Is there a specific for a voluntarily made monosyllabic sound from the mouth used to express humor/laughter/cynicism?

The sound I’m thinking of isn’t so much a snort, it’s not expelled from the nose, however, a sound used to express humor or amusement that doesn’t quite hit the laughter threshold. I notice I do it and was trying to use it in writing. Normally it’s a “T” sound or sometimes an “heh” as … Read more

Why is shippable spelled with 2 p’s [duplicate]

This question already has answers here: Closed 10 years ago. Possible Duplicate: What is the correct spelling: wrapable, or wrappable? My mother “corrected” me and said “shouldn’t shippable be spelled as shipable”? My gut feeling said two p’s, but I couldn’t think of a reason why. So I googled it and it is spelled with … Read more

What is the correct spelling and definition of a word (sp.) “enditement” [closed]

This question is too basic; it can be definitively and permanently answered by a single link to a standard internet reference source designed specifically to find that type of information. Closed 8 years ago. Whilst watching The Big Bang Theory (S04E11, ~06:45 in, where Howard and Stuart are talking in the Comic Book Store about … Read more

Why is butcher paper spelt without an apostrophe?

Why is butcher paper spelt without an apostrophe, rather than as “butcher’s paper”, when “carpenter’s square” is spelt with an apostrophe? Answer “Butcher’s paper” is found, as is “butchers’ paper” more rarely. It’s just the difference between using the genitive to associate one noun with another (“butcher’s paper” being paper that belongs to or is … Read more

Why do many names use “y” in place of expected “i”?

I would expect names like Taylor, Poynting have “i” in place of actual “y”, because they sound very similar to words “tailor” and “pointing”. There’s also Feynman, which some (not really credible source though) suggest to be “probably a poorly chosen spelling of the German/Yiddish Feinman”. Why is there “y” instead of “i”? Have the … Read more

Nonabelian or non-abelian?

I asked this question on Mathematics Stack Exchange (here) but I haven’t had any luck so far. Allow me to copy the question: If I wanted to be scrupulous about correct spelling, is there any reason that I should prefer either: non-abelian or nonabelian? nondegenerate or non-degenerate? hyperkähler or hyper-Kähler? NB: For some reason, hyperkähler … Read more

Is it “policy(ies)” or policy(s)” for an optional, parenthetical plural suffix? [duplicate]

This question already has answers here: Parenthetical pluralization of words ending in ‘-y’ (5 answers) Closed 6 years ago. When writing a noun that shows a parenthetical plural suffix option, which is acceptable, “policy(ies)” or policy(s)”? Answer Since the difference between the words is not a simple addition of characters, using parenthesis to show the … Read more

Why is the word ‘always’ written with only one ‘L’? [closed]

Closed. This question is off-topic. It is not currently accepting answers. Want to improve this question? Update the question so it’s on-topic for English Language & Usage Stack Exchange. Closed 6 years ago. Improve this question Does anybody know why the word always is written with one L, although it is formed by putting together … Read more

“Ninehammer” as variant spelling of “ninnyhammer”

I’m reading Neal Stephenson’s historical novel Quicksilver, published in 1998 and set around 1700. There are several passages where the characters use the word ninehammer, as in the following: “… For never have you seen such a gaggle of frauds, fops, ninehammers, and mountebanks.” (Book Three, “Daniel and Churchill on Tower Causeway”. This scene takes … Read more

touchscreen, touch-screen, touch screen? Merriam-Webster and Oxford disagree

I have searched but cannot find a definite answer on the correct to write “touch screen”. Merriam-Webster says touch screen. Oxford says touchscreen. And random people around the internet say “touch-screen”. What is the most correct and professional way to write touchscreen in the following sentence? We recommend using your touchscreen device instead of a … Read more