The stone is <pressing> the sole of my foot

Via32

Senior Member
Hungarian
Hi Everyone,

I have been wondering for ages about a verb to describe a particularly important :) "action", so I thought it was really time to ask and find the answer.

What verb would you use in the following cases? In my mother tongue all three is what I would translate as "press".

There's a stone in my shoe. The stone is <pressing> the sole of my foot.

My boyfriend's arm is around my shoulder but it's uncomfortable as I lay back on the couch. His arm is <pressing> my back.

The earphone's tips are too big and my ears become sore after a few minutes. The tips are <pressing> my ears.
 
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  • SwissPete

    Senior Member
    Français (CH), AE (California)
    There's a stone in my shoe. The stone is digging into the sole of my foot.

    I'll let other members address the other ones!
     

    heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I agree with 'digging into' for #1. For #2 I think I would say 'pressing into'. I don't know what I'd say for #3 - I've never experienced that particular discomfort.
     

    JSRM

    Senior Member
    Spanish - colombia
    This thread is pretty interesting to me.
    I'd like to know what each verb (dig into and press into) implies in the given context. How do you know when to use one or another?

    Thanks in advance.
     

    SwissPete

    Senior Member
    Français (CH), AE (California)
    Dig implies penetration through the skin.
    Press implies making contact (in a painful manner, in the present context).
     

    JSRM

    Senior Member
    Spanish - colombia
    I would like to express this topic as I see it and I hope you tell me whether I am right or not.

    In the second sentence, we use press into because his arm cannot go through my skin; it is almost impossible.
    In the first sentence we use dig into because the stone can harm me by penetrating my skin.
    And in the third sentence we can use either because the earphones tip can just be bothering me or can actually be harmful.
     

    heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Yes - that sums it up rather well.

    Though I would add that, for me, 'digging in' doesn't necessarily mean 'penetrating the skin', but that the pain or discomfort is caused by something sharp or pointy. For instance someone's elbow could be digging into you. It wouldn't penetrate the skin of course, but the pain would be localised at a point.

    I hope that makes sense.
     
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