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seen Jul 21 at 11:09

Oct
17
comment If collective nouns use the plural verb form, are they plural in other contexts too?
To your question two comments ago: yes, that feels most natural to me. The sentences with 'has' and 'have' swapped around are both possible, I suppose, but sound very odd to me, because the emphasis is in the wrong place. "England has won the league" seems to remove credit entirely from the players, and "England have vetoed the resolution" seems to attribute undue amounts of credit to individual politicians. There's a degree of fluidity, but certainly in cases like that it feels most natural to me to use 'have' and 'has' respectively, as you did.
Oct
17
comment If collective nouns use the plural verb form, are they plural in other contexts too?
To your original question: when 'England' means the country, it is obviously singular, but when 'England' means the people in the football team, it is (debatably, less obviously, perhaps even optionally) plural. So, perhaps clarifying what FumbleFingers meant: "England are awesome!" is a comment about a sports team; "England is awesome!" is a comment about the state of a country. The verb form makes it obvious. The sentence "England could be even better" is thus ambiguous without context - just like it is in American English.
Oct
17
comment Why is there a [sic] in this passage?
@I.J.Kennedy For those of us who are interested in the answer to this ("too localised") question, what is it?
Oct
17
comment Is to “tell off” a particularly British expression?
@BarrieEngland Only because you're deliberately setting the word in an inappropriate context - namely a parent talking to their child. A parent talking to another parent might very well say "my son did blah blah and I shouted at him and sent him to his room for the night; do you think I was right to scold him so much?", but I'd equally well expect "do you think I shouldn't have told him off so much?" or "maybe it was unfair of me to give him such a bollocking" or similar.
Oct
10
comment Is “If I would have X” an Indian shibboleth?
I've definitely heard "if I had have (+past participle)", as a colloquial alternative to "if I had (+past participle)". I've never heard "if I would have", except by non-native speakers. It sounds completely wrong to me (in contexts like this).
Sep
21
comment Are there any “-nk-” or “-nc-” words in English where there isn't a “ng” before the “k” sound?
@Marcin: Liverpool.
Sep
21
comment Are there any “-nk-” or “-nc-” words in English where there isn't a “ng” before the “k” sound?
@Marcin: I'm from England, and I have an 'ng' sound in all of those words.
Sep
20
comment Amber or yellow lights
@PLL: Liverpool is where I learnt to drive and have spent most of my life. (A short while in Cambridge / London, but I suppose I didn't really have many conversations about yellow lights there...)
Sep
20
comment “-ee” and “-er” word endings
"I believe I encounter more incorrect use of 'ee' than correct." This is normally the point after which you should reevaluate your understanding of what is correct.
Sep
18
comment “His hopes had not materialized”/“have not materialized”/“have not been materialized”
"Had not been materialised" doesn't make sense. The choice between "had" and "have" depends on the context of that sentence.
Sep
18
comment How do we differentiate long vowels from short vowels in English
(By the way, in case you don't know: calling English speakers 'white guy' is likely to cause offence!)
Sep
18
comment How do we differentiate long vowels from short vowels in English
Yes, that's right. It's the same vowel as in 'hat'.
Sep
18
comment How do we differentiate long vowels from short vowels in English
@JimThio: Huh? If you want to learn English well, you need to pronounce words correctly, of course! If you say 'eipple' (or 'oople' or 'ipple' or 'addle' or 'affle' or anything else incorrect), you are making it very difficult for your listener to understand what you're saying. Long 'a' and short 'a' are completely different vowels, and we do not usually think of them as being related when they're spoken. If you make three of these mistakes in the same sentence, it's unlikely that you'll be understood.
Sep
18
comment What is it called when a letter is within another letter?
@Robusto: The page I linked to gives many examples of ligatures, some not physically joined (e.g. the 'broken U', the Unicode 'ij' and 'fi' and 'fl', the letter it calls the "uo-ligature" ů, and the Chinese character ligatures). Ligatures in English (and indeed Latin) are all physically joined, yes, but that wasn't the question. The Dutch 'ij', for example, is very definitely one glyph: at the start of a sentence or proper noun it appears as 'IJ', rather than 'Ij'.
Sep
18
comment What is it called when a letter is within another letter?
It's not clear to me that this is necessarily kerning. If it's a regular L with a superscripted o that have been fused into one symbol, it seems unfair to call it kerning - much like the mathematical symbol ±, or the digraph æ, or the ligature ij, or the numero sign №.
Sep
18
comment Translating when speakers reference themselves by name
Absolutely. It simply becomes a question of the purpose of your translation: is it to convey what the speaker conveyed, or is it to stay faithful to the grammatical constructions and idioms of the speaker's native language? There are instances when the latter is useful, but almost always it's not the point. Almost always, you should do your best to understand the meaning and connotations of the original speech, and try to convey the same in the target language. (Whether or not you do things like footnote, or change difficult cultural references, etc. is up to your judgement!)
Sep
18
comment Usage of past participle in “He said he thought it having had seen my medical record”
You might have some luck if you google "past participle" (not "past principle", though...).
Sep
18
comment Amber or yellow lights
@Pitarou: Strange. It could well be a dialect thing. Or indeed, perhaps 90% of my conversations in which the term has come up have been with my dad (who taught me to drive), and "yellow" happened to be what he uses. Don't know.
Sep
18
comment Amber or yellow lights
I am British, and I almost always say and hear "yellow" (but obviously understand both).
Sep
18
comment “Is likely to be” vs “are likely to be”
There is a book, there are books. There is a change, there are changes. And so on. "Are" is correct. (Okay, I agree that it's an odd construction, but the same rule applies.)