Questions regarding the rules for the formation of sentences

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English syntactic phenomena

I am doing exploratory research in written-English syntactic constructs that show variability. Is there any list of known linguistic syntactic phenomena? For example, I am familiar with the dative ...
0
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2answers
27 views

'which is' or 'one is' [on hold]

I have sentence. Algorithm is classified as a probabilistic algorithms, which is used for solving [name of problem] problems. Can I say: "Algorithm is classified as a probabilistic algorithms. ...
2
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1answer
2k views

Adverb position in perfect tenses [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Are there any rules on the positioning adverbs should take in a sentence? My question concerns the adverb position in perfect tenses. For example look at these ...
0
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1answer
35 views

Use-case of `as less as possible` [closed]

Are following two usages are both valid and have same meaning? Use tools as less as possible. Use as less tools as possible. Thanks.
1
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3answers
80 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 ...
1
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1answer
62 views

Necessary and unnecessary articles for proper nouns

In AmE (and probably other dialects as well) there are certain place names and other proper nouns that either have a compulsory definite article or a compulsory lack of one attached to them. For ...
2
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2answers
490 views

Reason for Subject-Verb Inversion: Only in cases where A is B, shall the Company do X [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Sentences using: [something] + have + they subject-auxiliary inversions not associated with questions In the following, why does subject-verb inversion occur? Is it ...
5
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5answers
297 views

“Love me tender”: adverb or adjective?

Is the last word in each of these phrases an adverb or an adjective? How can we know? love me tender treat me nice hold me tight
0
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2answers
64 views

Difference between “focus” and “focus on” in “My main focus is Spanish.”

This question is originally posted on WordReference forum. My friend suggested me to post here to get more opinions on this question. I don't know if I am allowed to link to other site, so I am going ...
3
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1answer
90 views

Complements and adjuncts

Paul Austen’s novel sold immediately to the author’s eager readers. In the above sentence, which part is the complement and which is the adjunct? I am confused as to whether the adjunct should be ...
1
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0answers
29 views

Nonstandard English Syntax [duplicate]

What would be the best way to describe the non-standard syntax of "The spider he was confused."?
4
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3answers
186 views

You yourself - double pronoun

You have made it up yourself. This is obviously ok. But if the pronoun it should be repalced by a long noun-phrase: You have made up the illusory world in which you move yourself. It would ...
0
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3answers
94 views

Does “use X, Y, or Z” mean use *one of* or *all of* the options?

This is the text supposedly providing the parameters for creating acceptable usernames for a particular website: The username is case sensitive. Choose a username that is 6-74 characters long and ...
2
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2answers
120 views

Should “which percentage” or “what percentage” be used within a sentence?

I have the following paragraph: "The contents of a fish tank with 70 fish, of which 10 percent are goldfish, are added to another fish tank with 130 fish, of which 20 percent are goldfish. After the ...
2
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4answers
19k views

What is the difference between syntax and semantics? [closed]

As a computer scientist and a writing hobbyist, I really ought to know these terms' meanings for memory. Can anyone clarify the difference between syntax and semantics, and provide some examples? For ...
2
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3answers
2k views

When is “here” an adverb or a noun?

In the sentence "I hope you are all paying attention, here is a sentence I made earlier", is here an adverb or a noun? I think it is a noun, but if I substitute a noun or a pronoun for here, the ...
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1answer
49 views

Is it grammatical to have duplicate 'it'?: __ it it __

Is it grammatically correct to use the word it twice in a row? When doing so, do you have to separate the two using a comma? If there are different situations please use examples. My examples: ...
15
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10answers
2k views

What rules make “Remember me, who am your friend” grammatical?

An acquaintance recalled this specific example from an English textbook, but it is jarring to my native ear. Is this an example of prescriptive grammarians gone wild?
2
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2answers
51 views

How to avoid a preposition at the end of a relative clause

In this example: I am adverting to (noun, eg letter), the reception of which I am asking/tentative about. How can I recast this sentence, and preserve this syntax, without the "empty ...
1
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1answer
32 views

Would it be correct to say: The first few years of a child's life play a key role in their development

The first few years of a child's life play a key role in their development. or should it be The first few years of children's lives play a key role in their development.
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2answers
43 views

“Were you” or “You were”

In a sentence like the following: You want to know how long you were unavailable. Should I write "you were" or "were you"? Second version (with "were you") is: You want to know how long were ...
1
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1answer
69 views

“From the above analysis, we can see that” VS “From the analysis above, we can see that” [duplicate]

What is the difference between this two sentences? I looked into the google,and found that these two sentences are used.
0
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1answer
36 views

Is this correct syntax: [duplicate]

the girls' nose or the girls' noses? We are talking about the nose of many girls.
1
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1answer
151 views

uncommon use of “as well as” compounding two verbs onto one subject

I've got a pretty strong intuition for what's grammatically correct and what's not. My hunch here is that the following sentence is wrong. Can someone verify this for me, using a syntactical rule to ...
5
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3answers
990 views

Is “choose from one of four options” wrong?

I need backup in pressing my case that the phrase “choose from one of four options” is grammatically incorrect. Is there some resource that can prove my case, that the incorrect phrase should be ...
0
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3answers
84 views

A question on this common sentence structure

I saw these lines in a children's book today: The tourists gathered around the lake, taking photographs of the wildlife in the area. The cat sat itself down on the veranda, stretching its ...
25
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5answers
4k views

Is there some rule against ending a sentence with the contraction “it's”?

I heard this lyric in a song the other day and it just sounded so wrong that I assumed it must be incorrect grammar, but I can't find any specific prohibition that applies. That's what it's. ...
2
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1answer
433 views

Is it bad to start a sentence with “as”?

My boss doesn't like it when I start sentences with "as", and I'm not sure if it's actually a problem. A case where I would start with "as" would be: As your new account manager, it is my ...
2
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1answer
60 views

Why are these questions structured differently?

How many rooms does your apartment have? How many rooms have carpeting? I'm a native speaker of English teaching at a language school. Recently I was stumped by a question made by a student. ...
2
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2answers
30 views

Is the word order acceptable here?

I come from a family of completely Italian lineage called the Carusos. Since "the Carusos" is the antecedent of "family" is it that bad to have it come after lineage? Would it be better to say: I ...
2
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3answers
174 views

Why does “complex sentence” vs “compound sentence” matter?

This question asks about (teaching) the distinction between complex and compound sentences. I have managed to read really quite widely in linguistics for more than fifty years without ever as far as ...
2
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2answers
95 views

Awkward style choice or syntax error?

I'm doing a bit of copy editing on some work, and ran into a sentence that I feel is poorly constructed; however, the author insists that there is no error and that the supposed error in question is a ...
2
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1answer
718 views

“You have until X to do Y” — is this grammatically correct?

I have a question regarding the following sentence: You have until June 6th to go there. Is it grammatically incorrect? Consider the following: You is the subject, have is the verb, until June ...
3
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2answers
137 views

“Now that x, y,” vs. “Now x, y” (“Now” in dependent clauses): British vs. American English

I have noticed that British English speakers tend not to use that after now in certain dependent clauses where American English speakers will almost certainly use it. BE version of two examples: ...
0
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1answer
68 views

Invoices status, Invoices statuses, Invoices' status or Invoices' statuses

According to this, statuses is the plural of status. However, I am not sure here which one to use, my logic is statuses is more proper as each invoice has different status. But seems awkward word or ...
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1answer
131 views

Ending a sentence with “and thanks”

I have a colleague who ends many emails with "and thanks". To me it sounds awkward and random, but I wonder if anyone has seen this usage before? Examples (note particularly the third one!): "That ...
0
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1answer
78 views

Is this an example of a dangling modifier too?

"From an original focus on the oil industry, Platts gradually expanded its purview to include metals, shipping, and all energy-related markets - oil, coal, natural gas, electricity, nuclear power, ...
3
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1answer
55 views

Is it “the humanities” or just “humanities”?

I.e., would I use "I hate the humanities" or "I hate humanities"? On that note, would the complementary statement be "I love the sciences" or "I love science"? "I love sciences" just sounds wrong, ...
4
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1answer
41 views

Isn't this a dangling something?

As one of the busiest times of year, people will share moments, plan for the festivities and search for the perfect gift, every single day — on Facebook. And this year, it will truly be a mobile ...
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3answers
132 views

Can I say “Why not you study literature?” [closed]

May I ask you this question meaning to emphasize the importance of studying literature? What has confused me is that the question, ironically, carries the same implication of, "Why study literature?" ...
8
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2answers
168 views

Is there an exception to the prohibition against ending a sentence with “ ’s ” at work here?

The ’s can be used as a contraction representing a weak, unstressed word that is not pronounced. It allegedly cannot occur in sentence final position. She is not ready, but he is. She’s not ...
43
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12answers
2k views

Central Pennsylvanian English speakers: what are the limitations on the “needs washed” construction?

In the Central Pennsylvania dialect of English (and possibly elsewhere), the following construction is possible: This car needs washed. (=needs to be washed) The room needs cleaned. (=needs ...
8
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7answers
2k views

Using -ed vs. -ing in the “needs washed” construction

I'm from Central Pennsylvania, and apparently, we have a strange language construct in this area. I was recently talking about how "my car needs washed" to a friend from NJ, and she told me that my ...
0
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0answers
102 views

What formal English syntax tree notations are there?

I don't have enough karma to comment on their answer itself, and so I was forced to create a separate question, though this is probably otherwise for the better, anyway. Link to the answer: ...
5
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1answer
154 views

Poetic syntax with “as” and “so”

Does anyone know how to describe the type of poetic syntax of the line: "As the deer panteth for the water / So my soul longeth after thee" or something to that effect. I'm not sure if this ...
3
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2answers
435 views

“It is having time to think that makes me depressed” — grammatical function of “that”?

It is having time to think that makes me depressed. In this sentence, what is the grammatical function of the word that?
1
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1answer
93 views

Is it acceptable to say “It is one of my most important things.”?

My question is if I want to say It is one of the most important things for me. In another way, can I say It is one of my most important things. instead? And does the latter one sound ...
2
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1answer
227 views

Can “some” be a noun and a subject?

What is the noun in this sentence: Some of our greatest innovations were launched during tough times. I know that of our greatest innovations is a prepositional phrase and as such cannot contain ...
3
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1answer
48 views

“Choose a username that is …and must contain”: phrased incorrectly or just awkwardly?

The following parameters are given regarding creating acceptable usernames for a particular website: The username is case sensitive. Choose a username that is 6-74 characters long and must contain ...
0
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2answers
83 views

How to properly use “not…without” in English? [closed]

Please help me out by criticizing on the grammar and syntax of the following sentence used in my cover letter. I would like to make sure the sentence is not confusing in any way before sending it out. ...