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Inquiry

Can we say,"American English is more different than Britain English."? Can the adjective, "different" be used in comparison like any other adjective? Can we say," more different / the most different / as different as" or it is an absolute adjective? Thanks and waiting for your feedbackRead More...
Hi, Mohamed Emara, 'Different' can be followed by the prepositions 'from', 'to' and 'than'. There could be a problem with your example because of the usage of 'than'. Your example can be read like this: - American English is more different (from, to, than) British English than Canadian English. Yes, it can. I think you know the phrase "as different as chalk and cheese". Also, See 'more different from' on this link: https://www.merriam-webster.co...om-or-different-than Finally, you can find...Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

every week

Who used to borrow money from you back in those days. a. It was Tom every week. b. Tom, every week. c, It was Tom. Every week. Which of the sentences a-c are acceptable in this context? The idea is that: It was Tom. He borrowed money from me every week. Many thanks.Read More...

The meaning of "unconscious"

Q. He did not want to go home in an extremly unconscious condition. I searched almost all English dictionaries to figure out if the sentence above makes sense, but I'm still confused. Wanting to go home is a conscious, active process, I guess. In an objective manner, I wonder if the sentence is correct or not.Read More...
Hi, Jiho, "Unconscious" does not fit in with the context of doing something voluntarily, in this case, with not wanting to get home in a certain condition. Also, "unconscious" does not work with "extremely." You can be either conscious or unconscious, not extremely conscious or unconscious.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

such that

FROM Knowledge and Memory In both of these cases, then, understanding means attempting to extract indexes such that old stories can be related to new ones. Is it the same as 'so that'? Can I replace it with 'so that'?Read More...
Thank you. I have another question. What about ' to the extent that'? Is it possible there instead of 'such that'?Read More...
Last Reply By duaiekan · First Unread Post

Was/Were

Hello, For conditional structure, why do we use "were" instead? e.g. If I were you, I would..... If he were to acquire the property five years ago, he would have become a millionaire.Read More...
I am not giving you the answers. I am just sharing some thoughts. A moderator or another member will soon give us the answers. 1. Some (many?) American speakers would have no problem with "If I was you, I would not accept that job." a. But some people still use the so-called subjunctive "were." The subjunctive refers to something that is not true. I am not you, but if I were you, I ... 2, I think that your second sentence should not use "were." a. Maybe it would be better to say something...Read More...
Last Reply By TheParser · First Unread Post

A "Who are" vs. "Who is" question

Which of these is correct: You, who are noble yet vulgar. You, who is noble yet vulgar.Read More...
Hello, slimicee, and welome to the Grammar Exchange. Neither of your sentences is complete. Each is a sentence fragment. That said, "are" is correct, and "is" is not, since "you" is the antecedent of "who." We say "You are . . .," not " You is . . ."Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

an afternoon walk in the park and

Could one use a. He loves an afternoon walk in the park and a good late night movie. instead of b. He loves afternoon walks in the park and good late night movies. I am not sure (a) works. Doesn't it imply that the two things are somehow temporally connected? Many thanksRead More...

Is there any semantic daylight at all between these two phrases?

I'm trying to use (2) as a paraphrase of (1), so I need to make sure that there's no semantic daylight between the two: (1) We can't be sure whether there's still an opportunity for diplomacy. (2) It’s uncertain whether there’s still an opportunity for diplomacy.Read More...
A paraphrase does not duplicate long strings of words from the text being paraphrased. (When we duplicate long strings of words, we are quoting, not paraphrasing, and quotation marks are required.) Summaries are for longer texts, but they are essentially paraphrases that leave out minor details.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Can you say "as well that" or is it ungrammatical?

See the following (the issue is that you would have "as well that" if the dash-flanked part in bold were removed...not sure if that would be grammatical and I think that a sentence ought to be grammatical once a dash-flanked interruption has been removed): He refers to two 2021 remarks as well — one from a piece in Proceedings and one from a press briefing — that STRATCOM head Admiral Charles Richard made.Read More...
I agree with Gustavo that there is nothing ungrammatical about what you have written here. However, the sentence jerks the reader around a bit. You might consider streamlining your sentence like this. You'd have to scrifice an em dash. He refers, as well, to two 2021 remarks that STRATCOM head Admiral Charles Richard made—one from a piece in Proceedings and the other from a press briefing.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

future simple or future perfect

I doubt you will (hear/have heard) of the place i come from. which option is correct and why? you will hear or you will have heard ...?Read More...
Hi, Lika, I would go with neither of them. The present perfect sounds the correct choice, not the future perfect. To use 'will hear', you will need a very special context.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

a pack of lions

Please read the following passage. A widespread use of math in nature makes sense,experts say, considering the challenges to survival in the wild. By recognizing which bush offers more berries, for instance, or which pack of lions is more fearsome, an animal might improve its own chances of survival. In thes passage, is it OK to use the phrase," a pack of lions ," instead of " a pride of lions " ? I have learned the phrase "a pack of" is used for "dogs" or "wolves," etc.Read More...
Thank you.Read More...
Last Reply By mmaassuu · First Unread Post

didn't know how

Are these sentences correct: 1) The man who had entered the party we didn't know how was now dancing with Jane. 2) The man who had entered the party we knew not how was now dancing with Jane. Gratefully, NaviRead More...
Hello, Navi—Both (1) and (2) are ungrammatical. You have violated "island constraints" (generative-grammar jargon) by trying to extract the subject of the embedded question and put it at the front of the sentence. To clean up the mess, put the subject of the embedded question back in its original position: (3) We did not know how the man who had entered the party was now dancing with Jane.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Make or do

After I finish answering all the questions, I usually......a quick revision. A. do B. make C. sit D. fit This question appeared in longman Egypt The suggested answer is DO but I read that MAKE is correct too.Read More...
Hi, Treasure, Gustavo has given a very good answer to this question here: https://thegrammarexchange.inf.../do-or-make-revisionRead More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

Me and him as pronoun

Hello, Normally I would say: He and I often go for fishing on Saturday. However, I have heard people use "pronoun (e.g. him, her, them" at the beginning of the sentence. Is it grammatically correct? e.g. Me and him often go for fishing on Saturday.Read More...
Hi, Tony, No, it is not. You need to use subject pronouns here. 'Me' and 'him' are object pronouns.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

just as

Which are correct: 1) Just as he hates me, I hate him. 2) Like he hates me, I hate him. 3) As he hates me, so I hate him. 4) Just as he hates me, I hate him. Which mean: a) We hate each other and which mean b) We hate each other in the same manner (to the same extent) Gratefully, NaviRead More...

’there is very little in the way of consumer needs’

Hello, everyone, “Pre-emption means that a strategy is designed to prevent a rival from starting some particular activity. In some case a pre-emptive move may simply be an announcement of some intent that might discourage rivals from doing the same. The idea of pre-emption implies that timing is sometimes very important — a decision or an action at one point in time might be much more rewarding than doing it at a different time point. Pre-emption may involve up-weighting advertising for a...Read More...
Sincerely appreciate your additional clarification, David, which has finally solved out all my questions related to this thread. My last one has been issued, since I've seen a British who said ' little in the way of' in a set is "quantifier".Read More...
Last Reply By deepcosmos · First Unread Post

not only

Are these sentences correct: 1) Fielding was considered a great writer not only by Eliot. 2)Fielding was considered a great writer , not only by Eliot. I expect the 'not only...' phrase to be followed by 'but also...'. The sentences don't sound correct to me. Gratefully, NaviRead More...
Hello, Navi—I think f6pafd has an interesting perspective on the two sentences. My first instinct was to agree with you that the sentences aren't correct. However, considering the obviously correctness of the cleft sentence 1a) It was not only by Eliot that Fielding was considered a great writer. I realized that the problem with (1) is simply that you have presented it as a stand-alone sentece. In a live context, it would be followed by another sentence that would render it perfectly...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Choose

Help me choose the correct answer. I .................English during the last a few months. ( studied or have studied) I .................English in the last a few months. ( studied or have studied) Is it right that "During the last a few months " can be used as a key word to the present perfect. Meanwhile " in the last a few months" can be used as a key word to the past simpleRead More...
Hi, Poet 20, Neither of them works. The usage of 'a' before 'few' is ungrammatical. Do you mean 'in the last few months' VS 'during the last few months'? Both of them can be used with the present perfect when there is a suitable context.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

Does syntax guarantee a certain interpretation when there's a "than" construction?

See here: The Clinton Doctrine was “more expansive than Bush’s NSS”, but it was “barely even reported”, since it was “presented with the right style” and “implemented less brazenly”. Regarding the two instance of "it" that come after I introduce a second doctrine (the one from W. Bush), I have to worry that it might be possible to link them back to the second doctrine instead of to the first one. But the second doctrine is mentioned in a "than" construction, so maybe there's a hard-and-fast...Read More...
Hi, Andrew, In my opinion, the first "it" needs to refer to the subject in the main clause because it appears within a coordinate clause (introduced by "but") and the second "it" needs to be identified with the same referent: For the second part of the sentence to refer to the second doctrine, there should be a relative clause or another deictic: The Clinton Doctrine was “more expansive than Bush’s NSS”, which was ... / but the latter was ... I don't see any problem with that: The Clinton...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

to lose the game

a. He made a mistake to lose the game. b. What mistake did you make to lose the game? I think in (a) he makes the mistake intentionally. Is that correct? Does (b) imply that the speaker thinks that the addressee made the mistake deliberately? I don't think it does, Many thanks.Read More...
Hi, Azz, I agree with you. I think adding the adjective 'deliberate' would make this meaning clearer. Not necessarily. This needs further context. For example, the addressee might have mentioned that he did make a deliberate mistake to lose the game. The speaker would automatically ask him, 'What do you mean?' or 'What mistake did you make to lose the game?'Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

What's the difference between "envision" and "imagine"?

I think they have similar meanings. What's the difference between them? ThanksRead More...
Hi, Kimi, The main difference, I see, is that dictionaries relate 'envision/envisage' to something bright or a desirable possibility in the future. See Cambridge and Collins Dictionaries here: https://dictionary.cambridge.o...ary/english/envision https://www.collinsdictionary....ary/english/envisionRead More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

How can I fix this awkward sentence?

See here (I wonder if a small adjustment could be made or if the whole sentence could be overhauled; I don't like the ambiguity where "with" seems like it could attach to "set out" when it's supposed to attach only to "develop"): Health Canada set out to develop—with scientists’ input and without industry influence—a new evidence-based food guide.Read More...
Hi, Andrew, "Set out to develop" does form a verb unit and it will be hard, if not impossible, to differentiate which verb certain adverbials attach to. Though a bit wordy, the only solution I can think of consists of using a deverbal noun to separate both verbs: Health Canada set out a new goal: the development, based on scientists' input and free from industry influence, of a novel evidence-based food guide.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

How do you deal with an [adjective, noun, noun] construction?

See the bold (the issue is whether to write "chronic-disease burden" or "chronic disease's burden" or something else...it's of course true that common sense will cause someone to create the hyphen in their mind, since "chronic disease" is obviously a unit, but I'm just being finnicky and also seeking to make parsing as smooth as possible): Estimates indicate that lifestyle accounts for a large chunk of chronic disease burden in the West.Read More...

"That which"

“That which is measured improves. That which is measured and reported improves exponentially." -Karl Pearson. This seems to be a famous quote. I wonder if this sentence is grammatically correct. It seems to me that "That" is redundancy, as "which" is enough to funcion as a conjunction indicating a subject. Thank you in advanceRead More...
Hi, Jiho, "That" is grammatical and required there, because it is the head of the noun phrase " that which is measured [and reported]." You can imagine "that" as being equivalent to "the thing" or "the one." "That which" can have an indefinite meaning, being equivalent to "what" (= the thing), or refer to one in a group.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

‘ ... for a period before and during <when / which> ... ’

Hello, everyone, “Pre-emption means that a strategy is designed to prevent a rival from starting some particular activity. In some case a pre-emptive move may simply be an announcement of some intent that might discourage rivals from doing the same. The idea of pre-emption implies that timing is sometimes very important — a decision or an action at one point in time might be much more rewarding than doing it at a different time point. Pre-emption may involve up-weighting advertising for a...Read More...
Hi, Ahmed_btm, thanks for your opinion.Read More...
Last Reply By deepcosmos · First Unread Post

Any idea why some capitalize "Type 2" in "type 2 diabetes"?

Sorry for posting about a small little detail, but I checked the NYT and the New Yorker and I found that they both write "Type 2 diabetes". But Wikipedia does "type 2 diabetes" and look at this: https://www.nih.gov/nih-style-guide/medical-language Type 1 and type 2 diabetes should be lowercase unless beginning a sentence, per the American Diabetes Association. I just wonder what the story is on this front. Why do major publications capitalize regarding this term? I just checked the...Read More...

What does the comma do in this sentence and is the comma advisable?

See the bold (I think that maybe the comma prevents "with" from attaching to "medicine", but I'm not sure what with does in fact attach to in the sentence below and whether the comma is advisable): Our channel focuses primarily on health and medicine , with some content on environmental science.Read More...
Thanks. So the comma is important, right? Without the comma, does "with" attach to "medicine"? Also, would you say that a ", with" construction like this is "dangling" (or something?) in the sense that it attaches to nothing even if the meaning is clear?Read More...
Last Reply By Andrew Van Wagner · First Unread Post

Is this a good case where common sense is completely triumphant over syntatical concerns?

See the bold (note that the adjective "whole" could attach to everything in the list but common sense 100% prevents such an attachment even though syntax allows for it, right?...I wonder if this is an instance where common sense 100% triumphs and the "OCD" concern about ambiguous syntax is 100% irrational): A 2019 study shows that foods associated with improved health outcomes— whole grains, fruits, vegetables, legumes , nuts, olive oil, and fish—tend to have lower environmental impacts than...Read More...
Well, what would " whole olive oil " mean? I don't think the perverse interpretation you have envisioned can sensibly be forced upon the sentence.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

How do I deal with this ambiguity regarding "with"?

See the bold ("with" is supposed to attach to "reviews" and not to "books"; it's not that the books have "a lot of scientific rigor"): Red Pen Reviews is a great—and completely free!—resource that reviews popular nutrition books with a lot of scientific rigor .Read More...
Thanks! I really appreciate it!Read More...
Last Reply By Andrew Van Wagner · First Unread Post

What is the order of the actions?

INTRO 1 When I gave him 10 dollars, he told me the news. (First, I gave ten $, second, he told the news) 2 When I gave him 10 dollars, he had told me the news. (First, he told the news , second, I gave ten $ ) 1 and 2 are clear. Now. The problem. 3 When I met him, he knew the news. (THIS IS NOT CLEAR.) Is it: a) I met him first and then he learn the news. OR b) Before I met him he had already known the news 4 When I met him, he had known the news. (Before I met him he had already known the...Read More...

‘to change ..., to persuade ...’

Hello, everyone, “ Well, I am about to change your perception of the importance of me time, to persuade you that you should view it as vital for your health and well-being .“ While there is a parallel structure with two infinitival phrases in the sentence above, should’t we put the coordinating conjunction – ‘ and ’ between them after the comma? Isn’t it obligatory to put an ‘ and ’? Otherwise, can I be understood that in such a case above where two infinitival phrases are very long, the use...Read More...

Worse, more worse, or much worse?

It is known that women are............surgeons than men. a. worse b. more worse c. much worse The model answer to this question is "b". Is this answer correct?Read More...
Hi, Omar Ahmed, I see that both 'a' and 'c' are correct answers. 'B' can't be the right answer here. 'More' is in the comparative form and the same thing applies to 'worse'. They can't be used together. Let the exam maker see the following link: https://www.britannica.com/dic...atives-grammar-usageRead More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

adverbs

a. This play presents visually a sharp challenge to a discerning audience. This sentence is from Quirk et al., "A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language", p. 566, section 8.8 According to Quirk et al. "visually" here means "as a visual experience". That makes perfect sense. The question is whether there is any possible ambiguity in the sentence. Could 'visually' also mean 'using visual methods'? And what would b. This play presents a sharp challenge to a discerning audience visually.Read More...
Yes, Azz, I think that one could force such an interpretation. Compare: Hopefully, they sat in prayer.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

forms part

Hi, Client was wondering whether there is a separate form to be completed when applying for a membership, specifically declaring the household income. Should I say? The household income forms part of the membership form or The household income is formed part of the membership formRead More...
Hello again, Tony—As f6pafd says, it should never be used, because it is ungrammatical. The reason it is ungrammatical is that "is formed" is either a passive construction or a linking-verb-plus-adjective construction. If it is a passive construction, it cannot be followed by the direct object, since the direct object will have been promoted to subject. If it is a linking-verb-plus-adjective construction, then a preposition is needed after the adjective.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Something is important <to do vs doing>

Hi, Do you think the following two versions are both correct? The first one is from the dictionary, the second one being mine. 1. Recycling is important to help protect our environment. ( https://www.ldoceonline.com/dictionary/recycling ) 1a. Recycling is important to helping protect our environment. I always think of the “to” after important is a preposition, just like the "to" in 2. Resolving this issue is crucial to making peace work. (Macmillan Dictionary) The answer to the question...Read More...
Hi, Robby Zhu and f6pafd, Although I don't find any information about the usage of 'important to + v.ing' in my grammar books, I trust at least two people on the following site: https://forum.english.best/t/i...-do-something/5490/4 IMHO, when 'it' is the subject, it is better to avoid using 'important to + v.ing' whether 'it' is specified or not. From 'A Comprehensive Grammar Of The English Language', page 1226: (vii) It is important to be accurate. "For types (v-vii), on the other hand, the...Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

must or have to

Hello. could you please help me? Which one is correct? - A: What is the rule about visiting people in hospital? B: You ( must - have to ) go between 2 and 5 o'clock in the afternoon. Thank you.Read More...
I agree with Ahmed's answer. Conditional meaning is implied here, and there are external/institutional constraints involved. If you wish to visit someone in the hospital, you have to go between 2 and 5 o'clock in the afternoon.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

How can I be more clear when an adjective precedes a list?

Consider this: Your dietary pattern should be low—or moderate—in added sugar, salt, and alcohol. The only issue is that "added" seems to apply to the entire list (to all three of the items). So is the below a good solution? But we have to assume that "added" is only meant to apply to "sugar" and not to "salt"; is it fair to assume that? (Someone suggested to me that "added" must apply to "salt" to and that it therefore must apply to "alcohol" as well; do people speak of "added salt" and...Read More...
My friend mentioned this information: Many fermented foods will have a little bit of ethanol in there from the fermentation process itself, although its usually only present in very small amounts. Although I'm not familiar enough with food labelling laws to know if that's labelled as added or not (I don't think so though, I've never seen an added alcohol label on fermented foods). Salt is present in small amounts in any type of plant or animal cell, but the vast majority of salt in food is...Read More...
Last Reply By Andrew Van Wagner · First Unread Post

How can I be more clear regarding "mostly"?

Suppose that you write: We should eat mostly unprocessed—or lightly processed—foods. The "mostly" is ambiguous; it could apply to "unprocessed" instead of "foods". So is the following the best solution? We should eat mostly foods that are unprocessed or lightly processed.Read More...
Hi, Andrew, I agree that "mostly" is ambiguous, as it can refer to "unprocessed" or to "eating unprocessed foods." Yes, that seems fine to me.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

How often should you allow some ambiguity?

The bold text has a potential ambiguity where it could mean "mood function" and "brain function"; there's no such thing as "mood function" as far as I know but who knows...if I put "mood function" into Google Scholar I might get something. How can I eliminate the ambiguity regarding the bold? And should I bother eliminating an ambiguity like this where it's pretty clear (though actually, like I said, I'm not sure) that there's no such thing as "mood function"? Some fascinating emerging...Read More...
Hi, Andrew—You might find it therapeutic, cumbersome though it is, to drive a knife between the two phrases with "one the one hand"/"on the other": how food affects mood, on the one hand, and brain function, on the otherRead More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Can you say "essential unanimity"?

See this sentence (you might think that "essential" should be "essentially"): These studies will give you a sense of why there’s essential unanimity when it comes to those three pillars.Read More...
Hi, Andrew, It all depends on what you want to say. With other words, it might be clearer, for example: - There is basically consensus when it comes to those three pillars. (Here, consensus is not limited. What is limited is how many people reach it.) - There is basic consensus when it comes to those three pillars. (Here, "basic" restricts the extent of consensus.)Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

gladly

a. John was gladly sent to Germany. Could the adverb 'gladly' refer to the subject of the sentence in this sentence? Could it have been 'John' who was glad about his being sent to Germany? Many thanksRead More...
Hi, Azz, It could refer to either the agent or the the subject. That's why context is everything here. From 'A Comprehensive Grammar Of The English Language', page 576: "Passive sentences with personal subject and agent leave the adverbial equivocal ." - John was willingly sent to friends for the summer (by his mother). (Either 'John was willing' or 'his mother was willing'.)Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

a time to/a time for

a. This is not a time to mourn. It is a time to fight. b. This is not a time for mourning. It is a time for fighting. c. This is not the time to mourn. It is the time to fight. d. This is not the time for mourning. It is the time for fighting. Which of the above are correct? Many thanksRead More...
Hi, Azz—I agree with Ahmed that all four sentences are grammatically correct. In actual contexts, one or more of them would be more natural than the others.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

The or no article with explanation

I like ...........cold weather this winter. (The or no article)Read More...
I agree with both f6pafd and Gustavo that it is important to use "the" if the meaning with "the," which they have described well, is intended. Gustavo has also nicely described the meaning without "the," which takes a special context: Normally, in the winter, I hate cold weather. But it's really strange. I like cold weather this winter.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Coordinating two unlike elements

Hi, 1. He left his office . 2. He left unhappy. Can those two elements be coordinated: 3. He left his office and unhappy. This sentence doesn't feel right. I think it should be: 4. He left his office , and unhappy (with an additional comma). What do you think? ThanksRead More...
Thank you, Gustavo.Read More...
Last Reply By Robby zhu · First Unread Post

Which is the correct answer and why?

Dear sir, I came across this sentence in my text book, secondary school. It says: -The manager declared that the company..........brilliant workers the next month. (Had promoted - is promoting - have promoted - was going to promote). I think the answer should be "is promoting" but I don't know why? Second question: why is the word "month" preceded by "the"? I think it should have taken "no pronoun" before it. " Next month".Read More...
Hi, Shahd, I think that, if it is a reported speech exercise, you are expected to choose "was going to promote": The manager said: "The company is going to promote brilliant workers next month." (I feel that "brilliant workers" might require some determiner.) The manager declared that the company was going to promote brilliant workers the next month. You could use "is promoting" if the declaration was made recently and the promotion has not taken place yet. However, in this case you'd use...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post
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