Questions tagged [word-usage]

This tag is for questions which a dictionary cannot answer about the meaning or correctness of a word in a sentence. Give as much context as possible.

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1answer
7 views

Is it correct to say “you're holding the book upside-down, turn it right-side up” in this specific situation?

In the first picture, you're holding the book upside down. The book is perpendicular to the floor and parallel to your face. I think it is correct to say "you're holding the book upside-down"...
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1answer
41 views

“alternative” vs. “choices”

From an ELL post In this sort of context which usually refers to a choice between previously defined alternatives. For instance I have some time free at 9:30, at 11:00 and at 1:30. At which time ...
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12 views

Please Correct My diary) A game which I did very excitingly [closed]

I had played castlevania game which main character is alucard. I did half of this game but there are much more mission remained. Being through this game easily, I need one item which is a sword to hit ...
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1answer
56 views

is “learn about company” a appropriate way to imply the meaning of “get info”?

in the job interview, i would like to get some info about the company, such as, how many people in the department that i would join. I could ask the interviewer like this "how many people in your ...
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1answer
19 views

Can I make sentence with “scramble” in this way?

In the dictionary, scrambling means that compete for something. so ,Can i make the sentence with ''scramble'' in this way.... I scramble for life. Mr. Alex is scrambling as vice president candidate.
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1answer
19 views

“time span” or “time spans” or “the time span”

What I want to say is: the longer time duration between the first and second exam, the less useful they become. I am not sure which of the following is correct: the longer the time spans between the ...
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1answer
21 views

The odd usage of the word hence in “Hence the need for a providential Prometheus with a “why not?””

Hence the need for a providential Prometheus with a “why not?” What does hence mean in the context? There is a usage of it with 'with'?
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465 views

“Difference between” and vs. or

In a sentence like this is AND or OR correct? Eating healthy can be the difference between dying early AND/OR living a long life.
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0answers
16 views

Do all Americans prefer “toward”? [duplicate]

I know that the prefered spelling in America is "toward", but do all Americans prefer "toward" or do some use "towards"?
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2answers
1k views

Can I say “She's turning out beautiful”?

I'm kind of confused about this. As I was scrolling through Facebook this evening I came across a picture of my friend's daughter. It's been a while since I've last seen her, and now she's all grown ...
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14 views

Those or these?

"Like as in Python, operators can be overloaded and likes as in Python overloading is done by defining special functions." Then: "In D all those special functions start with op followed ...
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1answer
82 views

what does ”a shake of my whiskers” mean in this context?

"Because of another prophecy," said Mr Beaver. "Down at Cair Paravel - that's the castle on the sea coast down at the mouth of this river which ought to be the capital of the whole country if all was ...
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1answer
132 views

Is this a case of implicit “but”, or a comma-splice sentence?

In a computer book (Programming in Haskell, second edition — Graham Hutton), I found the following sentence. This new edition not only adds many more concrete examples of concepts introduced ...
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2answers
42 views

Is it idiomatic to say “Son, tuck your top under your chin while peeing”?

When our children learn to pee themselves, we need to tell them to hold the edge of their tops up high to their chins so that they don't pee on their tops. These are the list of says that I think of: ...
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1answer
15k views

“crossing the boundaries of …”

I'm confused about two things: 1) Does crossing the boundary imply stepping INTO or stepping OUT OF the bounded area or idea? For example: Never cross the boundaries of freedom of expression and ...
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1answer
32 views

How to tell to a child that he/she should remember his mistake that they did in the past?

Your child crawls under a table and when he stands up he bumps his head on the table by accident. Vietnamese is my first language and I often say like this in Vietnamese "withdraw from your ...
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2answers
21 views

pulling and yanking together?

The sentence: Suddenly two police officers started pulling and yanking (at) the scaffolding trying to shake the protester off it. Info: The two police officers are standing at the foot of the ...
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1answer
21 views

What is the meaning of **much** in sentence: Nothing much ever happened?

How to understand the meaning of the word much in the sentence: Nothing much ever happened?
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1answer
52 views

…tirade of frightening Russian

The owner of the bar had had enough. He exploded into a tirade of frightening Russian which nobody understood. Is it clear that it's frightening for the people he shouts at or should I rephrase the ...
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1answer
107 views

Question about “for” and “whenever”

"I watch sitcoms whenever I feel sad." Can this sentence can be paraphrased as: "I watch sitcoms for feeling sad"?
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1answer
26 views

I guess they're going to lose this one

If my friend text me to ask if a particular team is going to win and I want to say: "I guess they're going to lose". And if I mean a particular match, can I use: I guess they're going to lose this ...
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2answers
393 views

“I guess (so).”, “I guess (that) …” and “… , I guess.”

When NAm.En native speakers say or reply with "I guess (so)", "i guess (that) ..." and "... , I guess.", what are the common different ways in which they use the word "guess" here as a verb in the ...
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0answers
25 views

Is it correct to say “The toy is forwards on the chair, place it sideways on the chair”?

Is it correct to say "The toy is forwards on the chair or The toy is lying forwards on the chair" in the first picture and I want place the toy on the chair as shown in the picture 2, so is ...
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1answer
35 views

Get in form, out of form

Is "out of form" a British phrase is sports? Like: (S)He's a bit out of form. And does this sound fine: You need to get in form. You need to get back in form. The coach says I ...
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1answer
23 views

Can I omit the word 'about'?

In the following sentence, can I omit the word 'about'? If not, I'd like to know the difference between 'tell somebody something' and 'tell somebody about something'. I found the tea culture in Japan ...
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1answer
16 views

Is use of broke correct in this sense?

I know the meaning of broken, based on this Cambridge Dictionary's definition: [ before noun ] Suffering emotional pain that is so strong that it changes the way you live, usually as a result of an ...
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1answer
53 views

Taking the phone off charge

We say "I put phone on to charge". So can removing the charging point that's connected to the phone (USB) be called: I took my phone off charge. (Opposite to "I put my phone on charge")
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2answers
594 views

What does “bring in” mean here?

The left accompanied it, but not simply like a shadow: it stopped, paused for a few bars, brought in the right hand again, picked up the melody from it, continued alone, then threw the melody back to ...
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1answer
28 views

How do you correctly use the word “shipment” in a sentence?

If I have a shipment with X products, which is one the correct usage: At the first shipment we got X products On the first shipment we got X products In the first shipment we got X products or is ...
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1answer
42 views

Help with the use 'to' or 'of'

Could you use to in this sense?- "Property 'to' men" or does it have to be "Property 'of' men"
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1answer
37 views

Is “as + adjective” form correct?

The guitars in the other store are of a ........quality but not ....... . a) higher / as cheap b) high / as cheaply c) highly / as cheaper d) highest / cheap e) highly / the cheapest The ...
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1answer
48 views

Describing a Concept as “Delusional” or “Illusional” Here?

So I wonder if there is any chance for such a use of the term "delusional" to make sense (even for exaggeration): We will show that such-and-so concept can be delusional. If not, would "illusional" be ...
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1answer
36 views

Invincible as an adjective for faith and attitude

Invincible means too powerful to be defeated and its another usage is invincible faith or attitude which cannot be changed. I am a bit confused with the usage in the second form. I have written a few ...
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3answers
34 views

Do you say to a kid “Don't smear the ink of the marker all over your hand. It sticks hard on your hand. Now I have to scrub / wipe it off your hand”?

smear ​[transitive] to spread an oily or soft substance over a surface in a rough or careless way SYNONYM daub smear something on/over something The children had smeared mud on the walls. ...
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1answer
317 views

prerequisites vs requirements vs qualifications

Can somebody please help me with an explaination about the difference between course prerequisites course entry requirements course qualifications This is about a course which consists of ...
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3answers
265k views

“Important to me” or “Important for me”

I cannot easily figure out which one is more appropriate to use: It's important to me. It's important for me. Are they the same? If not, what's the difference?
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2answers
18 views

Is it correct to say “I ripped the cardboard apart by its side” in this specific situation?

When you tear or rip a thin paper, you just rip it easily "by its surface" (I am not sure I am saying correctly). Now, you have a very thick cardboard, and it is not easy to rip the ...
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1answer
36 views

contexts for “to learn” vs. “for learning”

Consider the following sentences We came here to learn English. We came here for learning English. I suppose most of us here would agree that both of them are grammatically correct. And I ...
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1answer
35 views

Is it correct to say “my child likes to swing / dangle / hang from my hands” in this case?

As shown in the picture, my son often lets his body hang freely by holding my hands. His weight thus pulls my hands down and I feel like I am lifting a very heavy thing. Is it correct to say "my ...
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1answer
54 views

Is it right to say “You mixed grandma up with grandpa” in this situation?

mix somebody/something ↔ up phrasal verb 1 to make the mistake of thinking that someone or something is another person or thing SYN confuse, muddle up with I always mix him up with his brother....
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3answers
57 views

Can you “change/exchange” it to an orange juice?

I know we don't ask the waiter to get us a different order once it has been put on our table, but anyways if you changed your mind and the waiter brought your order and you want to say "can I get an ...
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6answers
4k views

Can I refer to someone as “elder member” in internet forums?

Questions: Can I refer to a person who has been using SE for a longer period of time than me as an elder member? Is the usage of senior member correct? Note: Thanks for the good answers. I asked ...
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28 views

Meaning of the words in the clause

What dose it mean, the words in uppercase? Now I have to go to the library which I never WANTED TO HAVE TO do.
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1answer
54 views

“There's no such thing as free lunch” is not as idiomatic, isn't it?

According to the Cambridge Dictionary, "lunch" can either be countable or uncountable. Correspondingly, the famous saying could be There's no such thing as free lunch or There's no such ...
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1answer
34 views

how do we use “while” and “than”?

There is one sentence that goes like this: How will we handle one-on-one instruction while social distancing? I think the sentence should go like this: How will we handle one-on-one instruction ...
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3answers
47 views

What is the right way to ask

If you want to rent your apartment, what is the proper way to say so? Do you offer a friend an apartment in rent?
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4answers
41 views

Is the pair tenant/host correct?

Question from non-native English speaker. I am building a website where users would be able to list their property for the long term rent. I need names for both types of users. I know that Tenant can ...
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2answers
44 views

“rent” vs “rental” to represent property or payment

I looked for the dictionary and it seems both of words, 'rent' and 'rental' can mean the property or payment: Rental from Meriman-Webster: 1: an amount paid or collected as rent 2: something that is ...
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1answer
30 views

Is it common to say “Let's move on” when students response to a teacher?

According to Cambridge Dictionary, "move on" could mean to start a new activity I'd done the same job for years and felt it was time to move on. or to accept that a situation has changed ...
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2answers
35 views

Can I use 'mind' in this sentence?

I came across the following sentence in a textbook: She'a laid-back girl. She never minds others. It sounded odd to me. I looked up the meaning of the word "mind" in Longman Dictionary and ...

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