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it was

That was the first time......U.S. ( to visit/ to have visited / have visited/visiting)Read More...
Hi, Zonzon—None of them works. You need a possessive pronoun instead of "the." Then you can use the - ing form "visiting": That was my first time visiting the U.S. That was his first time visiting the U.S. That was their first time visiting the U.S. That was our first time visiting the U.S.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

It wouldn't be embarrassing...

▪ Shouldn't the first sentence be like this? "It Wouldn't be embarrassing to fail if you didn't try, right?" ▪ Could anyone please expalin what she meant by these lines "And for the record, I barely even trying at that. Basically not trying at all."Read More...
The sentence is correct as is. In the original sentence, "didn't try" is not unreal but real past. Therefore, - It isn't embarrassinng to fail if you didn't try means: - If you fail, you don't feel embarrassed if you didn't actually try. The sentence you propose is hypothetical. With this, the protagonist of the comic is confirming that she didn't even make the slighest attempt or effort: she didn't try, she didn't fail, and there's no reason to feel embarrassed.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

Export vs Exports

Hello !! Sorry to trouble you all but worrying about the correct use of the word export vs exports for a publication in a scientific journal about riverine nutrient export(s) !! At present, i have written sentences such as 'the export of X is affected by X', which i feel confident is grammatically correct. However, i am unsure whether to use export or exports in sentences such as the following ...'reducing export(s) of X and X'. Would love any advice about the correct form. I am English if...Read More...
I'd definitely use "exports" there. I'd use "Fe exports" if reference is being made, as I suspect, to the volume of iron exported. I'm not sure that "Si" can be used alone. How about this?: - Exports of Fe show contrasting trends to those of Si. or - Fe export trends contrast with those of Si.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

How would this be improved grammatically?

I am more proficient in English than my native language due to the age at which I immigrated from Romania to America, but despite a strong academic background I still struggle often with deciding the most grammatically appropriate way for writing my sentences. I often delete and rewrite sentences repeatedly, rearranging words, and finally going with something that I don't think is ideal, but that will have to suffice because I can't afford to spend any more time editing. I appreciate any...Read More...
Hello, Empathy, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. Thank you for sharing some details of your life with us. At GE we try to dispel doubts about grammar and are eager to discuss any grammatical issues our members can submit to us, but we don't do proofreading. If you have any specific doubts, you can ask us about them. Just this once I will highlight some things that, in my opinion, you could consider improving:Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

to your bank account or into your bank account

You provided the LA bank term deposit repayment advice which discloses the repayment of the term deposit to/into your bank account. Should I use to or into?Read More...
There are a number of possibilities, including the six-word sandwich you began with. Without compound nouns, perhaps " LA bank term deposit repayment advice " means " LA Bank's advice on how to repay the deposit for the term ." But feel free to use whatever business jargon your company likes to use.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Know of someone.

Hello, I am trying to find out which nouns commonly collocate with the phrasal verb Know of (I couldn't find any references in the Oxford collocation dictionary). It seems to me that this phrasal verb seems to be used more naturally with pronouns and improper nouns compared to the name of a person. 1.e.g Yes, I know of him/her/them. = OK to me. 2 e.g Yes, I know of a good mechanic.= OK to me. However, when I say: 3. Y es, I know of Mr Jones then it somehow sounds a bit odd. Perhaps I'm...Read More...
Thanks again for such a great answer. You confirmed what my instinct was telling me.Read More...
Last Reply By Mrchuffie · First Unread Post

Touchy feely

I asked my assistant to help me to check this and that and make a comprehensive report, but he just rushed things up and not checking things as supposedly. I wanted to describe him in a sentence using the word a"touchy feely" Can I say, I don't like his work ethic as he always does thing touchy-feely. Many thanks!Read More...
David, thanks for that, I like the use of a half-assed jobRead More...
Last Reply By Cristi · First Unread Post

I ate food as if there would not be tomorrow

Hello, everyone! I have one question about "I ate food like there was no more tomorrow." Though I know "There is/was no more tomorrow" is the idiomatic expression for the case someone does something very fast, in large amounts and without thinking carefully, I would hope to hear from you following alternatives are also acceptable or not: 1) I ate food as if (like) there would be no (more) 'tomorrow'. 2) I ate food as if (like) there would not come 'tomorrow'. 3) I ate food as if (like) there...Read More...
David, thank you million times with note, Best RGDSRead More...
Last Reply By deepcosmos · First Unread Post

In the 2020 income year or in 2010 income year

Mr X advised that full amount loan was repaid in the 2010 financial year. Should I say in the 2010 financial year? just say in 2010 financial year. Any difference in meaning? Thanks so muchRead More...
Syntactic factors are questions that have to do with syntax, that is, with the position of the words or phrases, with what precedes or follows them, etc.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

The amount of....or an amount of....

The amount of $5000 was paid by the LA bank. or an amount of $5000 was paid by the LA Bank. Should I use the amount of.... or an amount of.... what's the difference?Read More...
When used as a subject, "the amount of" implies that you have already mentioned it before, while "an amount of" is used to introduce new information. When used as an object, "the amount of" can be used to refer to known or new information (although the indefinite article may sound better to refer to new information): - LA Bank paid the/an amount of $5,000.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

When+v. ing

I do know that"when" can work as a preposition. Yet, is it correct to say"When meeting Tom,I was walking home". Can "When" work as a prepostion or be part of an abridged adverbial phrase with all tenses?Read More...
I edited your question above because it was a mess. As I said, "when" is a conjunction in the sentence above.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

We are in Monday.

Look at the following post on Instagram: - Career Consulting & Coaching on Instagram: “#lavitadolce and we are in Monday again! The Good news that from this week we will start Saturday #TeaTime together! How does it work? I…” My question is: Is this usage of "in" before "Monday" considered correct in formal and standard English? I think it’s because of “we are.“ Actions happen “on” Monday. But in these cases, the speaker/writer is referring not to an action but to a location on a...Read More...

rapidly again

1) Do it rapidly again. 2) Do it rapidly, again. 3) Do it again rapidly. 4) Do it again, rapidly. Which of the above correspond to which of the below: a) You have done it rapidly. Do it again. b) You have done it. At times you did it rapidly and at times you did it, but not rapidly. Do it rapidly again. c) You have done it, but not rapidly. Do it again and do it rapidly this time. Gratefully, NaviRead More...

No computer or no computers

I have no computer for you to operate and I have no computers for you to operation. What is the difference in meaning?Thank youRead More...
Hello, Cristi, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. Where you wrote "operation" above, I guess it was a typo — it should be "operate." Both sentences are correct, but while the first one presupposes that "you" only needs one computer to operate, the second one may imply that "you" needs more than one computer, or that there are no computers out of which one could be assigned to the operator.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

In trust distribution or as trust distribution

Dear Sirs, In the tax return, people need to disclose a separate type of income. I wanted to say Donald T has declared an amount of $10K in trust distribution from the Trump family trust in his tax return. Should I say in trust distribution or as trust distribution ?Read More...
I think you meant to say: In their tax return(s), people need/are required to disclose their types/sources of income separately. " as distribution" sounds better (you don't need to repeat "trust"). Both "as" and "in" work when what follows is a more concrete item: compare as/in assets/liabilities/earnings/expenses with as compensation/distribution . - In his tax return, Donald T has declared an amount of $10K as distribution from the Trump family trust.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

improve the sentences

"The first part of my job is to handle building services repair work inside the housing estate." " These experiences facilitate me to carry out the job duties of assistant engineer" How to improve the above 2 sentences in job application. Thank you.Read More...
Hi, Mooninsky—You're using "facilitate" incorrectly. Use "help" instead.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

everything or anything

a. I stopped eating anything. b. I stopped eating everything. c. I stopped eating anything he gave me. d. I stopped eating everything he gave me. Are all of the above sentences grammatically correct? Do (a) and (b) mean the same? Do (c) and (d) mean the same? Are (a) and (c) ambiguous? Maybe I stopped eating some things/some of the things he gave me.. Many thanks.Read More...
I think they can both mean the speaker started to eat nothing (with this meaning, "anything" seems more usual to me), or started to be selective: the speaker started to eat only certain things, not just anything or everything. I think the same ambiguity stated above applies here.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

because

a. He refused to close his bar because of the pandemic. b. He refused to close his bar because there was a pandemic. Are the above sentences grammatically correct, and do they make sense? The intended meaning is: He had to close his bar because of the pandemic and he refused to do it. AND NOT Because of the pandemic, he refused to close his bar. Many thanksRead More...
I agree with Gustavo that the intended meaning, represented by the first (1), is possible. Of course, the other meaning, represented by the second (1), is also possible. To disambiguate in favor of the intended meaning, you could say: c. He refused to let the pandemic, or the government's response to it, prevent him from keeping his bar open.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Punctuation

Which is correct ? 1 (a) John: Look at my knee, it's bleeding. (b) John: Look at my knee. It's bleeding. 2 (a) John: Mark, let's go with them too. (b) John: Mark. Let's go with them too. 3 (a) John: Help! I'm bleeding. Call 999 ! (b) John: Help, I'm bleeding! Call 999 ! (c) John: Help, I'm bleeding! Call 999. 4 (a) John: Thanks. Sue but I'd rather go home. (b) John: Thanks, Sue but I'd rather go home. (c) John: Thanks, Sue, but I'd rather go home. (d) John: Thanks. Sue. But I'd rather go...Read More...
Hi, bear_bear, The correct options are: 1(b), because independent sentences are separated by periods, not commas. 2(a), because after vocatives we use commas. 3(a), for the same reason stated for 1(b). Help! is, in fact, an independent sentence. (You don't need to leave a space before exclamation marks: Call 999! ) 4(c), because vocatives are set off by commas, and "but" also needs to be preceded by a comma.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

While with past simple

In "Practical English Usage , the author points out that we can use the past simple with while or as in sentences like: Jack cooked supper while I watched TV. As I sat reading the paper, the door burst open. Would you please give more explanation about the use of past simple after while or as in spite of the duration of the action. Thanks in advance.Read More...
Hello again, Ahmed—Cooking supper and watching TV are both activities that are engaged in for a period of time. When the duration of the supper-cooking time period is compared with the duration of the TV-watching time period, there are three possibilities: no overlap, partial overlap, or complete overlap. Since "while" (or "as") is being used as the coordinating conjunction, we can rule out there being no overlap; it is a question of whether the TV-watching period overlaps partially or...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Talking about Rima it reminds me...

A friend was talking about someone we both know and as soon as he mentioned her name I said: " Talking about Rima it reminds me she sent me a friends request a few months ago." I want to know if this expression is natural/correct given the context.Read More...
The version with "it" might be more usual in conversation. There is a significant grammatical difference: In: Talking about Rima, it reminds me she sent me a friend's request a few months ago "talking about Rima" is an adverbial clause of time, and "it" refers to something mentioned in the context, or to the situation (now that we are talking about Rima, what you just said/this situation reminds me ...) In: Talking about Rima reminds me she sent me a friend's request a few months ago...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

It's a great initiative..

Is this sentence grammatical and natural? ▪ It's a great initiative, purposive though it may be. Context: I meant with all great initiatives there is a personal, national etc gain or motive behind it.Read More...
Hi, Toaha, The sentence is grammatical, but the adjective "purposive" is, to the best of my knowledge, rather unusual. I think this could be more usual: - It's a great initiative, no matter what its (real) purposes are / may be.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

Improve the sentence

"I apply assistant engineer as I can utilize my knowledge learned from work in this job. " Is there any recommendation to improve the above sentence? I want to say that I learned knowledge from my present work can be utilized in the job that I apply for. Thank you.Read More...
Dear 'Gustavo', I completely agree with you. 'An' seems unnecessary here. Also, 'based' is the correct word to use in such a context.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmed_btm · First Unread Post

have graduated/am graduated/was graduated

"I have graduated from the ABC University with a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering. " I write this sentence in job application. Is there any mistakes? My main concern is "have graduated/am graduated/was graduated". Thank you.Read More...
Hello, Mooninsky, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. I agree with Ahmed that you should NOT say "was graduated" or "am graduated." It doesn't matter whether it's American or British English; the sentence is quite bad nowadays with "was graduated" or "am graduated." Although you can say, "I have graduated from XYZ with a B.A.," such a sentence would normally be used to announce a recent graduation. On a job application, it would be more normal to use the simple past: I graduated from ABC...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Don't or doesn't

Could anyone answer this question, please? Why ........…...... her? don't / doesn'tRead More...
Hello, Abo—Whether you choose "don't" or "doesn't," the sentence will be ungrammatical. "Her" is the pronominal subject of the question. As subject, that pronoun must be in subjective (nominative) case: "she." The correct question is " Why doesn't she? " You can say, " She doesn't because . . . ,"not " She don't because . . . ," " Her doesn't because . . . ," " Her don't because . . . "Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Have or has

Could you please answer this question? The vast majority of students ........ arrived. has / haveRead More...
My native ears only accept plural agreement there: "The vast majority of them have arrived." The Oxford English Dictionary (OED) confirms that "majority" is usually found with plural agreement when it functions as a quantifier, as here.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

How again was it.....

Could anyone please explain the part in bold to me. I didn't get it. ▪ " How again was it that you convinced me to do this?" the boy said to his friend before they jumped out of the plane on their first sky dive.Read More...
Hi, Toaha—If it is "again" that doesn't make sense to you, it signals that the speaker is asking the interlocutor to tell him something that he had told him before. If it is the construction "How was it that you convinced me to . . . ?" that doesn't make sense to you, that is a (clefted) rearrangement of "How did you convince me to . . . ?" Similarly, instead of saying, "You convinced me to jump out of this plane by giving me a hundred dollars ," we can say, " It was by giving me a hundred...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Might be and might have+past participle

Hi, What is the difference in meaning in the sentences below. a) the figure doesn't seem right, it might have been doubled up. b) the figure doesn't seem right, it might be doubling up. Thank you in advance!Read More...
Hello, Tony—Both (a) and (b) incorrect because they are run-on sentences. Can you spot where the first sentence ends and the second begins in each example? "It might have been doubled up" speaks of a process as having possibly occurred in the past; "it might be doubling up," of a process as possibly occurring now.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

If someone had to die, I thought it should be me.

Is the sentence below in second conditional and indicate future? ▪ "If someone had to die, I thought it should be me," he later told his parents.Read More...
Hi, Toaha—The image you posted was inappropriate (even more inappropriate than your "rape" post from yesterday), so I deleted it.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Walker pushed her back..

▪ Walker pushed her back and let the dog attack him, sustaining several bite injuries to the face. Could anyone please explain is "sustaining several bite injuries to the face" a participle or absolute phrase? It would be better if you could break the sentence and explain it.Read More...
Yes, you're right.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

Necessarily

Hello, Can the adverb necessarily be considered to be an intensifier? For example in the sentence below, does it provide some emphasis to the word mean? If you yawn, it doesn't necessarily mean that you are tired. Thank youRead More...
You're right. As you can see, leaving out "necessarily" results in a sentence that does not reflect the truth: when we yawn, it usually means we are tired.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

Important that sb complete or completes

Which of the following is correct? =>It is important that Himel ------------ his tasks =>complete or completes ? Any help will be appreciatedRead More...
Hi, @youknowwhowantstolearn, and welcome to GE. And thank you, Ayman, for your contribution. Both answers are possible (provided that Himel , which is a name, is properly written with a capital letter). With the adjective "important," I think that the present indicative ( completes ) can mean that the person usually completes his tasks (this is something he does, and that is important: (The fact) that he completes his tasks is important ), while the present subjunctive ( complete ) means...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

Evolve/evolving

Hello, I asked my sister the source of $10K deposited into her bank account. Initially she told me it was a lottery winning, later on she told me it was a disposal of her shares, 2 days later she told me, it was a sale of her car, a week later, she told me it was a gift. So in short, she keeps changing her story. I wanted to use the word "evolve" in this context. And because it is a matter of fact, which of the following sentence is more correct. A. Her explanation evolves B. Her explanation...Read More...
Hi, Tony, I'd use what you said at the end, She keeps changing her story . Speaking about the evolution of her explanation sounds like too much.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

What kind of sentences are these?

Hi everyone, I'm new to Grammar Exchange and I hope someone can help me with these two sentences. "Eat a lot of vegetables 'and' you will be healthy" "Eat a lot of vegetables 'or' you will no be healthy". I have not clear if they are subordinate clauses or not. Thanks in advance for your help and have a great day.Read More...
Hi Gustavo, first of all my apologies for the typo, and second thanks for your reply. I though about them as some kind of conditional, since one sentence is a consequence of the other one. But I couldn't find any specific information related to them. Thanks again for answering my question.Read More...
Last Reply By Felipe · First Unread Post

How and where noun should be placed when we compare using "as much as"?

1a) He doesn't have as many books as you have. 1b) He doesn't have books as many as you have. 2a) Jim doesn't eat as much chocolate as I do. 2b) Jim doesn't eat chocolate as much as I do. 3a) He likes hockey as much as basketball. 3b) He likes as much hockey as basketball. Do a and b mean same? And are they both correct? If I don't make mistake 1b and 3b are wrong but 2b is correct (while word order is same for all 1b, 2b and 3b). I can feel the reason but cannot say the exact cause. Will...Read More...
Great job, Gustavo. Just so Nousher is clear about what you've explained, I'd like to clarify that "eating as much chocolate" and "eating chocolate as much" are not different ways of saying the same thing but have totally different meanings. In the second formulation, in which, as Gustavo points out, "as much" is adverbial, "much" can be replaced by "often": " Jim doesn't each chocolate as often as I do. " But this does not work: * " Jim doesn't eat as often chocolate as I do ." In "eat as...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

attached

Which one is grammatically right? (a) Please find my feedback as attached file. (b) Please find the attached file in this email. (c) Please find the file as attached. (d) Enclosed herewith the attached file as my feedback. (e) My feedback is enclosed as attached file.Read More...
Hi, Joshua, I'd go for (a) and (e) with a minor addition: a'. Please find my feedback as an attached file. e'. My feedback is enclosed as an attached file. I suggest: f. Please find attached a file with my feedback / Attached you may find a file with my feedback.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

Leap ahead

What's the meaning of "leap ahead" in the picture below?Read More...
Hi, Toaha—Rape, as you know, is a sensitive issue. Unless there is a very good reason to take rape as an example in a grammar discussion, it would be better to use less sensitive topics. Soon I hope to post forum guidelines to which we can link members when threads like this get posted. Regarding the sign, I don't think it's well written; the meaning is not obvious to me. The sign's use of English strikes me as nonnative. As to the meaning of "leap ahead," the phrase calls to mind the first...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post
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