4 5 6 7 8 Displaying 36-42 of 176 Articles

National Grammar Day is just around the corner — it falls on Monday, March 4th (march forth, get it?). Among the festivities is the annual Grammar Haiku Contest, overseen by editor Mark Allen. In the contest, verbivores vie for glory by submitting grammar- or usage-based haikus on Twitter. This year, I've been asked to be a judge.  Continue reading...
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Adverbs end in -ly and modify verbs. At least, that's what we're taught in elementary school. It's a fair start, but we soon learn that adverbs are more complicated than the rule implies. For a start, adverbs can also modify adjectives, other adverbs, phrases, and clauses. And they don't have to end in -ly, either.  Continue reading...
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In advance of Valentine's Day, the dating site Match.com released some survey results indicating that good grammar is something that both men and women on the dating scene use to judge their potential mates. That finding led to a joke on Saturday Night Live that was supposed to illustrate "good grammar" but, ironically enough, failed to.  Continue reading...
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My sister has a problem with "passed" and "past." She recently commented thus on a Facebook post about the current flu outbreak: "When I flew this passed week, I wore a mask! I was mortified, but I can't remember the last time I flew and didn't get a cold, and I'm sick of it!" (I really wish I'd seen her in that mask.)  Continue reading...
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Last week we brought you an excerpt from Constance Hale's new book, Vex, Hex, Smash, Smooch: Let Verbs Power Your Writing, focusing on the power of phrasal verbs. In this second part, Hale looks at just how productive those "fertile phrasals" have grown to be.  Continue reading...
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We're pleased to present another excerpt from Constance Hale's entertaining new book, Vex, Hex, Smash, Smooch: Let Verbs Power Your Writing. Here she focuses on phrasal verbs, "the verbal combos that join an action word with a tiny preposition or particle to make a whole new meaning."  Continue reading...
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None takes a singular verb if what it refers to is singular and a plural verb if its referent is plural. But why is that? If none means "no one, not one," shouldn't it always be used with a singular verb? Formal agreement dictates that a singular subject pair with a singular verb and a plural subject pair with a plural verb. Yet the result doesn't always make sense. When formal agreement fails us, we reach out for notional agreement.  Continue reading...
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4 5 6 7 8 Displaying 36-42 of 176 Articles