. Is there any difference of meaning between the two ways of saying about your favorite color?
9
votes
4answers
16k views

When do you use this expression 'I am not a fan of '

I understand the meaning when it is said like 'I am not a fan of Indian food or horror movies' Here, you are a fan of things like movies, food etc. but I do not understand why it is correct to ...
6
votes
1answer
358 views

Why are lakes called “Lake Soandso” but seas are called “Soandso Sea”?

I am an English teacher for Brazilians. I was explaining the Great Lakes, and after that I mentioned the sea in Europe and noticed that the names were in a reversed order: Which of the great lakes ...
4
votes
1answer
403 views

what is the meaning of “minute debris”?

What does "minute debris" mean in the context of an avalanche? I can't find it anywhere. The fragments of ice hit the ground around them. The ground beneath his feet trembled and shifted with the ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

How do you say two or several things are about equivalent to each other in English?

How do you say two or several things are about equivalent to each other in English? For example, if I post a question here and receive two answers which seem equally good to me, and I don't know ...
4
votes
2answers
16k views

“What time is it” versus “what is the time”

Does it matter if I use "what time is it" versus "what is the time". In what cases should I use what time is it? For example would I say: Hey steve, what is the time. or Hey steve, what time ...
3
votes
3answers
6k views

Meaning of “Then again”

"Then again, it didn't matter, did it?" What's the meaning of "then again" here? Is it the same as "thinking better"?
3
votes
2answers
87 views

Is miscarriage or stillborn a better choice stylistically of an idea?

I used an expression for describing a really bad idea that already from start was bound to fail: ...that was a miscarriage for an idea... In an answer, a person pointed out that he'd prefer ...
3
votes
2answers
332 views

What Victorian profanities might Charlotte Brontë be referring to here? (in Jane Eyre) [closed]

Eliza and Georgiana, evidently acting according to orders, spoke to me as little as possible: John thrust his tongue in his cheek whenever he saw me, and once attempted chastisement; but as I ...
3
votes
1answer
4k views

What are “class rolls”?

I found this expression while preparing for the IELTS test: "Teachers will take the class rolls." What are these "class rolls"?
2
votes
3answers
4k views

What to call it when someone always looks for greener pastures?

Someone who always looks for the "better" and more ideal places (to live), jobs, things to buy that fit his taste/mood etc. He is always looking for better because he always feels it's "not enough".
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Is “How long will you be” correct?

When you're seeking to know in how long from now someone will complete an activity, can you say "How long will you be?" And what's your recommended phrase if this is incorrect?
2
votes
2answers
54 views

Is this a clear expression, “on a rainy day, Bob is grumpy with a 60 % chance, happy with 40 %”?

This question comes from this post, where I am trying to express the following meaning clearly and concisely. this is clear but not concise on a rainy day, Bob is grumpy with a 60 % chance, Bob is ...
2
votes
1answer
562 views

Is that any expression in English for “not too sweet tea”?

Is that any expression in English for not too sweet tea? Here, we normally say it is as sweet as guava, which means the taste of tea is just half sweet, because the amount of sugar is reduced.
1
vote
1answer
33 views

A proverb / an expression to imply: “Enough is as good as a feast” or “Too much spoil, too little doesn't satisfy”

Please imagine a situation that a person goes too far in doing something and in another task they son't put enough effort! Or a cook who's making a food and salts a it too much, and the other food ...
1
vote
2answers
41 views

“all of the balls” or “all the balls” in the box?

I answered a question just now Given a set S = {x, y, z}, then all the possible subsets of S are {}, {x}, {y}, {z}, {x, y}, {x, z}, {y, z}, {x, y, z} where, {} denotes the empty set. I ...
1
vote
2answers
52 views

Are “right now” and “currently” exchangeably here?

Chapter 2 of the book "C++ Primer Plus, 6th Edition by Stephen Prata (2012)" says Right now the main point to remember is that C++ syntax requires you to begin the definition of the main() function ...
1
vote
1answer
11 views

Is it grammatical and idiomatic to simplify this expression “the amount of that function that increases in this interval” this way?

The lecturer is saying we can then say that the gradient of this line is equal to the amount of that function that increases in this interval divided by the length of the interval where the ...
1
vote
1answer
439 views

How to politely ask for clearer explanation when getting lost in workplace?

As a second language speaker, I always concern if my interpersonal reaction is proper and polite enough. For instance,sometimes I got some email from other native colleagues who wrote in phrases or ...
0
votes
0answers
22 views

At the beginning of a chapter or an article , is “we provide” or “we'll provide” better, or no difference?

From this book "Deep Learning and Convolutional Neural Networks for Medical Image Computing" Abstract Computerized algorithms and solutions in processing and diagnosis mammography X-ray, ...
0
votes
1answer
23 views

Is this mathematical explanation of “except” and “other than” right?

This question is derived from this one. Assume "not including" and "including" have two mutually exclusive meanings. It is impossible "not including" and "including" at the same time. The Oxford ...
0
votes
1answer
64 views

What is the most common sarcastic response to something you already know?

How sarcastically imply someone who is trying to teach you something that you are well aware in that case Edited: I am going to find an up-to-date English metaphorical and sarcastic expression or ...
0
votes
0answers
18 views

Which expression is more idiomatic? `easier to read`, `has more readability` or some expression else?

I asked a question in this post. Is “to have xx systems achieve xx-level” easier to read than “to achieve xx-level of xx systems”? When I got an answer for that question, I felt readability may ...
0
votes
0answers
14 views

“using Python” seems not to be more clear and idiomatic than “with Python” at least in the stackoverflow community?

this question is a derivation from this post. there are 95,237 search Results for "using Python", lot of them come from "you're using Python" there are 72,612 search Results for "with Python", come ...
0
votes
2answers
217 views

“Greetings” as a greeting

In one of the episodes of Rick and Morty, The Ricks Must Be Crazy, Rick says "Greetings" to a crowd. It's not the first time I hear this expression, which seems to be used as a greeting. What's the ...