# January 2019

#### of vs in

1. This problem is more difficult than that one. Actually, this is the most difficult problem of the book . 2. Sharks are more dangerous than whales. They are the most dangerous animals of the sea . I am not happy with "of the book, of the sea". Shouldn't they be: in the book, in the sea? (Source: Iran's English Coursebooks, grade 12)Read More...
No, because you cannot say "the sea's most dangerous animals." Instead, you can say "New York's tallest building."Read More...

#### will

Hi Can you please explain "will"? Why isn't it "is"? "That is, instead of performing eight recursive multiplications of n/2* n/2 matrices, it performs only seven. The cost of eliminating one matrix multiplication will be several new additions of n/2 * n/2 matrices, but still only a constant number of additions."Read More...

#### can be folded to...

Are these sentences correct: 1) That letter needs to be read at least twice to extract some information from it. 2) This chair can fold to put in the trunk of a car. 3 ) This chair can fold to be put in the trunk of a car. 4 ) This chair can be folded to put in the trunk of a car. 5) This chair can be folded to be put in the trunk of a car. Gratefully, NaviRead More...
Hello, Navi, All five of the sentences are pretty bad, to tell you the truth, though (5) is technically correct. The problem with (2) is that "put" wants to be "fit": (2a) This chair can fold to fit in the trunk of a car. I suppose the correctness of (1) is debatable. I don't like it, though. I suggest that its sentence-ending infinitival be changed to a passive "if"-clause: (1a) That letter needs to be read at least twice if information is to be extracted from it .Read More...

#### not to displease his boss

Hi, Azz, Yes, I agree with your comments about the sentences. I don't think we need to explore the philosophical differences between trying to please someone and trying to avoid displeasing him or her. Suffice it to say that (a) and (b) are fine, and (c) and (d) are undesirable for the reason you indicate. And even though split infinitives aren't bad in themselves, (e) is pretty ugly. I suggest fixing (c), (d), and (e) all in precisely the same way -- by eliminating the sentence boundary...Read More...

#### cause fear in people or cause people's fear

I have made up two sentences below. (1) The next hurricane will cause fear in people in this city. (2) The next hurricane will cause people's fear in this city. Which one is grammatical? Thanks for your help.Read More...
Both are grammatical, Ansonman, but only (1) makes sense.Read More...

#### present tense + would in the same sentence/same question

I have made up three examples below. (1) If you have time, would you go fishing with me? (2) Is there a situation in which you would fight a poisonous snake? (3) I say to John,"While I work on my project in my bedroom, if someone made a lot of noise, would you quiet them down for me?" Are my examples OK with two different tenses each? Thanks you for your help.Read More...
Hi, Ansonman: Sentences (1) are (2) are OK. Please let me know if you are perplexed as to why they are correct. Sentence (3), however, does not work well. It would be better (though still not a wonderful sentence) if you used the progressive in the "while"-clause: "While I am working on my project in my bedroom . . . ." Also, I would prefer "makes" in the "if"-clause and "will" in the main clause of (3), but it is not incorrect to use "made" and "would."Read More...

This is slightly related to one of my previous posts. Suppose that you make a lot of negative comments about your job. You are always saying bad things like: long work hours, low pay, no breaks, strict workplace rules, terrible manager, and so on. (ex) You are maligning your job. Is it correct to say "malign your job"? Thanks for your time and help.Read More...
Hi, Ansonman, No, "malign" is not being appropriately used in that sentence, and I think you understand why; otherwise you wouldn't have said that this is related to one of your previous threads. Why not use one of these sentences instead? You are complaining about your job. You are whining about your job. You are looking at the minuses of your job. (cf. "the pluses and minuses")Read More...

#### can usages

Hello, Here is an explanation from Michael Swan: We normally use can and could to say that things are possible in general: people are able to do them, the situation makes them possible, or there is nothing to stop them. May and might are not used in this way: These roses can grow anywhere. Can gases freeze? I think I understand the point. My question is: Does the following sentence fall into this category? Does it show "a general possibility"? Every year, about one billion tourists travel...Read More...
Hi, Freeguy: Yes, "can" does indicate a general possibility right there. The sentence means that when tourism is spoken of, it is possible that either domestic tourism or international tourism is being spoken of.Read More...

#### "not a" vs "not any"

Hi there, are both not a and not any sound natural in the following examples? Yesterday was mothers' day but I did not post any photos with my mother on social media. I think importance of my mother to my life cannot be described by just clicking pictures or posting them on social sites on mother's day. Yesterday was mothers' day but I did not post a photo with my mother on social media. I think importance of my mother to my life cannot be described by just clicking a picture or posting it...Read More...
Hi there, do both not a and not any sound natural In the following context? Are they both grammatical? And if I use 'not a' in an exam, will I be marked down? Parliament elections in india are near. Today an opinion poll was held that says Abc party will win 250 seats, Xyz party will win 100 seats and others will not win a seat/any seats . As both mean others will win Zero seats so I think both forms are correct. Could you please explain?Read More...

#### still much left to learn about the nature

“Although research in the earth and environmental sciences has pieced together narratives of ancient and historical environmental changes, there is still much left to learn about the nature and causes of changing climatic conditions through time”. Question:3 http://www.cracksat.net/sat/id...-errors/test401.html Please help me in understanding the grammatical form and function of “still much left to learn about the nature”.Read More...
Now I understand, David. Thank you very much for the detailed explanation.Read More...

#### Us All or Us Each?

Can we use ‘us’ with ‘each’ in a sentence? Does it sound idiomatic to a native? For example, which one(s) is/are correct? It's an insult to us each. It's an insult to us all. The manager gave us each a task. The manager gave us all a task. Please note also that ‘all’ can mean either every member or part of — used with a plural noun or pronoun to mean that a statement is true of every person or thing in a group OR the whole number or sum of — used with a plural noun or pronoun to mean that a...Read More...

#### ended up \ end

Hi What is the difference between "end up" and "end"?Read More...
Thank you so much David Does "end up" mean "finish" but it has a result too?Read More...

#### difficult to remove or to be removed

I have made up two similar sentences below. (1) The red stains are difficult to remove. (2) The red stains are difficult to be removed . Which one is correct? Thanks for your help.Read More...

#### "I probably will" VS "I would"

Helen: Would you attend my party tomorrow? John: I probably will. Helen: Would you attend my party tomorrow? John: I would. Does the answer 'probably will' equal to 'would'? If not, what's the difference?Read More...
You said "You haven't done this, and I'm not suggesting that you ever you ever will or should, but if you were going to do so, how would you do it?" but the question want or suggests us to do that we really should do that not if we were going to do. How can it be hypothetical? (I can't write better)Read More...

#### Unreal Past

1- When she was younger, Leila wished she .............. faster. could read - would read - could have read - read 2- Steinbeck wished people .................... him alone as he hated publicity. had left - would leave - could leave - left I think both sentences express unreal past, so I'd go with "could have read" and "had left"Read More...
Yes, Mr. P. One of our members actually shared that text with me in e-mail after you asked your question. Please review our policy on the use of quotations . Whenever you quote something on this forum, you must show that you are quoting it (by using quotation marks or a quote box) and cite the source. You'll notice that the sentence you asked about is not identical to the sentence in the quotation. "And hated publicity" has been changed to "as he hated publicity." Is it possible that you or...Read More...

#### Mrs/Miss/Ms/Ms.

Hello, everyone, How should one address a women, either orally or in writing, when she is unmarried/married/widowed? This thing confounds me. Thanks.Read More...

Which are correct and make sense in a world where there are no living dead: 1 ) They included thirty revolutionaries, dead or alive, in the list. 2) They included thirty revolutionaries, dead and alive, in the list. 3) They included thirty dead or living revolutionaries in the list. 4) They included thirty dead an d living revolutionaries in the list. Gratefully, NaviRead More...
Hello, Navi, Navi meets Bon Jovi . That's what I thought upon reading your title. I do see your "living dead" interpretation for (2) and (4); however, that was not the first interpretation of those sentences which came to my mind. Indeed, I think all four sentences are "correct and make sense in a world in which there are no living dead." There are differences, though. I read (1) as saying that the list included thirty revolutionaries, regardless of whether they were living or dead; (2) as...Read More...

#### has been/was

Thank you, David! The bet slip I am referring to is an online bet slip, so I thought it could be described as "settled". Thank you for your quick help!Read More...

#### where

Hi Can "where" be replaced with "that" or "which"? "Instead of looking at the daily prices, let us instead consider the daily change in price, where the change on day i is the difference between the prices after day i-1 and after day i . " From CLRSRead More...

#### past simple or present perfect "preference"

Hello, teachers. I get puzzled when I read "We prefer ....." when dealing with a grammar point. In "Swan's Practical English Usage" I found this ... A. Why are you crying? ---B. My brother HIT me. (Not HAS HIT). Does this mean that "the present perfect is not O.K.?" *Does this prefence of one option means that the other options are NOT fine?.Read More...

#### "used to" vs "would"

Hi there, what's the difference between the two following sentences? 1- As a child I used to swim in the river. 2- As a child I would swim in the river.Read More...
Hi, Subhajit, Sentence (1), with "used to," means that swimming in the river was a habit you had as a child. Swimming in the river is something you did regularly as a child. Sentence (2), with "would," means that swimming in the river was something you occasionally did as a child, especially in a special circumstance -- e.g.: (2a) As a child I would swim in the river when the pool wasn't open.Read More...

Hi, Ansonman, Unfortunately, neither "praise" nor "compliment" works there. We praise and compliment other people and sometimes the things they produce, like sentences. However, we don't praise or compliment objects and other nonsentient entities, including jobs, which can neither be praised nor flattered. You could use "tout," "promote," "talk up," or "show off about": He is touting his job. / He is promoting his job. He is talking up his job. / He is talking his job up. He is showing off...Read More...

#### My hobby is to collect stamps/collecting stamps

I am trying to come up with different ways of saying the same thing. (1) below is my original sentence. (1) Collecting stamps is my hobby. (2) My hobby is to collect stamps. (3) My hobby is collecting stamps. (4) My hobby is that I like to collect stamps. Do any of my sentences sound natural to native speakers? I really appreciate your time and help.Read More...
Hi, Ansonman, All of the sentences except (4) are OK. Sentence (1) and (3) are transforms of each other, just as a transform of (2) would be "To collect stamps is my hobby." Sentence (4) doesn't work because your hobby does not itself involve liking. It involves simply the doing of it. I recommend breaking (4) into two sentences: (4a) I like to collect stamps. It's my hobby. "It" in "It's my hobby" refers, of course, to the infinitive "to collect stamps," which again yields "To collect...Read More...

#### "If there is any" vs "If there are any"

Should I use "if there is any" or "if there are any" in the following sentences? Are they all correct? Can I ever use if there is any with singular countable nouns? Please let me know if there is any problem. Please let me know if there are any problems. If there is any book that is better than yours, it is this one. If there are any books that are better than yours, it is this one. If there is any scooter or bike parked in front my door, I will throw it away. If there are any scooters or...Read More...
These are your threads about "any," Subhajit. All but two have responses, I believe. Please carefully review each one and let us know precisely how we have not already provided you with enough information to answer this new question: 8/29/17 https://.infopop.cc/topic/any-or-any-other 8/29/17 https://thegrammarexchange.inf...e-of-any-with-except 8/30/17 https://thegrammarexchange.inf...o-you-have-any-other 9/7/17 https://thegrammarexchange.inf...c/topic/usage-of-any 9/8/17...Read More...

#### If you have anyquestion(s)

Hi there, what's the difference between the two following sentences? This site says any could also be used with singular nouns in if clauses when it means any kind of. Is it true? Are both following sentence correct? If you have any questions, please let me know. If you have any question, please let me know. I know the first one correct. But according to this site BBC World Service | Learning English | Learn it says the singular noun is also correct when It means any kind of.Read More...
These are your threads about "any," Subhajit. All but two have responses, I believe. Please carefully review each one and let us know precisely how we have not already provided you with enough information to answer this new question: 8/29/17 https://.infopop.cc/topic/any-or-any-other 8/29/17 https://thegrammarexchange.inf...e-of-any-with-except 8/30/17 https://thegrammarexchange.inf...o-you-have-any-other 9/7/17 https://thegrammarexchange.inf...c/topic/usage-of-any 9/8/17...Read More...
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