Search found 1800 matches

by tony h
Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:26 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: the cousin of Kate
Replies: 7
Views: 213

Re: the cousin of Kate

All are ambiguous.
by tony h
Wed Dec 20, 2017 10:37 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings Archive
Topic: Tchotckes
Replies: 6
Views: 468

Re: Tchotckes

"13 inch long matches" they were always on my great-uncle's Christmas list. They made lighting his coke fired stove much easier.
by tony h
Wed Dec 20, 2017 10:30 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Bag up
Replies: 6
Views: 201

Re: Bag up

Others may have a different view. In English "bag", as a verb, tends to mean "shoot for sport". So you bag big game like a lion, a zebra or a crocodile. It also works with the results of the morning walk. "Took the dogs up to spinney hill and bagged a rabbit and a brace of pheasants." We would tend ...
by tony h
Tue Dec 19, 2017 7:40 pm
Forum: Addicts' Corner
Topic: Christmas Time
Replies: 4
Views: 185

Re: Christmas Time

Have a Very Merry Christmas - for which an excess of alcohol is not a prerequisite - and a Happy New Year
by tony h
Tue Dec 19, 2017 5:15 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Toast
Replies: 3
Views: 120

Re: Toast

The phrasing is rather awkward.

Let's propose a toast to you getting your driving license.

In England we tend to say "driving licence", the USA may use "driver's licence".
by tony h
Mon Dec 18, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: a new method to travel
Replies: 1
Views: 75

Re: a new method to travel

They are all fine. There is a slight possibility for ambiguity which context would almost certainly rule out. If the sentences were to apply to the scientists we would expect to see "his " or "their". eg: not "Doctor Jones is trying to find new ways to live with mental illness" but "Doctor Jones is ...
by tony h
Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:31 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Secrets
Replies: 4
Views: 152

Re: Secrets

I would call them a gossip. At school, where there was a penchant for Latinate phrases, they would be called a quidnunc. A good word but, I suspect, not well known these days.
by tony h
Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:20 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: A gift from the Devil’s grandmother
Replies: 5
Views: 302

Re: A gift from the Devil’s grandmother

Phil, are you able to confirm whether knitting is a key feature of the Devil's grandmother, in German sources, and what role it might play? Maybe it was more from the Nordic au-pairs. PS: we had a plethora of au-pairs as my mother contracted polio before I was born so they became a necessary part of...
by tony h
Sat Dec 16, 2017 12:10 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: dox/doxing
Replies: 4
Views: 208

Re: dox/doxing

That's news to me.
by tony h
Thu Dec 14, 2017 7:39 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: A foot long
Replies: 3
Views: 160

Re: A foot long

Building on Erik's excellent reply I wonder whether, with Subway advertising the "footlong" as being "a sandwich being much longer than that offered by their competitors" the phrase is intended to imply "this is a market sector all of which has problems but Subway's problems are more extensive than ...
by tony h
Thu Dec 14, 2017 9:44 am
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Long jacket
Replies: 6
Views: 218

Re: Long jacket

This is the coat ... https://www.kentandcurwen.com/military-greatcoat-k3602em10a.html The manufacturer calls it a Military Greatcoat. The main difference between a greatcoat and a trenchcoat is that a trenchcoat is designed to be substantially more waterproof than a greatcoat by using waterproof mat...
by tony h
Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:31 am
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: You're the man! -- You da man!
Replies: 11
Views: 16525

Re: You're the man! -- You da man!

An interesting observation.
by tony h
Mon Dec 11, 2017 8:30 pm
Forum: Usage and Writing
Topic: Sniper
Replies: 3
Views: 168

Re: Sniper

I agree with Erik.

For comparison the similar role for artillery is an observer.
by tony h
Sun Dec 10, 2017 1:21 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: The bones of his ass
Replies: 4
Views: 269

Re: The bones of his ass

Interesting! I imagine there are two things going on here. First: The illusion to "having no meat on him" or "all skin and bones" meaning that since losing his job he is wasting away - unclear whether this is from poverty or not eating as a result of depression. Second: "on his arse" being an indica...
by tony h
Sun Dec 10, 2017 12:52 pm
Forum: Word Origins and Meanings
Topic: A gift from the Devil’s grandmother
Replies: 5
Views: 302

Re: A gift from the Devil’s grandmother

What a lovely post! In my childhood we had a series of au pairs from Scandinavia and Germany. The Devil's Grandmother appeared in many warnings. The warnings often seemed to have illusions to knitting - the au pairs were invariably knitters - "The Devil's grandmother will catch you in her knitting" ...