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Questions tagged [phrase-meaning]

Use this tag for questions about the meaning and usage of a particular phrase, for which a dictionary cannot answer.

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meaning of “Figures” in this context

"Ach," laughs the baker's wife, "such a funny man, the Count." "I knew you'd like that," Dracula says, forcing a chuckle, "now get out of my way." At last he opens the front door but time has ...
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22 views

What does “Happen the gin'll work” mean?

It' a quote from TV drama Gentleman Jack S1E01, a historical drama, set in England during the first Industrial Revolution. Here are the lines: A: She says they were engaged. B: Did he know ...
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1answer
15 views

meaning: Wheat Belly

I've heard "beer belly," but what does "Wheat Belly" mean in the following book title? Wheat Belly: Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight, and Find Your Path Back to Health I'd appreciate your help.
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meaning of the word “some” in this context

"Right," says Dracula, slamming the front door. "I've decided to stay. Pull down the window shades quickly— quickly! Let's move it!" "What window shades?" asks the baker. "There are none, ...
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28 views

What does “play me close” mean?

From Maroon 5's girls like you: Roll that Backwood, babe, and play me close. Slang websites show the phrase means trick or deceive but I'm not sure this is what the singer means.
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21 views

Are there ways to rephrase this sentence?

Caroline was skiing when she broke her leg. Is when a conjunction or adverb? Can I replace when with the word and? Are there ways to rephrase this sentence?
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47 views

What does “cold-linking” mean?

A scene in the movie The Departed: Billy (to Trooper Brown, with a gun to Colin's head): Look, he's Costello's rat, all right? I got boxes of tapes! Evidence! Other documents proving it! ...
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17 views

what is the defference between 'I don't have anything' and 'I have nothing'

I don't have anything. I have nothing. What is the differnece between them? I wanna know the nuance, because to me they just look the same.
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23 views

How to understand “All could devil set me free”? [on hold]

I'm listening to this song "A Whisper in the Noise - All my.." All could devil set me free I'm so tired I can't sleep All my feelings gravity's Spinning in the world over me ...
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1answer
15 views

Could you write the sentence in bold in other words?

Now he starts to stir. The fluttering of his eyelids is a response to some age-old, unexplainable instinct that the sun is nearly down and his time is near. Tonight, he is particularly hungry and as ...
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1answer
16 views

What is the meaning of “all the news that's fit to print”?

The heroic image of journalist selflessly gathering "all the news that's fit to print" and publishing it "without fear or favour" is itself a heavy idealisation. I know it is a newspaper motto, ...
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1answer
19 views

Meaning of “He may not come today”?

I suppose that He may not come today means that he is not allowed to come today. Right? But what is the right way to say that he is allowed not to come today? He may not to come today Is that ...
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4answers
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What is the meaning of the simile “quick as silk”?

It seems that the Internet is unhelpful at all. The original quote, where this simile appears, is: “Once upon a time,” began Frank switching, quick as silk, to a sonorous story-telling voice... ...
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1answer
23 views

How should I understand “is its own”?

In general I do not understand the usage of "is its own" in a sentence. For example how should I understand "is its own" in the following sentence? Since the hand of a clock is its own clearly ...
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1answer
19 views

What does the phrase “shadows dance on the gravel underneath it” mean here?

Here is a sentence from a sentence: Sunlight kisses the yellow leaves of a tree by the lake, as shadows dance on the gravel underneath it. I am not sure about the phrase ""shadows dance on the ...
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1answer
24 views

What does “suggests after the event…” mean?

Just as the development of a society sometimes suggests after the event a pattern not in the minds of its creators, the transition from the old convict system to the new did not always follow the ...
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1answer
38 views

What is a “tomato word”?

In this explanation of the word myopic I get stuck by this sentence: In terms of pronunciation: it's a tomato/tomahto word: pronounce it "my-OP-ick" or "my-OH-pick," although that short o sound ...
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2answers
20 views

What is the meaning of the phrase “provocatively elliptical”?

The following line can be found in the novel We by Yevgeny Zamyatin: a laconic language that frequently lapses into the provocatively elliptical and imparts a sensation of breathlessness. The ...
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0answers
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You can expect to: [closed]

advance the end-to-end process workflow shorten IT support delivery time reduce operational costs deliver consistent and predictable IT experience for end-customers be ready to scale up on demand.
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1answer
18 views

Does the phrase “literary servility” have a negative meaning in this paragraph

Following paragraph is from the novel We by Yevgeny Zamyatin: Antagonised by Zamyatin's insistence on telling the truth as he saw it, by his open disdain for anything that smacked of literary ...
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1answer
20 views

“in the morning on Sunday” and “on the morning of Sunday”

Jesse takes the train in the morning on Sunday. or Jesse takes the train in the morning of Sunday. It looks to me that both are correct. If yes, do they have different connotations?
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1answer
45 views

Are they equivalent: “prolonged periods of high unemployment” and “persistently high levels of unemployment”?

...the program tackles broader labour market problems, such as shortages of skilled workers, prolonged periods of high unemployment, and ... What I am trying to convey is that the unemployment rate ...
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1answer
16 views

“If you pay for my ticket then we will be quits.” — what's the meaning?

I just came across the following sentence; If you pay for my ticket then we will be quits. What does the phrase "we will be quits" mean in there? Please, elaborate!
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A worker who takes orders in McDonalds

what do you call a worker who asks me about what i want to eat? I mean it's not a waiter and it's not a hostess i guess. And what do they say when there is no any line and they are ready to serve ...
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4answers
2k views

When a company launches a new product do they “come out” with a new product or do they “come up” with a new product?

When a company launches a new product do they "come out" with a new product or do they "come up" with a new product?
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3answers
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“to play out” meaning

After that, the back-seat chattering stopped. When Mr. Hampton looked into his rearview mirror he saw his daughter sending a text message on her cellphone. “Katie, you shouldn’t be texting all the ...
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1answer
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“milling over the grass” meaning?

Sirius stared around at the students milling over the grass, looking rather haughty and bored, but very handsomely so. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix I'm not sure what "milling over ...
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4answers
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One of the students whose mobile _missing(is or are)

Usage of "one of" if a relative pronoun whose is used in the sentence what will be the verb? One of the students whose mobile (is/are) missing
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1answer
26 views

Meaning of pay by use and potential alternatives

A company is experimenting with a new licensing model. It is called "Pay by use". However, this does not make sense to me. In my understanding, "Pay by use" means: "I compensate for the hotdog by ...
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1answer
68 views

What is the meaning of this phrase? [closed]

Can anyone rewrite this phrase in an easier fashion, so I can understand it: The last function of reason is to recognize that there is an infinity of things which are beyond it. It is but feeble if ...
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1answer
29 views

What does the “last then” phrase mean in the given sentence?

What is the meaning of the "Last then." phrase in the following sentence? Last then. Although I’ll concede that some online degree programs aren’t accredited and not worth the time, it’s simply ...
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2answers
353 views

What can the phrase “is embedded in a whale of a bill” mean?

Here is an excerpt from “Abstinence Or Obstinacy?” (The Washington Post; May 17, 2002): "Soon after, the measure providing more money for President Bush's cherished abstinence-only program sailed out ...
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1answer
457 views

Proper way to express “He disappeared them”

While watching an early episode of the TV show, "The Blacklist," one of the characters used the phrase: We got the list of the people he disappeared. I'm sure they meant the people the bad guy ...
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1answer
19 views

How to understand “alone of everyone” in this context

He made a small choking noise, then looked round at Kingsley and the man with short grey hair, who alone of everyone in the room had remained entirely silent so far. Harry Potter and the Order ...
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1answer
35 views

What does the word “brembedell” mean?

I heard this word in a song by Nicki Minaj and Britney Spears. This line: "Anyway, brembedell, whats that? I don’t know: Femme Fatale." What does the word "brembedell" mean?
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2answers
2k views

What do “high sea” and “carry” mean in this sentence?

This is a line from Google's definition of "poop": (of a wave) break over the stern of (a ship), sometimes causing it to capsize. "carrying a high sea, we were badly pooped" This line doesn't ...
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1answer
32 views

What's the meaning of “what it means for {someone} to be in some place”?

There is this context: "Since we are discussing the relationship of space, time, and logic, let us talk about time-travel paradoxes. We first have to ask ourselves what it means to travel back ...
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1answer
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'Alex is a son of Smith.' and 'Smith is a father of Alex.' carry same meaning or different meaning?

In terms of Data Modeling, either of the following two relationships imply the same meaning. I mean I can use any one of them. (For Specific two Individuals) IS_A_SON_OF IS_A_FATHER_OF Example Alex ...
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3answers
24 views

apologies vs apology

How to define when a single apology or apologies are to be used in the case of a singular personal mistake? Is using my sincere apologies valid if there are multiple recipients or if you want to ...
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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 ...
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1answer
15 views

when describing age

I recently came across this sentence in my English class and found it a little weird. It said, "A girl of about nine years old had recently described ..." Often I hear people say "a girl about nine ...
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1answer
51 views

What does “make something the success it is” mean?

What does "make something the success it is" mean? As a language learner, I don't know if the phrase is idiomatic and grammatical. These people have made the industry the success it is today. ...
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1answer
2k views

You're three for three

Here is a dialogue from Dilbert: Pointy-Haired Boss: Now let's hear what Dilbert did this week. Dilbert: I unnecessarily duplicated Ted's work because you forgot you asked both of us to do ...
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1answer
23 views

There be no doing

Plot: A is a fat woman, and there is a B fatter than A. A asked her husband, "B's bigger than me, right?" Her husband answered, "Yeah, there's no getting around her on the sidewalk." ...
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1answer
19 views

Fox hung meaning in context

— I'm reading a book by Richard Hughes, The Fox in the Attic. In the first page, chapter one "Polly and Rachel" there is a phrase that I didn't get it. "and here in a sodden tangle of brambles the ...
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1answer
39 views

Feed sb sth VS feed sb on sth [closed]

Sentences: I feed the dog biscuits. I feed the dog on biscuits. Does feed on mean to give as a regular food, and feed mean simply to give food? Explain. Thank you.
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21 views

Meaning of 'ends meet'

What is the meaning of ends meet in this context Hi, This email is to inform you that your application has been rejected. As the Test scores were not enough. However, we wish you all success ...
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1answer
29 views

What does mean “to get {somebody} {something}”

Could you say if I'm correct translating the following sentence: And I'd like to see about getting Harry some contacts. like And I'd like to see about providing Harry with some contacts. I'm ...
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2answers
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“taking their lead from him” in this context

He(Neville) had not once mentioned his meeting with Harry, Ron and Hermione on the closed ward in St Mungo's and, taking their lead from him, they had kept quiet about it too. Harry Potter and ...
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2answers
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Charles Dickens bleak house interpretation

It's from Bleak-House. Chapter Down in Lincolnshire ( LXVI) Some of her old friends, principally to be found among the peachy-cheeked charmers with the skeleton throats, did once occasionally say, ...