A word to describe someone who has moved back to live in his/her home country?

As an answer to this post, should my response really have been deleted? The decision seems highly arbitrary to me, no doubt the action of someone who was sleepy and\or grumpy, especially considering OP's original question, the answer that preceded mine, and my more expansive response which took much more of OP's query into account than did the preceding answer.

In contrast to the first respondent's answer (which I did not disagree with so much as I felt a need to expand upon), I specifically addressed the fact that (1) the noun form is more common than the verb form, and (2) pronunciation differences exist (at least in some regions) between the noun and verb form. I then went on to give several example sentences, in a particular context, of the target vocabulary utlilized in each part of speech.

Surely, my answer should be reinstated as a helpful elaboration on the first response? I leave the decision in your hands.

4 Answers 4


Stack Exchange sites do not work like discussion groups. They are Q&A sites. Each answer is supposed to stand on its own, not be, in effect, commentary or followup discussion on another answer. This is reflected in the fact that answers are listed not in the order they were posted, but in order by number of votes. There is no guarantee your answer will show up right under the one you are commenting on, which will make it hard for readers to make sense of your post.

You are more than welcome to post a standalone answer to the question, or to post your answer as a comment on an existing answer (in which case it should be recast as a constructive suggestion for improving that answer), or to improve an existing answer by editing it.


I deleted it because if we exclude the part where you repeat the answer that was already given, the additional information doesn't change the answer. Helpful supplements and/or anecdotes can be left as commentary on the other answer. I will move it there if you wish.

Also, I'm not sleepy or grumpy. I'm making cake. Those feelings are currently impossible to feel. Because cake.

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    It seems that, in the few weeks that I have participated in ELU, the entire enterprise here has sadly been whittled down to arbitrary and/or strict closings of queries or deletions of answers to the point that, really, there is no further ongoing reason for ELU to exist at all, since, apparently, all questions, according to this mindset, have already either been asked or answered. (As per my answer referenced above, I disagree...) It sounds like the Vatican or the Communist Central Committee to me, but by all means do what you think best, and I will govern myself accordingly. Commented Feb 27, 2013 at 17:17
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    I don't see why answers which duplicate an earlier answer in all substantive respects should gain rep which should go to the first one. I'd be a bit miffed if it were my answer which others simply repeated and added anecdotes to.
    – Andrew Leach Mod
    Commented Feb 27, 2013 at 17:35
  • Sometimes anecdotes add value. It's one thing to say, "I found this word in a dictionary," and another to say, "I use this word often." Even if it's the same word, that's not the same answer, I don't think. This is, after all, English Language & Usage. If someone can explain how/when/where they've used a word, that helps. As for whether that should go in an answer or a comment, that depends on how much elaboration is provided. A simple one-liner should be a comment, but a longer anecdote ("let me tell you about when my uncle came to visit...") can be an answer – in my mind, a valuable one.
    – J.R.
    Commented Feb 28, 2013 at 15:45

Apparently I can't vote to undelete the answer, because it was deleted by a mod, not by votes.

I don't necessarily think Shawn's answer was that good, but I don't see why it should have been deleted. The (only slightly earlier) answer didn't even mention what to me was a significant point - that for all the OED citations in the other answer, the fact remains that repatriate is very rarely used as a noun (just as expatriate is very rarely used as a verb).

In short, I think OP has a point here, and glib justifications involving cakemaking seem like further evidence that his (imho, useful) contribution isn't being given the attention it deserves.

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    I think the cake making was just as relevant to the discussion as the grumpy accusation.
    – Kit Z. Fox Mod
    Commented Feb 28, 2013 at 18:29
  • @KitFox♦: Touché. But you as a mod should be (and usually are) above such tit-for-tat. I do apologise for the fact that my choice of the word "glib" above was more confrontational than I really intended, but I still can't say I agree with your deletion (now apparently reversed). I know you mods have to "run" things, but from what I've seen of ELU over the last couple of years, it seems unlikely three users would have voted for the deletion. If we wouldn't, probably you shouldn't either - regardless of the rights and wrongs of the specific case in point. Commented Mar 1, 2013 at 1:24
  • I understand. It is obvious from the answers here that the community is divided on this example. This was a grey area, and it was my call. Cakemaking aside, I stand by the rationale I gave. However, I pointed this question out to the other mods and asked them to review it and undelete the answer if they thought it ought to be undeleted. I washed my hands of it at that point.
    – Kit Z. Fox Mod
    Commented Mar 1, 2013 at 1:39
  • @KitFox♦: I think that's the key point - it's a "grey area". It may actually be that if every active ELU user were obliged to vote one way or the other, deletion would carry the day. But whereas I think most native speakers would know that ordinarily repatriate and expatriate aren't "symmetrical" across verb/noun usages, non-natives (of whom there are a good many here) mightn't know that; they could easily be misled if they only saw the top-rated answer, and not this now-reinstated one (which I'll just go and give its first upvote! :) Commented Mar 1, 2013 at 22:49

FWIW, on the 24th, I flagged Is “Who is he?” ok when we don’t know the sex? as an answer of low quality. It is a duplicate and adds nothing further to the accepted answer. It also reads like a comment. My flag was disputed which I guess implies that at least one reviewer disagreed with me. The answer still stands.

While I personally agree that Shawn's anecdote should have been in a comment to tchrist's answer, a little consistency in moderation will also be nice. His anecdote was far more useful than my flagged answer.

(I'm assuming here that my flag wasn't just voted down by established users and that it went all the way up to the mod-queue.)

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    I agree that the other answer should have been deleted. For future reference, use a flag that indicates that the answer has already been given. We don't always compare the answer to all the other answers, so it isn't always obvious.
    – Kit Z. Fox Mod
    Commented Feb 28, 2013 at 18:33
  • @KitFox Which flag is that? Custom/Other? Commented Mar 3, 2013 at 6:11
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    Yes, I think Custom. I don't think any of the presets have this message.
    – Kit Z. Fox Mod
    Commented Mar 4, 2013 at 12:51

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