Questions tagged [interpretation]

This tag is used for questions about how a word or phrase is interpreted by a Native English speaker.

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15
votes
1answer
7k views

What does “Get a damn room!” mean?

A moment in a movie went like this: A woman was sitting on a man’s lap and about to kiss him in her room which has extremely thin walls. Her neighbor shouted suddenly, "Just kiss already! Get a ...
9
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4answers
1k views

Interpretation of an integrated relative in “my brother who doesn't [live in New York]” in context

Here goes a sentence from a grammar test published on the online version of The Telegraph (UK): I should like to introduce you to my sister Amanda, who lives in New York, to Mark, my brother who ...
8
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3answers
2k views

Is this BBC article ambiguous, or am I interpreting it incorrectly?

I came across a BBC article titled Ten laws that India should scrap. In the section about salt taxes, it first states: In 2013-14 collections from the tax amounted to $538,000 (£343,400), which was ...
8
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3answers
2k views

The exact meaning of 'Mom made me a sandwich'

Mom made me a sandwich. Does this necessarily include the meaning that Mom made the sandwich available to me? Or does this only mean that Mom made the sandwich, leaving it to context whether or not ...
8
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1answer
2k views

“Improving pain”, is it desirable?

I have read improving together with terms like pain multiple times, and never was confident this means the pain is reduced so its an improvement of pain in a sense of suffering. Or it might mean the ...
7
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5answers
2k views

Please tell me what “count with” means

Among the lyrics, there is the sentence "you can count me with the dreamers." This phrase is from movie called Tangled. It's the lyrics from "I've got a dream". What exactly does that mean? count A ...
4
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2answers
1k views

What does “switch off” mean exactly in this sentence?

I need some help to interpret a sentence. I would like to know what "switch it off" means here for a native speaker. The girl here is thinking about how some people have the ability (which she doesn't ...
4
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3answers
485 views

“All X but Y including W did Z” -> did W do Z?

In a the construction "All X but Y including W did Z", is it understood as W did Z, or W didn't do Z? Example: "All kids but 2 including Bob got a candy". Did Bob get a candy?
4
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1answer
424 views

How do you interpret this english sentence?

On a message board where we discuss English grammar in our native language (which is Japanese), there is a discussion about how to interpret this sentence: You'll be frustrated with anything less ...
4
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2answers
2k views

“You will never be the man your mother is.”

"You will never be the man your mother is" is without a doubt one of the most popular (and perhaps overused) insults. Yet I feel like I've never really grasped the true meaning it carries. What ...
4
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1answer
649 views

You made the cut?

Here's from a TV show "3rd Rock From the Sun S1E06 Green Eyed Dick". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgBb9-xaV3Y 5:42 Hey! It says "men" on the door. You made the cut? (Laugh) I don't ...
4
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3answers
335 views

Does 'may' here mean 'can' or 'might'?

A sentence is in Disjunctive Normal Form if it is a disjunction, the disjuncts of which are themselves conjunctions of sentence letters and negated sentence letters. In this characterization we ...
4
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1answer
879 views

Meaning of perfect aspect in infinite clauses

Motivated by this question I've realised I have some difficulty in interpreting infinite clauses. What is an infinite clause? One of my grammar books says that an non-finite clause is a dependent ...
4
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1answer
55 views

Interpretation of adverbial clauses meaning time or condition, such as when, if

I'm learning English with text books, and one of them says tenses of adverbial clauses which means time or condition(such as when-clause or if-clause) depend on the main clauses to which they are ...
3
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3answers
163 views

Is my interpretation of this paragraph from a horror short story by Arthur C. Doyle right?

I'm reading Arthur Conan Doyle's LOT NO. 249, and I'm having some troubles understanding the first paragraph. Of the dealings of Edward Bellingham with William Monkhouse Lee, and of the cause of ...
3
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2answers
33 views

On the interpretation of this sentence that contains “of such of”

It is sufficient to say that though the proof was invalid, the proposition remained true, and carried with it the truth of such of Carnot's deductions as were based solely upon it. I had some ...
3
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5answers
113 views

When do I need to add 's to the first noun (and when don't I need to)?

Below you can see 63 of a Smart Card security target. (Here) The question is : "When I need to add an 's to the first noun and when I don't?" I mean which one of the below expressions is true? JCVM'...
3
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2answers
57 views

How many items did she want?

Source I mentioned last week that I still have my grandmother’s button box. When she sold her house and dispersed her belongings it was one of the two things I wanted most. (Along with her sewing ...
3
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1answer
134 views

What's the meaning of “turn over” in the sentence below?

May a new year turn over a new leaf, and try a new way forward. Source: JoongAng Daily I searched up the meaning of "turn over" in the Merriam-Webster dictionary 1 a : to turn from an upright ...
3
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1answer
542 views

Interpretation of a passage

I'm not sure if I'm allowed to answer this qestion. But here it is: These young people have grown up with sociable robot pets, the companions of their playrooms, which portrayed emotion, said ...
2
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1answer
114 views

Is this definition of 'World War No.2' correct?

I read this at Mental floss: That's right—in February 1919, just a few months after World War 1 ended, a story appeared in the UK's Manchester Guardian called “World War No. 2.” The Oxford English ...
2
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2answers
68 views

What should I take “should I nod or shake my head here?” to mean?

I read this in Kafka on the Shore: The girl frowns and gives me a hard look. "You don't watch at all?" I shake my head silently. Wait a sec – should I nod or shake my head here? I go with the nod. ...
2
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2answers
1k views

Why 'brought out' rather than simply 'brought'?

Looking for some explanations, it seems that the use of 'out' in some phrases is just a thing we need to accept, there is no rule around that. Is that true? If yes, how can I know when to use the '...
2
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1answer
254 views

Spoken text in need of interpretation

I shall not dwell on that, but pass on to the taxpayers’ revolt. We people don’t see the effect of all this. You know we used to say we must have this money to help pay the taxes, this liquor tax ...
2
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2answers
143 views

Is 'The something product' equivalent to 'The product of something'?

I was reading the news during lunch, and this sentence in a sports article about Johnny Manziel jumped out at me: The Texas A&M product completed 147 of 258 passes for 1,675 yards with seven ...
2
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1answer
146 views

Is word “turbo” old-fashioned?

I need to translate a childish insult "turbo-dweeb" (from English to Russian), and I'm a bit confused about the word "turbo". There's a calque of "turbo" here in Russian. But if used as an insult, it ...
2
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1answer
541 views

How should I interpret this sentence?

The only time one of my children had been ill was like that. She was comparing the way one of her children had been ill to another child when she says like that as a reference to her own past ...
2
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2answers
167 views

How to interpret some fixed phrase/idiom when there is another literal meaning?

I come across this question when I encounter the phrase "for the record". According to the Cambridge Dictionary, for the record Meaning: something that you say before you tell someone ...
2
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4answers
927 views

Is it possible for the ‘yet’ within ‘Are we there yet?’ to mean ‘still’?

Are we there yet? I know that this sentence usually means Have we got there so far (‘at this time’)? and it is even somewhat idiomatic. But ‘yet’ has another meaning, ‘still’, which may give the ...
2
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1answer
41 views

is the author saying that higher education is not a right, but a privilege— OR, that it's a right?

So, in class we were studying this article called "Access to Higher Education". I had to summarize the article, and I have no idea why, but this article confused me because: is the author for higher ...
2
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3answers
14k views

Did + definite time in past . “Did you take your medicine this morning?”

My understanding is that when we say "this morning", it refers to a definite time in the past. If yes, then, "did you take your medicine this morning?" , is the correct question. If no, then, it ...
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2answers
294 views

What does “I did my George Washington report on beavers instead” mean?

I read a figure book. at the figure, i think that a girl reported to the student about not George Washington but beavers. I am confused with interpretation of the sentence . I am not native speaker. ...
1
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1answer
446 views

I hope he kept the receipt

Here's from a TV show "3rd Rock From the Sun S1E4 Dick is from Mars, Sally is from Venus". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_VUxhdOpX5w 17:18 Hey, check out the bartender. Ooh, god's gift to ...
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2answers
73 views

Can you explain about the correct interpretation of this sentence containing double gerunds?

This constant obsession about attaining a ghostly pallor and observing our behemothic interest in the Duke’s every move and the Duchess’s every outfit makes me think that the British may have been ...
1
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1answer
75 views

Help me understand the meaning of these sentences

I know better. In recent years, South Korea’s parliamentarians have largely managed to give up literally fighting. Yet metaphorically, warfare remains entrenched. Source. I have no idea about ...
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2answers
1k views

What does William Shakespeare mean by “murder, though it have no tongue, will speak.”?

I read a book titled 'An Isolated Incident' written by Susan R. Sloan. In chapter one of the book, she quotes Murder, though it have no tongue, will speak. How can this be interpreted in simple ...
1
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2answers
97 views

Is this 'providing' a conjunction or an adjective verb?

I wonder it's clear to natives whether providing is a conjunction or a adjective verb. How about this one? The Giants aren't the first sports team to dabble in providing fans with wireless Internet ...
1
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2answers
82 views

“Configured” vs “Properly Configured”

I have a situation where I need to describe two states. One is when something is configured properly and one where it is misconfigured. Is it valid to contrast "configured" and "misconfigured", or ...
1
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2answers
45 views

Guest workers, many from South Asia, who spend years

I have a question about the meaning of some sentence fragment in this NY Times article: There is a broad consensus that the Saudi ideological juggernaut has disrupted local Islamic traditions in ...
1
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1answer
2k views

What does “I've been for you” mean?

This a stanza from the song Talkin' karate blues by Townes Van Zandt: I said, "I believe I better go check another place" he said, "Ha so, Yankee don't like my race" I said, "Now there's a ...
1
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1answer
275 views

Ellipsis with apostrophe?

This is a strophe from one song: "But the times were hard, Lord, the jobs were few all through Tecumseh valley but she asked around and a job she found tending bar at Gypsy Sally's" ...
1
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1answer
204 views

Which word does “evidence” refer to in this paragraph?

Page 79 of Mokard 2.2 (A smart card) security target : The TSF shall be able to relate the identity of the originator of the information, and the application package contained in the ...
1
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2answers
93 views

I don't understand this sentence of an article about Windows 10

Here's a quote from the article of COMPUTERWORLD: http://www.computerworld.com/article/2825116/free-at-last-after-windows-10-consumers-wont-pay-for-updates-or-upgrades.html The two put Microsoft's ...
1
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2answers
212 views

What is the reference of “from” in this sentence?

Below, you can see page 77 of ST_Lite_JxE081_v00.02 .It is a Security-Target (a document that indicate some security specification of an IT production) for JCOP Smart cards. TSF = Target Security ...
1
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1answer
30 views

Is this implication of the word “mythological” fine?

I read this in "Kafka on the shore": Greek gods are more mythological than religious figures. By that I mean they have the same character flaws humans do. They fly off the handle, get horny, ...
1
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1answer
15 views

Meaning of a rule in the guideline

I have hard time understanding the meaning of one phrase. I understand that this might be an open-ended question, but still maybe native speakers could make it a bit more clear. This phrase is ...
1
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1answer
27 views

How to change a reported speech into a direct speech, in Magic's song 'Rude'

In the words of Magic's song "Rude" there is a following sentench. You say I'll never get your blessing 'til the day I die. Which will be correct, if this sentence is put into direct speech? (a) You ...
1
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2answers
46 views

Adding a new accomplishment without sounding pretentious

In an informal interview where the host and the audience already know about the new accomplishment, the interviewee brags like in the following sentences. Can you imagine! I am a journalist, a ...
1
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2answers
302 views

Confusion about usage of the resist

The verb 'resist' means withstand the action or effect of. Now, I want to convey that a person (suppose "he") has a tendency to be on top always, like he always wants to be the best among the lot....
1
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2answers
53 views

Please simply this sentence for me

“In the feast of Christmas,” says Stow in his “Survey,” “there was in the King's House, wheresoever he lodged, a Lord of Misrule, or Master of merry disports, and the like had ye in the house of every ...