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3
votes
3answers
86 views

Is this a direct object or predicate complement?

In this sentence: This book cost me 20 dollars. Is 20 dollars a direct object or a predicative complement?
3
votes
2answers
180 views

Adjectives versus Noun Adjuncts [duplicate]

What determines whether something is a "noun adjunct" or just a garden-variety adjective? Does it matter in any meaningful way? Here is my hypothesis, but I can't find any authoritative source to ...
5
votes
3answers
118 views

What is the origin of auxiliary verbs?

When and why did we start using auxiliary verbs, particularly "do", to ask questions and make negatives?
14
votes
4answers
685 views

Grammatical role of “the hell”?

I’m wondering exactly which grammatical role the word hell takes on in expressions such as Get the hell out of here the hell in this case seems to modify the phrasal verb to get out (get out ...
5
votes
0answers
335 views

Buffalo explanation [duplicate]

Could anybody please explain in detail the sentence "Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo." I have seen the wikipedia pages but am unable to get it properly.
0
votes
0answers
59 views

Correctness of “of my sending the picture” [duplicate]

Is this sentence correct? I don’t think Linda would have approved of my sending the picture; but I did it anyway. Specifically, is of my sending the picture correct?
2
votes
1answer
88 views

Telling if a word is a verb in the imperative mood

I'm working on a static analysis tool for the documentation in the Python programming language (PEP257). For this, I need to check if the first word in a documentation string is a verb in the ...
1
vote
1answer
39 views

Are nonrestrictive elements considered part of the subject or part of the predicate?

Wolves, hunted to extinction in Wyoming and Montana in the twentieth century, occupy a vital place in the natural cycle of the area. In the above sentence, is the nonrestrictive element hunted to ...
3
votes
1answer
68 views

This long sentence is ambiguous, and difficult for me to understand [closed]

I got this sentence Property value litigation is no different than any other type of litigation where experts are used in that expert opinions are fair game for attack by the opposing side in ...
1
vote
1answer
59 views

What’s Up: Adverb vs Preposition

I start with a simple sentence: “I climb the ladder.” This contains a nice transitive verb with a clear direct object. If I slightly modify the sentence: “I climb up the ladder.” I believe that I ...
0
votes
1answer
63 views

Part of Speech, adverb or adjective? [closed]

From a part of Pollyanna written by Elenor Porter: "There ain't no tellin'," sobbed Nancy. "She lay back that white an' still she might easy be dead; but Miss Polly said she wa'n't dead--an' ...
2
votes
3answers
131 views

What is the grammatical construction in “Be but sworn”?

I have found several questions asking for the meaning, but the thing that troubles me here is the grammar actually and i haven't found anything on that. In Shakespeare's sentence "Deny thy father ...
3
votes
3answers
547 views

What's the subject of “There is my biscuit!” ? And how about “There is one biscuit left”?

What's the subject, grammatically speaking, of these sentences? There is my biscuit! My biscuit is there! There is one biscuit left. I don't really know how to analyze these. The following ...
0
votes
1answer
116 views

Parts of Speech and Grammar Point for -ing

Can someone help me to explain the two following structures — identifying parts of speech, and in particular why we’re using the -ing form of have in the first? How about having lunch? Why don't we ...
-4
votes
1answer
771 views

Punctuation following “My question is…” [duplicate]

Forgive me if this has been asked before (if it has been, I couldn't find it) What punctuation, if any, should I use after "My question is..."? For example, My question is why is ice so ...
5
votes
3answers
383 views

Transformation? Cleft?

I am wondering if the difference between "It is terrible." and "What it is, is it is terrible." can mostly be described in terms of transformations, grammatically. Is it a kind of cleft sentence?
0
votes
1answer
53 views

Are these default questions about events correct grammatically? [closed]

As you can see below, I created some default questions which are supposed to ask about events that either have happened or will happen in future(the gaps will be filled by different events such as ...
1
vote
1answer
57 views

The practice of identifying authors from their writings

Is there an English word for the practice of analysing texts to determine their authors? For example, comparing three texts A, B and C and realising that the choice of words, grammar and style of ...
5
votes
2answers
625 views

On the part of speech of “now”

I recently had a conversation about the Spanish word "ahora", in which my conversant claimed that "ahora" is always an adverb, and never a noun. This lead me to investigate the part of speech of ...
3
votes
3answers
472 views

Existential sentence…in the passive voice?

Now, a friend over the internet wanted me to explain the passive voice to him. He began by providing his story's "readability statistics" of Microsoft Word, which said that 7% of his sentences were ...
2
votes
3answers
210 views

When does one append “-ly”?

I am trying to understand the difference between adjectives that end in ‑ly compared with adjectives that do not end end in ‑ly. For example (the ones I would have chosen are bold): A tactical ...
0
votes
2answers
80 views

How to best correct ambiguity of “in the room next to me”?

A common construction in English is: There is a person in the room next to me. However, this is ambiguous because it’s unclear whether the person is in a separate room that happens to be ...
-1
votes
1answer
63 views

What is “post patent expiration”?

GMCR paid high prices to avoid having to compete with licensees post patent expiration. Is post a verb here, or is it a part of post patent expiration? What does it mean?
0
votes
1answer
174 views

Using two and’s in one sentence, and starting a sentence with “To” [duplicate]

Is this sentence correct? To view your policy status, last payment information and next payment information, enter your policy number in the box below and click Submit to continue. I’m not a fan ...
1
vote
2answers
145 views

Does removing the comma before 'which' in a non-restrictive clause change the meaning of the sentence?

There are many 'rules' on the net saying that a comma should be placed before the relative pronoun 'which' in a non-restrictive clause. (http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/words/relative-clauses) But ...
2
votes
1answer
164 views

Is “anecdotally” a proper adverb?

And if yes, is it common or rather odd? Example sentence: Anecdotally, we do see instances of customers buying both our products at the same store. The Chrome spellchecker doesn't seem to ...
3
votes
1answer
634 views

Is this Adverbial a complement or an adjunct?

According to Wiki, Adverbials are typically divided into four classes: adverbial complements (i.e. obligatory adverbial) are adverbials that render a sentence ungrammatical and meaningless if ...
3
votes
1answer
116 views

Why would you call “before” a preposition when it precedes a clause?

I'm new here & don't know all the etiquette & ins & outs, but I have a question about something posted in another thread. Modern grammar, however, recognises that prepositions can take ...
3
votes
3answers
93 views

Do I need an extra “about”, or does one suffice?

Consider the following sentence: I have a lot to talk about with John about his project. Since I can swap the position of the first about to make it 'I have a lot to talk with John about', then ...
1
vote
3answers
223 views

More confusion with relative pronoun ambiguity

What does the relative pronoun refer to in this sentence? It was probably on the darker/smoother side of things, compared to, say, the Sony ZX-1, which I prefer. To me, his preference isn’t ...
1
vote
2answers
184 views

The use of the word “what” [closed]

Which of the two following sentences is or are correct? Excessive logging of forests in the past century has resulted in what becomes known as deforestation. Excessive logging of forests in the past ...
2
votes
3answers
2k views

Is “out” a preposition or an adverb in these sentences?

Is out a preposition or an adverb in these sentences? "We need to get the hell out of this place." "We need to get out and leave this place."
0
votes
1answer
49 views

“But had events gone another way”(grammar) [duplicate]

The whole sentence is "But had events gone another way, this would be a rather different memoir." Why is the sentence not like "But the events have gone another way"? "Have" and "events" are ...
3
votes
1answer
413 views

If a clause is a direct object, its pronoun is nominative because the whole clause is the object

I am sure this has been asked before; I couldn't locate a definite answer (grammar websites on direct objects do not seem to explicitly state the answer). I think it may have been addressed in my ...
2
votes
1answer
253 views

“Put me in touch with whomever created it”? [duplicate]

He created it. Put me in touch with him. So which is correct and why: Put me in touch with whomever created it. Put me in touch with whoever created it.
0
votes
1answer
155 views

why is there a difference in the usage of “neither…nor” in similar sentences? [duplicate]

look at these two sentences: neither the coach nor the players are going to the beach. neither the players nor the coach is going to the beach. why does one sentence use "are" while the other has ...
5
votes
2answers
292 views

Are “this” and “next” demonstrative determiners?

Question 1: In the following, is this a demonstrative determiner: I will go to the store this week. Question 2: If so, then what class is next in the following: I will go to the store next ...
4
votes
3answers
333 views

Personal pronoun - Using 'it' when introducing a person

On the NPR radio program Wait Wait Don't Tell Me (http://www.npr.org/programs/wait-wait-dont-tell-me/) Peter Sagal introduces the week's panelists using 'it's,' as in "She'll be performing Friday at ...
1
vote
3answers
208 views

Sufficient or sufficiently?

When we compare this with his [Milton's] later prose writings, when he moved closer to the victorious Cromwellian ascendancy, we find that pragmatism usurped idealism, not completely but ...
5
votes
3answers
414 views

Particle or preposition?

I'm studying Spanish and I have some questions about the grammatical parallels in English. Le gustan cocinar y hornear. He likes to cook and (to) bake. When an infinitive is used in ...
2
votes
3answers
285 views

Plural indefinite pronouns?

Can some indefinite pronouns be plural? One commenter on Mr K's Grammar World says they cannot. He also says the following examples contain quantifiers, and not indefinite pronouns. Many have ...
1
vote
0answers
17 views

“Who” usage in interrogative form [duplicate]

When using "who" in a question, which is correct: Is it I who has erred? Is it I who have erred? The latter seems correct by test (take out who), but the former seems correct by question form ...
9
votes
5answers
5k views

How many different parts of speech can the f-word be used as?

In an "interesting" thread of comments we began to look at the word fuck in several different uses. Most of them were interjections and verb uses as would be expected. But, perhaps dialectally, the ...
3
votes
3answers
500 views

Pure verbal nouns/deverbal nouns vs. gerunds

This is a follow-up to a previous question which I am still trying to understand. I think I'm making progress in my understanding, but I would appreciate feedback to help me refine my thinking. Here ...
2
votes
4answers
9k views

To whoever it may concern

I received a letter of confirmation for funding from an English native speaker. She started the letter with: To whoever it may concern, I am not a native speaker, but that sounds quite odd to me ...
1
vote
1answer
122 views

Infinitive use in “whether or not he be” compared with its use in “if he be”

Here is the phrase in question: . . . but whether he be, or whether he be not. . . . Is the usage of the infinitive in that phrase above the same sort of thing as occurs in this quotation: ...
2
votes
0answers
50 views

“Whom”/“Who” in subordinate clauses [duplicate]

I've come across the following sentence in a book: “I wanted to learn everything I could about it from whomever in the country might have specialized knowledge of it.” I know that the whomever ...
1
vote
0answers
49 views

Pronoun Case in Noun Phrases used as Direct Objects [duplicate]

When I have a noun phrase that contains a pronoun as a subject (of the phrase), but the noun phrase is being used as the direct object of another verb, is the pronoun in the nominative case or the ...
1
vote
2answers
204 views

Meaning of “It flaming spread” in a Tolkien poem

Tolkien wrote a poem called “Over the misty mountains cold”, which is featured as a song in the first Hobbit movie. In this poem there are those verses that made me scratch my head: The pines were ...
1
vote
1answer
257 views

“Help” as a Non-Modal verb

Please read the following sentence: Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer is planning his retirement in the next nine months from the software giant he helped build. Would you consider "helped" a ...