106,954 reputation
8140245
bio website caxton1485.wordpress.com
location United Kingdom
age 72
visits member for 3 years, 2 months
seen 3 hours 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.


Apr
8
awarded  Nice Answer
Apr
5
awarded  Nice Answer
Apr
5
answered “Must be” with a meaning like “must do”
Apr
3
comment What is the accepted stance on using “they” in a singular form?
@ivanhoescott. I know. I've written about it here: caxton1485.wordpress.com/2013/07/18/…
Apr
1
comment Is it ok to use 'before' at the end of a sentence?
@medica. You might like to try this: ucl.ac.uk/internet-grammar/home.htm
Apr
1
answered Is it ok to use 'before' at the end of a sentence?
Mar
30
answered What does 'had been long settled' mean?
Mar
25
comment What is this construction?
You asked about the construction, not the meaning, but the meaning is I don't know for sure, but my conclusion from all the available evidence is that it was a good idea.
Mar
25
comment What is this construction?
Why? The the sentence can be exapanded as I can't tell, but I conclude that it was a good idea. (And please don't use the term 'grammar Nazi'.)
Mar
25
answered What is this construction?
Mar
18
comment What is the English word for “street along a river bank”?
+1. I was going to suggest 'strand' myself.
Mar
14
comment “Hungry” is to “full” as “thirsty” is to what adjective?
As thirsty is to pissed.
Mar
14
answered Do I refer to the previous month or to the last month
Mar
14
revised Are the abbreviations IMO and IMHO synonymous to each other?
added 46 characters in body
Mar
14
answered Are the abbreviations IMO and IMHO synonymous to each other?
Mar
14
comment Why is there no article in “The Child is father of the man”?
I'd never assume I was right, if I was you.
Mar
13
comment Why is there no article in “The Child is father of the man”?
You make a valid distinction, but I think my 'owner' example could occur, in BrEng at least, in certain contexts.
Mar
11
awarded  Good Answer
Mar
11
comment The meaning of “rack” or “rock” in “The Peasant Poet” by John Clare
Perhaps. The two relevant definitions in the OED are 'a mass of cloud moving quickly, esp. above lower clouds; a mass of such cloud' and 'a bank of cloud, fog, or mist; a wisp of cloud or vapour. Also as a mass noun: mist, fog; sea spray.'
Mar
11
answered The meaning of “rack” or “rock” in “The Peasant Poet” by John Clare