This tag is for questions about the correct order of words in a phrase, or a sentence.

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2
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2answers
1k views

“Pick up something” or “pick something up”?

I have difficulties with word order: I have picked up the pencil from the floor. [says my dictionary] ?I have picked the pencil up from the floor. [could be?] ?I will pick up it. [sounds ...
2
votes
3answers
254 views

Question regarding sentence structure in a NY Times article about Michelle Obama

In a NY Times article titled "Michelle Obama and the Evolution of a First Lady", there is this sentence: Rahm Emanuel, then chief of staff, repeated the first lady’s criticisms to colleagues with ...
2
votes
3answers
97 views

Which of these sentences is better?

The user is redirected to your web page after the click. After the click, the user is redirected to your web page. Which kind of sentence should be used, the first, the second, or neither?
2
votes
2answers
230 views

The position of “always” in different sentences [closed]

I want to know about the position of always in different sentences. For example: Always she is tidy and on time. Is it correct or not?
2
votes
2answers
271 views

position of “only”

Which sentence is correct? (A) Mosquito larvae can only be seen through a microscope. (B) Mosquito larvae can be only seen through a microscope. (C) Mosquito larvae can be seen only through ...
2
votes
1answer
97 views

Usage of begrudge

While looking up this word, I found a weird usage, for example: She begrudged Martin his affluence She begrudged her friend the award. Applying common sense, it's clear that she envied her ...
2
votes
2answers
526 views

Position of verb for object clause

Is the general word order of this sentence correct? We investigate how strong the effect of X on Y is. Or, as an alternative, We investigate how strong the effect of X is on Y. In a ...
2
votes
1answer
819 views

Word order in defining and non-defining relative clauses

With defining relative clauses, there is a different word order according to the status of the relative pronoun in the sentence (that is, it can be either the subject or the object of the relative ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Position of 'also'

What is the correct position of the word 'also'? I would like to also talk about ... I would also like to talk about ...
2
votes
4answers
808 views

“Run over XXX” or “run XXX over”

I would need to clarify which one is correct. My dictionary says “run somebody over” (meaning hit by car) and an example: I ran over the dog. On the internet I found: I’m afraid we’ve just ...
2
votes
4answers
245 views

What is the correct way to phrase this?

I asked this question on meta.stackoverflow.com, but I need some help. What would be the correct way to phrase "...diverse topics from software programming to cooking to photography and gaming." Or if ...
2
votes
2answers
408 views

What does “The man that once did sell the lion’s skin While the beast liv’d was killed with hunting him” mean?

I came across the following sentence in the context of four professional men discussing a plot to retrieve their lost $1 million, swindled from them by a nouveau riche American banker in Jeffery ...
2
votes
2answers
246 views

Is this correct grammar — “which feature in C/C++ don't you like?”

The question in question is this: Which feature in C/C++ don't you like? Just wanted to know if that is proper way of asking. Not sure if "don't you like" is the right way there.
2
votes
2answers
154 views

How to express a chronological dependency?

How do I express a chronological dependency between two events? Is it alright to say : "Event A must be chronologically after Event B"? Any suggestions are welcome.
2
votes
3answers
176 views

Adjective + “of them”

My wife and I were discussing whether it is allowable to put an adjective in front of "of them". For instance, I could say "I want 5 cats" and "I want 5 of them". However, while it sounds perfectly ...
2
votes
2answers
71 views

A suggestion for a change by reviewers

One of the suggestions that I got in my paper review is just indicated as a mistake in There is, however, no proven criterion when to stop. What is wrong with the above sentence. Word ordering? ...
2
votes
3answers
208 views

Loathe. The atypical use of the verb [closed]

I have a quick question about the atypical grammar of mine. I am a poet using iambic pentameter. The question is whether the following is grammatically correct: I she loathes. That I loathe. ...
2
votes
1answer
334 views

What's it called when you make an adjective post-positive? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Why do some adjectives follow the nouns they modify? In English, adjectives usually precede the nouns they describe, as in "organic carrots". However, in some cases ...
2
votes
2answers
311 views

Difference between “had [verb] not to” and “hadn't [verb] to”

When we talk about things that we intended to do, but didn't or will not do in the future, we can use past perfect. I did a question in a reference book: I hadn't intended to become a doctor, I ...
2
votes
2answers
58 views

Noun-adjective reversal - was it ever in use in plain speech?

In some more or less archaic texts I found the order of noun and its adjective reversed at times, like: I traveled through nights starless, and roads unmapped. I wonder, is it a stylistic tool ...
2
votes
2answers
154 views

Are “now … any time” and “any time now” different meanings?

We know what "any time now" means, indeed: from now on it will happen soon. But in the sentence, which is quite informal, "Now yo'berths's ready any time, Miss" - said by the porter in the train (Pale ...
2
votes
1answer
842 views

Correct position of the word “hence”

Which one of those two versions is correct: ... and seems hence to be ... ... and hence seems to be ...
2
votes
3answers
6k views

Is “as” used correctly in this sentence?

Young, naive and trusting as I was, I believed every lying word he said. From what I learned, "as" used the way here should mean "though". But if it means "though", the meaning of this sentence ...
2
votes
1answer
36 views

Difference between second actor coming first or second with trivalent verbs

Take the following two sentences: She gave him an apple. She gave an apple to him. What is the difference between the two sentences? I heard that the object at the end of the sentence ...
2
votes
1answer
122 views

Is “I, too, did it” correct

I've heard sentences such as "I, too, did something," in which I would have used "I also did it," or "I did it as well," or "I did it, too." In school I've been taught I have to put 'as well' and ...
2
votes
3answers
300 views

“This helps us how?” vs. “How does this help us?”

In the sci-fi movie Inception by Christopher Nolan, in the first level of dreaming, they kidnap Cilian Murphy and Tom Hardy tries to get some information from him, by impersonating Browning, his ...
2
votes
1answer
486 views

Inversion with “many times” at the beginning of a sentence

I am having a discussion with my friend. I said, "Many times I have seen him washing his car." He says it should be, "Many times have I seen him washing his car. Much like "Often do I see him", and ...
2
votes
2answers
307 views

Order of participial adjective

I'm proof-reading a thesis by one of my friends and there's some recurring construct which I always mark as false but I'd like to check with you. In the comments I was told that the example I ...
2
votes
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 ...
2
votes
2answers
288 views

Not always + inversion? [closed]

My neighbour's little son (they are from UK) asked me for something, saying that he wants it and hence he will get. I realized I do not know how to say that correctly (for the first one I used ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

Order of phrases after verb: Prefer “share with you X” or “share X with you”?

Which of these sentences is grammatically correct? I wanted to share with you the outcomes of today's board meeting I wanted to share the outcomes of today's board meeting with you
2
votes
2answers
8k views

“But (something) instead” versus “but instead (something)”

Please consider the sentences: They do not overpower the city, but empower it instead. They do not overpower the city, but instead empower it. I'm doubting the use of but + instead. Is ...
2
votes
1answer
120 views

“used word” or “word used”?

The word used in that context should be gusto. The used word is wrong. Is it correct to place used after word? When should I use word used, and when used word?
2
votes
3answers
141 views

“put your coat on” and “put on your coat” but not “depend on someone” and “depend someone on*”

Why can you say "put on your coat" and "put your coat on" but not "depend on someone" and "depend someone on*"? Why are adverbs ("on" in the first sentence) mobile, whereas prepositions ("on" in the ...
2
votes
2answers
75 views

Word order with 'used to' [duplicate]

Is there a difference between I didn't use to do that and I used to not to do that For example, I don't use to read books when I was a child. Would both be correct? Is the second ...
2
votes
2answers
71 views

Position of “to” in the sentence

Is there any difference between the below two statements: I have to pay bills I have bills to pay Could you please tell us the difference between the above two statements and when to use them.
2
votes
3answers
283 views

“My latest five novels” or “my five latest novels”?

Is it okay to say "my latest five novels" when I want to express "five of my latest novels"? As far as I know, "five" is a postdeterminer, so it precedes an adjective (except for ...
2
votes
1answer
826 views

Should I say “have only been . . . twice” or “have been . . . twice only”?

Will these next two sentences confuse you? 1.I have only been to London once before. 2.I have been to London twice only. Now for a more complicated example, I want to express that I have ...
2
votes
2answers
678 views

Should personal pronouns always be placed at the end of a list? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “My friends and I” vs. “My friends and me” vs. “Me and my friends” Is naming the first person last proper grammar or just proper manners? “Julio and I” vs “I and Julio” ...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

“…and me” or “me and…” [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: “Me and my wife” or “my wife and me” I keep seeing that it's just courtesy to put yourself last in a list of nouns. eg. "They went to the game ...
2
votes
1answer
2k views

Usage of “just”, “only” and word-order [intended meaning]

I've got these sentences, which meanings are correct (my interpretations are in brackets): Use of only: (1) Only in 1996, Ford sold a rebadged Mazda 626 GV over here as its rebranded Japanese ...
2
votes
3answers
12k views

“Why do not you come here?” vs “Why do you not come here?”

I have two questions. What is the difference between "Why do not you come here?" and "Why do you not come here?"? Are both of "Why do not you come here?" and "Why do you not come here?" ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Use of “only” and word-order

I'm writing an automobile website and some of my paragraphs contain the word "only". I understand the following. As far as I'm aware, this is right: Only the Volkswagen Polo, Golf, Passat, Passat ...
2
votes
1answer
5k views

Not only… but also

Consider the following: Not only you should be able to speak but also able to write. You should be able to not only speak but also write. You should not only be able to speak but also be ...
2
votes
1answer
34 views

Can you place a cardinal number after a noun?

Is it possible to express a number of something by placing the cardinal after the noun? I know the concept of postpositives, like snow galore etc. but does this apply to cardinals? E.g. you can say ...
2
votes
2answers
193 views

Does 'which' refer to the noun immediately preceding it?

Is the 'which' in Proposition 25 suggests a better definition of m-reducibility than given in Definition 23, which is also the one typically given in texts ambiguous? It is a line from an ...
2
votes
1answer
827 views

Where to put the preposition of “approve”? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: When is it appropriate to end a sentence in a preposition? In this answer I wrote [You can use it] to take pictures of a movie in a cinema, of which the cinema ...
2
votes
1answer
766 views

Phrase and word-order meaning

I know that "only" and "just" and word-order are oft-mentioned topics on here, but word-order for phrases and meanings - don't both of these mean different things? Here is an example of how word ...
2
votes
0answers
22 views

“A question in a question” [duplicate]

I've got two questions for you. Number one: I've always been confused about what I call "a question in a question" (maybe there is a technical term for that but I don't know it). What I mean is... ...
2
votes
0answers
131 views

Swapping the order in an idiomatic expression [closed]

I may have sounded general in the title but my question is very specific. Recently I was writing a poem and I needed it to rhyme this way Some will stand to watch you go down quick But no one ...