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Regarding the COVID-19 Pandemic

David, Moderator
Dear Grammar Exchange members, As we continue our grammar discussions, I want you to know that I am aware that we are all struggling in various ways as a result of the current pandemic and that my heart goes out to all of you. I hope that you and your loved ones are safe and healthy. Although we may not know each other personally, we all know that there is much more to us than the English grammar issues we discuss here. This post is devoted to the dimensions of you and your lives that I know...Read More...
Hi Gustavo, Thank you very much for your advise and guidance!!!! I sincerely appreciate it! ~Nina~Read More...
Last Reply By Nina WD · First Unread Post

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only

Understanding doesn’t create use: only when you can instantly recall what you understand, and practice using your remembered understanding, do you achieve mastery. <source> Can I omit <do> here?Read More...
When 'only when' is fronted, there should be no commas before the main clause. IMHO, the two commas are used here because the writer wants to present 'and practice using your remembered understanding' as an afterthought or minor information.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

past continuous

Hello Moderators. Could you please help me choose the correct answer? Why? - Which one of the following sentences isn't in the past continuous tense? a) My father was always criticising me when I was young. b) While driving fast, Ali had an accident. c) The film was interesting, so we waited till the end. d) During their stay in England, they learnt much English. Thank you.Read More...
Last Reply By Ahmed Imam Attia · First Unread Post

Parentheticals beginning with a coordinating conjunction

When used nonrestrictively, a parenthetical can start with a coordinating conjunction. E.g.1, "I like bachelors, or unmarried men, because they are fun." However, I see writers using parentheticals with a coordinating conjunction that are clearly adding new information to the sentence and thus are restrictive. E.g.2, "These apples, and the bananas next to them, are delicious." The commas in e.g.2 look entirely unnecessary and incorrect to me. Are they?Read More...
Thank you David.Read More...
Last Reply By GreenThunderBolt · First Unread Post

Past Participle tense

"picked up six bodies" is the passed action after the action of "he told French ..."; why it was not using "past participle tense (had picked up)", instead of "simple past tense"? He told French radio station Delta FM he and his crew picked up six bodies that were drifting in the water. https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-59423245Read More...
Swan (Practical English Usage, 3rd edition, page 251): "Past perfect tenses are not always used, especially if the time relationships are clear without a change from past to past perfect." - This man on IT said that dinosaurs were around for 250 million years.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

way to

Crowdfunding is a new and more collaborative way to secure funding for projects. It can be used in different ways: To request donations for a worthy cause anywhere in the world. To generate funding for a project with the contributors then becoming partners in the project. <Source> Is this paraphrasing grammatically correct? It can be used in different ways such as to request donations for a worthy cause anywhere in the world and to generate funding for a project with the contributors...Read More...

subject

Taxing certain goods or services, and so increasing prices, should result in either decreased use of these resources or creative innovation of new sources or options. The money raised through the tax can be used directly by the government either to supply services or to search for alternatives. (Source) What is the subject of the sentence underlined? Thank you in advance.Read More...
Thank you.Read More...
Last Reply By GBLSU · First Unread Post

to put vs putting

Can replace "to put" with "putting"? Earlier, Ms Patel told Parliament there was "no quick fix" to tackle the issue but said she had spoken to her French counterpart to offer to put more officers on the ground and had continued to push for joint patrols of the Channel. https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-59423245Read More...
Hi, Joshua, Swan, page 250, says: "Speech relating to actions (e.g. promises, agreements, orders, offers , requests, advice and suggestions) is often reported with infinitives ." - Ann has offered to baby-sit tonight.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

for that matter

Hello, what's the meaning of “for that matter” in this sentence? Prior to the late 1880s, most of us were so busy trying to make a living that we didn’t care what the Joneses were doing, nor did we know, for that matter. Thanks.Read More...
Thank you, David. "for that matter" is also defined "as far as ...is concerned". Is it accepatble to use this definiton to explain "for that matter" in this sentence?Read More...
Last Reply By erinD · First Unread Post

don't need to vs don't have to

Hello! What's the difference in meaning between these examples: Two friends. One notices that the other is going to water his garden and says to him: a) You don't need to water the garden this evening. It's going to rain tonight. b) You don't have to water the garden this evening. It's going to rain tonight.Read More...
Thank you, David!Read More...
Last Reply By Alexey86 · First Unread Post

Find NP V-ed

Hello, 1. She returned to her east London home to find her back door forced open . ( Collins dictionary ) 2. When they got home, Jane cooked their dinner in the microwave oven and without realizing it, cooked her fiancé's wallet as well. Imagine their dismay when they found a beautifully-cooked wallet and notes turned to ash! ( New concept English) Questions: How would you parse "forced open"? Is it an adjective phrase with open as head? Is "turned to ash" a modifier of "notes", or is it...Read More...

Sentence structure

Hello Grammar Exchange members! I've run into the following sentence while reading an article on the Internet. a. On the contrary, inefficient management of ESG erodes a company’s brand value and ends up bleeding the business needn't be reiterated through mere words.(https://brandequity.economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/marketing/esg-risk-management-and-brand-identity-are-closely-interlinked/87516495) I don't understand how this part "needn't be reiterated through mere words" can be attached...Read More...
Hello, KDog—I am unable to follow your link and inspect the accuracy of your quotation. If you have quoted the sentence accurately, the part of it that you are asking about is ungrammatically attached to the rest of the sentence.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

used to like = no longer likes

Hello. Could you please help me? in the following sentence, I think both choices are OK, right? - Ali used to like hot pepper in his food. This means he (doesn't like it now / no longer likes it). Thank you.Read More...
Thank you for your reply On Wed, 24 Nov 2021, 7:05 a.m. The Grammar Exchange, < alerts@crowdstack.com > wrote:Read More...
Last Reply By Ahmed Imam Attia · First Unread Post

for that matter

Hi, everyone, I read the sentence “Prior to the late 1880s, most of us were so busy trying to make a living that we didn’t care what the Joneses were doing, nor did we know, for that matter. ” in an English textbook. "for that matter" here is given the meaning "as far as...is concerned". I find such an explaination a bit awkward. I consulted the editor of the textbook and was told that "for that matter" meaning "as far as....is concerned" was proper and taken from the Oxford Advanced...Read More...

Cleft sentence

Hi, everyone. 1. It is fair to criticize and question the mechanism—that is the culture of research, after all—but it is the prize-givers' money to do with as they please. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wik..._Fundamental_Physics Does "it" refer to anything? Or is the sentence just a variant of a cleft sentence: It is the prize-givers' money that they can do with as they please. Thanks in advance. Context: As much as some scientists may grumble about the new awards, the financial doping that...Read More...
Thanks again! I'm glad I can finally comprehend this sentence.Read More...
Last Reply By Robby zhu · First Unread Post

would

How does "would" work in this sentece? Here is an explanation of my English grammar book about the word "rouse". To rouse somebody is to wake them up, make them interested, make them excited etc. It is extremely difficult to rouse my father in the mornings. (In an informal style, ...to wake my father up...would be much more natural. There is a 'would' here. So why does the writer use it rather than "is"?Read More...
Hi David, thanks for the explanation. If I replace "would" with "will", is there any difference? And appropriate. In a informal style, ... to wake my father up... will be much more natural.Read More...
Last Reply By Sadnesess · First Unread Post

entail

Can "accompanied" be a substitute for "entailed"? Beauty, Ugliness and the Free Play of Imagination When we experience nature, we do not experience it as species, but as individual objects. And as separated into individual objects, nature can have aesthetic properties that are not entailed by its scientific description.Read More...
Hi, Dude—No, "accompanied" cannot replace "entailed." If something is not entailed by its scientific description, its scientific description does not contain it or imply it. "Accompanied" does not mean "contained by" or "implied by."Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

antecedent

"Inside" a noun or an adverb? Can "adverb" be an antecedent of a relative clause? I appreciate your help. The Language of Houses: How Buildings Speak to Us Inside, however, where zoning does not reach, they often contain modern lighting and state-of-the-art kitchens and bathrooms.Read More...
Yes, Dude, exactly. An intransitive preposition is one without an object.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Using a decade as an adjective

Hi! I'm struggling to find out whether it's possible to to use a decade as an adjective. For example, '1920s New York' or '1980s Russia'. Thanks!Read More...
Hello, Laura G., and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. If you follow the stylistic advice that no apostrophe should be used in the spelling of the decade itself, then there is no reason to add an apostrophe when it is functioning as an adjectival modifier. Incidentally, notice that if 1920s were to be made possessive, the spelling would be 1920s' (with the apostrphe after the s ), not 1920's . Interpreted as a possessive, the form 1920's is the possessive of 1920 .Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

what symptoms have you been having

Do we say "what symptoms have you been having" in daily life? A : What symptoms have you been having? B: I've been coughing a lot. / I've been having a fever.Read More...
Hi, Bear-Bear, I see that the question and the answer are quite natural, but -of course- David is the one who can tell about their usage in his daily life.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

concerned

Can I think of <be concerned with> as <be worried about>? I looked them up in the dictionary, but there is no mention about it. Can you confirm it?Read More...
Hi, GBLSU, Mostly 'be concerned with' means either 'interested in' or 'be about a particular subject'. 'Be concerned about' means 'be worried or anxious '. (Source: Longman Dictionary Of Common Errors.)Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

clean

Is "clean" an adjective or adverb? THE CONSTANTLY SELF-CLEANING LOTUS This property of the lotus led researchers to design a new house paint. Researchers began working on how to develop paints that wash clean in the rain, in much the same way as lotus leaves do.Read More...
Thanks a lot.Read More...
Last Reply By Dude · First Unread Post

IT

Workers should be included in the planning for new factories or the introduction of robots into existing plants , so they can participate in the process . It may be that robots are needed to reduce manufacturing costs so that the company remains competitive, but planing for such cost reductions should be done jointly by labor and management. <source> What does <it> indicate? Thank you in advance.Read More...
Thank you for your confirmation. Actually, this is from the government-administered university entrance exam in Korea. Of course, this is based on the book mentioned. I guess that as many of the students got confused about what <it> refers to, they got the test problem wrong. I guess many thought <it> refers to something mentioned in previous sentence. Can I think of <what you said> as a dummy subject, <it> or preparatory <it>?Read More...
Last Reply By GBLSU · First Unread Post

In order for us

Every time when I use "in order" for us, word document asks me to consider revising and I don't understand why. e.g. In order for us to provide a proper quote of our fee, we require more information from a client, unless it is a start-up business. I thought "in order for us" in the above sentence is perfect.Read More...
Hi, Cristi—Microsoft Word flags (with underlining) many constructions that are perfectly fine from a grammatical standpoint, and "in order" in "in order to" purpose clauses is a big example of that. I wish someone would complain to Bill Gates about this. I guess the programmers feel that, because the "in order" is unnecessary, it is wordy. Outrageously, Word even underlines "have to," presumably because the programmers feel people should use "must" instead!Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post
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