Questions tagged [phrases]

A phrase is a group of words that make a unit of syntax with a single grammatical function.

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30 views

What is the meaning of 'When tigers used to smoke' [closed]

I am confused about the phrase When tigers used to smoke I am thinking it mean never or long back. Can anyone elaborate?
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1answer
21 views

What does the phrase “tool manufacture and food for your livestock” mean here?

Please help me figure out the meaning of the phrase "tool manufacture and food for your livestock" in the following sentence (not available online) from the description of the game "...
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1answer
18 views

What is the meaning of I have been broken

If you see, I was broken makes sense to me. It means you're having a very difficult time due to say some tragedy. But I want to say it like Once you are broken, it will always xyz. But to me, it seems ...
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3 views

A website for identifying the different phrases in the sentence [migrated]

I was wondering if anyone knew of a website that allows you to paste in your sentence and the site will identify the individual phrases in that sentence. For example, I paste in the sentence and the ...
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2answers
23 views

What does “leave work until the last minute” mean?

I saw a new phrase today in ''Interchange'' Book #2 page 21: Some people leave work until the last minute, this is a bad habit that can cause trouble. What does this phrase mean?
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15 views

What does the phrase “spin each puzzle around” mean here?

Please help me figure out the meaning of the phrase "spin each puzzle around" in the following sentence from the description of the game "Spek": Shapes merge and separate as you ...
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1answer
14 views

How do you use phrase named “get along ”?

I have learned one English phrase recently but i am facing doubt of it's using. According to dictionary "get along" means be friend or deal with something. So aren't these question right ...
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2answers
30 views

Is this phrase okay to use to convey bathing with bucket and mug?

In India, most people use this kind of thing for bathing (Shower is for rich people and luxury. Not everyone can afford it here.). A bucket of water and a mug. Now, I want to say that "Yesterday,...
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3answers
39 views

Formal phrases in scientific texts

I am writing a formal text (thesis) and I would like to use the formulation ... results must be taken with a grain of salt. Although it seems that it is used in scientific papers (see this question),...
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1answer
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“More likely than not” - (1) How likely is it for you in percentage terms? (2) Any phrase describing exactly the opposite?

I feel the phrase "more likely than not" is often seen or heard here and there, sometimes in a sentence, other times just the phrase alone like the following ones. "More likely than ...
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23 views

Does “excepting that” here mean “but”?

In "Dr. Thorndyke's Case-Book" by Austin Freeman", a woman was talking to a detective about another killed woman, saying: "Oh, she liked him well enough. He is a tall, good-...
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2answers
49 views

The meaning of “out from”

When I was learning English by watching CNN news, I saw a news with the title “ The polls show Biden is a clear favorite 100 days out from an unprecedented election”, I want to know that is “out from” ...
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Verbs related to laundry

Closely related to this, after clothes are dried out, what verbs are used for: collecting and putting them inside the house (maybe because it's raining) collecting, folding and putting them in a ...
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16 views

“What's to discuss?” vs. “what's there to discuss?”

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning between what's to discuss? and what's there to discuss? For example: What's to discuss?/what's there to discuss? Everything is decided. I'm not ...
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1answer
44 views

May he rest in peace. Why subject-auxiliary inversion?

I understand that this is a kind of a set phrase to express the hope that his spirit has found peace after death, but I don't understand why subject-auxiliary inversion occurs, and the "May" ...
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1answer
19 views

Does “accounted for by” here mean “overshadowed by”?

In "Dr. Thorndyke's Case-Book" by Austin Freeman", a detective was talking to a doctor, who was summoned to check a dead woman, saying: In the aspect of the room there was something ...
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1answer
2k views

What does the phrase/idiom “no sacred cow remains untipped” mean?

From Everything You Know about English is Wrong: Now that you know, it's time to, well, bite the mother tongue. William Brohaugh, former editor of Writer's Digest, will be your tour guide on this ...
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Is the phrase “let happen whatever may” valid and correct in the sense of leaving something to chance?

Is the phrase let happen whatever may valid and correct in the sense of leaving something to chance For example: I have not idea what is going to come up in the exam. I have no time to prepare, so ...
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14 views

difference of “to switch over” and “to switch”

I have two texts which contain word "switch", but in one of them there is "switch over" and in other there is just "switch". As I can see from texts they have the same ...
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2answers
41 views

“It takes a lot of time” vs. “it takes up a lot of time”

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning between it takes a lot of time and it takes up a lot of time? For example, in the 9th episode of the 10th season of Friends the latter was used. ...
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2answers
23 views

usage of the 'but-a' phrase

I've heard the use of 'but a' like this: I am but a common man. He is but a clever dog. I'd expected something like this: 3. I am anything but not a common man 4. He is nothing but a common dog. (...
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1answer
26 views

“In the day” vs. “in the daytime”

Could you tell me if it's correct and natural to use the phrase in the day meaning in the daytime? For example: I like to go fishing in the day when there are no mosquitos. Is there a chance in the ...
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2answers
52 views

What is the difference between ‘The meeting is/has finished’ and “meeting over” or “meeting done”?

What is the difference between ‘The meeting is/has finished’ and "meeting over" or "meeting done" and can use like "meeting completed"? Could anyone please advise which ...
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1answer
16 views

“Take the time to do something” vs. “take the time out to do something”

Could you tell me if there is a difference between the phrase take the time to do something and take the time out to do something? In the 20th episode of the 9th season of Friends, they used take the ...
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1answer
51 views

What does “pimpier” mean?

In Neal Brennan's stand up comedy show: Neal Brennan: "How many of you believe, by round of applause, that men actually wanna get married? And yet you force us to do it... without shame or ...
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2answers
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How can I write this?

The officer walks down the hallway. He notices that one of the doors is ajar. He pushes it open silently. And enters. Questions to this: Is the part in bold okay? Would you phrase it differently? I'm ...
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1answer
48 views

what does “spending upwards of” mean here

If someone asks - Do you think spending an upwards of 100 bucks would make sense? I think that means spending 100 more than something. But since they've not specified compared to what. Please, help ...
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1answer
17 views

“The last time” vs. “one last time”

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning and usage between the last time and one last time? For example: Dad, can I use your car the last time? Dad, can I use your car one last time? ...
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2answers
54 views

What’s the difference between “scam” and “rip off”?

I was wondering what was the difference between these two terms: “To rip off” “To scam” Which one is better in this sentence? : “This store rips off their customers” “This store scams their customers” ...
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20 views

X lead you to Y

Is the following sentence correct grammatically? The knowledge that I have gained through reading various reports on the future of the workforce and the experience that I have had precipitated a ...
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1answer
36 views

Is “I hate his doing that” old-fashioned? [duplicate]

I read a lot of classical novels although I am not a native speaker, and in Jane Austen’s or Louisa May Alcott’s, I see a lot of sentences like these: “I don’t like his insulting me” “I don’t feel ...
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1answer
23 views

Can “whatsoever” replace “at all”?

So I have difficulties to pronounce “at all” in English, and I was wondering if “whatsoever” meant the same thing, and if it could be used in a conversation. “He had no idea whatsoever.” “He had no ...
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2answers
46 views

Is the use of “one” as a gender-neutral pronoun current use in English?

I’d like to know whether the use of “one” - as a gender-neutral pronoun — is used by native speakers often. For example: “One should always tell the truth, if one wants to be respected.” Is this a ...
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1answer
154 views

Is there any difference in meaning between the phrase “clear the air” and “have it out with someone”?

Is there any difference in meaning between the phrase clear the air and have it out with someone? For example: I think it's time to clear the air with Kate. I think it's time to have it out with Kate....
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0answers
14 views

Do we say “given” or “given that“?

Which is the formal one? “Given I’m tired, I won’t be there.” “Given that I am tired, I won’t be there.” Can we omit the “that” after “given” or it won’t be formal anymore? Other examples: I don’t ...
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30 views

Which of these sentence is correct given the subject of the sentence?

Which of these sentence is correct? “I am a person who likes their hair” (we conjugate with “person” we use “their” as a gender-neutral pronoun or do we put “his?”) “I am a person who like her hair” (...
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1answer
67 views

Do we say “Seek help” or “seek for help”?

Do we add for when we say seek? Which of these is correct? To seek something Or... To seek for something
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2answers
24 views

What's the good of mentioning “If he could help it” here?

In "The Chief Mourner of Marne" by G. K. Chesterton, Mr. Mallow is searching for Father Brown to consult him about very serious problem, and finds him at a friend's house. He entered ...
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13 views

'between' is verbose

Now i have a situation where an apple can be placed between two mangoes or two bananas or a mango and a banana. Now this sounds too verbose. What can be a better word instead of 'between' which ...
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27 views

Is there any difference in meaning and usage between the phrase “judging from” and “going by”?

Is there any difference in meaning and usage between the phrase judging from and going by? For example: Judging from how you look, you have completely recovered from the illness. Going by how you ...
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12 views

“How long before you…” vs. “how much time do you have left before you…”

Could you tell me if there is any difference in meaning between how long before you... and how much time do you have left before you...? For example: How long before you get off work? How much time ...
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1answer
25 views

What's meant here by yellow & red stripes?

In "The Chief Mourner of Marne" by G. K. Chesterton, Mr. Outram was talking to Father Brown about an old duel between Mr. James Mair, whose second was Mr. Outram himself, and his cousin ...
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1answer
46 views

For some reason vs In some reason [closed]

What are the differences between: for some reason and in some reason ?
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1answer
29 views

What does “I didn't even go to how huge something is” mean?

I have come across in the second episode of the eighth season of Friends. Here is the context: Rachel: Phoebe the father is not here okay? I haven’t told him yet and I don’t think I can tell him at ...
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1answer
24 views

What does “go with the odds” mean?

I have stumbled on it in the 23rd episode of the 7th season of Friends. Here is the context: Monica: I’m making a list of all the things that are most likely to go wrong at the wedding. Now, that way ...
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3answers
28 views

Is it natural to ask someone “how did you make it?” meaning how was their trip somewhere?

Is it natural to ask someone how did you make it*?* meaning how was their trip somewhere? For example: We have been waiting you. Anyway How did you make it home? If it's good, what would the most ...
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1answer
417 views

What does the phrase “if I am anything to go by” mean?

I have come it across in this program. It's at 1 minute and 18 seconds. Here it is: Presenter A: So my question is: what percentage of people in the UK has less than 1000 pounds in savings? Is it a) ...
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22 views

“What was it your name was?”

If someone has already told me their name, but I forgot what it was, so I ask: "What was it your name was?" Is that natural? And what else could I ask?
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1answer
20 views

Is 'haven't a clue' slang? and do people all over the world use it or is it just a British thing, or is it used by a smaller group of people?

Just wondering as I always use it and people often ask me what I'm talking about. So it got me thinking that it might just be a British thing, or maybe even just a thing people from the country ...
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24 views

How to write a LinkedIn connection request Note?

LinkedIn is a great way to network with all types of professionals: from recruiters to influencers and users that share common interests, it’s a great way to build connections. For Example Let's say I'...

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