What is the meaning of “annihilated in detail”?

I ran across the phrase “annihilated in detail” while listening to Professor Garrett G. Fagan’s instruction regarding the History of Ancient Rome. This comes from a lecture on Marius and Sulla with regards to a particular Roman battle: They split their forces. As a result when the Germans came on, they were annihilated in detail. … Read more

Is it correct to use both “On the other hand” and “instead” in a single sentence?

I have this sentence “On the other hand, you can go to this page instead.” but I am not sure if the presence of both On the other hand and instead makes the sentence redundant. Answer tautology … a tautology is a statement which repeats the same idea, using near-synonymous morphemes, words, or phrases, that … Read more

Redundant words — “little bit”

He sandwiches tastier by spreading a little bit of cranberry sauce on the bread. In the above sentence, is “little bit” redundant? Should it be either “little” or “bit”? I checked the pair of words in books.google.com/ngrams, and the result was; language-tool says, “Reduce redundancy by using ‘little’ or ‘bit’.”. Answer “Little” or “bit” could … Read more

Is “barista bar” redundant?

I am editing something that mentions a “barista bar.” Is this redundant? Is it like saying a “bartender bar”? If I’m not mistaken, a barista is the Italian word for a male or female bartender, and refers more casually to servers at a coffee bar. So it doesn’t make sense to me to use it … Read more

“May I help the next customer on line.”

Leaving aside the regional dialect that might cause someone to say “on line” or “in line,” isn’t the line what establishes who the next customer is — and so therefore redundant? Wouldn’t a simple “May I help the next customer?” suffice? I know line-forming is not something done in all cultures, but I’m fairly certain … Read more

Is “crucially important” redundant?

I’ve come across the phrase crucially important many times. More than 100,000 hits on Google Scholar, and it even appears in some of the answers on this site. However, crucial already means “extremely important”, so is using crucially important (and by extension, of crucial importance) redundant? Answer In 1869, a New York Post reporter, commenting … Read more

“Leave nothing (left) behind”

In the lyrics for “What are you waiting for” from Disturbed, there is the line: Leave nothing left behind I’m debating whether “left” is superfluous and here only for rythm, or if the expression “left behind” that forms adds meaning to the sentence compared to “leave nothing behind”. Is the phrase correct as-is, and does … Read more