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Information that you get straight from the horse's mouth means information that you get from a reliable source. Origin - In horse racing circles tips on which horse is a likely winner circulate amongst punters. The most trusted authorities are considered to be those in closest touch with the recent form of the horse, that is, stable lads, trainers etc. ...


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In my opinion it’s not so much formal or informal, as usage. As an educated native (British) English speaker of a certain age, I would avoid ‘called’ in the first two of your examples because it just doesn’t feel right. Possible ways of rewriting are: I had an opportunity to attend a seminar at an agency — the XYZ Group. . I studied at a type of ...


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Both words mean to bring someone around to support an argument advanced, in this case that particular someone is potential employer and the argument is that your friend is qualified. Sticklers claim that you must persuade a person to act and convince a person only to believe. Of the distinction, Steven Pinker says in A Sense of Style "...few writers ...


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The two curves transpose when we shift focus from A to B.


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The expression move the focus is correct - see definition #2 (Macmillan) . Other options are change the focus and shift the focus. The last one is much more common:


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As long as you don't capitalize it, it's fine: Could you please provide me the details? It's not at all necessary, though, and in fact the word "please" can convey a sense of impatience or insistence. So it ironically could be a bit more polite to just say Could you provide me the details? Beginning the request with "Could you..." is actually ...


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You could turn it around, particularly if the client is a sensitive type or the delay has cause some problem (and you don't want to be seen to be transferring the blame as noted in Michael Scott's answer). Something along the lines of "I neglected to ask if an electronic version would have suited your needs."


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"Had I known" has the necessary intent without really placing blame on anyone in particular.


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A formal (and not too confrontational) way of stating your thought would be: "I wish I'd been made aware.".....or "If I'd only been made aware". Both of these, of course, have the effect of "transferring the blame" to the recipient of your message....which I assume is the intention of your words. :-)



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