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November 2020

any other

1) If I acted that way, I would be similar to any other criminal. 2) If I acted that way, I would be similar to any man that has no moral principles. Does '1' say that I am a criminal? Does '2' say that I have no moral principles? Gratefully, NaviRead More...
Well, in that case I think "I" is a criminal, though not the kind who would act that way, and has no moral principles, though not to the extent of behaving like others do.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

grammar

I've found this sentence: "But if they were worried it's not safe and should not be made mandatory, why do two out of three Canadians say they'll get it?" I'm little confused with grammar. It shouldn't be correct: why do two ot of three Canadionas say they WOULD get it? Also shouldn't be correct: it was not safe?Read More...
Hello, Tina22, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. The grammar of the sentence, which has been taken from this article , looks confusing because both the main and the conditional clause contain subordinate clauses. If we break it down into two separate sentences, we get: Conditional clause: They are worried it (the vaccine) i s not safe and should not be made mandatory. Main clause: Why do two out of three Canadians say they 'll get it? The author of the article disbelieves that they are...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

Correct position of 'prepositional phrase'

Can I say the following? I mean in what positions I should use the preposition phrase. - I was not well for two days last week. - I was not well last week for two days. - Last week I was not well for two days. - For two days last week I was not well. - Last week For two days I was not well.Read More...
All the variations are correct, Subhajit. You seem to have forgotten the 6th one: For two days I was not well last week .Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

A typical Indian breakfast/ The average Indian....

"A typical Indian breakfast consist of some roti and vegetables." Q1) Is it correct to say 'a typical Indian' to mean something in general? Other example sentences: "A typical American household has two car parking." "A typical android phone lasts about three years." Q2) How is it different from "The average American don't keep their word." I don't think it's possible to say "The average Indian breakfast......"Read More...
Hi, Ashraful, You can use "typical" instead of "average," but "average" is closer to "ordinary." Please notice that your sentences above contain several number agreement mistakes.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

Sport or sports?

Hello everyone, I need Your help with grammar since english is not my native language I'm making an award look a like gift for my dear friend but I don't how to name his profession correctly - is it sport psychologist or sports psychologist? I want to make a card with a sentence "World's best sport/s psychologist". I've read some articles, book titles; facebook profession option says sport psychologist, while random dictionary goes with sports; it's different everytime, which form is...Read More...
Hi, Nikaweronika, Unlike most other nouns, "sports" in attributive position is always used in the plural. Here is a list of possible combinations from the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English: SPORTS + NOUN a sports team A lot of schools have their own sports teams. a sports club She joined her local sports club. a sports field/ground The village has its own sports field. a sports event Is this country able to stage a major sports event? a sports fan (= someone who enjoys watching...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

The use of the word respectively

Should I use a "," or"and"? See my example below. The $100K, $280K insurance expenses are included in the other expenses line item reflecting in the profit and loss statement for the 2019, 2010 financial years respectively or The $100K, $280K insurance expenses are included in the other expenses line item reflecting in the profit and loss statement for the 2019 and 2010 financial years respectivelyRead More...
Hello Gustavo, so it should be like this, you mean. The $100K and $280K insurance expenses are included in the other expenses line item reflecting in the profit and loss statement for the 2019 and 2010 financial years, respectively. So before respectively, I put a comma?Read More...
Last Reply By Tony C · First Unread Post

Re: Past tense or present continuous tense

Supposedly, I have contacted my client to follow up all the requested documents that I requested (lots of documents) and I have given him a timeframe to respond. So when writing an email to my boss to describe what has happened should I use past tense or present continuous tense in the context below and why?. Hi Naomi, I just wanted to let you know I have contacted Mr X to check h ow he is going with the response to our information request/how he went with the response to our information...Read More...
Hi, Cristi—Your sentence is very awkward. I recommend using the present progressive in the first clause in question (to agree with the governing verb, in the present progressive) and the past progressive in the second (again, to agree with the governing verb, in the past tense) and changing "going" to "doing," "check" to "check on," and "preparing" to "preparing it": I just wanted to let you know that I have contacted Mr. X to check on how he is doing with the response to our information...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

As a priority

Hi, Why do we need to put an article "A" as in as a priority. e.g. Please get back to me on my queries regarding "XYZ" as a priority. Isnt that priority is an uncountable noun?Read More...
No problem David, thanks for correcting and that's how I learn. Thank you both Gustavo and David, much appreciated.Read More...
Last Reply By Cristi · First Unread Post

While as a conjunction

Hi, here are the two example sentences I want to ask about. 1. Schools in the north tend to be better equipped, while those in the south are relatively poor. 2. While there was no conclusive evidence, most people thought he was guilty. Questions, 1. Are both "while"s used in the same sense? My understanding: Both are used to indicate a contrast between what is said in the subordinate clause and that of the main clause. Am I right? 2. Someone argues that they are different because the first...Read More...
Hi, Robby zhu—In (1), "while" means "at the same time." In (2), it means "although." "While" expresses contrast in both sentences, but it is only in (2) that it also expresses concession.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Launch

Hello, The new supermarket chain ( is launched - launches - will launch - is going to be launched) next year. I think all can work. Thanks in advance.Read More...
Hi, Menem—"Is launched" does not work there. Although the simple present can be used in reference to events that are scheduled to occur in the future, it is not used thus in passive verb phrases. The other three choices do work.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

"As" vs "like"

Could anyone please tell me the difference between as and like ? 1a- She has got a headache like me. 1b- She has got a headache like I have. 1c- She has got a headache as I have. 2a- She is confused like me. 2b- She is confused as I am. 2c- She is confused like I am.Read More...
Hi, Subhajit—Your sentences need a comma before "as" and "like." Then they will all mean the same thing. "Like" is considered informal as a subordinating conjunction, so (1c) and (2c) would be considered informal by some people. Sentence (1b) is incorrect in American English. We would use "like I do" instead. Main verb "have" is not a licenser of verb-phrase ellipsis in American English.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

"If he missed the bus, he won't be here on time."

Hi all GE moderators and members, I am confused about the following sentences 1- If he missed the bus, he won't be here on time. (from Longman English Grammar by L.G. Alexander). I can't think of a context in which this sentence can be said. 2- The paiting must be worth a thousand dollars if it's worth a cent. This sentence is called "rhetorical conditional clause) (Quirk et all). I don't understand this grammar point. Please help me. Thank you so much.Read More...
Thank you so much Gustavo for your reply. Now I understand something about the Real Past as you mentioned above. So it's OK to say: If she left home early this morning, she will be here around 2:00 PM. Is that right? Regarding the rhetorical conditional clauses, I read Quirk again and think of sentence as follows: 1- The river must be 1000 kilometers long if it is a meter. 2- This mountain must be 2000 meters high if it is a meter. 3- The valley must be 5000 meters deep if it is a meter. 4-...Read More...
Last Reply By tonyck 2 · First Unread Post

Past Perfect or Past Simple

Hello everybody, could you please help me? I was confused by the sentence: By the time he had finished speaking, most of the audience had fallen asleep. Why do we use two parts of this sentence in past perfect? As I know we use past perfect for action which happened before another action in the past, so can I say: By the time he finished speaking, the most of the audience had fallen asleep? Thank you.Read More...
Thank you for your reply. This sentence is not a part of a larger context, I’ve just found it in a grammar test. I thought that using past simple for “by the time he finished” is correct, but in keys the correct option was “by the time he had finished”. It’s really hard to understand what they meant without context, so thank you for your explanation.Read More...
Last Reply By Anna505 · First Unread Post

Can I omit a "to be" verb if another verb suggests it?

Webster's New World English Grammar Handbook says this on page 191: "These verbs suggest a 'to be' meaning after the direct object, but bear in mind that the verb to be is not stated: 'We all thought George [was] honest.'" Examples of "These verbs..." include appoint , believe , call , and choose . I feel that I disagree with the book on this point. Can we really cut a to be verb out like that? I suppose it technically makes sense if "honest" is an object compliment of "George." In which...Read More...
Thank you all for the thoughtful replies. And thank you David, for pointing out my inappropriate use of 'compliment.'Read More...
Last Reply By GreenThunderBolt · First Unread Post

Meaning of word "breakdowns" in a specific context

Hi, I have a doubt about the meaning of "breakdowns" in this context: "A Marti Report revealed Ford built 2,932 coupes for 1967 “with these engine/transmission codes,” referring to the 390 with 4-speed. Marti’s book, “Mustang … by the Numbers (1967-1973) reveals additional breakdowns of 543 and 4,403 of the 390-powered coupes built with 3-speed manual and automatic transmission, respectively. So, total 390-coupe production equaled 7,878 for 1967, compared to 12,135 fastbacks, and 2,181...Read More...

refuse with two objects in the passive voice

Hello team. Could you please help me? Which sentence is correct to change the following sentence from active into passive voice? - They refused him a visa. (active) 1- He was refused a visa. 2- A visa was refused to me. 3- A visa was refused for me. Thank you.Read More...
I agree with Gustavo. Incidentally, it is also possible to promote the second object in the active-voice construction to subject position in the passive: 1a. A visa was refused him. 4a. A visa was denied him.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

'claim' belongs to command verbs for base subjunctive?

Hello! I have one question - if 'claim' belongs to command verbs for mandative subjunctive in sentence, which needs should or base form without should in that clause - " People claimed that he should take every situation into account." ? When I review the page 1182 of 'A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language - Quirk', 'claim' is not in the list. However, I sometimes see following sentences ; - Last week, Koike responded to Cage’s request for an annulment with a demand of her own. The...Read More...
Hi, David and Gustavo, these additional correspondings have been really good chance for me to learn something new. Appreciating and Best RGDS,Read More...
Last Reply By deepcosmos · First Unread Post

Is slash (/) only used for single words?

I usually see slash used for single words such as: or/and write/read he/she And I was wondering, can you use it for multiple words? eg. when he/if she eating/playing video games Is it read as: eating video games playing video games or: eating playing video gamesRead More...
Hello, meowthful127, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. The use of slashes to present different options is not advisable in formal writing but can be found in certain texts for the sake of linguistic economy, as is the case with forms and some contractual documents. To avoid confusion, there must be parallelism between the items being separated by the slash: two or more verbs alone, two or more verbs with an object each, two or more nouns alone, two or more nouns accompanied by their...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

This is you interrogating an witness.

A shows B a picture and goes: A: This is you interrogating a witness . B: Yes. Is it a gerund: "... your interrogating..." or a relative clause: "...you who is interrogating..."?Read More...
Hi, Language learner, I interpret that V-ing as the present participle of a verb in a progressive tense from a time clause that has been partially elided: A1. This is you ( as/when you are/were ) interrogating a witness.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

As such and therefore

Dear Gustavo, My apologies, for example: You contend that the funds obtained from Washington bank was used to purchase your private helicopter. As such, the interest on the loan would not be tax deductible. Can I use as such or it needs to be "therefore"?Read More...
Just interesting what is the difference between formal and informal-writing? Just read this https://differencebtwn.com/dif...-vs-informal-writingRead More...
Last Reply By Juan · First Unread Post

Less or fewer

In an English blog, l read this sentence: A short story can have 200 words or less. My question is ( Why less not fewer )? Thanks for your help.Read More...
It's perfectly fine to use "fewer" in place of "less" in your example. With "have," that is the choice I prefer, and it is certainly the prescriptively correct choice. If the focus is on individual words rather than overall length, "fewer" is needed.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

On Youtube or On the Youtube

Hi admin. Which is the correct phrase between these two? "On the Youtube" and "On Youtube". Thank you.Read More...
"The" is not part of the name YouTube. That is why you cannot use it as part of the name of the site. However, if you wished to refer to a particular video that had been uploaded to YouTube, you could say "(on) the YouTube video Thus-and-Such," or, more simply, "(on) the YouTube Thus-and-Such."Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

as rapidly as

a. As rapidly as they are moving, they'll be here soon. b. As hard as John hit Henry, Henry must be in a lot of pain right now. Are the above sentences grammatically correct and meaningful? I am confused. Generally, when 'as' is used like this with adjectives, the meaning is usually 'although'. c. As precise as this instrument is, it sometimes gives wrong readings. I don't think that could be used in a 'positive' sense. Many thanksRead More...
Hi, Azz, I think that posposed "as" can express cause or concession both with adverbs and adjectives. I don't think the first intensifying "as" is correct or at least necessary (what do you think, David?): - Rapidly as they are moving, they'll be here soon. (cause) - Rapidly as they are moving, they won't be here in time. (concession) - Precise as this instrument is, it can render accurate readings. (cause) - Precise as this instrument is, it sometimes gives wrong readings. (concession)...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post
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