372 posts tagged with grammar.
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American grammar textbooks

Are there grammar textbooks at the middle school and high school (or even elementary school) levels that incorporate any of the developments in understanding of English grammar that have been made in the past several decades? [more inside]
posted by strangeguitars on Oct 18, 2010 - 5 answers

Poem illuminating count and non-count/mass nouns

Is there a short, lovely, simple poem I can give to ESL students that contains significant examples of English 'count' nouns (basic stuff you can count) and 'non-count' or 'mass' (concepts, feelings, liquids) nouns? [more inside]
posted by amtho on Oct 17, 2010 - 12 answers

suicidal grammar

My newspaper recently reported that X "has died of an apparent suicide." This strikes me as grammatically fuzzy. "X has apparently committed suicide.", I know is correct. How else could this be correctly rephrased, or is the original perfectly fine?
posted by eaglehound on Oct 15, 2010 - 25 answers

Who proofs the proofreaders?

I'm a professional copy editor who has been blessed with an intern with good instincts and grammatical understanding, but needs to learn the techniques of the craft. Right now I'm just reviewing her work and discussing her mistakes/omissions as they arise, but I'd like to do more formalized instruction. Can anyone recommend a lesson plan? [more inside]
posted by thinkingwoman on Oct 6, 2010 - 16 answers

I'm good

Where does the colloquial English phrase "I'm good" come from, and has it suddenly exploded in popularity? [more inside]
posted by bad grammar on Sep 28, 2010 - 32 answers

Grammar help: Constructing a question.

Grammar help: Constructing a question. [more inside]
posted by Liquidwolf on Sep 16, 2010 - 15 answers

Should I put a question mark here, because I think it's awkward?

Grammar question about putting question marks at the end of sentences. [more inside]
posted by zardoz on Sep 14, 2010 - 15 answers

Difference between National Adjectives ending in AN and those ending in ESE?

At my job we often need to ask the nationality of people we’re speaking to on the telephone. Help me solve a small disagreement around the grammar/ semantics of exactly how this is done. [more inside]
posted by cilantro on Aug 25, 2010 - 27 answers

Me doesn't spel or write two good.

Is there such a thing as an "advanced" spelling and grammar program for Microsoft Word or WordPerfect? Bonus points if it is designed for the legal world. [more inside]
posted by 2legit2quit on Jul 25, 2010 - 14 answers

It's i before e, except in that word, oh, and that one too. Nevermind.

Grammar checker? [more inside]
posted by fifilaru on Jul 22, 2010 - 7 answers

Let us break bread(s?) together

Is the plural of a variety of bread, "breads" or does it remain bread? "I scale, mix and bake various breads from scratch for a busy café and catering orders."
posted by wocka wocka wocka on Jul 19, 2010 - 12 answers

Don't be such a Gloomy Gus

Is there a word for "Debbie Downer", "Nervous Nelson", and similar labels? [more inside]
posted by fleeba on Jul 17, 2010 - 11 answers

Oh, English.

Punctuation filter: Comma, colon, semicolon, dash? Is what I'm saying even grammatically correct? [more inside]
posted by a.steele on Jun 10, 2010 - 24 answers

"Best" and "worst" experiences involving grammar?

"Best" and "worst" experiences involving grammar and learning grammar? I think we were asked to write this to increase empathy, but I can't think of anything with any emotional weight, so I thought I'd ask for your experiences. Please answer especially if you had a difficult time with grammar. [more inside]
posted by amtho on Jun 8, 2010 - 31 answers

Can you reccommend a good, in-depth primer on grammar?

Can you reccommend a good, in-depth primer on grammar? I don't mean where to use a comma, but rather a clear definition of, for example, nominative, accusative, dative and genitive cases. What exactly are tense, mood, person, number, and voice. That kind of thing. [more inside]
posted by Nothing on Jun 6, 2010 - 16 answers

Help with hyphenated adjectives, plz

Please help resolve an office grammar debate regarding hyphenated adjectives! (Sounds fun, right?) [more inside]
posted by Flamingo on Jun 4, 2010 - 43 answers

Up the street without a paddle, or is it 'down' the street?

Grammar filter: When do you say "up the street" versus "down the street"? [more inside]
posted by thisisnotbruce on May 28, 2010 - 36 answers

Random Late-Night Grammar Question

I know this is a silly question, but I've never been able to figure this out. If my sister and I have a favorite song, how would I describe that fact in a sentence? "That's my sister and I's favorite song", "that's my and my sister's favorite song", "that's my sister's and my favorite song?", or some other permutation I may not be seeing? [more inside]
posted by Buddy-Rey on May 28, 2010 - 31 answers

Spruce up my grammar (no tree diagrams, please)

Looking for a handy reference book on English grammar. What would you recommend and why? [more inside]
posted by moody cow on May 11, 2010 - 24 answers

Fathers and Suns and Gerunds

In his book "Fathers and Sons", Alexander Waugh quotes an essay written by his grandfather Evelyn Waugh that includes this sentence:"He would have liked to do the same with me, but my school was less conveniently placed for visiting (sic) and the hard times of the First World War made hospitality difficult." Why the (sic)? What was Evelyn Waugh's error here?
posted by davidjmcgee on May 2, 2010 - 11 answers

"Myself" vs "me"

Grammar filter: Is it wrong to use "myself" when "me" seems to sound better? [more inside]
posted by stenoboy on Apr 21, 2010 - 33 answers

Quranic Grammar Headache!

What's going on grammatically in the opening verse of the Quran, which uses a sound masculine plural for the word "worlds"? [more inside]
posted by Biru on Apr 9, 2010 - 10 answers

Should "della" be capitalized in the middle of an Italian business name?

Italian speakers/readers/writers: my client is naming his new business "Studio Della Statua" or "Studio della Statua". I know that in English, the second capitalization scheme would be fine, but... [more inside]
posted by amtho on Apr 6, 2010 - 9 answers

Are surfing The Google with iPad?

What's the term for the use of a product name as a singular noun (like iPod), and why do companies do this? [more inside]
posted by tmcw on Apr 4, 2010 - 9 answers

needs replaced v. needs to be replaced

Is the phrase "needs replaced" an English language regionalism? Is it an American English regional phrase? Is it of relatively recent vintage? Why does it seem to be gaining prevalence? [more inside]
posted by OmieWise on Mar 15, 2010 - 47 answers

Need some apostrophe help.

When you pluralize a number, do you need an apostrophe? What I mean is if someone's address or phone number contains the number 3 twice, do I say it has two 3's or two 3s?
posted by shelayna on Mar 10, 2010 - 38 answers

Grammar helo Please!

Please make these sentences grammatically correct for me. For some reason, I am unable to format this idea into a coherent couple of sentences that read well. Your help is greatly appreciated. [more inside]
posted by cheechman85 on Mar 3, 2010 - 29 answers

Semi-Colon; moderate pause.

This is an awesome way to learn about grammar and punctuation . Do you have any other recommendations to make this sort of stuff fun?
posted by moocheen on Mar 1, 2010 - 11 answers

Is Present Perfect Progessive Passive possible in English?

GrammarFilter: Present Perfect Passive Progressive. Real or a myth? [more inside]
posted by MostHolyPorcine on Feb 26, 2010 - 10 answers

Should our son skip a grade?

How did skipping a grade work out for you or your child, and what were the factors that made the biggest difference? [more inside]
posted by Betsy Vane on Feb 25, 2010 - 88 answers

English usage: "what would seem to be."

What's the proper use of the phrase "what would seem to be"? [more inside]
posted by exphysicist345 on Feb 18, 2010 - 11 answers

Indefinite articles used with acronyms starting with U

Why do we precede acronyms starting with the letter U with 'a' instead of 'an', e.g. "a USB key" or "a UFO"? Acronyms starting with a consonant are frequently preceded by "an" because consonants' names have a different spelling than the letters themselves, e.g. M as em and H as aitch, therefore "an HIV outbreak" or "an MRI". However, U's name is spelled u, and acronyms that start with other vowels are preceded by 'an', e.g. "an ABC license". What's the deal?
posted by BigSky on Feb 12, 2010 - 31 answers

How to spell 101

"One hundred and one" vs. "one hundred one." Which is correct?
posted by nestor_makhno on Feb 11, 2010 - 61 answers

Proper use of commas for dates

"Sunday 7 February 2010." Is a comma required between "Sunday" and "7"?
posted by Busoni on Feb 7, 2010 - 16 answers

Help me choose a verb

I need a bit of grammar help, please. [more inside]
posted by shelayna on Jan 28, 2010 - 19 answers

I'll make you a trade, but am I saying this backward?

GrammarFilter: Is the phrase "I will trade you.." often misused, or is it a perfectly valid usage that drives me crazy? [more inside]
posted by mikeh on Jan 11, 2010 - 24 answers

Linguistic study of math/physics equation "language"

I was thinking the other day about "all Greek to me!" as I was reading a physics book w/equations (using the Greek symbols) And equations are a sort of language, of course. So I wondered if there's some sort of linguist who's ever looked at the grammar or syntax of math/physics equations and tried to derive, whatever the hell it is linguists derive! Does this sound like something anyone has heard of? If so, have any links?
posted by symbioid on Jan 8, 2010 - 6 answers

Either or too

Can I use "Me either" in place of "Me too" in response to this statement..."I can't wait to see you!"? Please explain.
posted by likeapen on Jan 8, 2010 - 19 answers

Is this sentence grammatically correct?

GrammarFilter - please hope us! [more inside]
posted by lwb on Jan 6, 2010 - 31 answers

I do like the word "pluperfect."

What tense is the following sentence: "If you were still around, we would have had a Merry Christmas by now." [more inside]
posted by Karlos the Jackal on Dec 29, 2009 - 13 answers

This doesn't look correct.

Affect/Effect [more inside]
posted by tizzie on Dec 22, 2009 - 9 answers

Help me stop sounding like a valley girl!

What are some tips in having better speech? [more inside]
posted by InterestedInKnowing on Dec 14, 2009 - 9 answers

Plural of "behalf'?

Quick grammar/usage question. Which is the preferred usage: "I'm buying this property on their behalf," or "I'm buying this property on their behalves." [more inside]
posted by crLLC on Dec 8, 2009 - 17 answers

That is the question.

What is a good heuristic for the usage of 'that'? [more inside]
posted by ageispolis on Nov 25, 2009 - 10 answers

Help me subjugate the subjunctive, or I might get moody.

Yet Another English Grammar Question: Which is correct? Based on my facial expression right now, you would think I [were/was] excited. The former sounds wrong, but reading about subjunctive moods makes me think it's right. Does it matter whether I intend to imply that I was not in fact excited?
posted by phrontist on Nov 23, 2009 - 27 answers

Difficulty of writing and speaking English?

Is English much more difficult than most languages to speak and to write? [more inside]
posted by ragtimepiano on Nov 23, 2009 - 37 answers

Are adverbs mere adjective spinoffs?

Are adverbs mere adjective spinoffs? [more inside]
posted by aswego on Nov 13, 2009 - 17 answers

That little red grammar book...

Anyone know the name of that handy little red grammar book? It's digest sized and I think it was published by Harcourt and Brace.
posted by zzazazz on Nov 11, 2009 - 4 answers

Baby, your words hurt me. Severely.

GrammarFilter: "I want to punch you severely." [more inside]
posted by opossumnus on Nov 4, 2009 - 30 answers

To answer, you would have had to have been able to have answered this question...

GrammarFilter: A friend and I have been discussing this construction: "would have had to go" vs. "would have had to have gone." It seems they are both correct and are almost always interchangeable, so it would seem the former, simpler version is preferable. Thoughts, explanations, examples otherwise? Are they both correct? [more inside]
posted by Badasscommy on Oct 26, 2009 - 10 answers

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