English Vocabulary


Which is the best way to acquire vocabulary and to get used to it?
Insert the new words and expressions in sentences and tell them several times by rote like rotating in a squirrel cage.
But to come across new words and expression you simply might put questions and get answers.
Be this thread devoted to that purpose.

21 comments - page 2

  • Three guys are bound to face danger, a timid, a coward and a courageous.
    How can you make them out?

    The timid is afraid before being in danger,
    the cowardly is afraid while in danger,
    the courageous is afraid after the danger.
  • Gee has just told us a clever stoty about different people being AFRAID when confronted with danger.
    It reminds me of a Chinese saying: Fright knocked at the door, Confidence went to open the door and there was nobody...
  • Here is the same idea coming from Chinese thoughts, Silky, but yours is more quitening:
    It is difficult to catch a black cat into a dark room, especially if it is not there...
  • Dear Edelweiss,
    You made me burst out laughing with your black cat playing a funny trick to cat-catcher-wannabees.

    I was deeply touched last Sunday as I was offered your bunch of three white flowers. They are still standing here, two for words on my desk and the third in the bottom of my heart.
    Life is beautiful.
    [No CW because the mistakes, if any, come from my natural feeling, my self-acting, so moved I've been by the flowers. It was the first time in my life!)
  • For AhQ :-)))
  • Q1 - Why should we hear and see more than we speak?

    A1 - Socrates answered : Nature has given us two ears, two eyes, and but one tongue, to the end that we should hear and see more than we speak.

    Q2 - About Socrates' vocabulary: why didn't he say listen and look instead of hear and see?

    A2 - (left pending)
  • My dear fellow bastard,

    Your Question 2 is an old chestnut. Say, what a dirty trick are you playing on us, poor English learners carried away along the scents of the jungle?


    First thing first: Who has been so bold as to render into such a wretched English the beautiful Greek of Plato? Is it you, Lucky bastard? or a fellow bastard of your kind unsettling people about hearing or listening, seeing or looking if not watching? Would you make us believe that Greek philosophers were not able to make out a passive sensible action from an active one?
    For my part I keep holding Greek philosophers in high esteem.

    Secondly. I consider significant to keep in mind that Socrates never wrote a mere line. All his says have been reported by Plato. But, saying that, I am not trying to hint that Plato would be a treacherous (tradittore) in reporting Socrates speeches. Yet he was not a translator (traductore), and moreover he was a top clever man holding Socrates in high esteem.

    So, eventually, the trick is lying in the translation into English. And it happens that any quotation has to be reported in its context. The sense of a speech hasn't to be found in a word-to-word translation, but in the whole. Just as the truth always lies in the whole, not in parts.

    Here I'm bringing facts to unveil the trick.
    'blepô' can be rendered into English by either 'I see' or 'I look' according to the context.
    In the same way, 'akouô' (incidentally root of 'acoustic') can be rendered by 'I hear' and/or 'I listen to'.

    Now let's come back to A1. In Socrates' answer as reported, let's remove 'hear' and 'see' respectively by 'listen' and 'look'. As a result the sense of the sentence turns otherwise with no less relevance about the human behavior.

    As a conclusion this is my proposal to the pending A2.
    Q2 does not make sense. It's meaningless.
    Hence A2 is nonexistent.

    Is it what you expected as an answer, Lucky bastard?
    If so, you are a expert in the Socratic teaching methods.
    Are you a teacher, Lucky bastard?
  • Dear AhQ,
    I read Socrates' quote in a quotations site and I wondered why the translator had taken such options. Since I picked up the sentence to get fellow learners' opinion.
    I had never expected a such extensive account to let understand that both proposals of translation are suitable. I have been dazzled by your arguments.
    Gifted you, AhQ!
    Your fellow bastard
  • Q - How could you be the great-great-great-grandfather of a great-great-great-grandchild?

    A - The hardest is to manage to be a great-granddad of a great-grandchild. Then, what’s is left is just getting a stammer.

    Nota bene - Sorry for women who will never be great-great-great-grandmother because it’s well known that women, even angry, never manage to stammer.
  • Q - How could you improve your vocabulary by at the same time helping starving people?

    A - By spending a while checking your knowing of words on http://www.freerice.com/

    Nota bene - It's not a joke. The site is supplied by sponsors.

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