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10 votes

Should I down-vote an accurate answer that lacks references?

Links to external resources are encouraged, but not required. Upvote useful answers. Downvote answers that are not useful. A useful answer is an answer that will help not just the asker but also ...
MetaEd's user avatar
  • 28.5k
7 votes

Are answers that only cite personal experience acceptable for questions about dialects?

As my flagging of a comment instigated @sumelic question, I'll share my thought. Questions on pronunciation are quite interesting, particularly for non-natives as myself, as resources are very ...
P. O.'s user avatar
  • 4,096
5 votes

How could we create extended discussion on EL&U that could be used as reference material to back up Q&A

There's the blog. You could get a couple people to write contrasting viewpoints in a topic and post it as an article on the blog. Also, 'meta' tags like 'discussion' on the main site are not allowed....
Kit Z. Fox's user avatar
  • 27.8k
5 votes

The abbreviation of words

There's certainly no comprehensive dictionary of abbreviations, as any individual, company, or even fandom can easily have its own abbreviations on top of any standard ones. Wikipedia is probably your ...
Drazex's user avatar
  • 662
4 votes

What books about English grammar are the standard for linguists and what for non-linguists?

@alphabet's answer covers professional grammars. The problem with the other category ("people who are neither linguists nor linguistics students") is that there are no "standard" ...
John Lawler's user avatar
4 votes

What books about English grammar are the standard for linguists and what for non-linguists?

For linguistics-oriented texts, most people here seem to be fans of Huddleston & Pullum (2002), McCawley (2nd ed., 1998), or Quirk et al. (1985). Expect a vigorous debate in the comments section ...
alphabet's user avatar
  • 18.7k
4 votes

dictionary for American English

Merriam-Webster's Eleventh Collegiate Dictionary (2003) is now eighteen years old, and—as far as I know—Merriam-Webster has no immediate plans to issue an updated Twelfth Collegiate. The gap is ...
Sven Yargs's user avatar
  • 164k
3 votes
Accepted

Is there a comprehensive and authoritative reference on whether or not an article is appropriate?

I am simply a vehicle for getting some enlightening but ephemeral comments into an answer. This is all thanks to the incomparable Edwin. Actually, it's far from trivial to decide between the definite ...
aparente001's user avatar
  • 21.6k
3 votes

Are answers that only cite personal experience acceptable for questions about dialects?

If the question is specifically asking about dialect differences, then I think these kinds of answers are acceptable. (They aren't for pretty much all the other kinds of questions.) Answers that cite ...
curiousdannii's user avatar
3 votes
Accepted

What resources to use for understanding archaic English usage?

Dictionaries can get you pretty far if you know how to use them. With late Middle English and Early Modern English, most of the words are spelled the same except for the vowels, which may be different ...
Laurel's user avatar
  • 66.5k
1 vote

For any word, see constituent roots; for any root, see composite words

Yes, the Oxford English Dictionary web application provides this service. If you look up the word composite in the OED, it reveals that its etymology is: Etymology: < Latin compositus, past ...
tchrist's user avatar
  • 135k
1 vote

What are some good and authoritative reference/data source for modern usage examples of words?

What I think you are looking for is a number of examples of a target word in a sentence or paragraph (most dictionaries will give at least one sentence in its definition). The OED is great (arguably ...
Mitch's user avatar
  • 71.6k
1 vote

What are some good and authoritative reference/data source for modern usage examples of words?

I'd say that if you've got access to the full OED then that's a good place to start. No other source has (nor probably ever will have) that level of acknowledged expertise (as opposed to unaccredited ...
FumbleFingers's user avatar

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