Grammaticality refers to whether something obeys the rules of grammar for English.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (1)

10
votes
5answers
5k views

Can “cattle” be singular?

I've grown up on a farm, and my dad and his dad, apparently, always used "cattle" to refer to both the singular and plural forms of the domestic bovine. I've always assumed it's how the word "deer" ...
10
votes
2answers
378 views

Can an English sentence have a 'dative subject'?

I have been thinking about this for a while. It seems to me that, sometimes, the subject plays a dative role in that it is the recipient of something. Take the following active sentence. He gave ...
10
votes
3answers
373 views

“[Noun] upon [noun]” — singular or plural?

I am copy-editing a manuscript in which the author has written the following sentence: Rank upon rank of theologians has envisioned God the Father as the omniscient and omnipotent one. "Rank ...
10
votes
1answer
433 views

“Road liable to flooding” — is this roadsign grammatically correct?

I passed the roadsign below while driving home late last night, and realised that despite how many times I had seen it, I was still surprised by the choice of words used and unsure if it was actually ...
10
votes
3answers
8k views

“Haven't you?” or “don't you?”

What is the right question tag (in British English) when we use the verb have? I have interviewed a few native speakers and none of them could explain why sometimes they prefer "haven't/hasn't" and ...
10
votes
3answers
11k views

Where does “emphasis mine” go in a quotation?

I have often seen the term emphasis mine used whenever an author wishes to denote that emphasis in a given quotation originates from said author rather than from the original source. What is the ...
10
votes
1answer
164 views

“A child don't know anything” in Gadsby — grammatically right? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: The grammaticality of “that don't impress me much” In Gadsby, which is almost grammatically not wrong at all, occurs just a solitary construction that I ...
10
votes
4answers
20k views

“As part of” versus “as a part of”

When should I use "as part of", and when "as a part of"?
9
votes
7answers
16k views

How can I explain to people that the phrase “off of ” is grammatically incorrect?

How can I explain to people that the phrase off of is grammatically incorrect? I‘ve heard this phrase used a lot, especially by Americans (though they aren't the only ones). In my understanding, ...
9
votes
5answers
23k views

How to use “text” as a verb

–verb (used without object) Digital Technology. 15. to send a text message: Texting while driving is an accident asking to happen. Can I use: I text to her but she didn't text me back. ...
9
votes
3answers
20k views

Why to use “May” before using “May God bless you”?

I heard it many times but I haven't really pondered on that. We can hear these following sentences in our daily lives: May God bless you. May God be pleased with you. May God accept your ...
9
votes
6answers
13k views

“On/at/for/over the weekend” in American English

Some sources say that "at the weekend" is wrong, while other ones say it's correct. Which form is acceptable in American English? On Saturdays her sister Ann usually comes to stay with Mary ...
9
votes
9answers
7k views

Is “non-vegetarian” a correct word?

I've heard that the words "non-veg" and "non-vegetarian" are not legal English words (i.e aren't in the dictionary). Is this true? If so, what is the right way to say that something contains ...
9
votes
5answers
37k views

“I and someone”, “me and someone” or “I and someone we” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When do I use “I” instead of “me?” A friend of mine asked me for advice about an e-mail he was writing. There was a sentence like this: I and ...
9
votes
1answer
4k views

Is “of” instead of “have” correct?

I have noticed a lot of people use of instead of have, for example: "that must of been really annoying". Is this correct?
9
votes
7answers
11k views

Is “a wide range of features” singular or plural?

In the office, we've been having a discussion about the grammar in a sentence and have differing opinions about what is right and what is wrong... It is a very minor issue but is still bugging me :) ...
9
votes
4answers
12k views

Is “both” singular?

Is the following correct? Both of these essentially act as a WebKit wrapper. Or should it be the following? Both of these essentially acts as a WebKit wrapper. Context.
9
votes
2answers
1k views

Grammaticality of “Shoreditch station to permanently close”

I recently read an article on BBC titled Bad grammar and the people who hate it. In it, there is a photo of a train station sign which reads as follows. Friday 9 June 2006 Shoreditch station ...
9
votes
3answers
19k views

Correct usage of “parallel” versus “in parallel” versus “parallelly”

I wish to know if any of the following sentences are incorrect: Using A and B parallel. Using A and B in parallel. Using A and B parallelly. Now I suspect most people are going to ...
9
votes
5answers
13k views

Can you use two “and”s in a sentence?

For example, I like chocolate, vanilla, and lemon and orange ice cream. Indicating "lemon and orange" is a combined flavor, as an item in the list needing an initial and.
9
votes
6answers
49k views

Is “over-exaggerated” correct English?

Isn't "exaggerated" enough? Is it right to say "over-exaggerated"?
9
votes
2answers
3k views

Preferred way to apostrophise in case of dual or multiple ownership by distinct entities [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Nikki's and Alice's X” vs. “Nikki and Alice's X” Consider describing the wedding of X and Y. If I want to avoid the overly-formal ...
9
votes
5answers
4k views

Should “anymore” only be used in a negative statement or question?

I don't know why this is so, but I've always believed that the word anymore should only be used in a question or negative statement. Do you go there anymore? Don't do that anymore. But I often ...
9
votes
5answers
34k views

Should an adverb go before or after a verb?

For example: The word rarely turns up outside of those contexts. The word turns up rarely outside of those contexts. Which one is correct and why?
9
votes
4answers
1k views

Is this correct grammar: “[…] cash can't be beat.”

I found the following phrase in a NYTimes article and I was pretty surprised that it wasn't corrected or edited out: "But when it comes to privacy and freedom, cash can't be beat.". I am under the ...
9
votes
2answers
394 views

“That” or “which”? Does it matter?

If I wish to say something along the lines of Consider the bear that scratches his head. It seems to me that I could instead say Consider the bear which scratches his head. I am unsure ...
9
votes
3answers
380 views

What's wrong in this question?

Is it better to say "what's wrong with something" or "what's wrong in something"?
9
votes
5answers
735 views

Do idioms pose an exception to normal definite and indefinite article usage?

I found this phrase in my biology textbook (emphasis added): ...in relation to Earth's history, 100,000 years or even a million years is the blink of an eye. The part of the phrase in question ...
9
votes
5answers
2k views

“I have never said” versus “I never said”

I have never said this. I never said this. Is the usage of have in the first sentence justified or grammatically correct?
9
votes
3answers
8k views

Is “I'm glad it helped” grammatical?

Is the phrase "I'm glad it helped" grammatically correct? And if it is, does it express correctly that I am more than happy that I could help someone?
9
votes
3answers
9k views

“Are” vs. “is” with compound subjects

How are the wife and kid? How is the wife and kid? Which is more correct?
9
votes
6answers
4k views

Improper use of “Whenever”

I increasingly encounter people who misuse "whenever" when they really mean "when": Whenever I first came to St. Louis, I lived with my Aunt Judy... Bugs me to death. Obviously they are talking ...
9
votes
1answer
5k views

“Broadcast” or “broadcasted”

I'm not a native English speaker, so sorry if this is a very basic question. Is broadcast a verb? If it is, what is the simple past and past participle: broadcasted?
9
votes
3answers
17k views

“I'm home” or “I'm at home”

The second form looks more correct to me, but the first expression is present in several titles of movies and songs. Which form is preferable?
9
votes
2answers
16k views

“all of you” vs “you all”

All of you are sitting here with me in my den vs. You all are sitting here with me in my den And a general form: you all vs. all of you Which is the proper usage?
9
votes
2answers
17k views

Is “a very good read” grammatically correct?

Is it grammatically correct to describe a book or article as a very good read?
9
votes
6answers
19k views

Is it wrong to start sentences with “in which case”?

I read a few things someone wrote and for the first time I saw a sentence starting with "in which case". This person does that very frequently, and it seemed really wrong to me. Some time after that ...
9
votes
3answers
37k views

“Congratulate for” vs. “congratulate on”

Which is correct? I congratulated him for coming first in the race. I congratulated him on coming first in the race.
9
votes
2answers
2k views

How to combine in a sentence two verb–preposition pairs that have the same object?

Examples: Data can be imported to and exported from the application. Data can be imported and exported from the application. Data can be imported to the application and exported from it. ...
9
votes
2answers
27k views

“See you Monday” vs “See you on Monday”

I have seen native speakers use both variations. See you Monday. and See you on Monday. I would like to know which usage is correct or if there are any specific instances in which each is ...
9
votes
4answers
30k views

Is a thumb also a finger?

The thumb has a different name compared to the other fingers (index, middle, ring, little) and it does not end with "finger". Also, when referring to the hand, I have seen literature where it is ...
9
votes
3answers
939 views

“1 out of 100 chickens is” or “1 out of 100 chickens are”?

I'm in an argument. To me "are" makes more sense. I understand the rationale for is because it's only one chicken, but chickens itself is plural. Help?
9
votes
1answer
1k views

“How big of a problem” vs. “how big a problem”

Quite a few phrases in English are constructed like so: How [adjective] a [noun]...? This is the question form of the construction, which is often answered with the negative: Not that ...
9
votes
4answers
15k views

Would you use the word “swum” these days?

Would you use the word "swum" these days? I mean, grammatically, it is the past participle of the verb "to swim", but it seems to me that no one uses it anymore. If it's the case, how would You ...
9
votes
1answer
5k views

Ellipsis or Ellipses?

Inspired by this question: What is the correct term to use when describing the "three dots" (. . .), ellipsis or ellipses? And are either of these terms considered plural? For example, if I wanted to ...
9
votes
3answers
1k views

“home to” or “home for”?

Which of the following is correct? Himalaya is home to diverse flora. Himalaya is home for diverse flora. Or is there a better third possibility?
9
votes
5answers
8k views

What is the proper usage of “not only… but also”?

I'm trying to figure out how to use "not only... but also" properly. Basically, my goal is to combine two clauses by using "not only". For negations, I've figured out two styles that both sound ...
9
votes
3answers
13k views

“Had better” — what is the meaning of this grammatically?

I'm interested to know why we use had better for recommendation. Technically we're speaking of an action that hasn't yet occurred. Like he had better leave a tip means he hasn't yet left a tip, but I ...
9
votes
2answers
171 views

Can you use “many, many” in this way?

Suppose I want to use the phrase "many, many" to compound the "maniness" of the thing I'm describing. There are many, many people. The people (of which there are many, many) The first one ...
9
votes
3answers
496 views

The “of” in “the month of January”

Why is it called 'the month of January' and not 'the month January'? As I was learning German, I noticed they used the latter (der Monat Januar). Why the discrepancy?