Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange
Join us in building a kind, collaborative learning community via our updated Code of Conduct.

For questions which a dictionary cannot answer about the meaning of a single word. It is best to include details about where you found the word, and any definitions that you have found that don't make sense, or don't fully answer your question.

0
votes
1answer
14 views

“A world-spanning empire” What does it mean?

These self-satisfied cotton manufacturers and merchants had reason to be smug: They stood at the center of a world-spanning empire—the empire of cotton. This is a sentence from the book Empire of ...
2
votes
1answer
24 views

“a half-baked *consternation*”?

I faintly recall coming across something along the lines of a half-baked consternation of [...] a couple of times on the web. My hunch is that I probably encountered this sort of phrasing in ...
2
votes
3answers
35 views

What do we call “three people who united on a person to destroy something he\she has”?

Let's say that X is a girl who has a deal with Y, she would absolutely get many benefits of that deal after it comes to its deadline. However, there's A, B, and C who are three people that hate X and ...
1
vote
1answer
16 views

What does 'representation' mean in this context?

There are plenty of reasons to cheer for the new romantic comedy Crazy Rich Asians, which opened in theaters on Aug. 15. For starters, the Jon M. Chu-directed adaptation of Kevin Kwan’s blockbuster ...
0
votes
2answers
37 views

Can I use “The mike is yours” implicitly?

Is it necessary when I say: "The mike is yours, confound me." that you really have a microphone, or you should have a microphone? If yes, then what should I say instead that sentence with the part "...
2
votes
1answer
43 views

Is “fancy” used to describe a gay person?

Once upon a time, I chose the word 'fancy' as my nickname in real life (e.g. "feel free to call me 'Fancy' sometimes") because I thought it's a good word, which have a sense of elegantly fashionable ...
1
vote
1answer
39 views

What does 'idle tale' mean?

https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/jest later the term denoted an idle tale What does it mean? Any references would be welcome. While researching 'idle' I found this https://en....
0
votes
3answers
49 views

“I'll play your game, you rogue.” What does this mean?

I'll play your game, you rogue. I'm on to you, Trebek! Come on, you nancy boy! I found these used as some kind of meme. So I googled them but only to have found that those came from SNL ...
0
votes
1answer
23 views

Representative for or of

Claude Miller, a sales representative for our farm equipment products, is truly an asset to the company, having increased its annual profits by as much as 25 percent. What is the difference between ...
0
votes
2answers
39 views

meaning of “awards”

Are the following instances of awards used properly? It seems that sometimes it means "awards ceremony," and sometimes the awards themselves. Also, I am wondering whether the shift of number is ...
0
votes
1answer
36 views

What is a “shear of light”?

A line from the movie The Road: There was a long shear of bright light, then a series of low concussions. With the noun shear being a tool, I can't imagine what a shear of light would look like. I ...
0
votes
0answers
47 views

the most fashionable inner-city coffee shops?

Does the word inner-city sound natural in the following? Turmeric drinks became popular in the West when customers began to request turmeric lattes at the most fashionable inner-city coffee shops. ...
-1
votes
0answers
21 views

What does “well-developed” in following paragraph mean? [on hold]

What does "well-developed" in following paragraph mean? The German Rex is also blessed with well-developed cheeks, large ears, and affectionate, alert eyes. Its whiskers, meanwhile, have a slight ...
1
vote
2answers
41 views

be careful of someone's health?

Does "be careful of" make sense in the following? Be careful of John's health. He may have a heart attack anytime. I'd appreciate your help.
3
votes
1answer
138 views

What does “bound” mean here?

The bronze, 8-foot-tall LBJ sculpture is slated to be installed at downtown's Little Tranquility Park, bound by Capitol, Walker, Bagby and Smith streets. (source) Judging from the context, I think "...
0
votes
0answers
33 views

What does “close-coupled” in the following paragraph mean? [closed]

What does "close-coupled" in the following paragraph mean? The Norwegian Elkhound resembles a typical spitz-like breed of the north: close-coupled and square-proportioned body, with a tightly-...
21
votes
5answers
6k views

What's the difference between “vanilla” and “plain” when talking about yogurts?

Merriam Webster explains vanilla (when used as an adjective) as: lacking distinction : plain, ordinary, conventional It's not obvious why vanilla has such a meaning, and why plain is listed as its ...
9
votes
1answer
1k views

'Upright' meaning in “Please store upright below 25°C”

I read the sentence on the tag of a honey container. Please store upright below 25°C. I looked it up. Upright as an adjective can mean: adj vertical or erect honest, honourable, or ...
-1
votes
0answers
24 views

meaning of present an interesting viewpoint

I'm wondering if "presented an interesting viewpoint" is properly used in the following: Are females more curious than males? This question might be difficult to answer if we only looked at human ...
12
votes
3answers
4k views

Smart/casual dress is encouraged with longs/shoes a must : What is “longs”?

A community-edited travel guide about Colombo (Sri Lanka) has this paragraph: Most nightclubs may charge admission and smart/casual dress is encouraged with longs/shoes a must. What does "longs" ...
1
vote
1answer
21 views

What does 'salvo' mean in this context?

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump backed boycotting American motorcycle manufacturer Harley Davidson Inc on Sunday, the latest salvo in a dispute between the company and Trump over tariffs ...
0
votes
1answer
29 views

What is a “protuberant person”?

I am having a hard time making sense of the word "protuberant" in this sentence from an online article. I have always understood that word to mean something along the lines of "bulging", "protruding," ...
0
votes
1answer
47 views

“had” as meaning “caused to be”?

Background: I'm a native speaker of English, who is learning French. Often, when I don't know how to translate an English sentence into French, it makes me realize that there is something "special" ...
1
vote
1answer
51 views

What is a “suburban valley (belly) street”?

I heard in the movie description of the film The 40-Year-Old Virgin: In a helmet, he pedals his mirror-equipped bike along a suburban belly street. The scene shows the protagonist pedaling a bike ...
0
votes
2answers
26 views

How are the words “elusive” and “fleeting” related?

In Oxford's dictionary, we can find the following definitions for "elusive" and "fleeting": Elusive: Difficult to find, catch, or achieve. Difficult to remember. Fleeting: Lasting ...
0
votes
1answer
26 views

Amused to, by, with: Which one?

How should I use "amuse" with prepositions in phrases? Is following examples correct? Amused by something: Being entertained by something Amused with something: Being entertained with something This ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

attached to his mom all day?

If a boy is very clingy to his mom, does the following sentence sound natural? The boy is attached to his mom all day. I'd appreciate your help.
0
votes
2answers
25 views

What does this “striping” mean?

Compute Engine manages the hardware behind persistent disks so you can add and resize your disks without handling striping or redundancy. What does this "striping" mean?
0
votes
1answer
65 views

“Elevation” word usage

I read this line in a book: "The general elevation of the Deccan plateau is from the West to East, which is proved by the pattern of the flow of the rivers, which flow from West to East." Shouldn't ...
0
votes
1answer
27 views

What does C Drive or T Drive means? [closed]

When I watching the tutorial, at the time 1:15 you know C Drive or T Drive wherever you did actually install it and ... What does C Drive and T Drive mean? Does them means Disk C and Disk D?
0
votes
1answer
37 views

'During' and 'over'

When I want to say that somebody did something during a past period of time, I think I can say I have achieved some good rewards during the past 10 years or over the past 10 years. Does these two ...
0
votes
2answers
29 views

What does “is credited” mean in this sentence?

What does "is credited" mean in this sentence? Dr. Yunus is credited for pioneering the concept of microfinance. Does it mean...? Dr. Yunus is believed for... or Dr. Yunus have achieved ...
0
votes
1answer
24 views

What definitions can “blessed” have when referred to people and events?

I'm wondering if "blessed" can refer to either of the following when used to describe a person or event: 1) Being favored by a higher power 2) Just being fortunate/happy Here are a few sample ...
0
votes
1answer
22 views

What does “run” mean here?

A scene from the movie Warrior: Paddy: Have a heart, Brendan. Brendan: You listen to me. You take your "have a heart" bullshit and you run it down the road. Yeah, run it out with someone that ...
0
votes
2answers
27 views

Existential meaning in given sentences

Although in dictionaries like oxford the definition is said to be : (formal) connected with human existence (philosophy) connected with the theory of existentialism But I've hardly found any ...
0
votes
1answer
26 views

“with zeal”, positive or negative?

It is a popular misconception that nuclear fusion power is free of radioactivity; in fact, the deuterium-tritium reaction that nuclear scientists are currently exploring with such zeal produce both ...
0
votes
2answers
25 views

“Your fingers” include “the thumb” or not?

Your fingers is defined, by the dictionary on my phone, as: Your fingers are the long thin parts at the end of each hand, sometimes also including the thumb. But according to Collins dictionary: ...
1
vote
2answers
24 views

What 'objective' means in following sentence?

"Dhrisrashtra is the very image of ignorance; and Sanjaya is the embodiment of self-restraint. Ignorance lurks at the core of the objective, the outward-looking", mind. With his mind enveloped in ...
0
votes
0answers
27 views

What's the difference between “stock exchange” & “stack exchange”( the name of this network of Q&A websites )?

What's the difference between "stock exchange" & "stack exchange"( the name of this network of Q&A websites ) & "stock market"? I know that stock exchange means: The business of buying ...
0
votes
1answer
25 views

What are the differences between “Do dishes / laundry / household chores..” & “Do the dishes / the laundry / the household chores”?

What are the differences between "Do dishes / laundry / household chores..." & "Do the dishes / the laundry / the household chores..."? I would say: Do / wash dishes: refers to dishes in general....
0
votes
4answers
44 views

Difference between 'be breaking down', 'be broken down' and 'be broken'

Is there any difference between 'My car is always breaking down', 'My car is always broken down' and 'My car is always broken'?
0
votes
1answer
39 views

What is “pooled eyed” (or “pulled eyed”/“pooed eyed”)?

I heard a strange word in a movie description several times: Mitch looks pooled-eyed This describes the character Mitch looks unhappy and frustrated after his phone call was cut short. As ...
1
vote
3answers
59 views

What's the difference between revise, amend and modify

When you revise, amend and modify something, your intention is all to improve them. so does it mean I can use them interchangeably?
12
votes
1answer
3k views

What does “Candygram” mean?

Candygram? What does it mean? I read this entry, but it didn't make sense. Candygram candy that can be ordered by wire for delivery with an accompanying message, as on the recipient's birthday or ...
0
votes
2answers
28 views

Recurrence meaning

In a book I'm reading, there is a way to use recurrence as follows: Obviously, astronauts have to be in exceptionally good physical condition and to have as low a risk of developing health ...
3
votes
1answer
523 views

What do we call a person who works to avoid prison?

I will take for example a person who has been sentenced to go to prison and if he wants to avoid it, he has to deal with socially useful work for a certain period of time as a substitute. How do we ...
2
votes
2answers
288 views

Meaning of 'cast' here

I'm learning something from programming and I came to this: While evaluating expressions, the result is automatically updated to larger data type of the operand. But if we store that result in any ...
2
votes
3answers
48 views

What does “well-swilled” mean?

The ODO has an example sentence: I lost track trying to count the sheer bald-faced, brazen, well-swilled out-and-out lies being palmed off as fact or being suggested for our consumption as ...
0
votes
1answer
35 views

the usage of 'with us' in 'Thank you for shopping with us'

I can see 'with us' on bus or on supermarket walls like Thank you for traveling with us (on bus) or Thank you for shopping with us (in a supermarket). I am confused why don't use 'travel by ...
1
vote
2answers
38 views

“a whipsawing trade standoff” mean?

The collapse of the deal could aggravate tensions between Washington and Beijing amid a whipsawing trade standoff that has chilled relations between the world's top two economies. According to ...