is there a word for 'a word that fits its own definition'? for example, sesquipedalian is a big word that by definition means "prone to using big words." is there a formal term for this type of thing?
posted by carlypennylane
on Nov 29, 2011 -
What’s a sure-fire way of knowing the difference between “their” and there; I always end up getting confused between the two. [more inside]
posted by hadjiboy
on Nov 21, 2011 -
Can you help me explain how and when to use articles (a/an/the) to a non-native English speaker? [more inside]
posted by shortyJBot
on Nov 7, 2011 -
If I had never seen the internet before, where would you direct me in 2011? What are the best news, film, music, art, fashion, history, technology, gossip, sports websites and blogs out there? [more inside]
posted by maca
on Oct 3, 2011 -
When we talk about general magnitude of countable things ("I see hundreds of ads every day" or "There were thousands of people watching the parade"), why do English-speakers generally say "dozens" instead of "tens"? [more inside]
posted by psoas
on Oct 3, 2011 -
Is there a common English word or a technical term that names the process of taking a page or picture from the real world to the virtual? In other words, if I took a physical page and, with a scanner or camera, turned it into a file on my computer; what would you call that action?
posted by millerizer
on Oct 2, 2011 -
Is there a graphical representation of the number of english words, broken down by popular use? If not, is the raw data available online somewhere?
posted by parallax7d
on Sep 27, 2011 -
I've read a poem that has intrigued me and piqued my curiosity but unfortunately it also confused me. It would be great if someone here could elucidate its meaning for me. The poem is The Curse
by John Donne.
posted by gregb1007
on Sep 19, 2011 -
How would you translate this into English? Il n'est voisin qui ne voisine.
I know it's a French idiom, but what does it mean?
posted by degoao
on Sep 14, 2011 -
"American English is like a mugger in a back alley who, instead of taking your wallet, takes your pocket dictionary".
I read a quote in this vein a while ago and I'm trying to identify the actual quote and the source.
posted by chara
on Sep 12, 2011 -
I have often have trouble understanding what ESL speakers are saying, and I pretty much feel like a jerk after asking someone to repeat something a third time. [more inside]
posted by anonymous
on Sep 9, 2011 -
So, this is a a little embarrassing. Apparently, I know nothing about the rules of grammar and English composition. Obviously, I have some of the basics of writing down (you can read this right?), but I don't know any of the terminology and nitty-gritty details about how sentences are constructed in English. I need help with resources to quickly catch me up to all the other kids in my Advanced Composition class. [more inside]
posted by runcibleshaw
on Sep 7, 2011 -
I'm looking for materials for a university level program in Spain for the teaching of intermediate/advanced English to Spanish nursing and physiotherapy students. As coordinator of the programme, I'm on the lookout for recommendations for websites/other materials that I could use which people may have had positive experiences with. Hospital English
looks pretty good, for example. The coursebooks will be the Oxford English for Careers (Nursing, Medicine series) by Tony Grice, unless anyone has any better suggestions!
posted by Holly
on Sep 6, 2011 -
Has an evaluation been made of the dichotomy between what is implied by the term "wild" in the line "You drive us wild" and what is implied by the term "crazy" in the immediately following line "We'll drive you crazy" in KISS's "Rock And Roll All Night?"
posted by herbplarfegan
on Aug 23, 2011 -
Okay, this is a long-shot, I know, but I need help finding information about someone referenced in a random Ph.D thesis I came across on teh intarwebs. His ideas are about the use of patterning in High School English education, and I'd like to acknowledge them in my own thesis. His name is Chad Wolf and he taught at Jefferson High School in '00-'01. My Google-fu is weak, but all my attempts return nothing. All the information I have below the fold. [more inside]
posted by guster4lovers
on Jul 31, 2011 -
Why does the New York Times write "unemployment rose to 10% from 5%" rather than "unemployment rose from 5% to 10%"? I trip over this formulation and have to go back and reread the clause every time. Is the goal to increase clarity of avoid confusion in some way? How so? This doesn't seem to be standard American English, and it's certainly not usual in the UK. [more inside]
posted by caek
on Jul 15, 2011 -
Do you honestly enjoy reading free verse? Can you explain to me why I should enjoy it, too?
posted by anonymous
on Jun 24, 2011 -
Calling etymologists, linguists, lexicographers, and research librarians! Was there a time when 'television,' 'radio,' or 'newspaper' were always capitalized? [more inside]
posted by thebestsophist
on Jun 20, 2011 -
What are the pros and cons of trying to become an English professor in Toronto for a fiction writer (and how feasible is it)? [more inside]
posted by skwt
on Jun 20, 2011 -
This Friday, I have to give a one-hour lecture to a group of Chinese 14-year-olds about American culture and learning English. What should I teach? [more inside]
posted by jweed
on Jun 19, 2011 -
Two questions about vocabulary in the American South and elsewhere: did your parents call you sugar and did they, when you were in trouble, use both your first and middle names to summon you for the reckoning? [more inside]
posted by mygothlaundry
on Jun 2, 2011 -
ELT-filter: I'm arguing that "What's your favorite lunch menu?" is Japanese-English phrasing that shouldn't be included in an English textbook. [more inside]
posted by planetkyoto
on May 9, 2011 -
So I graduated last year and have been working in sales since then. I'm very intrigued by the concept of teaching english abroad, as I've had some great experiences teaching children before, but am overwhelmed by the amount of different schemes and companies. I have never really
travelled before, and I know this may be seen as a big step, but I have this uncontrollable itch to just go for it while I am young and relatively free.
I'm really looking for any and all advice from you guys - anyone who's done it, anyone who's considered it, anyone at all!
Ideally, I am looking for a half-year placement, with a UK-based TEFL company (although it seems that many companies don't care where you are from). Having said that, I could be swayed by a year-long course. I am very excited by i-to-i, and heard about this through a recommendation.
However, as I say, I feel a little like I am stabbing in the dark. I have read with much interest some previous questions, and have heard mention of Dave's ESL cafe, but this seems to be mostly aimed towards the USA. [more inside]
posted by jhighmore
on May 3, 2011 -
Summer short course filter: Fun readings on the internet, the future, and research in the digital age for high school teachers. Help a librarian plan a syllabus! [more inside]
posted by activitystory
on Apr 28, 2011 -
Taxonomy (or just a list) of English grammatical constructs suitable for use as a checklist for a second language learner? [more inside]
posted by amtho
on Apr 26, 2011 -
Tutoring two 2nd-grade students in writing more creatively. I'm a creative writing grad student, so no sweat right? Wrong. Their first language isn't English. [more inside]
posted by joyeuxamelie
on Apr 19, 2011 -
Given 4 months of free time, how can an advanced English learner take the biggest step toward full fluency? [more inside]
posted by mshrike
on Apr 18, 2011 -
My friends, a software engineer and a novelist, are getting married. I want to give them a puzzle to solve as a wedding gift that requires the use of both their skills. [more inside]
posted by jewzilla
on Apr 17, 2011 -
So yesterday I bought a used copy of Fallout 3 for the xbox 360 at my local Gamestop. Turned out it was a Polish version. Anyone know if it's possible to change the default Polish text and dialogue to English?
posted by Dumsnill
on Apr 9, 2011 -
Who are some film directors, screenwriters, and TV showrunners who went to grad school in the humanities, or taught in humanities departments before going into show business? [more inside]
posted by Beardman
on Apr 7, 2011 -
I'm a native speaker of English and I feel like my poor English grammar is degrading me. [more inside]
posted by sanskrtam
on Apr 3, 2011 -