Verbs are words that express an action, occurrence, or a state of being.

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“A book to be read” vs “a book to read”

Which is grammatically correct: "a book to be read" or "a book to read"? And what is the difference?
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1k views

Dust vs. Undust?

The entry for "dust" from LDOCE says: dust1 (n.) [uncountable] → HOUSEHOLD dry powder consisting of extremely small bits of dirt that is in buildings on furniture, floors, etc. if they ...
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42 views

“is thought to have been” verb tense

What tense is the phrase "is thought to have been" in the sentence "Bruce Lee is thought to have been the first actor to do his own stunts"? Also, why is it correct to say "to do his own stunts" ...
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4answers
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Word that corresponds to “flew” or “drove” when riding a train

My daughter recently journeyed several hundred miles by rail. Had she taken a bus, I could say: "She was bussed from San Francisco to Houston" Had she flown in an airplane, I could say: ...
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227 views

Can a human “bless” anything?

Does the word "bless" apply only to God? For example, can a human bless anything (such as "bless the day")? Or can only God bless? Note, I am asking about the usage of the word "bless", and not about ...
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62 views

is “imperative” correct here

I am writing a piece of software related to meetings. Participants are invited to a meeting using a button which the command "invite" is written to be pressed by the person who wished to do the ...
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50 views

Why present simple not continuous

I have a few sentences here: A) The instructor explains the diagram to students who ask questions during the lecture. Why are "explain" and "ask" used here in present simple, and not in the ...
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26 views

Verb to be before pronoun in declarative sentences [duplicate]

I saw this sentence in a newspaper cartoon: Not only are you dysfunctional — you appear to be completely spineless as well. Is the verb are in the right position?
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5answers
894 views

What does it mean: “… was three days dying”?

Not being a native English speaker, I still like to read in English from time to time. In my current book was written that someone "... was three days dying." Does this mean that the person died three ...
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14 views

Nouns in a series with singular or plural verb? [duplicate]

Which is correct? Cultivation, possession, and distribution of corn is ... Or Cultivation, possession, and distribution of corn are ...
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1answer
81 views

“Dream, dreamt” and “learn, learnt” irregular verbs: correct or not? [duplicate]

Often when I am writing emails or any other documents, I would like to use the irregular forms of dream (dreamt) or learn (learnt). But the computer spellcheckers always underline these words as being ...
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1answer
56 views

Crib: to Complain [closed]

People in India use crib as a word for complain as in 'Don't crib about it'. I always thought this was wrong usage, but I recently checked in OED online and found that sense 9b says b. To ...
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64 views

Can more options use “is”

So I've been learning German on Duolingo (great app by the way if you want to learn a language). I know you guys don't want translations here, but this is more about the English. Of course, not all ...
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74 views

Can the word, “art” be used as a verb to mean “create” art?

In the Washington Post (July 27 issue) article titled, “Figuring out what matters in a midlife ‘Is this all there is?’ crisis” the columnist, Carolyn Hax writes as follows: “Tweak as you need to, ...
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1answer
63 views

When using “Used To” in a sentence with two clauses, do you change the verb tense in the second clause?

I was helping a friend proofread one of her essays on the short story The Lottery. She had written this sentence: I think the lottery used to have a specific reason and represent something in the ...
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2answers
67 views

A simple question about syntax [closed]

I guess this would be a pretty simple question to answer. Is this sentence correct: The player appears to have not connected. I am having my doubts about the appears to have not part. P.S.: Not ...
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0answers
32 views

Verb form of suds - is “sudses” permissible? [closed]

If I want to say, for example, that a cleanser produces suds, could I say "This shampoo sudses"? I think the answer to this question depends on whether the verb is considered to be "sud" or "suds." ...
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1answer
66 views

Difference between “queue” and “enqueue” [closed]

What is the difference between queue and enqueue given that both are verbs?
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55 views

Can “backup” be used as a verb in the context of data management? [duplicate]

I have heard backup being used as a verb in the sense of I have to backup my hard disk by non-native English speakers (the English noun backup is also used in other languages, for example in ...
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6answers
308 views

Connotation of “appease” [closed]

Is "Bob did what he could in his capability to appease them" a positive or negative comment about Bob?
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9answers
165 views

Word/phrase for importance being reduced

For example when you stop doing one thing before it's finished, and start something else because you, or someone else, considers it more important than the thing you were doing. The thing you was ...
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3answers
66 views

“It takes” + infinitive vs. present participle

Is it grammatically correct to say "It took me five hours travelling to the US"? Most people would say "It took me five hours to travel to the US." I wonder if the infinitive is always the only ...
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1answer
100 views

What does “draw something within something” mean? [closed]

From page 228 of Thinking Like a Lawyer by Frederick Schauer: The law is presumed unconstitutional, but the state may rebut that presumption by satisfying a heavy burden of justification. ...
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1answer
43 views

Does one include a comma after the last proposition in a list of multiple preposition-verb pairs

Should I do this: The developers are less experienced in, or passionate about, UX. Or should I remove the last comma: The developers are less experienced in, or passionate about UX. This ...
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108 views

Grammar: French conditionnel in English?

Could anybody help me here, please? I’d like to know the grammatical form of the verb “can" in the following examples: 18y old Tim is asked by a relative what he’s going to do with his life. ...
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3answers
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Word for “putting an end to one's solitude” or “be with someone”?

In Arabic there is a one-word verb that approximately means "being with someone and not letting them be alone". It could be used in phrases like: "يؤنس وحدتي " "أنت تؤنسني" "يؤنس وحشتي" It is used ...
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Verb for “I wish I were” him?

Is there a verb to describe a person who you wish you could be? For example, if you wish you were Bob, then I __ Bob.
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What is the correct verb to imply the move of a moveable bridge?

Moveable bridges are the ones that can move, to allow the boats, etc. pass, like this one: For such purposes, the traffic on the road needs to be stopped, so that the bridge *move*s and allows the ...
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5answers
155 views

Does using “did” to form the past tense make a difference? [duplicate]

The two sentences here both indicate that, at some point in the past, I performed some work: I did work I worked What is the difference between these two sentences? Does constructing one with did ...
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1answer
96 views

use of being in a sentence

What is the grammatical reason for the following use of the word being? Thank you for willing to come : (wrong, I know) Thank you for being willing to come : (right) But what is the ...
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1answer
72 views

Singular or plural when referring to an event and a specific case of that event

In sentences in which a verb references an event, and a particular case of that same event, should i use the singular or plural form for the verb? for example: "milk production, and in particular ...
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1answer
72 views

Use of “exist” in “Can there exist an uncountable planar graph?”

Can there exist an uncountable planar graph? This usage of exist bothers me. In this context, my understanding is that it is used as a replacement for be. That looks very strange to me. However, ...
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1answer
67 views

Does “C follows A” apply to “ABCDE” [closed]

Given the sequence: ABCDE I think it makes sense to say "B follows A", but what about "C follows A"? I mean, is "follow" limited to the case where something comes right after something else? ...
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1answer
74 views

I threw a coin in a well that [was] or [is] in the forest [duplicate]

Which statement is correct and why? I threw a coin in a well that was in the forest. vs I threw a coin in a well that is in the forest. Also, is the "is/was" before "in the forest" called a ...
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2answers
56 views

Is the following the correct usage for the word “read”: “Read a dictionary”

Is it correct to state: "Read a dictionary". Similarly can you "Read an encyclopedia",
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What does “match X against Y” mean?

I just read a post that says: When Angular bootstraps your application, the HTML compiler traverses the DOM matching directives against the DOM elements. What does "match... against" mean? How ...
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2answers
85 views

”We're looking forward to helping you find X” vs “We look forward to help you find X” etc

I’m trying to link the following items into a single sentence: we look forward to help you find X So for example, here are some ways I was thinking of doing that: We look forward to help you ...
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106 views

Does “is” or “are” introduce a list of items?

Should a list of items be introduced with is or with are? Does the verb agree with a singular list or with multiple items in the list? Next in the row is/are Khorasan-e-‎Razavi, Esfahan, ...
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2answers
206 views

use of the verb “make” [closed]

The following is part of a blog post in The Huffington Post: In the perfect world we would all be morning people. We would wake up calm, refreshed and ready to tackle the day. But this isn’t a ...
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35 views

How does “to subsist in” come to mean “to be attributed to”? [closed]

What's the logical derivation behind this definition of subsist [Definition 2.1] Be attributable to: the effect of genetic maldevelopment may subsist in chromosomal mutation In that link, the ...
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In “can hear singing”, is “singing” a verb or a gerund?

In this sentence is singing a verb or a gerund? Look at the children whom you can hear singing.
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1answer
36 views

arrogate vs arrogate to

Can the verb arrogate stand alone? http://www.oxfordlearnersdictionaries.com/definition/english/arrogate only publicises arrogate + to. For example, would it be right to omit to in the following by ...
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1answer
71 views

What does “take out your book” mean? [closed]

What does this phrase mean? "take out your book" Because I have found no relevant meaning of take+out as a phrasal verb in the online dictionaries. Can any one help me?
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1answer
39 views

intermix vs mix

What are the differences? Are they everywhere interchangeable? Isn't intermix redundant, because if you mix A and B, then you must be mixing them together? For example, can mix be used in: Law and ...
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2answers
99 views

Will marry vs will get married [duplicate]

I have seen both sentences below: I will get married. I will marry. So what is the difference? Which one is recommended? Is there any difference in meaning or just grammar?
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1answer
56 views

“vest” as a phrasal verb

Rather than memorising the definitions, how could I intuit and rationalise them: vest in somebody/something = to belong to somebody/something legally. vest something in somebody = to give somebody ...
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3answers
75 views

Placing the object of an infinitive before it instead of after it

At the beginning of 1807, based on information gathered from Burr’s correspondence allegedly showing that he had begun preparations for a large-scale military expedition, the former vice ...
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2answers
173 views

Is “nothing but birds and a few insects” singular or plural?

Nothing but birds and a few insects [was/were] to be seen. In the above sentence, should the verb agree with "nothing" or with "birds and a few insects"?
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2answers
55 views

Can “succeed” be used as an imperative?

In a golf video game I'm working on: "Succeed a putt from 50 feet." This use of "succeed" bothers me whenever I see it, but I can't formalize why I think it's wrong.
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Notice vs. pay attention

I want to ask you, the English native speakers, regarding to a post in my blog which was commented by a visitor: Before applying for a job, please notice the following requirements: write down ...