Everyone knows the main meanings of words like “stand”, “tell”, "should", and “suggest”, but do you know their common 2nd meaning? These 10 words have a common second meaning that some English learners may not realize.
Should = if
Should you lose your ticket, you’ll have to buy a new one (if you lose your ticket)
Should the jury find him guilty, he’ll go to jail (if the jury finds him guilty)
Should you require any help, just call me (if you need any help)
To stand = to tolerate
I can’t stand his voice! (I can’t tolerate)
How can you stand that smell? (How can you tolerate?)
He can’t stand seeing his ex-girlfriend (he can’t tolerate seeing)
To run = to manage
He runs his own business (he manages)
My parents run a small hotel (my parents manage)
who is running this event? (who is managing this event?)
To see = to understand
Don’t you see? (Don’t you understand?)
I see what you mean (I understand)
He doesn’t see my point (he doesn’t understand)
To tell = to determine
I can’t tell the difference (I can’t determine)
Can you tell which boy is older? (Can you determine?)
It’s hard to tell when someone is lying (It’s hard to determine)
To suggest = to imply
She suggested that the food wasn’t good (she implied)
His behaviour suggested that he disagreed with me (his behaviour implied)
His tone suggested he was being sarcastic (his tone implied)
To kid = to joke
I’m just kidding (I’m just joking)
Are you kidding? (Are you joking?)
Don’t take his comments seriously. He was kidding (he was joking)
To object = to disagree
I hope he doesn’t object (I hope he doesn’t disagree)
She objected to my proposal (she disagreed)
My lawyer objected to the witness’s statement (my lawyer disagreed)
To bet = to be sure (usually when you are giving your own opinion/prediction)
I bet that he'll arrive late like usual.
I bet they will break up soon. They seem like an unhappy couple.
I bet the traffic will be terrible. It's always bad in the morning.
To bear = to produce children
Women are not bearing as many children as they used to (women are not producing children)
She bore four children (she produced four children)
Women who bear children over 40 have increased health risks (women who produce children over 40…)
Note: this is where the past participle “born” comes from “I was born (by my mother) in 1987.”
Rewrite each sentence below using one of the words from this lesson:
kid / should / bear / bet / tell / see / object / suggest / run / stand
She manages her own catering company.
The author of the article implies that the government overreacted to the pandemic.
I was just joking about your hairstyle.
I can’t tolerate stubborn people.
It’s harder for women to produce children after the age of 35.
I thought it would be a good idea to change our office layout but my manager disagreed.
I’m sure she won’t remember me.
I understand your point.
If you require assistance, call our front desk and they will be happy to help.
I can’t determine if he’s joking or being serious.
She runs her own catering company.
The author of the article suggests that the government overreacted to the pandemic.
I was just kidding about your hairstyle.
I can’t stand stubborn people.
It’s harder for women to bear children after the age of 35.
I thought it would be a good idea to change our office layout but my manager objected.
I bet she won’t remember me.
I see your point.
Should you require assistance, call our front desk and they will be happy to help.
I can’t tell if he’s joking or being serious.