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As that of

What's the replacement word for "as that of" so that it can be easily understood. e.g. Where a trustee of a trust makes a statement resulting in a shortfall amount for a beneficiary of the trust, section XYZ treats the shortfall amount a s that of the trustee for penalty purposesRead More...
Hello, Tony—As you can see from Gustavo's paraphrase, it is not the word string "as that of" that has a replacement word. Rather, "that" (which functions as a pronoun here) can be replaced by its antecedent: "the shortfall amount." that = the shortfall amount as that of = as the shortfall amount ofRead More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

What's the difference between "learn of" and "Learn About"

1. We learned of his death with great sadness. Can we also say: 2: We learned about his death with great sadness.Read More...
Hello, Kim, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. As Gustavo has indicated with his fine explanation, it only makes sense to use "of" in your sentence, at least in a normal context. Normally, students do not become sad when they, say, learn about the demise of historical personages. What I would like to add here is that, even with "of," the sentence is not very natural. Sentence (1) would normally be phrased by native speakers as a cleft sentence, with the "with"-phrase focused: 1a. It was...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Question on the use of Semicolons

Hi, this is my first time posting. I usually can find the solution online but I've gotten some mixed messages from a few people in person. I understand semicolons when used in the following case [sentence/clause] ; [more description] i.e. I ate pizza; it was pepperoni. But can you use it to separate 1. [a term]; [definition] 2. [a premise]; [a conclusion] 3. [a conclusion]; [logical deduction] I dislike using semicolons since they are usually unnecessary and glare at you when used where a...Read More...
All three of your categories, Limelight, collapse into the category of explanation. Normally, we use a colon, not a semicolon, to introduce such clauses. Or we use a semicolon followed by a conjunctive adverb (as in my last post), or something else. The only one of your three examples that I find natural is (1).Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

beach, shore

Choose: I believe both are OK, right? Why? - I spend a day on the (shore - beach) with my family. Thank you.Read More...
Hello, Ahmed—Both are OK, yes. However, certain contexts will render one more appropriate than the other, or both of them inappropriate. (Are you staying next to the beach/shore or travelling to it? Are you on a boat?) Also, it is very strange that you are using the present simple. Did you mean to use the past simple ("spent")? If not, you should add an appropriate time adverbial. I spend a day on the shore/beach with my family every summer .Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Grammar SOON which is the correct use?

we're leaving soon , so can you get your bags ready? Soon we're leaving , so can you get your bags ready? we're soon leaving , so can you get your bags ready?Read More...
Hello, Sil, and welcome to the Grammar Exchange. The only natural, normal position position for "soon" in that sentence is after "leaving." With "will be leaving" instead of "are leaving," the positions of "soon" in the other two sentences would also work. All of these work: We will be leaving soon , so can you get your bags ready? Soon we will be leaving, so can you get your bags ready? We will soon be leaving, so can you get your bags ready? Please remember that the first word of a...Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

What type of conditional?

Hi all GE members and moderators I happen to see the following sentence from LDOCE and I don't know what type of conditional it is. " If he had noticed her presence, he gave no sign." The main clause "he gave no sign" is in the past tense while the if-clause is in the past perfect. I haven't seen this before. Please let me know about this. Many thanks Collocations - notice somebody's presenceRead More...
Thank you so much for your explanation. I can think of some sentences as above: If he had killed her, he gave no sign. If he was killed, there is no evidence that he was. Many thanksRead More...
Last Reply By tonyck 2 · First Unread Post

-ing clause vs having + past participle

To the moderators, please. I came across this sentence in 'English Grammar in Use': _______a hotel, we looked for somewhere to eat . [Finding - After finding - Having found - We found] and the answer key of the book is ' After finding & Having found' , which I completely agree with. Yet, why not 'Finding' as well. Is it because as is mentioned in some grammar books to avoid ambiguity and to indicate that 'Finding a hotel' took place first, then it was followed (not immediately) by the...Read More...
Thank you, Abdul, for such a well-documented question. Exactly. "Finding" does not work for the reasons you mentioned. See how these work: - Looking for a hotel, we found somewhere to eat. (As we were in the process of looking for a hotel, we found...) - Seeing that there was no hotel available, we decided to find somewhere to eat. (As soon as we realized our search for a hotel was to no avail, we decided ...)Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

How to Answer an Embedded Question

Hello everyone, would someone here kindly enough take a look at the following question, which was published in a test paper in Taiwan? Martha: Did you notice if she was in her office or not? Anne: No, __________ (A) she wasn't (B) I didn't (C) she didn't (D) I wasn't This answer provided in the test paper is (B). Yet, is (A) acceptable, I've been wondering? Is there a grammatical rule or any convention suggesting that we should always answer the main clause, not the embedded one only? Thanks...Read More...

Asleeping/sleeping people

A question from my book: Thieves avoid making any noise in order not to wake up _______ people. A. Sleep B. Sleepy C. Asleep D. Sleeping The answer is B, which feels natural. However, option D makes sense. Which of the previous options is grammatically sound?Read More...
To add to what Gustavo has said, the correct choices are redundant. We can say: Thieves avoid making any noise so they won't wake people up .Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Singular form or plural form

Assuming each year I was issued a penalty assessment. In the scenario below, should I use assessment or assessments? e.g. I am not satisfied with the penalty assessments/penalty assessment issued for the 2018 and 2019 financial years.Read More...
Hi, Cristi—I recommend using the plural in that context. With the singular, it could appear that there was one assessment for a two-year period.Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Correct Tense to use with 'before'

In the following context, Should I use 'present perfect' or 'simple past' with before ? 1- I worked for this company before but now I work for another company. 2- I have worked for this company before but now I work for another company. 4- I told you before that we should not trust John. 5- I have told you before that we should not trust John.Read More...
Have you forgotten, Subhajit, that you just asked almost the same question?Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

titled, named in an email

Hi, I am writing an email and wanting to include an attachment. The attachment is in word document. The word file is named Biden and the title of the word document is President elect Biden's life history. And I am confused what "entitled" and "named" refer to. Please let me know if I have not used it properly in the following sentences. (a) Please find attached the word document entitled Biden/President elect Biden's life history . (b) Please find attached the file named Biden/President...Read More...
Noted, thanks!Read More...
Last Reply By Cristi · First Unread Post

The use of "Which"

Hi, I was just wondering in the following example whether it is necessary to use which. e.g. In support of your contention that you acquired units in the ABC unit trust, you provided the following documents: a) Swiss bank history report which shows on 1 January 2020, you withdrew an amount of $100K to acquire the units in the said trust. b) c) Appreciate if you could shed some light!Read More...
I agree with Gustavo that the article can be left out in this type of list of noun phrases, where the items are listed on separate lines. If the list appears as a series in the sentence, however, articles will be needed. That is, even corporate accountants cannot say that they provided report, return, and statement .Read More...
Last Reply By David, Moderator · First Unread Post

Can someone help me fix these sentences? Pls

1. A University of Hawaii team led by Dr. Craig Smith found the crabs using a remotely operated submersible. 2. The man’s attorney asked that he be admitted to a mental hospital because he was insane. 3. The sisters were reunited after 38 years at the I-10 rest area. I have gone through so many sentences for my homework assignment and am stuck on these three. These are the instructions for the assignment: Find the error or issue in each item and correct it. It may involve a misspelling, a...Read More...
I know it is the man, not his attorney, the one who was likely to need mental attention. The point is that, being in the genitive case, it is not syntactically clear. The sentence could be fixed as follows: - The attorney asked that his client / his principal, who was insane, be admitted to a mental hospital. (An attorney can be a lawyer (an attorney-at-law), in which case he acts for his client, or an agent (an attorney-in-fact), in which case he acts for his principal, that is, for the...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

a best or the best?

When should one use the/a with BEST? 1 Is there a best way to live your life? 2 Is there the best way to live your life? 3 What is the best way to live your life? 4 What is a best way to live your life? 5 There is the best way to live your life. 6 There is a best way to live your life. 7 That morning she did the best time of 21 seconds. 8 That morning she did a best time of 21 seconds.Read More...
Hi, Me_IV, "there is" usually requires an indefinite article (except with lists of items), so only (1) and (6) work. In both cases, "best" means "ideal." In the mentioned sentences, we can of course also use "better," though with a different meaning. I think (5) can work if "there" is not a pronoun but an deictic adverb, meaning that one is the best way to live your life. In the other cases, "the" is required to express absolute superlative in (3) and in the last pair I think both "the" and...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

demonstrative pronoun vs relative pronoun

Hello I wonder if the word "that" is used as a demonstrative pronoun or relative pronoun. I am very confused because of the commar used in front of "that". I learned that "that" is not used with undefined relative pronoun with "comma" before it. So would it be possible for me to understandt "that" is a demonstrative pronoun despite the usage of error of comma. I chose this sentence from LOCNESS learner corpus by native students. "Boxing is a high risk, short term career the men who do it are...Read More...
I agree with Ahmed on all counts. "That is why" should be preceded by a period, a semicolon, a colon, an em dash, or a linker, that is, something that sets it off as a separate sentence. Only "which is why" can be preceded by a comma as it introduces a sentential relative clause. I would hyphenate the compound adjectives. I also find the "the men who do it are aware of it" part defective, so the sentence as a whole should be recast: - Boxing is a high-risk, short-term career, and the men who...Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

As-clause, as a modifier

- Supermarket shelves stripped bare by stockpilers were familiar scenes as anxious shoppers loaded up withtoilet rolls and pasta when lockdowns were first imposed. (From The Economist). It feels to me that "as" Introduce a relative clause modifying "familiar scenes". But I'm not sure because I only know about "the same as" pattern. Is that really a modifier? Thanks.Read More...
Hi, Robby Zhu, No, "as anxious shoppers loaded up with toilet rolls and pasta when lockdowns were first imposed" is an adverbial clause of time indicating when those scenes (of supermarket shelves being emptied by stockpilers) were familiar. The clause in turn contains another adverbial clause indicating when shoppers purchased those goods ("when lockdowns were first imposed").Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

grammar question

With no clear indication from online searches, I'm seeking consensus opinion on the grammatically correct way to structure this sentence. Grateful for any assistance: For centuries, women have styled their hair in all manner of fashion . For centuries, women have styled their hair in all manner of fashions . For centuries, women have styled their hair in all manners of fashion .Read More...
Thank you Gustavo. I really appreciate such a prompt and helpful reply to my question. I'm happy to have found this forum.Read More...
Last Reply By Curator in California · First Unread Post

Tip To Help/That Will Help Waitress Change Her Life

The headline of Floyd Mayweather tipped waitress $10,000 to help change her life - but wanted nobody to know says: 1) Floyd Mayweather’s secret $10,000 tip to help waitress change her life . a) Is the underlined portion above equivalent to the following? Floyd Mayweather’s secret $10,000 tip in order to help waitress change her life . where the underlined part is modifying the noun "tip" adjectivally. b) Can sentence (1) be written like this as well? Floyd Mayweather’s secret $10,000 tip for...Read More...
Hi, Language Learner, The constructions "in order to" + infinitive and "for" + V-ing are equivalent, and so are your sentences under (a) and (b) above. Both indicate purpose. However, in headlines "to" is usually used to introduce a future event, being similar to "due to" or "bound to," and this might be the case with this headline, the idea being that the tip will help the waitress change her life.Read More...
Last Reply By Gustavo, Contributor · First Unread Post

It is ... to infinitive

Hi, this is my first post. I know that "It is fun to play tennis" is more preferred than 'To pay tennis is fun', but wonder if there is any difference in the meanings or nuances. Thank you!Read More...
Hello, David. Thank you very much for explaining it, and sorry for my typo mistake!Read More...
Last Reply By Reo · First Unread Post
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