All Forum Topics

The object of the verb 'deserve'

Hello, teachers! [1] Korean books and dictionaries say that these are all correct. However, I heard from some native speakers that we can't use [-ing] form objects after the verb 'deserve'. Would you confirm this for me? 1. He deserves [* helping, to be helped]. 2. Your proposals deserve [* considering, to be considered] in detail. ******** [2] Although we can't use [-ing] form objects after the verb 'deserve', some people say we can use #3 instead of #4, I often hear. Is it true? If #3 is...Read More...

'The' in front of the superlative adjective complement

Hello, teachers! Please help me with this! 1. The baby looks [the] happiest in its mother's arms. 2. The lake is [the] deepest at this point. 3. I am [the] busiest in February and March. In Korea, we are taught that in this kind of sentence we can't use 'the' in front of the superlative complement. Is this rule correct? I think we can use 'the' even though it's uncommon (or preferred regionally). Am I wrong? Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

'More than one' and agreement

Hello, teachers! Would you please tell me which is the correct agreement? A teacher on a edu-TV says 1 needs 'is' and 2 needs 'are', but I think both should be 'is', although it doesn't seem too wrong to use 'are'. Am I wrong? 1. More than one book is/are not his. 2. More than one of the books is/are not his. Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

'It is you...who is/are...?"

Hello, teachers! In this sentence, which is the correct verb? I think 'is' is correct, but a test says 'are' is correct. Who is correct? Am I in the wrong? - It is you, Tom, who [is, are] going to receive the prize. Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

"It was herself/she herself/her herself who"

Hello, teachers! In both sentences, are these all acceptable, 'herself', 'she herself', or 'her herself'? 1. It was [herself, she herself, her herself] who Jim met with yesterday. 2. It was [herself, she herself, her herself] who took Jim to the meeting. Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

'On (the)air,' 'on (the) radio'?

Hello, teachers! Which is correct or common, "to be on air" or "to be on the air" as the meaning of "to be broadcasting on the radio or television"? 1. The documentary is going to be on [the] air tonight at 10 o'clock. ******* In addition, would you tell me whether or not we use 'the' in these sentences? 2. It was on [the] radio this morning! 3. He will go on [the] TV in the morning! Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

"one another" & "each other"

Hello, teachers! In Korea we learn that we use "each other" with the relationship between two, and we use "one another" with the relationship among more than two, and we think this is unchangeable, absolute rule. 1. They gave presents for Christmas to each other. [Here 'they' have to be two people.] 2. They gave presents for Christmas to one another. [Here 'they' have to be three or more people.] 3. Romeo and Juliet loved each other. [We can't use "one another" here.] 4. The villagers helped...Read More...

Participle or Gerund

I've come across one of the grammar questions listed in the book by Strumpf and Douglas* and I thought it is quite interesting. The student asked what the role of "being" and "becoming" in the following sentence is: I'm not a human being but a human becoming. The authors respond to this question as follows: " Being and becoming are present participle. They both modify the noun human ". After reading the response, I believe I have to disagree with the authors. To me, being and becoming are...Read More...

past and present event

Dear All, Please take a look at the following sentences. Is my analysis of them correct ? 1) We thought a person coming in to give the talk would be better than a video in case the students WANT to ask questions. 2) We thought a person coming in to give the talk would be better than a video in case the students WANTED to ask questions. Am I right that in 1), the event has yet to take place while in 2), it has already taken place. Thank you. RickyRead More...

'The' with coordinate nouns

Please consider the following: Original the pure scientist and the applied scientist a. the pure and the applied scientist b. the pure and the applied scientist s c. the pure and applied scientist d. the pure and applied scientist s What do you think the best, i.e less ambiguous, choice to rephrase the original phrase above?Read More...

function of 'would'

Dear All, Please take a look at the following sentence : "It wouldn't surprise me if she goes to Europe for her holidays." Q: Is this a first conditional with 'would' instead of 'will' being used in order to 'soften' the tone ? Thank you. RickyRead More...

Who is the doer?

Hello, teachers! Would you please tell me who is the doer? 1. I saw him on the bus. [Was he on the bus, or was I on the bus?] 2. They shot at us behind the wall. [Who was behind the wall, we or they?] 3. He fought his wife drunk. [Who was drunk, his wife or he?] 4. They attacked us hungry and exhausted. [Who was hungry and exhausted, we or they?] 5. They took us by surprise, hungry and exhausted. [Who was hungry and exhausted, we or they?] Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

Simple past with 'for the last 10 minutes'?

Last night I bumped into this sentence: Our bus didn't move for the last 10 minutes. Is it correct? I thought present perfect was used because of the phrase 'for the last 10 minutes' ur bus hasn't moved for the last 10 minutes.' Are both of them acceptable? Are there any differences in meaning? THANKSRead More...

The definite article with compound subject

Hello everybody, I've read that when ˜and' connects two nouns standing for things or people that are closely linked, a determiner is not normally repeated before the second noun. I don't know whether ˜boy' and ˜girl' are closely linked. Do I have to use ˜the' before ˜girl' in the sentence ˜The boy and THE girl are playing'? I think ˜king' and ˜queen' are closely linked. Can I say ˜The king and queen are dancing'? Thank you. Aneeth PrabhakarRead More...

Tense in reported question with "asked"

I have a question about reporting. Here it is: (this morning)I said to her,"Where did you go yesterday?" This afternoon, I'm reporting this. What can I say? a)I asked her where she had gone yesterday. b)I asked her where she went yesterday. c)I asked her where she had went the day before. thanksRead More...

Where to put an adverb

The following numbers are what I got from a simple Google search. My question is how do we determine where to put an adverb ( adjective?), whether before "be" or after "be". 1. It will hardly be possible 586 2. It will be hardly possible 215 3. It will almost be impossible. 171 4. It will be almost impossible 8460 AppleRead More...

"Every four years" vs. "every fourth year"

Hello, teachers! Here in Korea, we are taught that as an adverbial phrase, [every + cardinal number + plural noun] & [every + ordinal number + singular noun] have the same meaning. So it is taught that sentences 1 & 2 are both correct. However, I think sentence 2 is incorrect, isn't it? 1. The Olympics are held (once) every four years. 2. The Olympics are held (once) every fourth year. Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

"Every two years", "every second year" vs. "every other year"

Hello, teachers! Here in Korea, we are taught that as an adverbial phrase, [every + two + plural noun], [every + second + singular noun], and [every + other + singular noun] all have the same meaning. So it is taught that sentences 1, 2, and 3 are all correct. However, I think sentence 2 is incorrect, but sentence 3 is correct even though it sounds somewhat unnatural. Am I right? 1. The festival takes place every two years. 2. The festival takes place every second year. 3. The festival takes...Read More...

in/per two years

Hello, teachers! Would you please tell me if these are correct or not? I think these are correct even though it is uncommon. Am I right? 1. The Olympics take place once in/per four years. 2. The festival is held once in/per two years. Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

present perfect

Present perfect tense often confuses me. Can you check out this sentence? Amy has been kind to everybody. Does it always mean she is still kind to everybody? Or it depends on the situation? THANKSRead More...

'Family' and article

Hello, teachers! [1] Would you please tell me if we should use 'a' or not? 1. You are my brother. We're [a] family. / We were never [a] family. 2. We are [a] team. [2] Would you please tell me if we can leave 'our' out? 3. We just had [our] family at the wedding. Thank you very much. Best Regards.Read More...

Prepositions with 'alert'

There is a sentence that confuses me: He alerted board members of the possibility of a union strike. As I know, the word alert is used with 'to' not 'of'. So I think the sentence should be 'he alerted board members to the possibility of a union strike'. Am I right? THANKSRead More...
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