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May 2020

there is/are the

Dear Grammar Exchange members I study English and have met a very difficult topic for me: " there is, there was " in the book of M. Hewings, Unit 95. The rule says: 1.When we introduce a new person or thing - to say that this person or thing exists, happens, or is found in a particular place - we can use a sentence beginning There + be: There's nothing to eat. Further, we see: 2. Because we use there in this way to introduce topics, the noun after there + be often has an indefinite or...Read More...
Kursevich, many of your comments in this thread are rude and inappropriate. While we welcome passion about grammatical topics, this passion is misplaced when it leads to insulting statements about people who have taken the time to answer your question, especially those who, like Gustavo, have an official question-answering role at this grammar website. However, you should not insult any members, including those who, like Yoda, have just become members. If you will not be polite toward those...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Perfect tense for completion and duration

Hi, guys. Can we express both completion and duration with perfect tense? For example, "I have run for 30 minutes." Is this construction correct?Read More...
Ok, I don't want to waste anything, thus I will not write in this thread anymore. Soon, I will create a new one, though, asking about the different types of verb phrases. I'm curious about them, and maybe this knowledge will help me understand English tenses better. Thank you, everyone, for contribution to this long thread.Read More...
Last Reply By Former Member · First Unread Post

Present Perfect Simple vs Continuous

I do understand that both tenses, the Present Perfect Simple and Continuous, are used for repeated actions. I started researching the topic a long time ago and found out a lot of differences between the two. The difference that I need to ask you about is the following: This is from Practical English Usage by Michael Swan. I've understood from it that we don't use the Present Perfect Continuous when we say how often we have done something. However, I came across the following sentence,...Read More...
Thanks David. Your examples have clarified everything and answered all my questions I had in my mind. I really appreciate that.Read More...
Last Reply By Rasha Assem · First Unread Post

Use of word "Spirit"

Considering current lockdown situation which prevents you from clubbing is the following sentence correct? "I want to dance. Even my spirit is dancing within". Is the usage of the word "Spirit" correct?Read More...
Hi, Angelica—The "sentence" you have asked about is actually two sentences. There is a period at the end of the first sentence. The second sentence begins with "Even." Those two sentences are OK, though the use of "Even" is a bit awkward. I recommend deleting "Even": I want to dance. My spirit is dancing within. The problematic sentence is the one you used to ask your question: " Considering current lockdown situation which prevents you from clubbing is the following sentence correct? " You...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

George Floyd

George Floyd cried out for his mother twice while being murdered. His mother died 2 years ago. Let that sink in. I have 2 questions regarding that passage above: 1. What is the meaning of "Let that sink in"? 2. Can I write this sentence: "George Floyd cried out for his mother twice while being murdered" like this way: George Floyd cried out for his mother twice while he was murdered.?Read More...
Wow! thanks for this informative explanation, Gustavo 💖😇Read More...
Last Reply By Toaha · First Unread Post

"Fauna and flora" phrase

Hi guys! Could you please help me with my confusion. The phrase "fauna and flora" is an uncountable noun or countable noun, which can be added s into "faunas and floras". Which one is it? Thank you for helping!Read More...
Hi, Moon Le, "fauna" and "flora" are uncountable in the sense that you cannot say *two faunas, *three floras , but can take an "s" to refer to the fauna and flora of different places or times.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

She always lets me down . OR She always is letting me down

Please help. What is correct way ?Read More...
Hello, Nastassia, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. When you ask questions here concerning example sentences, please include the example sentences in the body of your post, so that readers do not have to refer to the title in order to understand your question. Thank you. Both sentences are correct, though you have "always" in an awkward place in "She always is letting me down." You should place "always" after "is" (the auxiliary verb): "She is always letting me down." There is a...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

under/in any circumstance(s)

Dear friends, I'd like to use the similar expression like in any case , at any point , on any account. So could I use under/in any circumstance? or circumstance is a special word, that under/in any circumstances is commonly used?Read More...
@ahmed_btm @Gustavo, Co-Moderator Thank you very much! Thank you very much!Read More...
Last Reply By Ivana · First Unread Post

accustomed to swearing

1) He is accustomed to swearing. Is that sentence ambiguous? a) He is in the habit of swearing. b) He is used to hearing people swear. How about: 2) He is accustomed to swearing at linguists. I think sense "a" is the one that more readily comes to mind, but he might be in a select company that swear furiously at linguists constantly and he is merrily accustomed to such swearing. Gratefully, NaviRead More...
Hello, Navi—Yes, (1) is ambiguous in that way. Nice observation. On reading (b), "swearing" is a gerund, i.e., a noun. (Compare: "He has grown accustomed to the swearing in that film, he has seen it so many times.") The sentence says that swearing is something to which he is accustomed. On reading (a), "swearing" is a verb. (Compare: "He is accustomed to swear .") "Swearing" is not a true gerund on this interpretation. It could even be modified by an adverb ("He is accustomed to swearing...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

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Yes. Unlike "wanted," which can point to the future within the past ( he wanted to have a meeting/meetings ), "liked" expresses a habitual past, and then "so he could not bear to listen" could only be used to express result. This is another possible sentence: - Jim didn't like long meetings so (as a result) he left in the middle of the boring presentation. Note 1: couldn't bear can also be followed by V-ing ( couldn't bear listening to... ) Note 2: Your comment further above should have been...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

have built, have been building

Hello. Which one is correct? Why? - They.........this school for two years now. a) have built b) have been building Thank you.Read More...
Hi, Ahmed—Only (b) is correct. "For two years now" tells you that the action of building this school is ongoing. The progressive is needed to show that the action has not been completed.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

The government or governments

Dear sir, I'm practicing writing my essay in English and I'm confused between the noun "governments" or "the government". Which one is correct to use? Thank you.Read More...
Hello, Moon Le, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange: Both "governments" and "the government" are correct, but using one or the other will depend on what you want to refer to (governments in general or some specific government).Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Co-Moderator · First Unread Post

Sentence structure

Hello, Grammar Exchange members! I've run into the following sentence while reading a book titled "The Individual Subject and Scientific Psychology." What I don't understand about the sentence is the bolded part. 1. Successful application of the basic knowledge of psychology in particular concrete situations — be those situations examples of individual or group psychotherapy, of consultation in a business firm, or of dealing with a troubled adolescent — can be consistent only if the basic...Read More...
Thank you, Gustavo. Great help!Read More...
Last Reply By KDog · First Unread Post

Can a sentence be "simple complex"?

I've run into multiple definitions of simple, complex, and compound. According to some online sources, a simple sentence has only one independent clause (but they don't say anything about dependent clauses.) These sites state that a sentence with one dependent and one independent clause is a 'simple complex sentence. Other online sources state that a simple sentence must have only one clause that is independent. According to these sources, a complex sentence is not ever a simple sentence,...Read More...
I agree this makes far more sense. I do not like the dichotomy of 'simple/compound'. A child should not be greatly faulted for confusing complex sentences with compound sentences when attempting to infer a relationship from the fact that 'simple' and 'complex' are antonyms. To a child, a 'simple complex sentence' is a lexical nightmare even though the concept is perfectly valid.Read More...
Last Reply By cwm9 · First Unread Post
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