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Questions tagged [understanding]

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2answers
2k views

What does “east of the Indiana/Ohio border” mean?

Today I am reading an Algorithms textbook. The author, in order to explain the shortest path between two vertices in a graph, gives an example in the real world: At one time, there was a speed trap ...
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1answer
320 views

How would a native speaker understand a malformed question?

In Portuguese, to transform an affirmative phrase in interrogative, you just append a question mark. When learning English, beginners sometimes just append the question mark, forgetting about ...
6
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4answers
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difference between ‘fast’ and ‘quick’

I was reading a game of thrones and got an ambiguous understanding of two words: fast and quick It looks like the author is describing two characters whose characteristics are quite opposite. Is ...
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2answers
591 views

I don’t get what “as it were” means

I don’t understand whenever I read “as it were”. Could anyone please explain it to me in a plain way along with some examples of how to use it? My English mightn't be as good as yours.
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2answers
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What is the meaning of “polarisation” in this paragraph?

The implication is that the process of technical change, at the firm level, is generally evolutionary. Firms that survive within the marketplace will move along a technical trajectory accumulating ...
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2answers
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Having problem understanding a sentence

Our university, in expelling a student who verbally harassed his roommate, has erred by penalizing the student for doing what he surely has a right to do: speak his mind. Q1) Are the word "student"s ...
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2answers
121 views

How to understand the word “free” in this sentence: “a geyser of death blasting mole bodies free of the planet”?

From A mole of moles, I meet this sentence: Plumes of hot meat and bubbles of trapped gases like methane—along with the air from the lungs of the deceased moles—periodically rise through the mole ...
4
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3answers
397 views

What is the exact meaning of “3 is not a factor of m or of n”?

3 is not a factor of m or of n. Meaning of the above statement the way I understand it is 3 is not a factor of m or 3 is not a factor of n. I think that I might be wrong because here I suggested an ...
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2answers
176 views

What is the difference between the two questions?

Is man not extremely foolish, to be unable to see this? How is that different from Is man not extremely foolish if he is unable to see this?
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3answers
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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 ...
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2answers
4k views

Problem listening to foreign accents [closed]

From the beginning I had some problems listening to foreign accents. Like when someone from my native country (India) speaks English I understand it at once, but if someone from a foreign country ...
3
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1answer
99 views

Expression UK radio hosts and MCs use to shout out to friends/fans

I notice this mainly in drum 'n' bass/grime/dubstep radio shows from UK where an MC or the host frequently talks over the tune. Similar to terms like 'shout out to xxx' or 'big up xxx', where xxx ...
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1answer
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What does “In others, not at all.” mean?

From the NY Times, "Their father has the only key to the front door, and he keeps it locked. In some years, they are allowed outside only a handful of times. In others, not at all." The sentence ...
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3answers
136 views

Make exception for (X) in (Y)

I've tried to parse this statement, but it was really hard, and neither I can understand it: An office culture that makes exceptions for remote people results in second-class citizenship, putting a ...
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3answers
4k views

Understanding a passage in relation with 'Clauses' and 'Phrases'

Below is the screenshot of a passage from 'Oxford Guide to English Grammar by John Eastwood'. The passage says A clause has a subject and a verb. Subject and Verb are the elements of a sentence or a ...
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2answers
170 views

Is it common to use -in the integration- in this case?

can you please tell me if this sentence is understanable to native speaker and is it common to say it like this? Besides being used as a stand-alone module, (the module's name) can work in the ...
2
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3answers
68 views

“you can” vs “you cannot” How to understanding? What is difference?

When I try accept my answer, I seen a prompt: You can accept your own answer in 2 days This sentence make sense to me as miswritten for: You cannot accept your own answer in 2 days I post ...
2
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1answer
648 views

'succeed' and part of speech

I have the following sentence. I'm really excited to share with you some findings that really surprise me about what makes companies succeed the most, what factors actually matter the most for ...
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2answers
62 views

Why do people use phrases like “scan to” and “scan into”?

Source Scan anything into a PDF using your mobile device. Adobe Scan app, scan documents to PDF. Scan to PDF, convert JPEG or TIFF to PDF. Why one should say phrases like scan into PDF ...
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2answers
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Does “gone astray” mean the same as losing the way?

If I walk along a hiking path and I lose my way somehow, can I say that I am gone astray?
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1answer
51 views

What's the rule governing the use of an indefinite article with a noun?

Source Gazing at them for hours on end, sitting on the sandy river bank, was a great help to me. I could wash away my anguish and disgust over life. The anguish and disgust were caused by my ...
2
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1answer
254 views

What is the meaning of the numbers in this case?

I came across phrases like this: I haven't read it, but a lot of 130s students love it. Most of my exposure to this book comes from tutoring and grading for 161 which are just a little ...
2
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1answer
35 views

Understanding “pallias”

What does "pallias" mean in the passage: UNCLE PAT. Cow Gum! Now there’s a scent to stir the soul. September, nineteen hundred and eleven… I was seven years old. Pat, Maggie, Arthur, Frank and me, ...
2
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1answer
51 views

Understanding “to be”

The argument presupposes that which is to be proved. The word "refute" means "prove sth to be wrong". In the first sentence, the phrase "to be" seems to have a meaning of future. However, in the ...
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1answer
36 views

“He couldn’t hear her voice above the noise.”, Someone help me understand this sentence

So in this sentence "He couldn’t hear her voice above the noise.", does "above the noise" describe "her voice"? if so, how come "he couldn't hear her voice". Shouldn't he be able to hear the voice ...
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3answers
1k views

Understanding English (Listening skills)

I've been trying to improve my listening skills for about 9 months. I realized that I can understand "BBC Radio 4 extra" very well (especially the drama), but I find it's hard to understand "CNN" and ...
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1answer
104 views

“what it is to <do something>”

According to this passage, based on Three Days to See by Helen Keller: "I do not know what it is to see into the heart of a friend through that "window of the soul," the eye. I can only "see" ...
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2answers
838 views

Explanation of a paragraph about irony [closed]

It's your brother's MR. T PUPPET, which of course is kept in the apartment with a sense of profound humorous irony. But as usual with your BRO's exploits, this is no ordinary irony, or anything close ...
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3answers
2k views

Why break wind means fart?

As a non-English native speaker. I found it hard to understand why break wind means fart.should I just remember the phrase and give up to try to understand why it means that.
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2answers
27 views

sentence fragment to be improved

I ask the following as a non-native English speaker. In this question, I have trouble understanding how does "accompany me to my office" connect to anything else in the sentence. Original sentence: ...
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2answers
83 views

Understand: is not under natural authority but is under the arbitrary authority of the self-appointed and self-validating

Today I encountered a sentence: A slave's education is not under natural authority but is under the arbitrary authority of the self-appointed and self-validating I boldened the doubtful words and ...
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1answer
3k views

Meaning of “as anything but ______” in a sentence [closed]

I have found a GRE question from official ETS practice book for verbal. I am kind of stuck with the type of the question asked in GRE that is posted here. The media once portrayed the governor as ...
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2answers
33 views

“Unwelcome liberty”, “taken with”

His works were praised by many literary critics as fresh, inventive approaches to the form of the novel. Others, however, dismissed his works as simple retelling of local tales, full of unwelcome ...
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1answer
101 views

“purely out of”

Some consumers will not continue to patronize a company purely out of brand loyalty. I have two interpretation for this sentence. consumers does not go to the company because it is completely ...
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1answer
372 views

Is “can be viewed using many different devices” correct? Is it missing a word?

Web pages can be viewed using many different devices: desktops, tablets, and phones. I don't understand "viewed using" section. I think it miss a certain word.
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2answers
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Can you explain about the constructions of the type “verb+noun+another verb”?

I have seen constructions like: The number of electrons present inside the metal is large. In the given case, the noun electrons is directly followed by the verb present. It could also be written ...
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1answer
3k views

How to tell someone “you don't understand my mean” politely in English?

When does someone not understand my mean, how can tell I it politely?
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1answer
99 views

How to easily read not simple English? [closed]

I am an intermediate level English learner and I wish to be fluent in English in order to be able to easily read academic subjects, books, novels, and researches written in not simple English, so I ...
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1answer
78 views

How do I identify whether the word “quite” is used in the sense of completely or partly?

I've found that word "quite" is used sometimes in the sense of "greatest extent" (or say absolute or complete sense) and sometimes "moderate extent" (or say somewhat or little sense) and taking the ...
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1answer
384 views

I can't understand this sentence [closed]

I could have picked up a dozen of those for next to nothing in the Cairo marketplace
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1answer
72 views

What this person is saying in “American English” accent?

Video At 1:02: He says Human beings should be ..... from each other. Also a little bit confusion between 0:02 and 0:10. I believe it is: Went through .......
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2answers
1k views

What does “refer to their own interest” imply?

I'm decent with the English language but this sentence makes no sense to me. "Whatever reasons we may have for preserving or protecting non-sentient beings, these reasons do not refer to their own ...
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1answer
55 views

Any difference between “I know C did it” and “C did it”?

I was working on a logical problem. In this problem I have a problem with the statement made by B. B said I wasn't I know C did it I thought that the second statement of B means C did it. In the ...
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1answer
139 views

“specifically true in this situation to the (possible) exclusion of other situations” - Clarification?

Please, take a look at this answer from English.SE. I am interested in understanding the precise meaning behind the ninth paragraph: What the form BE+V-ing really does is to indicate that the ...
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1answer
49 views

Do I understand the tense forms correctly?

I made the following sentences up by myself and I would like to know if they are grammatically correct. Past Continuous: “I was searching for a job in the newspaper when I got a phone call.” or ...
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1answer
33 views

Which type of coin is which?

The type of the receiving coin, upon which another set of dies are struck, is referred to as "undertype", while the type being struck over it is called an "overtype". (Source) Am I understanding ...
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1answer
59 views

as being arbitrary

Many people object to mandatory retirement at age 65 as being arbitrary, arguing that people over 65 make useful contributions. However, if those who reach 65 are permitted to continue working ...
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2answers
47 views

a means to the end of

There is a misconception held by some that Stoics have no interest in worldly goods and pleasures. This is not correct, as previously stated. The acceptance of a period of discomfort, similarly, ...
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3answers
49 views

Usage/understanding of “holding it all”?

In the Off Camera Show (timestamp), Brit Marling says today many people take many photos a day as a way to say I'm here, I'm alive and I'm holding it all. Is this a way to express someone has ...
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2answers
118 views

Passage understanding

There is a passage that I cannot understand. It is from one of the LSAT prep tests. Superconductors are substances that conduct electricity without resistance at low temperatures. Their use, ...