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.

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1answer
737 views

Should I use 'a' or 'an' when the following word is within parentheses? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “a/an” preceding a parenthetical statement I'm asking a question on Stack Overflow now, and I'm unsure about this: I have an (Ruby on Rails site's) API ...
2
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2answers
353 views

Is this usage of “whose” correct?

Is the following phrase (grammatically) correct? Bill Gates, whose company is very rich, is famous. (I couldn't come up with a better context-free sample)
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3answers
6k views

Correct use of 'with' or 'at' when talking about percentages?

I'm writing the following sentence: Women lead uptake at XX%. But a friend is saying that it should be written: Women lead uptake with XX%. Which one is correct?
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2answers
485 views

“At the cost of giving expression to the obvious…”

I have read this phrase somewhere. If I remember correctly, it was At the cost of giving expression to the obvious (or truism), I'd suggest that ... Does it mean that the author wants to ...
2
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5answers
957 views

Is it wrong to say “very almost”?

I hear phrases like I very almost fell over! often and to me they sound awkward. Is the word, "very", wrong, just superfluous or completely valid? Should this wording be avoided?
3
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2answers
569 views

Is this an adverbial clause?

I see a sentence in this site: But both can be quite strong depending on how they are spoken. Is depending on […] an adverbial clause?
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2answers
1k views

Is “Joe, I've been finishing with the task” correct?

Is this a correct phrase? Joe, I've been finishing with the task.
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3answers
1k views

Is “to” really part of the infinitive?

Consider this: I like to eat here. vs I would eat here. It appears to me that "to" has nothing to do with the infinitive form of the verb that follows. It is, in this example, an integral ...
3
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5answers
18k views

Mixing up “quiet” and “quite”: spelling or grammar error?

Look at this sentence: It wasn't quiet what I wanted And this one: The music was too quite for me Obviously quiet and quite are mixed up. Is this considered a spelling mistake? In both ...
2
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1answer
692 views

“Using Verb Tenses in Sequence”

http://www.arts.uottawa.ca/writcent/hypergrammar/vbseq.html Here, what does 'sequence' mean? Does it mean 'multiple sentences'? Or it means 'a paragraph'?
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2answers
1k views

Can a verb in the -ing form take a direct object?

Here is the example: We condemn such behavior that can risk damaging a company’s brand and reputation. I think, the 'a company's brand reputation' is the object of 'damaging'. And the whole ...
3
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6answers
34k views

Is “would” the past future tense of “will” or just a modal verb?

What's the difference: Would you give me some advice? Will you give me some advices?
1
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1answer
279 views

How could I different the subjunctive mood from wrong tense or singular from in third personal?

Here is the example, which is right? It's important he know this. It's important he knows this. It's important he has known this. or, those above all right, but express different meaning.
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5answers
69k views

“Centered on” or “centered around”

I have often heard presenters talking about something centered around another thing, but it seems a bit illogical and hence improper to talk like this. Am I right about this?
2
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3answers
2k views

Is it correct: “We don’t have to go there if we don’t want to”?

Which sentences are correct? We don’t have to go there if we don’t want to. or We haven’t to go there if we don’t want to.
2
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3answers
18k views

Usage of the word “itself”

Is it correct to use the word "itself" in the following cases. I have seen many people using "itself" in the following cases I read the note yesterday itself (to mean - I already read the note ...
5
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2answers
2k views

Is it wrong to say “The sun's rays are primarily responsible for skin damage.”

The sun's rays are primarily responsible for skin damage. To me this sounds like it means that the primary activity of the sun's rays is damaging skin. However the intention is obviously that ...
0
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2answers
559 views

Which is the verb of the 'that' clause?

here is the sentence: We condemn such behavior that can risk damaging a company’s brand and reputation risk or damage, which is the verb? I remember that two verb ( one verb after another) must use ...
7
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4answers
3k views

Why use “his” in association with the word “mankind”?

I have a doubt. The economist Keynes in a book wrote: The power to become habituated to his surroundings is a marked characteristic of mankind. I would have used "its" instead but since English ...
0
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2answers
3k views

Using “wish” to express regret in the present and in the past

I wish I have been there for the baby kicking for the first time? Could I change the sentence to I wish I was there for the baby kicking for the first time? What are the differences ...
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6answers
3k views

Dative whom with accusative who

When I am not bound by a style that mandates otherwise, I like to use whom in dative constructions and who in accusative constructions (I am aware that English doesn't have a proper case system, but ...
2
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1answer
828 views

Is “Create Product” a <Verb> + <Subject> or <Verb> + <Object>?

I am software developer and trying to develop a new language. I need to learn that basic information in English: Create Product. Update Page. Stay Here. Create, Update and Stay are verbs, of ...
9
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2answers
11k views

Should I use the singular or plural verb in mathematical formulae (“Two and two make/makes four”)?

I remember somebody correcting me once when I said, "Two and two makes four", since the conjunction and would imply the use of a plural verb. They would prefer I said: Two and two make four. ...
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3answers
6k views

Should I use a singular or plural “one” here?

Sometimes I get confused over how and when we should use plurals. For example, should we say: They are the only one who is capable of doing this Or They are the only one who are capable ...
2
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3answers
960 views

“it would take me 1–2 seconds”

or "it would took me 1–2 seconds"?
4
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5answers
25k views

Is it 'a usual' or 'an usual'? Why?

is it 'a usual' or 'an usual'? 'A usual' sounds more correct in my head ('Today was a usual day.') than 'an usual', but u is a vowel. Which one is correct and why?
1
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1answer
2k views

“Would not pass” or “would not have passed”?

Here is a situation: (Jack and Dorothy are in the car) Silence. They pass Blumergton. Dorothy looks out of the window, her face is obviously surprised. Silence again. They pass Himilgreens. ...
33
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5answers
22k views

What's the negation of “I used to be”? Surely not “I didn't used to be”?

What is the negative form of "I used to be"? I often hear "I didn't used to be" but that sounds awfully wrong in my ears.
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2answers
835 views

Where can we find anacoluthon nowadays?

An anacoluthon <...> is a rhetorical device that can be loosely defined as a change of syntax within a sentence <...>. Grammatically, anacoluthon is an error; however, in rhetoric it is a ...
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3answers
445 views

Where does the -en come from in misshapen?

We can say both misshapen and misshaped. Where does the misshapen form come from? What other words use this form?
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3answers
3k views

“in the year 1908” or “in the year of 1908”

Do we need preposition "of" after a year? Freud is a visitor at James’s Sussex residence, Lamb House, in the year 1908
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4answers
453 views

Is “Actor Peter Fonda found dead body inside car” correct?

"Actor Peter Fonda found dead body inside car" - that's the title that Yahoo first chose for its news article confusing so many people Is this kind of title correct? (They just changed to "Police: ...
3
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2answers
1k views

Is this correct: “.. get us one of them thousand foot perimeters.”

In a recent Daily Show episode, Jon Stewart said this (position: 00:40 in video): Can the rest of us get us one of them thousand-foot gun-free perimeters? I am not a native speaker, so I am ...
2
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1answer
308 views

Where is the modifier in “the majority of senators”, “a number of students”, “the range of documents”?

Where is the modifier in "the majority of senators", "a number of students" and in "a range of documents" in these sentences: The majority of senators will be fired tomorrow. A number of students ...
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1answer
2k views

How do I determine subject and subject complement in “A side-effect is the spread of commercialese to other domains.”?

Consider this example: Commercialese is an instrument of art, designed to enrich and invigorate our language—surely you will all agree with this—, and we should encourage newcomers to learn ...
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3answers
9k views

“I am hungry/hunger of/for knowledge”

I am not sure which one is the correct one: A: I am hungry of knowledge. B: I hunger of knowledge. C: I am hungry for knowledge. D: I hunger for knowledge. But my feeling says that A and ...
11
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4answers
2k views

May, might confusion

When should I use each of the following: This may help. This might help. I always get confused about the use of may and might.
2
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3answers
2k views

Can ‘although’ be used in this way?

We still haven't got a sponsor although the fact that we've written to dozens of companies. What's wrong with ‘although’ in the sentence above?
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7answers
114k views

Which is correct: “drive safe” or “drive safely”?

Which one is correct? Similarly, is "do good" correct?
0
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2answers
106 views

What are the reasons that its decision to open itself automatically or not is based on?

Is the following phrase grammatically right? "When Twitter shows a notification, what are the reasons that its decision to open itself automatically or not is based on?" This question is probably ...
14
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1answer
1k views

Did the English language ever have noun genders?

And if so, how did they differentiate between male, female or neuter nouns? Did English ever have gender-specific (in)definite articles? (like der/die/das in German)
2
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1answer
1k views

Two adjectives for two nouns

I saw this on a billboard recently We have new and pre-owned cars and trucks Clearly the intention is to modify "cars and trucks" with the two adjectives "used and preowned" and although the ...
2
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3answers
2k views

“Adapt himself to being/be free”

A sentence from my reference book is He can't adapt himself to being free again. Why is being used instead of be? Isn't verb form and not verb + ing form used after to?
2
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1answer
224 views

Choice of an agent to give an active voice - me or the computer program

Background I am writing a scientific article that describes a computer program. Although it is common in the field to use a passive voice, it is also acceptable, and my preference, to diversify the ...
2
votes
1answer
591 views

What is “however” in this sentence referring to?

No definite mass is identified. However, for further evaluation of this patient given his symptoms, an MRI is recommended. In the above sentence, does the "however" refer back to looking for a ...
1
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1answer
852 views

“Recommend someone to represent…” vs. “recommend someone represent…”

Looking at the sentence below I have a feeling it is wrong, though I can't explain why: I highly recommend Dave to represent you in Korea with your software. I have thus rephrased it to the ...
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2answers
801 views

About the use of the definite article “the” before a word starting with capital letters

I am writing a scientific paper. I have made several assumptions which are properly ordered. When I cite them, shall I use, i.e., "... by the Assumption 1,..." or simply "... by Assumption 1,..."?
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0answers
182 views

When can you leave off 'that' in a sentence? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Use of “that” in a sentence Some times I find myself leaving out the 'that' that binds two parts of a sentence together, because it reads 'smoother'. Here's ...
2
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2answers
160 views

Usage of “the” for possible future objects

I am writing a software user manual so the topic is about possible situations which its users may come across. Here is an example sentence below: Enter the window ID which contains an image.
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2answers
839 views

What do you call “that” or “where”?

For words that sit as placeholders for other words (and introduce subordinate clauses), is there a name? For example, The quick brown fox that jumped over the lazy dog. The man who killed ...