Questions tagged [meaning]

This tag is for questions which a dictionary cannot answer about what a word means. If the question is about the meaning of a word that can't be understood outside its phrase or sentence, the "meaning-in-context" tag should be also used; for the meaning of a phrase, use the "phrase-meaning" tag instead.

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There's no dessert like this vs. There's no such dessert as this

I was wondering if the following statements mean the same: There's no dessert like this. There's no such dessert as this. It seems pretty obvious that the second one means "There's no such thing ...
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1answer
6 views

What does “walk you off a tower” mean?

Harry Potter fell over 100 feet: Fred: What do you expect? He fell over 100 feet. Geroge (says to Ron): Let's walk you off a tower and see what you look like. What does "walk you off a tower&...
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1answer
10 views

What does “Break into fours” mean?

Students find Fat lady is missing from portraits: Keep calm, everyone. Break into fours. Back to your common room. What does "Break into fours" mean?
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1answer
21 views

What is the meaning of “right there”? Does it mean “inside that thing”?

I'm watching a comedy movie called Bad Trip (2020). There are 2 male friends riding in a car. One of them who is in the passenger seat picks a DVD snap case and the driver, owner of the car, says: &...
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2answers
35 views

What does “trying to catch smoke with your bare hands” mean?

Bem says this words about Sirius Black who arrived at Duff Town: Bem: It's like trying to catch smoke... like trying to catch smoke with your bare hands. What does "trying to catch smoke with ...
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1answer
32 views

What does “another minute” refer to?

Malfoy got attacked by Buffbeak: Pansy: Does it hurt terribly, Draco? Malfoy: It comes and it goes. Still, I consider myself lucky. Madam Pomfrey said another minute and I could've lost my arm. What ...
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0answers
17 views

Is there anything missing from the original sentence?

All the kings and queens of the day were invited to the wedding feast, as well as all the immortal ones who lived on Mount Olympus – all that is, except for one, for no invitation was sent to Eris, ...
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1answer
39 views

How can a native speaker understand George is asking question without seeing subtitles?

George snatches newspaper clipping which is lying before Ron: George: Not flashing that clipping again? Ron: I haven't shown anyone. George: No, not a soul. Not unless you count Tom. How to ...
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0answers
25 views

What's the meaning of “Madame Onassis got nothing on you” in Rod Steward's “You wear it well” song?

I'm hearing a Rod Steward's song. Among its lyrics : You made me feel a millionaire and you wear it well Madame Onassis got nothing on you What is the meaning of that last sentence ? That Madame ...
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3answers
223 views

What does “we learned” mean here?

I am wondering what "we learned" means in the following sentences: I notice Will and Dad sizing each other up surreptitiously. In Dad’s company, oddly, Will seems a little diminished, a ...
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1answer
28 views

What does “a little less himself” mean here?

I am wondering what "a little less himself" means in the following sentences: I notice Will and Dad sizing each other up surreptitiously. In Dad’s company, oddly, Will seems a little ...
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3answers
409 views

What does “until she passes the five-year mark, Dad’s record to date” mean here?

I am wondering what "until she passes the five-year mark, Dad’s record to date" means in the following sentences: Séverine, Dad’s latest wife – French, not far off my age, one part ...
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2answers
35 views

What does “the broken nose” mean here?

I am wondering what "the broken nose" means in the following sentences: ‘Dad!’ I say, ‘You terrified poor Hannah!’ I mean it was a bit of an overreaction from her, dropping her glass like ...
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1answer
13 views

The two teams shared the spoils with a 1–1 result

What does this sentence mean? Especially" "with 1-1 result". The two teams shared the spoils with a 1–1 result.
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1answer
27 views

What does the “honest” in “honest mistake” imply?

I encountered this thread on Twitter by Will Amos. I made a really unfortunate mistake today & obviously I’m embarrassed by it. My camera was accidentally left on as I changed into work clothes ...
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1answer
21 views

Question about the duration

I have to answer a few questions about pandemics like: List the main known pandemics before the Covid? What was their time? Their root cause? How long did they last? How did they stop? If "...
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1answer
40 views

Meaning of “Shouldn’t you be living in a proper house?”

She turned her bleached face to him and gave a small nod. Elizabeth rammed the key into the lock and twisted it back and forth. Dexter looked at the shop-fronts opposite. One of them had a dull red ...
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0answers
25 views

What does “all a little worse for wear after a day of carousing” mean here?

I would like to know what "all a little worse for wear after a day of carousing" means in the following sentences: It is a few moments before the waitress regains consciousness. She is, it ...
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0answers
13 views

What does “The most they can get from her” mean here?

I would like to know what "The most they can get from her" means in the following sentences: It is a few moments before the waitress regains consciousness. She is, it appears, uninjured, ...
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1answer
28 views

What does “he gives me a kind of apologetic wince” mean here?

I would like to know what "he gives me a kind of apologetic wince" means in the following sentences: This is crazy, I think. I don’t have to drink it. I’m a thirty-four-year-old woman. I ...
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1answer
24 views

What does “spill out over my bottom lip” mean here?

I would like to know what "spill out over my bottom lip" means in the following sentences: This is crazy, I think. I don’t have to drink it. I’m a thirty-four-year-old woman. I don’t even ...
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2answers
29 views

What does “Methinks the lady does protest too much” mean here?

I would like to know what "Methinks the lady does protest too much" means in the following sentences: ‘Yep,’ says Will. ‘Lost all the feeling in the pads of these fingers.’ He holds up one ...
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3answers
1k views

Presupposition: “Is there a professor of linguistics at MIT?”

While reading a Wiki page about pragmatics and presuppositions, I came upon this explanation: Is there a professor of linguistics at MIT? » Either there is a professor of linguistics at MIT or there ...
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4answers
3k views

What does “that public schoolboy polish” mean here?

I would like to know what "that public schoolboy polish" means in the following sentences: ‘Yup,’ Will says. ‘We were at school together.’ I’m surprised. The other men have that public ...
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1answer
31 views

What does “Jules flicks him with champagne from her glass. ‘Oi!’” mean here?

I would like to know what "Jules flicks him with champagne from her glass. ‘Oi!’" means in the following sentences: ‘And he seemed so grown-up,’ Jules says, heedless of the interruption. ...
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1answer
34 views

What does “It was my summer job” mean here?

I would like to know what "It was my summer job" means in the following sentences: ‘So Charlie boy,’ Johnno says, ‘tell us. How did you two first meet?’ I think at first he means Charlie ...
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1answer
44 views

What does “A millions years ago” mean here?

I would like to know what "A millions years ago" means in the following sentences: ‘So Charlie boy,’ Johnno says, ‘tell us. How did you two first meet?’ I think at first he means Charlie ...
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1answer
21 views

What does “he’s looking between Charlie and Jules” mean here?

I would like to know what "he’s looking between Charlie and Jules" means in the following sentences: ‘So Charlie boy,’ Johnno says, ‘tell us. How did you two first meet?’ I think at first ...
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1answer
28 views

What does M.O. mean here?

What does mean "M.O." here? I have found a list of possible meanings for this acronym but do not know which applies. “Some people collect cars,” Fieldly says. “That’s not his M.O.—Carl ...
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3answers
47 views

What does “Myrna” mean in this context?

I have a text, where author thanks Meg McKeen, for being the best Myrna a girl could ask for. Alisson Hammer "You, Me and Us". Who is Myrna? Google directs me to Myrna Loy, but I don't see ...
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0answers
24 views

What does “sometimes I’ll have the impression” mean here?

I would like to know what "sometimes I’ll have the impression" means in the following sentences: A couple of times my gaze snags with Will’s over her shoulder. I don’t think it’s my fault: ...
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1answer
28 views

What does “tailored jackets that definitely don’t come from Next, like Charlie’s” mean here?

I would like to know what "tailored jackets that definitely don’t come from Next, like Charlie’s" means in the following sentences: This man is Duncan, apparently, and he’s married to ...
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1answer
34 views

What does “it was on a yoga retreat in Ibiza” mean here?

I would like to know what "it was on a yoga retreat in Ibiza" means in the following sentences: ‘Now,’ Will says, palm on my back as a gentle steer, warm through my dress, ‘let me introduce ...
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1answer
74 views

What does “Botox in real life” mean here?

I would like to know what "Botox in real life" means in the following sentences: ‘Now,’ Will says, palm on my back as a gentle steer, warm through my dress, ‘let me introduce you to some ...
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1answer
71 views

What does “Guilty!” mean in this context?

I would like to know what "Guilty!" means in the following sentences: ‘Hannah,’ Will says, turning to me with that famous, generous smile of his. ‘You look stunning.’ ‘Thanks.’ I take a big ...
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1answer
35 views

What is meant by Though of?

Get me a giant cauldron?” said Aeger, looking brighter. “Then we can brew all we need”. There was a great guffaw in the hall. “Invited us to stay for a while, have you Aeger?” “Of Course I’ll help, I ...
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2answers
51 views

How can a native speaker understand Mank is asking question without seeing subtitles?

Mank speaks about Modern Quixote movie character: Mank: Love him enough to make him president. But they won't, and they don't. How do you suppose that could happen? Could it be because, in their ...
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1answer
26 views

I wonder if there are some typos in this sentence: Ashely had pushed her past her patience pique

While reading a book I encountered the sentence I don't understand. Please give me some advice. Situation: During a class, a student, Ashley Bonny is caught being lackadaisical when she should pay ...
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1answer
31 views

“ It happened that she was out when we called.” ('called' here means what?) [closed]

It happened that she was out when we called. 'called' means visited or phoned?
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1answer
39 views

What does “can only heal so much” mean in this sentence?

I found the following sentence in an American novel (this one: here you can read the whole paragraph). A woman broke her wrist and just had her cast removed. She thinks she can start playing piano ...
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5answers
87 views

Meaning of “A bigger boy ran in the back door, and kicked it to”

‘I’ll go and get him,’ said Dexter. ‘Athena – Vicki must be sat near the warmth. She’s from sunnier climes, aren’t you, Vicki.’ He rounded her up, sidling and dancing with his arms out in their big ...
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1answer
20 views

Why do you have to put “being” here?

We think of a day as being the time from when we wake up to the time we go to sleep. Exactly when a person wakes up and goes to sleep is not important. Shouldn't the phrase, think A as B, means A ...
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1answer
18 views

What is the difference between “this medication works on me”, “this medication works for me” and “this medication works against me”?

What is the difference between "this medication works on me", "this medication works for me" and "this medication works against me"? The dictionary says "to work&...
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0answers
25 views

Meaning of “He rounded her up, sidling and dancing with his arms out in their big curve”

Dexter made the presentations. ‘We can’t stay, I’m afraid,’ said Elizabeth in her grand manner. The closed door next to the stove must lead to the bathroom: she could hear the dull splatter of a ...
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0answers
16 views

What does it mean to be a rebel in art? [closed]

I noticed this in an English book. There was a question about "your favorite artist". One of the questions was asking whether my favorite artist is a rebel. What kind of artist is called a &...
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1answer
25 views

Meaning of “the flap-handled”

The air shimmered with warmth. The table, large, wooden, scarred, was laid at one end with a bleached cotton cloth, a pile of bowls, a fistful of spoons. All the objects in the room looked like ...
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1answer
33 views

What does “bad someone for doing” mean?

In The Markenmore Mystery (1922) by J. S. Fletcher, a detective was talking to a sexton about a murdered man: “I suppose Mr. Guy Markenmore was pretty mad about her at that time, eh?” suggested Blick....
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1answer
13 views

What is the meaning of “tops” here?

we would see the Sun on his journey, crossing between the building tops from our side over to the RPO Building side. Does it simply mean "roofs"? So why "tops" and not "top&...
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2answers
23 views

What does “briefly noted” mean?

I often see the expression "briefly noted" on weblog posts (and also New Yorker). In general, what does it mean to say "something is briefly noted". Some Examples: In New Yorker ...
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0answers
31 views

Help me understand the lyrics of this song [closed]

I use music to learn English. I want to learn the lyrics of this song but I can't seem to understand what the singer says. I can't find the lyrics online maybe it's an unreleased demo, if you can help ...

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