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Issues with tense

Some times different tenses are used in very similar contexts. For example, in the following sentense: If it should fail for any reason other than physical abuse, we will replace the part free of charge. The first part can be also written as: If it fails for any reason... If it has failed for any reason.... Or the following two sentences: Anticipating his arrival, she cleaned up her place. Having anticipated his arrival, she cleaned up her place. Are there any significant differences between...Read More...

'Much"

(Originally posted May 10, 2003 02:10 AM) S1 Have you been in Paris much these late years? S2 I am sure you are tired, if you've been out much this wet relaxing day. S3 Come to think, I HAVEN'T seen her out much this season. Is "much" semantically related to the preceding adverbial ("in Paris"; "out") or to the following time expression ("these late years"; "this wet relaxing day"; "this season")? Thanks. Chuncan FengRead More...

A questionable PSAT question

There has been a debate about a sentence in the PSAT test. The sentence is: "Toni Morrison's genius enables her to create novels that arise from and express the injustices African Americans have endured." Could the pronoun her be used to refer to the adjective, Toni Morrison's? .Do you think that this sentence is a gramatical glitch? You can read the entire news at http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A51947-2003May13.htmlRead More...

point of view

I have come across both "from my point of view" and "in my point of view"; the first much more frequently than the latter. According to traditional "textbook" grammar, is it okay to say "in my point of view"? Does the same apply to "viewpoint"? If we just use the noun "view" or "opinion", we would say "in my view" / "in my opinion", right? Thank you for any comments. Gisele São Paulo BrazilRead More...

"Wood" or "wooden"?

What´s more common to say: a wooden bench or a wood bench? Thanks Gisele São Paulo BrazilRead More...

Do nouns in English have gender?

Hello everyone I am writting to you from Portugal. I studied for several years English in scholl and college. I´ve always learned that nouns in English are mostly considered as having no gender, except on cases where there is a diference, such as "boy-girl", "widow-widower", "actor-actress". Recently someone who has studied English Linguistics told me that certains nouns in English can be considered "masculine" and "feminine". She gave me the example of "car", which she says it´s masculine...Read More...

Much

S1 Have you been in Paris much these late years? S2 I am sure you are tired, if you've been out much this wet relaxing day. S3 Come to think, I HAVEN'T seen her out much this season. Is "much" semantically related to the preceding adverbial ("in Paris"; "out") or to the following time expression ("these late years"; "this wet relaxing day"; "this season")? Thanks.Read More...

Inversion and use of auxiliaries -- wrong or highly unusual?

I was wondering whether strange-sounding sentences such as these are grammatically possible. They advised me to stay, and stay I did He was ready to travel, and travel he did The children wanted to eat everything, and eat everything they did Similarly, is it possible to say: They have been suggesting that I give a party, and give a party I will It´s important to practice, and practice she does They emphasized the importance of being punctual, and punctual they were My immediate reaction...Read More...

"All that" or "all what"?

Isn´t it wrong to say something like: I´m in favor of all what he does In this case, wouldn´t we necessarily have to omit "all"? Isn´t the correct form: I´m in favor of all that he does (where the use of "all" is optional) Thanks Gisele São Paulo BrazilRead More...

Possessive adjectives -- nomenclature

I am really riled at the classification of possessive adjectives as pronouns in some circles. And I am writing to you because Longman belongs to these circles. There is a Longman book I just bought at the TESOL conference which compounds the error by calling possessive adjectives pronouns and then setting up some weird categories for these 'pronouns.' The simple answer is the better answer. New categories of pronouns do not need to be invented. The definitions of the parts of speech, which I...Read More...

Fruit

If we want to say a generalization with fruit, can we say, Fruit smells good. It sounds a bit awkward.Read More...

"Lain" or "laid"? Direct object or indirect object?

Which sentence fragmen tis correct: ". . .an argument to which he had lain witness" or ". . .an argument to which he had laid witness"? Why I'm confused: Lay/laid/laid refers the placement of a (material) object (such as a book) while lie/lay/lain refers to the reclining of one's self. Since there is reference to "he," it seems as though the word choice should be "lain," especially since there is no placement of a (material) object. MS Word's "grammar" doesn't agree with this reasoning and...Read More...

Special adjective clause - some of whom are / some of whom being

We often come across sentences like: They have invited lots of guests, some of whom are specialists The chidren, all of whom had played the whole day long, were quite exhausted It´s imperative that we go over the main points, a few of which are still not clear The products, several of which have been recently launched, seem to be well accepted Celso Charure, all of whose teachings revolved around developing one´s awareness as fully as possible, was an exceptional man It seems to me that...Read More...

There is or There are

According to the following sentences: [S1] Like having more than one way to meet someone in real life,there is more than one way to meet someone in cyberspace. [S2] There are more than one way of recovering from an economic downturn. These sentences are selected from google.com. The question is whether we should use "there is" or "there are" for such a phrase as ...more than one way...Read More...

What´s shaking

What would be some appropriate responses to: What´s shaking? What´s up? How do you do? Thanks Gisele São Paulo BrazilRead More...

Verb "to have"

Is it correct to say "I don´t have" instead of "I haven´t got" ?Read More...

As well as

Can we put the phrase 'as well as' at the beginning of a sentence? Is the following sentence correct? As well as making the corridors smelly,this also attracts cockroaches and even rats.Read More...

Impressed AT?

Can "impressed" be used with a preposition "at" as used in this sentence? though impressed at the company's incredible winning streak through such acts as Britney Spears, R. Kelly, Nsync, The Backstreet Boys and Joe. PromegaXRead More...

Verb forms in questions

Why is it that sometimes helping verbs are necessary in forming questions and sometimes they are not? example - "who visited you?" vs. "who did you visit?"Read More...

The noun "curiosity"

I read something today which I thought would be considered grammatically wrong in standard textbook English, but I wasn´t totally sure. It was a sentence where the noun "curiosity" was followed by the preposition "of", followed by a gerund; something like: "He no longer has the curiosity of reading tourist guides". I´m aware that one can be "curious about something" or "curious to do something" or there may be "curiosity about something" but is it normal to say "have the curiosity of doing...Read More...

"Was being"

Hallo, It`s greenrat again. I`ve got a question to ask. When do we say "He was being unfair / He was being funny"? What is "being unfair"? Gerund or participle? And what do we need that structure for? Is it past continuous or not? I mean why would we use it instead of simple past like "he was unfair"? Thank u / wish u all the best yuri greenrat@yandex.ruRead More...

Regret doing == regret having done?

S1 I regret having called him a thief, but I regret even more his stealing my watch. S2 I regret calling him thief, but I regret even more his having stolen my watch. S1 comes from the Longman Contemporary English-Chinese Dictionary (1988:1186), an English dictionary with Chinese translation. S2 is my imitation of it. Do S1 and S2 have the same meaning? (I think they mean the same because, in these sentences, what one regrets is something that has already taken place.) Thank you.Read More...
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