February 2019

He saw enough to satisfy and interest him

Hi! When I was reading Little Women by Louisa May Alcott, I noticed this sentence interesting: Laurie did not read all this while he watched her feed the peacocks, but he saw enough to satisfy and interest him, ... (Chapter 37) I thought "him" should be replaced with "himself," and I was wondering whether the following sentences are grammatically okay and whether there could be any difference in meaning among (1) and (2), (3) and (4), and (5) and 6): (1) He saw enough to satisfy and interest...Read More...
Hi, Gustavo, Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts! It's interesting to see that the adjective enough phrase can not only follow but also precede the noun it modifies (there might be some restriction on its preceding the noun, I don't know) on one hand, and they can differ when it comes to the presence/absence of the (for sb) to do sth infinitival clause on the other hand.Read More...
Last Reply By yasukotta · First Unread Post

commas and periods

Hello, Here is a part of self-introduction of an English proof reader born and educated in the UK. I like to encourage students as much as possible, I am here to help and I want to get the best out of our customers. I want them to feel comfortable working with me and students must never get upset by my corrections, they are there to help, I never want to embarrass the student or make them feel they have lost confidence in carrying on learning the subject. I copied it from the website and...Read More...
Thank you again for your kind reply. AppleRead More...
Last Reply By apple · First Unread Post

Perambulatory

ahmad
Hello, everyone, With a view to ensure whether I could use ' perambulatory' in a certain way (which I will come to later on), I ran a search on COCA and came upon the following: "Such guarantees of public input reflect the Parties' perambulatory affirmation of the importance of public participation in conserving, protecting, and enhancing the environment." https://corpus.byu.edu/coca/ I don't understand the meaning of the word in question in the above sentence. Would someone help me...Read More...
Hello again, Ahmad, Yes, I believe those two sentences are fine and express the meaning you wish them to express. I like "the perambulatory orders" the best. "Perambulatory orders" is similar to "grammatical errors," which refers to errors of a grammatical nature, not to errors having the virtue of being grammatical. The reason I have qualified my answer with "I believe" is that I am not at home with "perambulatory." I don't think I have ever once used the word in real life.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Didn't have to or needn't have pp

Hello, The following sentence is from a school book: "We didn't have a test today so I .............for it last night!" A- didn't have to revise B- needn't have revised The guide of answers says "B" But I inquire why not "A". I think that "A" is OK as it means that we didn't revise last night because we didn't have a test today.Read More...
David, you obviously posted while I was still writing my last bit, as often happens, but I don't think I've contradicted you. In fact, I completely agree with your logic. I will say that you are absolutely correct, with regard both to your grammatical point itself, and to the fact that it is, as you so elegantly understate it, "worth mentioning" in the context of this thread. Rather, I say that your point is essential in order to appreciate the subtle differences among the various uses of...Read More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

Span Toward

ahmad
Hello, everyone, "Brahman cannot be a bridge, since there is nothing beyond for it to be a span toward." The above quote is from The Encyclopedia of Indian Philosophies, Volume 3: Advaita Vedanta up to Samkara and His Pupils edited by Karl H. Potter...Read More...
Thanks a lot to both of you. The explanation provided by DocV is quite enlightening.Read More...
Last Reply By ahmad · First Unread Post

Correct use of “having seen”

Hello! Am I using “having seen” correctly in the sentence below? ”The images were etched in his memory from having seen them every day for as long as he could remember.” I’m starting to doubt myself. Thank you! EddyRead More...
Hi Doc V, Thank you for the helpful top-up. The latter is correct, per David’s suggestion. I suspect my original phrasing was misleading, hence my appeal for help. Feel free to email me some info on the editing services you offer. I have an agent who acts as a first-round editor, but I like to ensure the manuscript is polished before sending her way. I’d be interested in getting the first 50 pages or so edited, depending on your rates. Testimonials and reviews would also be helpful. Thanks...Read More...
Last Reply By eddyautomatic · First Unread Post

(a) minority

Hello, In the following sentence do we need "a" before "minority"? I don't think "a" is needed, but I'm not sure. In the organization where most managers are men, women are considered (a) minority.Read More...
Thank you, Gustavo, for your prompt reply. AppleRead More...
Last Reply By apple · First Unread Post

every game I play

Are these sentences correct: 1) Each game I play, I consider as a new challenge, even if it isn't in an important tournament. 2) Every game I play, I consider as a new challenge, even if it isn't in an important tournament. If they are correct, would you consider them literary or informal? Gratefully, NaviRead More...
Thank you very much, David, Wow! Another great reply! I had totally missed that ambiguity!! It was not a hidden challenge! Respectfully, NaviRead More...
Last Reply By navi · First Unread Post

too much

cocoricot
Dear teachers, 1. Don't spend too much time on video games. 2. Don't spend your time too much on video games. 3. Don't spend too much of your time on video games. Please tell me if they are correct and explain the meaning of the different positions of "too much''. Thanks.Read More...
Thank you, DocV, for your precious help.Read More...
Last Reply By cocoricot · First Unread Post

to as a preposition?

Learning to take good notes is very important. Good notes can help you remember and review a text you have read. There is no magic formula to taking notes when reading.You have to find out what works best for you. (Source: Iran's English Coursebooks) I wonder why we have "taking" (a gerund) after "to". Is this "to" a preposition? I've checked a couple of dictionaries. The common combinations are: (1) formula for: a formula for the withdrawal of US forces from the sea (2) formula that: There...Read More...
Thanks.Read More...
Last Reply By Freeguy · First Unread Post

are/is

Which are correct: 1) Who are richer than the French in this county? 2) Who is richer than the French in this county? 3) Which ethnic group is richer than the French in this county? 4) What ethnic group is richer than the French in this county? Gratefully, NaviRead More...

on the roads?

It is very difficult to find your favorite food when you travel. Sometimes it is even difficult to find healthy food. Besides, the prices of foods may be so high on the roads or in airports. Long trips may make you tired and weak and this can increase the risk of illness. So you should eat well while you are traveling. 1. Shouldn't "on the roads" be "on the road"? 2. Is "on the road" here an idiom, meaning " travelling in a car, especially for long distances "?Read More...
The name of the book is: Vision The authors are Iranian English teachers whose major fields of study is "English, as a second language."Read More...
Last Reply By Freeguy · First Unread Post

I'm having a problem vs I have a problem

Hi What is the difference between "I'm having a problem" and "I have a problem"? Are these the same as "I'm having trouble" and "I have trouble"?Read More...
Tara, Does this mean that our answers (mine and David's, in particular) to your questions on those other threads have sufficiently addressed this new question? If not, just tell us, and we'll try to give a better answer. DocVRead More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

the meaning of to infinitive

cocoricot
Dear teachers, The sentence below is in a dictionary. Please explain what it means when "to be'' is added to the sentence while to me the sentence still has its meaning without it. Honesty is essential if there is to be good rapport between patient and therapist. Thank youRead More...
Thank you, DocV, I fully understand.Read More...
Last Reply By cocoricot · First Unread Post

Can I say ?

I. If I know that my friend have changed the job, so can I ask suddenly that: 1 "Hey John! What did you do for a living? / Hey John! What was your job?" or I have to ask that "Hey John! Formerly, what did you do for a living? / Hey John! Formerly, what was your job?"? 2 "Hey John! Were you a teacher? or I have to ask that "Hey John! Formerly, were you a teacher?" And does he understand me when I ask suddenly like that? II. If I know that my friend have changed the name and I have forgotten...Read More...
Kimconu, In section (I) you can say, a: What did you do before this? or b: Did you use to be a teacher? In (II), you can say, c: Didn't you use to go by a different name? DocVRead More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

on (the) top and bottom

I have made up a few similar sentences below. (1) There are stickers on the top and on the bottom of the box. (2) There are stickers on the top and the bottom of the box. (3) There are stickers on the top and bottom of the box. All of my non-native English speaking friends think my sentences are all grammatically correct. Are they really correct? Thanks a lot for your help.Read More...
Yes. DocVRead More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

usage of "pay"

I have made up a few similar sentences below. (1a) I get pa id for doing the project. (1b) I get pay for doing the project. (2a) This is a high paying job. (2b) This is a high-pay job. (3a) This job is high paying. (3b) This job is high-pay. I heard people use the a sentences. Are the b examples grammatically correct? Thank you very much for your help.Read More...
Ansonman, I don't like any of the (b) versions. Also, my tendency would be to hyphenate "high-paying". DocVRead More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

a place and a day + weather

Suppose that ABC is the name of a city. I have written some short sentences below. (1a) It's usually rainy in ABC. (1b) ABC is usually rainy. (2a) It's rainy today. (2b) Today is rainy. (3a) It will be rainy on Wednesday. (3b) Wednesday will be rainy. (4a) It will rain in ABC soon. (4b) ABC will rain soon. (5a) It will rain tomorrow. (5b) Tomorrow will rain. My non-native English speaking friends and I know all the "a" sentences are correct. We made up the "b" examples, and we are not sure...Read More...
(4b) and (5b) are incorrect. Cities and days can be rainy, but they can't rain. DocVRead More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

Active and passive form

cocoricot
Dear teachers, Is it correct to use whether active or passive form? 1. It was too badly damaged to repair. 2. It was too badly damaged to be repaired. Thank you.Read More...
Actually, Cocoricot, in light of Gustavo's excellent point that "repair" is almost exclusively used transitively, I find your (1) more natural than your (2). A robot might very well show up at a job shop and announce "I'm ready to repair!", but a technician would be much less likely to do so. DocVRead More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

correlative conjunctions

mohsen
Hi dears, I have read if u want to use correlative conjunctions to join two items u need the equal grammar, for example ' either[a noun] or [ a noun] what about the following example : # I think the chores are either boring and a waste of time. ' boring ' in the first part is an adjective but ' a waste of time ' in the second part is a noun phrase. is it possible to do this as the terms are not grammatically equal?? Best of wish MohsenRead More...
David, i did not pay attention to the beginning because I expected your name at the end! anyway, thanks for your answer...Read More...
Last Reply By mohsen · First Unread Post

Interesting sentences/paragraphs

Do you know of any way to write sentences/paragraphs that captivate. When i read my stuff it is so boring, but when i read the same written in a book by a pro it sounds so much better. Is there a way to lay out the words or ideas, to constructe interesting sentences/paragraphs. All i can find is to place active words at the beginning or end of a sentence. What do you do to spellbind the reader. ThanksRead More...
John121, I don't see a grammar question here. What you are asking is outside of the scope of this forum. I suggest you find a writers' workshop. Depending where you live, there might be such groups in your area with an actual leader or instructor (possibly through a college or adult education center), or strictly peer groups, where, at every session, members volunteer to submit what they have most recently written in order to have it critiqued by the other members. I see advantages and...Read More...
Last Reply By Doc V · First Unread Post

mixed conditional?

You shouldn't be so tired if you ....... to bed earlier. 1) had gone 2) went This test was asked by one of my colleagues today. To me, #1 works. Also, I am not happy with this usage of "should". I think "You shouldn't be so tired" is not modern usage; "Would" is what's meant. What do you think? And tell me which type of conditional is this sentence? I think it's mixed.Read More...
Yes, Freeguy, this British use of "should," which relates to "shall" in its first-person usage in British English, is generally used only in the first person -- and it is generally not used at all in American English. The last style guide in the U.S. to have recommended it without reserve was published in the nineteen-sixties. The British usage of "shall" and "should" allows for changes in perspective, and it is still possible to conceive of such changes in perspective. If you and I were...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post
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