382 posts tagged with grammar.
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I've noticed the New York Times is now using "Miss", or Ms., as the accepted honorific for a women both married and unmarried. Is this MLA, or is the New York Times in the vanguard? Is Mrs. dead?
posted by plexi on Nov 3, 2008 - 12 answers

What's up with the funky syntax used by television reporters?

Extra! Extra! The verb "to be" missing from TV newscasts! Anchors and TV reporters omitting "to be," often favor using participles instead. Why? [more inside]
posted by HotPatatta on Oct 12, 2008 - 16 answers

Are there singular/plural pairs in english with completely different spellings?

In French, the singular of eye is "oiel" and the plural is "yeux." Are there any nouns in English that have completely different spellings of the singular and plural like this?
posted by Crosius on Sep 26, 2008 - 27 answers

*, 1? 1, *?

Mixed footnotes: do numbered notes precede symbol notes, or vice versa? [more inside]
posted by Shepherd on Sep 26, 2008 - 3 answers

Dots and Don'ts

Is there a rule as to how many ...'s are supposed to be placed at the end of a sentence which is to be continued? [more inside]
posted by gman on Sep 23, 2008 - 21 answers

How do I use footnotes properly?

Footnote experts/writers: Please help me decide the best way to use footnotes in my document. [more inside]
posted by Badmichelle on Sep 17, 2008 - 6 answers

Help me prove my friend wrong

"Already has" or "has already" [more inside]
posted by urbanwhaleshark on Sep 11, 2008 - 18 answers

a blessing, a doom and a pryde walk into a bar...

You have a murder of crows, sleuth of bears, even an exaltation of larks, what about Fairies? [more inside]
posted by jrishel on Sep 10, 2008 - 53 answers

Help Translating Lyrics for a Music Composition

I am a composer looking to score a piece for orchestra and Soprano Voice. I wrote it in English, and after a bit of reading attempted to translate it into latin using a dictionary and grammar book. It's not gonna be perfect, but I gave it an honest attempt, and hope the metafilter community can help me to streamline it and help me with some grammer isses I don't understand (ie.ablative or accusitive). thanks much! (by the way, the meter is 4/4 and a slow tempo,flowing legato melody, but once I have a working translation I'll make it fit) [more inside]
posted by FireStyle on Sep 4, 2008 - 3 answers

Before vs. Behind - which is correct here?

Which preposition is the correct choice in this context? [more inside]
posted by FireStyle on Aug 26, 2008 - 35 answers

Reality check in German

German grammar check: free online tools or Mac freeware/shareware? I have fairly solid German; goal is polishing drafts I'm writing in German, not translating from scratch. Seeking best stopgaps for when I can't afford or barter for a human's time. (And I don't have an MS Office CD with German tools.)
posted by kalapierson on Jul 28, 2008 - 2 answers

Apostrophe's : 2 pound a pound...

"Grocer's Apostrophe" or "Grocers' Apostrophe"? [more inside]
posted by twine42 on Jul 17, 2008 - 46 answers

super-size it to a triple tense for $1

Grammar Filter: what is the English equivalent to the "Double Future Tense"? [more inside]
posted by davejay on Jul 9, 2008 - 10 answers

No more than vs. not more than

What is the difference between "no more than" and "not more than"? [more inside]
posted by Arasithil on Jul 3, 2008 - 15 answers

When is a noun a proper noun?

English grammar filter: can a common noun act as a proper noun if the thing being referred to exists within a shared context? Please help to settle a dispute between my girlfriend and I. [more inside]
posted by ellF on Jun 6, 2008 - 29 answers

bad grammar vs. poor grammar

Which expression is correct when describing grammatical mistakes: "bad grammar" or "poor grammar?" [more inside]
posted by rinosaur on May 30, 2008 - 7 answers

How do you pronounce 'read'?

How do you pronounce the word 'read' when used in the following context? -- 'John is dry (read: boring).' /rɛd/ or /rid/ Thanks!
posted by gman on May 29, 2008 - 122 answers

How can I best learn the French language, grammar, and pronunciation?

How can I best learn the French language, grammar, and pronunciation? [more inside]
posted by christopherbdnk on May 26, 2008 - 16 answers

Simple French-language booklets for Kenyan French teacher of elementary students?

On a recent trip to Kenya, we visited a school who is in need of simple French language instruction booklets for elementary-age children. [more inside]
posted by vanoakenfold on May 23, 2008 - 3 answers

[latin grammar filter] Summa or summa? Laude or laude?

How do you properly capitalize "summa cum laude" on a diploma? [more inside]
posted by deejay jaydee on May 22, 2008 - 7 answers

Help me improve an employee's writing skills.

Looking for recommendations for English grammar workbook(s) designed for adults who did not finish high school years ago. [more inside]
posted by bartinpc on May 15, 2008 - 2 answers

Yes, I'm.

Vagaries of the English Language, part n: I need to tell my boss why the contraction "I'm" cannot stand alone as a sentence. For example, "Yes, I am" is okay. "Yes, I'm" is not. I haven't been able to find any good logic for this case or that works for the different contractions in general ("don't" can also stand alone, "I'd" and "I've" cannot). Given this is about languages, and particularly English, "just because" is, alas, potentially the best answer.
posted by whatzit on May 15, 2008 - 36 answers

[There is rockets.] vs [There are rockets.]

GrammarFilter: True/False -- The following sentence can be grammatically correct. There's rockets. [more inside]
posted by Quarter Pincher on Apr 29, 2008 - 53 answers

Don't trust the messenger

EpigramFilter: What's the converse of "Don't kill the messenger"? [more inside]
posted by Araucaria on Apr 28, 2008 - 21 answers

Capitalize This

Wordsmiths, Help! -- Do you capitalize the word "left" in the phrase "the political left"? [more inside]
posted by jak68 on Apr 24, 2008 - 26 answers

God bless the Grammar Natzi's

Copy editors or grammar natzi's: I am pre-copy editing a manuscript for my friend. Is it acceptable to start a sentence with the word "but"? I am leaning towards no but I can't remember. Also what are the rules about mentioning name brands in novels? such as "Hilton" or "Boston Red Sox" or "Boston Globe"? Thank you so much!
posted by meeshell on Apr 21, 2008 - 22 answers

I need to brush up on my Spanish.

I need recommendations for the best Spanish review/dictionary. [more inside]
posted by greta simone on Apr 21, 2008 - 4 answers

Take this broken grammar and learn to fly

GrammarFilter: I was listening to "Blackbird" by the Beatles recently, and was struck by the line: "You were only waiting for this moment to arise." I was intrigued by the way the phrase "to arise" has sort of an ambiguous function here. [more inside]
posted by AngerBoy on Apr 17, 2008 - 26 answers

grammar police?

Do you correct colleagues when they make grammatical mistakes? What is the proper etiquette? [more inside]
posted by pasici on Apr 10, 2008 - 21 answers

Is there a consensus on the grammatical relationship between emoticons and punctuation?

Is there a consensus on the grammatical relationship between emoticons and punctuation? [more inside]
posted by mkultra on Apr 8, 2008 - 37 answers

foreign language "bibles"

Foreign language "bibles" (superlative, comprehensive language resources) for language-learning lovers? [more inside]
posted by zeek321 on Apr 3, 2008 - 10 answers

Is this missing a verb?

I have a grammar question that has been driving me crazy. It's probably a matter of style but... [more inside]
posted by mekanic on Mar 31, 2008 - 17 answers


How do I pluralize a contraction that already ends with an apostrophe? [more inside]
posted by ignignokt on Mar 28, 2008 - 17 answers

Is there any hope?

Please hope me! Or why hope for help? [more inside]
posted by TheRaven on Mar 27, 2008 - 23 answers

A mp3 or an mp3?

Grammar Filter: A mp3 or an mp3? I can't make myself say the former! [more inside]
posted by tastycracker on Mar 25, 2008 - 25 answers

"And" versus "or"

Proper choice of coordinating conjunction in a list. "And" versus "or." [more inside]
posted by tentacle on Mar 18, 2008 - 14 answers

Help us with a syntax question (buffalo buffalo buffalo.)

Do fish fish fish fish fish fish fish? [more inside]
posted by ThomThomThomThom on Mar 5, 2008 - 35 answers

Bad Grammar pop lyrics

Please: I would like a bazillion examples of popular music lyrics and song titles that would make an English teacher cry out in empathetic pain for their abuse of grammar. [more inside]
posted by spock on Mar 4, 2008 - 89 answers

No he or she, just us

Are there any languages that do not contain gender-specific pronouns? (no he's or she's, just 'it')
posted by dinty_moore on Mar 4, 2008 - 19 answers

When is "to" unecessary?

Is there a grammar rule that deals with when to use a "to" following certain phrases like "help"? For instance, "Product Wonderful will help you sleep better" -or- "Product Wonderful will help you to sleep better." To my ear, I prefer it without the "to," but I don't know if there's a grammar issue let alone a style guide preference. [more inside]
posted by _sirmissalot_ on Feb 28, 2008 - 34 answers

This is an historic question.

What are some other examples of using 'an' in front of a non-vowel like some do with 'an historic...'? [more inside]
posted by afx114 on Feb 22, 2008 - 40 answers

This Needs Answered

I went to school near Pittsburgh and now live in Ohio. Both at school and here in Columbus, I notice people leaving off "to be" in sentences. This needs fixed, that neads cleaned, those need washed. What's the deal here? [more inside]
posted by lohmannn on Feb 21, 2008 - 45 answers

quirky sentence structure among sports fans

Why is there a disdain for the future conditional tense among people who talk about sports? [more inside]
posted by stupidsexyFlanders on Feb 8, 2008 - 31 answers

To question is human; to declare, divine

"How do we get to Jupiter? And do it cheaply..." [more inside]
posted by Terminal Verbosity on Jan 23, 2008 - 17 answers

censure, said the tenser

A) "At the next stage in the process, the tea leaves ARE blended". B) "At the next stage in the process, the tea leaves WERE blended". Is A correct from a formal grammar standpoint? If so, which tense is it using, and how is it using the past tense of "blend"? If not, why not?
posted by Jon Mitchell on Jan 11, 2008 - 19 answers

Grammar Question: Is or Isn't?

Grammar Question: Is or Isn't? [more inside]
posted by philmas on Dec 8, 2007 - 57 answers

If I were recently laid off, I would have a lot of time on my hands.

GrammarFilter: Is the sentence “If I were ______, I would have done _____” grammatically incorrect? If so, why? [more inside]
posted by jason's_planet on Dec 5, 2007 - 13 answers

Comma in an introductory clause

Do I need the comma in this sentence? "In _Grapes of Europe_, Joe Bloggs reports that grapes are purple." And if so/not, why? I've tried googling adverbial introductory clauses and prepositional introductory clauses, but I can't find a similar example where a work is being introduced.
posted by media_itoku on Dec 2, 2007 - 35 answers

when should I say 'african american' and when 'black' ?

when should I say 'african american' and when 'black' ? [more inside]
posted by krautland on Nov 16, 2007 - 71 answers

I need adjectives!

I need . . . adjectives! Is there a *scannable* online dictionary or some way in which I can search through giant lists just for the adjectives? [more inside]
posted by Dee Xtrovert on Oct 18, 2007 - 9 answers

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