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Q&A

Posts tagged English

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Q&A Plural agreement with a syntactically singular subject

Many quantity words trigger agreement with their object rather than themselves. For instance, syntactically, "a lot, "a bunch", "an amount" seem to all be singular. However, as a native speaker, "T...

1 answer  ·  posted 3mo ago by Moshi‭  ·  last activity 3mo ago by Jirka Hanika‭

77%
+5 −0
Q&A Possessive vs accusative case for nominalized clauses

Consider the following sentences: "She was against his joining the team." "She was against his joining of the team." "She was against him joining the team." Instinctively, the first just so...

0 answers  ·  posted 7mo ago by Moshi‭

83%
+8 −0
Q&A Why "me too" and not "I too"?

I've been studying German lately, and came across something that sparked my curiosity: The way to say "me too" in German is "ich auch" - that is, "I too". A shallow glance at other Germanic languag...

1 answer  ·  posted 7mo ago by Moshi‭  ·  last activity 7mo ago by Jirka Hanika‭

30%
+1 −5
Q&A How can "in terms of" alone encompass — and substitute — multiple prepositions "at, by, as, or for"?

in terms of. This phrase is commonly used as a substitute for a precise identification of relationship or as a substitute for such prepositions as at, by, as, or for. The phrase is correctly used...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 7mo ago by gmcgath‭

Question English semantics
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Q&A What's the difference between "in doing so" and "by doing so"?

As the title mentioned, what's the difference between these two terms? The question has troubled me for some time. Hope somebody can answer me. Thanks!

2 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by sinneddennis‭  ·  last activity 8mo ago by gmcgath‭

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+6 −0
Q&A Where, here, and there: What is the origin, and can it be generalized?

I recently stumbled upon this wikipedia page and it got me thinking. Take a look at the following table (terms are lifted from the Wikipedia page) W (interrogative) H (proximal) T (medial)...

0 answers  ·  posted 8mo ago by Moshi‭

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+4 −0
Q&A English dialects and he/she versus it

In normed Finnish language hän (he/she) refers to people, while se (it) refers to non-people. However, in spoken language, at least in many dialects, se is used also for people. (Both hän and se ar...

2 answers  ·  posted 8mo ago by tommi‭  ·  edited 8mo ago by Lundin‭

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+7 −0
Q&A Calling another by name when one is exasperated

In my English-speaking culture, when two people are in conversation, usually we don't bother addressing each other by name—or even by any substitutive term of address, like ‘sir’/‘ma'am’ (formal) o...

1 answer  ·  posted 10mo ago by r~~‭  ·  last activity 9mo ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Q&A Modern English words originating in Norman

Where should I learn about words that came into Modern English most likely from Norman? Please example some words which most likely came to Modern English only from Norman (i.e. words which are li...

1 answer  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 1y ago by dsr‭

42%
+1 −2
Q&A Why does "counter" mean the area of a letter entirely, or partially, enclosed by a letter form or a symbol?

Etymonline's entries for the homonyms "counter" don't semantically appertain to its meaning in typography. How does "counter" in typography relate to the common lay English 2021 meanings of "co...

0 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 1y ago by PSTH‭

Question etymology English
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+1 −1
Q&A Why did linguists choose 'Patient' (noun) to denote this Thematic Role?

        THEMES and PATIENTS are rather similar, and not all linguists distinguish between these roles. A THEME typically moves from one location or one person to another, like the letter in (31...

1 answer  ·  posted 1y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 1y ago by Keelan‭

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Q&A What is "Charter change bill" in English?

I have read this headline in a news website which think is being primarily written in Australian English: Government's charter change bill sails through 3rd reading How should this be underst...

1 answer  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 1y ago by mcalex‭

Question English
75%
+4 −0
Q&A Which phrase is correct? (Is using plural form for singular object make sense?) (Does using plural form for singular object make sense?)

Replying to the last edit (#4)... Since it language related site hence I am asking the question by creating new Q rather than commenting there. The earlier title was Is using plural form for sin...

3 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 1y ago by deleted user

Question English
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+2 −1
Q&A What should I use instead of `have` in present perfect tense?

As we know have is verb and auxiliary also. What should I say when I have to use have in present perfect tense (sentence). Usually, what came to my mind that is Have you have it? (completely wro...

1 answer  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 1y ago by Cereal Nommer‭

Question English grammar
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+2 −0
Q&A Does using plural form for singular object make sense?

Some people use they/them if they can't identity gender/sex (gender and sex isn't same). But when mentioning a single person should we use plural pronoun? We know that "they/them" is plural form. ...

2 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  edited 1y ago by Moshi‭

Question English pronouns
66%
+2 −0
Q&A What is the difference between a guild and a lodge?

What is the difference between a guild and a lodge? The context to this question is pretty much Freemasonry terminology but please feel free to answer with a general English context.

1 answer  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 1y ago by gmcgath‭

Question English
61%
+6 −3
Q&A How did “-able” semantically shift to mean “requiring”?

Etymonline on "-able" doesn't expound the origin of "requiring". -able common termination and word-forming element of English adjectives (typically based on verbs) and generally adding a notion...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 1y ago by PSTH‭

33%
+0 −2
Q&A Is there any country in South America in which Spanish and/or Portuguese aren't dominant (excluding the Caribbean's)? [closed]

Is there any country in South America in which Spanish and/or Portuguese aren't dominant? (excluding the Caribbean's but not excluding any other island around South America).

0 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  closed 1y ago by Moshi‭

Question American-English
66%
+2 −0
Q&A How tan pronounced?

I noticed whenever I say tan it sounds like ten. I guess, it is not understandable all the time. So, how tan pronounced? I know little bit of phonetic. So, that will be OK for me also.

2 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user  ·  last activity 1y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Q&A Is it correct to use `Had I had it?`

Past participle of have is had. I asked a question What should I use instead of have in present perfect tense?. I was recently thinking of past perfect. Had I had it? (While had is past particip...

0 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by deleted user

Question English
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Q&A Why did David Ricardo coin "rent", to signify income from a factor of production that exceeds the minimum amount necessary (to beget that factor of production)?

At the time that Ricardo (1772-1823) coined "rent", did "rent" already signify Modern English's lay meaning of 'rent' (tenant's regular payment to a landlord for the use of property or land)? ...

0 answers  ·  posted 1y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 1y ago by Moshi‭

Question etymology English
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+3 −0
Q&A How did "as" amass all its confusing "broad and vague meanings"?

as. Do not use the conjunction as when you mean “since,” “because,” “when,” or “while.” Its broad and vague meanings can create confusion. For example, As a potential work stoppage threatened to ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 1y ago by PSTH‭

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Q&A Why are service or maintenance contracts called 'warranties', when they aren't Legal Warranties?

The term 'warranty' is used to distinguish between a term (warranty) and a mere representation, and also to distinguish between terms that give no right to termination upon breach (warranties) an...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

Question etymology English
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Q&A Expound and simplify the "semantic progression" behind "must"?

I don't understand the "semantic progression" that I emboldened. The steps in the "semantic progression" feel farfetched and unconnected to me. Can someone please fill in, and elaborate, the steps...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Moshi‭

Question etymology English
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+10 −0
Q&A What is the origin of the missing "to be" in sentences like "the car needs washed"?

I grew up in western Pennsylvania (US), where constructs like "the car needs washed" are common. I was taught (yes, in schools in that region) that correct formal grammar requires "to be" in this ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Monica Cellio‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

72%
+6 −1
Q&A 'Caution' and 'cautious' with ʃ or ʒ?

I know some people pronounce caution with an /ʃ/ and others with a /ʒ/, and the same is true of cautious. I wonder if anyone can provide information on who says each (by region, time, etc.).

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by msh210‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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+1 −1
Q&A How does backwardation semantically relate to "backward"?

What semantic notions underlie any sense of 'backwardness' (like "backward" or "backwards"), with the meaning of 'backwardation' below? Etymonline overlooked this term. OED is too brusque and doesn...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by tommi‭

62%
+3 −1
Q&A "Us neither" - Is it valid?

Recently, I read the phrase "Us neither", and for some reason it irked me. I don't know why though, since I can't immediately say what exactly is wrong with it. Logically, "Me neither" and "Neither...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Moshi‭

Question English grammar
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+6 −0
Q&A Why does the dollar sign precede the number in English?

In English, at least in USA, people write $3 and mean three dollars (rather than dollars three), while other units are written after the number; no c99, h13, min22, '5, etc. to be seen. Why is it $...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by tommi‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

Question English
75%
+7 −1
Q&A Order of pronouns

In an examination in my country (India) I had a multiple choice question on the order of pronouns. Q: Please try to remember when I, you and my wife were talking there. Options: A. you, I and ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Severus Snape‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Severus Snape‭

42%
+1 −2
Q&A Why is my Danglish pronunciation much better than Danish?

For background, there exists a stereotypical Danish pronunciation of English. "Danglish" can also mean other things, but this is what I am referring to, here. I lived one year in Denmark and can r...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by tommi‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jordan‭

70%
+5 −1
Q&A Why word future events in the present?

If you're around tomorrow, stop by. I'll eat when I'm hungry. She'll be coming around the mountain when she comes. You're around tomorrow, I'm hungry, and she comes are describing fu...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by msh210‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

Question English
33%
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Q&A What semantic notions underlie 'privity' with 'privity of contract'?

The OED 3 ed, June 2007 defines b. privity of contract n. the limitation of a contractual relationship to the two parties making the contract, which prevents any action at law by an interested...

0 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Moshi‭

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+2 −2
Q&A How did 'equity' semantically shift to mean 'Assets — Liabilities'?

I ask about Equity = Assets — Liabilities here, not its meaning as stock. See Personal Finance For Canadians For Dummies (2018), p 468. equity: In the real-estate world, this term refers to the...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by PSTH‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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+3 −1
Q&A Etymology of "son of a gun"

What's the origin of the expression "son of a gun"? This comic explains a possible origin: British Navy used to allow women on naval ships, and any child born on board who had uncertain paternity ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by hkotsubo‭  ·  edited 2y ago by hkotsubo‭

Question etymology English
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Q&A Why are there different suffixes for people of different countries in English?

I never thought about it too much until now, but in Hebrew, the only suffix, if I'm not mistaken, to refer to a person from a country is to add the letter Yod to the end of the name of the country ...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Harel13‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Moshi‭

Question English suffix
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Q&A What is "these gentry" in Marxist writing?

In George Orwell's essay "Politics and the English Language", he refers to "[t]he jargon peculiar to Marxist writing (hyena, hangman, cannibal, petty bourgeois, these gentry, lackey, flunkey, mad d...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by msh210‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by Jirka Hanika‭

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Q&A Primary clause uses singular, subordinate co-reference is plural, what verb to use in English?

I sometimes find myself writing sentences with subordinate clauses where there is number mismatch between the primary and subordinate clauses. For example: The oath he swore, those words about se...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Monica Cellio‭  ·  edited 2y ago by Moshi‭

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Q&A Why is “timbre” pronounced “tamber”?

One thing that’s always bothered me about the musical term timbre is its pronunciation. The word begs to be pronounced “timber,” yet it’s widely pronounced “tamber” instead. I understand the etymol...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by DonielF‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by user8078‭

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Q&A Does English support three-word contractions?

In English certain pairs words can be contracted with an apostrophe, such as "I've" (I have). I don't know if there are strong rules for which words can be combined in this way and which can't. I...

2 answers  ·  posted 2y ago by Monica Cellio‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by shpielmeister‭

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Q&A When do you use 'whom'?

I have two basic questions about the usage of 'whom': When and how do you use the word 'whom'? Can I just... not? Even after looking it up, I'm confused. I've never found an example given where r...

1 answer  ·  posted 2y ago by Moshi‭  ·  last activity 2y ago by msh210‭

Question English

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