105,208 reputation
8128232
bio website caxton1485.wordpress.com
location United Kingdom
age 72
visits member for 2 years, 11 months
seen 54 mins ago

I have spent most of my career in government service, much of it abroad. I have a degree in English Language and Literature from the University of Oxford and the Diploma in English Language Studies from the UK's Open University, and am qualified as a teacher of English to foreign learners. I have studied several other languages including French, German, Latin, Arabic and Old and Middle English.

My blog, Caxton, is mostly, but not entirely, about the English language.

Elsewhere on the web I have attempted to write in the constrained style of the 'Ouvroir de littérature potentielle' (OULIPO) in Variations on an Incident in Paris and in Variations on Jane Austen. I have also created a full set of 256 Syllogisms by figure and mood and showing which are valid and which are not.


Dec
10
revised Post-fixing or pre-fixing “mind you” onto an informative/descriptive statement
deleted 1 characters in body
Dec
10
revised Dialects where days of the week end with “dee”?
deleted 39 characters in body
Dec
10
answered Dialects where days of the week end with “dee”?
Dec
10
comment Grammar of 'dare' in this example
+1 for the answer, but I'd just add that I tend to punctuate such sentences as 'The pizza was nice but - dare I say it? - the salad was awful.'
Dec
10
answered Post-fixing or pre-fixing “mind you” onto an informative/descriptive statement
Dec
10
awarded  grammatical-number
Dec
9
comment “Translate into” vs. “Translate to”
@Mr. Shiny and New 安宇: Yes, 'into' tends, I would say, to be used where motion, actual or figurative, is of the essence of the preceding verb, particularly with the sense of passing through .
Dec
9
comment “Translate into” vs. “Translate to”
@jwpat7: If the OP wants a treatise on the history and many and varied uses of 'translate' with and without different prepositions, then I'm sure, given time, energy and space, several of us could provide it. If, as I suspect, he wants a pragmatic answer to a straightforward question, then that answer is that 'translate into [language]' is a better bet than 'translate to [language]'.
Dec
9
answered “Newly found” vs. “New Found”
Dec
9
answered Is there a comparative form of the word “different?”
Dec
9
comment “Translate into” vs. “Translate to”
@jwpat7: Apart from my own experience and practice, the OED has five citations for ‘translate to’ and none of them concerns language. It has 42 for ‘translate into’ and almost all concern language. There may be rare instances where ‘translate to [language]’ are found, but if the OP is asking for straightforward advice, I believe I have given it.
Dec
9
answered “Translate into” vs. “Translate to”
Dec
9
answered Is this grammatical? “Each method has features in which context to use it.”
Dec
9
answered Capitalizing quotations with initial omission?
Dec
9
awarded  verbs
Dec
8
comment Is there a single noun that describes “need not”?
Unless you allow 'needlessness'.
Dec
8
comment “Call on” or “call at” or something else? Which is appropriate?
You would say 'You can call me at my cell' only if you were in prison.
Dec
8
comment Is “must” ever grammatical as a past tense verb?
@Henry: Yes, there are obviously difficulties in trying to summarise something like modal verbs in a couple of sentences. We might, for example, say ‘I can play the piano now, but I couldn’t when I was younger.’ That, however, is not the usual meaning of ‘could’. It is more often used to express ‘unreal’ meaning, to seek permission and to make a suggestion.
Dec
8
comment Is “looking to” acceptable English in this use?
@PeterShor: Then let’s go for the 1770 citation instead: ‘I never look to have a Mistress that I shall love half as well.’
Dec
8
comment Is “looking to” acceptable English in this use?
@Phoenix: No, 'to' is not part of the verb.