What's going on grammatically in the opening verse of the Quran, which uses a sound masculine plural for the word "worlds"? [more inside]
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]
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]
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]
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?
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]
This is an awesome way to learn about grammar and punctuation . Do you have any other recommendations to make this sort of stuff fun?
GrammarFilter: Present Perfect Passive Progressive. Real or a myth? [more inside]
How did skipping a grade work out for you or your child, and what were the factors that made the biggest difference? [more inside]
What's the proper use of the phrase "what would seem to be"? [more inside]
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?
"One hundred and one" vs. "one hundred one." Which is correct?
"Sunday 7 February 2010." Is a comma required between "Sunday" and "7"?
I need a bit of grammar help, please. [more inside]
GrammarFilter: Is the phrase "I will trade you.." often misused, or is it a perfectly valid usage that drives me crazy? [more inside]
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?
Can I use "Me either" in place of "Me too" in response to this statement..."I can't wait to see you!"? Please explain.
GrammarFilter - please hope us! [more inside]
What tense is the following sentence: "If you were still around, we would have had a Merry Christmas by now." [more inside]
Affect/Effect [more inside]
What are some tips in having better speech? [more inside]
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]
What is a good heuristic for the usage of 'that'? [more inside]
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?
Is English much more difficult than most languages to speak and to write? [more inside]
Are adverbs mere adjective spinoffs? [more inside]
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.
GrammarFilter: "I want to punch you severely." [more inside]
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]
Editors, I need your help with quotation marks! Which is correct? a) I sent him an article about "The X Factor". b) I sent him an article about "The X Factor." [more inside]
How is "I should mind" used to mean "I don't really mind"? This and other grammar/language questions inside. [more inside]
Tell me everything you know about this sentence construction: "Are you finished your lunch?" [more inside]
Grammarians: Is it OK to take liberties with the word "win" when publicizing a contest or draw? [more inside]
Please hope me with this seemingly-basic English grammar/spelling question! Which is correct: "long-sleeve t-shirt" or "long-sleeved t-shirt"? Is there supposed to be a hyphen between "long" and "sleeve(d)? [more inside]
Why is incorrect pronoun usage so prevalent? [more inside]
If I am on the phone with an unknown person, I usually say "whom an I speaking with?" to get the callers name. It doesn't seem to roll of the tongue very nicely though. What is the best way to get a callers name in today's world?
So which sentence is proper English grammar: "If you eat like Bob and me, you will be healthy." or "If you eat like Bob and I, you will be healthy."
Grammarfilter! Oh my. Is it "X and Y are two side of the same coin" or "X and Y two sides of the same coin"? This was an SAT sample question, and I, a poor girl's tutor, swore that "sides" must be plural in this context. Then the sample test website told me I was wrong, that it's "two side". [more inside]
My name is Daniel Plainview. I am driven and goal-oriented, and I endeavor to forge new possibilities in alternative energy.
In There Will Be Blood, Daniel Plainview delivers the line: "I have a competition in me." Could this be described as grammatically correct, strictly speaking? Or is it idiomatic, but not strictly correct? Is Plainview saying, essentially, "I have a [sense of] competition in me," a sentence that, were it to be spelled out as such, would lose its rhetorical punch? Could it be argued as a case of poetic metonymy or something of the kind? [more inside]
I understand the normal rules for "I" and "Me" in sentences, but I simply cannot figure out the answer to this example. What I want to say is that my dad and I are regional truckers (or me and my dad are regional truckers). If I stay true to the "I" vs."Me" formula I learned in school and eliminate the objective pronoun, the simplified version of the sentence can be written as either "I are regional truckers" or "me are regional truckers", and both of these look atrocious written down. I'm not a seasoned grammarian, but even I know that neither one of these seems to be the correct answer. Am I missing something?
I want to ask several questions in a row in a research proposal. What is the grammatically correct way of doing this? [more inside]
LanguageFilter: How can a native English speaker develop a better sense of grammatical cases? [more inside]
In Return of the King, Aragorn says: "I see in your eyes the same fear that would take the heart of me." What precisely does he mean by this? My confusion is with the phrase "take the heart of me." Is this a standard idiom?
Is possession for nouns that end in x indicated by a quotation mark alone or is the quotation mark accompanied by an s?
Genuinely dumb question to waste on the brain trust here but: when nouns end in x, do you indicate possession with just a quotation mark or do you need to include the s? [more inside]
WordMacroFilter: So my new boss is great but he has some crazy grammar and wordsmithing quirks. I received a list (no joke) of the edits he wants to see of documents that come to his desk (use affect instead of impact, effect instead of impacts, etc). I'd like to create a Microsoft Word Macro that will automate the task. [more inside]
Grammarfilter. The question: "Haven't you been to Italy?" The answer: I've been to Italy. Is the correct response yes or no? [more inside]
Can one 'criticize that?' [more inside]
GrammarFilter: A co-worker regularly uses the phrase "to include" in sentences such as: "Max has achieved the goals, to include such-and-such." I suspect "including" should be used instead of "to include," since "to include" implies future tense but the verb is past tense. Am I right? If so, can anyone find a link that explains this? (Google results tended us use the phrase "to include" in their text, not as their content.)
Help settle a grammar dispute: Can I say "He was to Africa," the same way I would say "He has been to Africa"?
And so I found myself asking this for some sort of reassurance, which question would be fielded by AskMefi's language nerds with bewildering rapidity
In David Foster Wallace's A Supposedly Fun Thing I'll Never Do Again he uses the word "which" in a way that I found unusual - a usage that is described under heading three here. I think I'm fairly well read, but I can't remember ever having seen this before. I've been having (what I think are) migraines lately and I'm curious if I'm becoming linguistically befuddled, or if this is just an obscure or archaic usage. Examples after the jump. [more inside]