This tag is not for questions on whether something is grammatical. It's for questions about how the grammar actually works: different grammatical usages, how they can be used, or what they mean.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

1
vote
2answers
6k views

Why “he knows it” and not “he know it”

Why is it I know it and They know it but He knows it? But then I knew it, They knew it and He knew it?
4
votes
2answers
323 views

Is 'why wait?' a correct usage?

I need to write a short tag line for an ad. 'Why do you have to wait?' is too long. instead can we use 'why wait?'
2
votes
2answers
946 views

Is “which [noun] …” correct? [duplicate]

I came across this literature recently: An Owner may apply for a Change of Name of a registered Greyhound by submitting to the GBGB the appropriate form duly completed, which form shall include ...
0
votes
4answers
933 views

Can itself be used for a group of people?

Reading the following in Harry Potter 1 made me think if it was okay to use itself for more than one person. One morning in mid-December, Hogwarts woke to find itself covered in several feet of ...
2
votes
2answers
4k views

“I have to” vs. “I must”

When would you use the following? I have to go the market. I must go to the market. I need to go to the market. If I replace 'have' with 'had' would you have any other way to say it? E.g. I had to ...
0
votes
2answers
128 views

“See less events” or “see fewer events” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Less” vs. “fewer” I'm placing a button on a website and need to know which is the proper way to write this out: see less events or see fewer ...
2
votes
3answers
5k views

Use of “make someone able to XXX”

I have some doubts about the construction of this sentence: I want to make you able to play. In my language this is a common construction. Is it a valid sentence in English too? This is the ...
3
votes
3answers
269 views

Can one suppress the pronoun “one” in a list?

On another site it sometimes happens that I give answers like: The first formula is correct but not the second one. This is probably grammatical, but I find the formulation a bit clumsy, ...
0
votes
0answers
64 views

How can I answer back? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: How to answer a negative question without ambiguity? If someone ask you this question "Don't you have exam? " how can I answer back using only (Yes and No). that's ...
2
votes
2answers
505 views

Past perfect events timeline

In the following example: He had walked away when she looked at him. If it is correct then which event came first? "She looked at him" should come first before "He had walked away" but here to me, ...
2
votes
3answers
763 views

Noun or non-finite subordinate clause?

Consider the following sentence: The government wants to encourage understanding of science. Now, "to encourage understanding of science" is a non-finite subordinate clause functioning as an ...
16
votes
2answers
101k views

“As a side note” vs. “on a side note”

What is the difference between "as a side note" and "on a side note"? Are they interchangeable? Which one is preferred over the other?
6
votes
4answers
900 views

Pluralization of Germanisms

The German noun "Ansatz" is widely used (at least) in physics and, less frequently, in math texts in English. I have seen it always in singular though and now I must use its (English) plural. The ...
15
votes
4answers
3k views

Is “very crucial” redundant?

This came up as a multiple-choice question in an exam. Is using "very crucial" redundant?. . . or tautology?
0
votes
3answers
32k views

“I met” vs “I've met” [closed]

What's the difference between the following? I met him in the UK. I've met him in the UK. Does the second sentence mean that the event was happened recently?
0
votes
1answer
623 views

Simple past or past perfect in this example

In the following examples: When I was five years old I had a dog. Is this a past perfect sentence? Here, I know that the 'dog' is not a verb and because we use third form of verb after 'had' so ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

What are the grammatical parts of “You idiot!”?

I've heard native English speakers say "You idiot!". However, is it considered grammatically correct? If so, what are the grammatical parts?
1
vote
4answers
24k views

“Going to go” vs “going to”

1) I am going to go watch a game. 2) I am going to a game. 3) I am going to golf. 4) I am going to go golfing. What are the differences and similarities between and among sentences ...
1
vote
2answers
1k views

Past perfect tense in this example

For the following example: I had seen many beautiful shops in UK, when I was walking down the street years ago. I'm not sure if the phrase "years ago" at the end of this sentence is correct. ...
8
votes
4answers
5k views

Usage question: “I hadn't drank any coffee before I lived in Italy.”

Ok, so as an English teacher, I know that in the present and past perfect tenses, the auxiliary verb have is followed by the past participle form of the verb. Using most verbs, I find that this is ...
0
votes
4answers
4k views

Present perfect tense sentence

For the following sentence: I haven't been there in a long time. I want to know if the above sentence conveys any connection with time up to now. How can I correct this sentence it if it is ...
3
votes
4answers
9k views

“I am back to city” vs. “I am back in city”

Which is the correct usage when I tell someone that I am back? I am back to [some city] Or I am back in [some city]
3
votes
3answers
1k views

The use of “will” in assumptions

We can use will for both past and future assumptions. But how do we differentiate if it refers to past assurance or future possibility? For example: You will know all about Rachel, of course. ...
2
votes
3answers
272 views

Loathe. The atypical use of the verb [closed]

I have a quick question about the atypical grammar of mine. I am a poet using iambic pentameter. The question is whether the following is grammatically correct: I she loathes. That I loathe. ...
1
vote
2answers
413 views

“how soon I get” vs. “how soon I will get”

What is the difference between the following: It depends on how soon I get my visa. It depends on how soon I will get my visa.
0
votes
1answer
3k views

“Each” followed by “have” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: 'Each' with plural or singular verb Is the use of have after each grammatical here? Believe it or not, farther and further each have distinctly different ...
8
votes
1answer
6k views

“At home” or “home”

What is the rule of not using at before home? For example, When he called me I was (at) home. I am always (at) home on Sundays. He came to my place at 6pm and by that time I had already been (at) ...
0
votes
2answers
2k views

As yet + past simple/present perfect

I was unable to find out the rules here and what is the difference: As yet, he has not received the package. As yet little was known of the causes of the disease.
5
votes
2answers
190 views

“Imperial Japanese Navy” or “Japanese Imperial Navy”?

Is it "Imperial Japanese Navy" or "Japanese Imperial Navy", and why?
4
votes
2answers
1k views

“Miss to inform” or “fail to inform”

Do you miss to inform someone or fail to inform them? I am seeing miss appear in places but it just seems awkward.
1
vote
2answers
936 views

“I know where you work at” vs. “I know where you work”

Which one is correct? I don't need to know where you work at. I don't need to know where you work. Could you also please tell me about this rule is called in grammar so I can learn more ...
20
votes
5answers
117k views

“It worths it”, “it worth it” or “it is worth it”?

Which one is correct and why? I think "worth it" is an adjective phrase. So what is "worth" then? Example: You should try spending money on her. It worths it. You should try spending money ...
12
votes
2answers
89k views

Which is correct (if any): “please let me know what do you think”? or “please let me know what you think”?

I find myself unsure which of the following is more correct: please let me know what do you think Or please let me know what you think My gut feeling tells me that it's the latter... Or ...
0
votes
1answer
298 views

Any/some in a specific sentence

I know that some/any are used with plural (with some exceptions), but what about this? I can give you a book...if there is any Is that correct? I want to say that if there is any book, I will ...
19
votes
8answers
3k views

Do you say “please yourself” in a non-sexual context?

In an English grammar textbook, I found this example sentence: Dinner's at 8 o'clock, but there's nothing planned for the afternoon, so you can all please yourself until then. I googled please ...
1
vote
2answers
641 views

“A lot of people, especially this one psychoanalyst […], keeps asking”

In the last chapter of The Catcher in The Rye: A lot of people, especially this one psychoanalyst guy they have here, keeps asking me if I'm going apply myself when I go back to school next ...
1
vote
1answer
3k views

How can someone become fluent and improve their writing skills? [closed]

How can someone become fluent and improve their writing skills? I've been learning English for many years and I still face many problems especially at writing(academic writing and writing in general) ...
4
votes
5answers
67k views

When to use 'ourselves' vs. 'our self'

I wrote when we place our self meaning each one of us, his or her self -- and was told to use "ourselves" instead. Who is right?
2
votes
3answers
1k views

“Let's see who wins” vs. “let's see who will win”?

I have seen the following sentences: Let's see who wins. Why not "who will win"? Let it be decided tomorrow who will win. Why not present here, then?
-3
votes
2answers
251 views

Meaning of “Nothing is working here like the rest of the world?” [closed]

I would like to know whether this phase has negative impact or it can be positive.
3
votes
5answers
12k views

Wouldn't have been alone

Listening to the BBC one of the journalists made the following utterance when discussing a historic figure, "The Khan". A: For merchants the crucial issue was protection when traveling. B: I ...
1
vote
2answers
3k views

Is it correct to use the word “then” to imply something of the past?

I am trying to identify something that was once a new thing. I used the word "then" to imply the subject as something that is already a past. But I am not sure if this is grammatically and ...
-1
votes
0answers
57 views

How to choose between “which” and “that”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When is it appropriate to use 'that' as opposed to 'which'? Sentence 1: The motorcycles with designs which involve an engine, a shaft and a gearbox, ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

How to write out dates correctly

I have a document dated 05/05/2012. What should I say? Based on the document from 05 May. Based on the document from 5th May. Based on the document from 05 of May.
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Should I use “me” or “mine”?

I have the tendency to equate "mine" as something like "hers" and "his". But I am not sure if this is correct. I know I could say: This pencil belongs to his. But which of the following is ...
1
vote
2answers
19k views

“I am done” or “I have finished” or “I am finished” or “I finish”

I was trying to say the following and got bewildered with the different choices. I have "To Kill a Mockingbird" on my list. I will write you about it when I am finished reading it. I have "To ...
1
vote
0answers
21 views

Word order in subject sentences (questions) [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Usage of “What” + verb without auxiliary one I have probably not used the correct term but I am sure you will get it. If a question has do-support, then in ...
0
votes
3answers
10k views

“fine at your side” vs. “fine on your side”

What difference(s) do the prepositions below make in the meanings of the following statements: I hope things are fine at your side. I hope things are fine on your side. To me the first one ...
2
votes
2answers
5k views

Which is correct, “Indicates” or “Indicates that”?

Which one sounds better? "it indicates that the lane is closed" or "it indicates the lane is closed" Personally I would go with the first one without thinking, but I am reading a document, ...
19
votes
6answers
4k views

How do I pluralize a name ending in “y”?

Frequently when I refer to or address a family, I do so by pluralizing their last name, e.g., The Smiths, or The Ramones. But suppose I want to address a family whose last name ends in a "y", e.g., ...