Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [descriptive-grammar]

Descriptive grammar is a set of rules about language based on how it is actually used. In descriptive grammar there is no right or wrong language. It can be contrasted with prescriptive grammar, which is a set of rules based on how people, mostly writers of style books and grammar text books, think language should be used. See https://www.teachingenglish.org.uk/article/descriptive-grammar .

0
votes
0answers
21 views

Correct Grammar “for which or which” [on hold]

Which should I use in the following sentence "for which or which"? "Below is the California's Case Tracking Ad hoc view "for which/which" we will create a similar reporting view in Texas: "
0
votes
3answers
77 views

Learning to end sentences with “hence”. Examples?

I dabble in creative writing here and there. Wordsmiths like Tolkien and Lovecraft are a pleasure to read for their sheer skill in sentence structure and plethora of words. I'm now attempting to ...
2
votes
1answer
47 views

Avoiding use of double negatives

I teach an ESL Class for Spanish speakers. I've taught them the rules regarding "double negatives". Today, I had them translate the Spanish equivalent of "It isn't that he doesn't understand me." ...
-2
votes
0answers
39 views

Why “I aim…” and not “I aims…”? [duplicate]

My question might look silly, but it's confusing me as to how the first sentence below is correct and the latter incorrect, according to Grammarly app? 1) I aim to exceed the expectations of my ...
0
votes
0answers
29 views

Yes-no question with the adjective comprehensible

I constructed a question that I thought was grammatically correct, but I have gotten confused after being told that the sentence was ambiguous. Is (verb) what is meant (in the sentence) (Subject) ...
1
vote
1answer
26 views

how to attribute a singular property to a plural noun?

Please consider the following examples: The size/sizes of the planets is/are written here. The door/doors of a 100 houses is/are 100Kg. Men's nose/noses is/are bigger than that/those of women. Which ...
0
votes
0answers
38 views

Is it correct to use “because of”'?

I read the motivational phrase " You are a precious and important person, only BECAUSE OF BEING YOURSELF" I want to know if it is written correctly or if it were better to say "You are a precious and ...
3
votes
2answers
80 views

Is “The cat paws in the water to get the fish” a grammatically correct sentence? [closed]

Is this sentence, "The cat paws in the water to get the fish" grammatically correct?
1
vote
0answers
32 views

How can I describe a conjunction that ends a sentence (so, and, or, but …)?

Recently I (American English speaker / academic / raised in Appalachian and Southern dialect household) noticed myself falling into a conversational pattern with coworkers where I would end a spoken ...
0
votes
1answer
22 views

Clarity on the definition of the word “predict” [closed]

When someone says "I look forward to your predictable path" and "please continue down your very tired and predictable path" and "your arguments are right out of a playbook", what's the meaning of '...
0
votes
1answer
23 views

Type of usage in these examples? Clauses/fragments

Peter senses his father's danger and tries to reach him, but is forced to watch helplessley as his father is driven away. Her father struggles with complex emotions about the child he raised as his ...
0
votes
1answer
31 views

Using commas around names that specify relationship

I've been getting conflicting information on this problem. If I write: "My brother Sam loves to eat cake." OR "My brother, Sam, loves to eat cake." OR to be REALLY clear "One of my brothers, Sam, ...
1
vote
0answers
72 views

“fresh and relaxed”

I have to identify the syntax used in these two sentences and explain. A. After a short vacation in Japan, Mr Chang appeared in my office, fresh and relaxed. B. After a short vacation in Japan, Mr ...
0
votes
2answers
41 views

Degrees of comparison - “is the” vs. “is more”

Can we say "John is the stiffest of Rachel and Mark.", OR "John is more stiffer than Rachel and Mark."? Which one is better?
1
vote
2answers
57 views

How do we grammatically describe 'thing'

There's a thing I'd like to ask, it's something you might know. When we say "bring me that thing over there" or "it's with my things", how do we grammatically classify this use of thing in English? ...
0
votes
2answers
193 views

Take an umbrella in case it may rain?

Take an umbrella in case it may rain. can anybody tell me why this statement was wrong? and the right one is Take an umbrella in case it rains.
0
votes
1answer
57 views

What do you call someone who is ungrateful, only sees things negatively and never acknowledges you

I am a team player and like to contribute. When asked to take on a task. I always say yes and I never get a thank you. He never provides all the details to what he wants and then asks why I didn’t ...
0
votes
3answers
41 views

“Some of the [superlative adjective] I've ever been” — another way to phrase this?

I can't seem to find a non-awkward way of expressing this sort of sentiment: suppose you want to tell a friend about some time you were really, really cold, but it wasn't the coldest you've ever been. ...
3
votes
1answer
41 views

Is there a term for using “or” to introduce something like an appositive?

Recently someone was trying to explain to me that "or" can have a non-disjunctive function, and this came to mind as a possible example but I can't figure out the terminology to describe it. I know ...
0
votes
1answer
72 views

In a world of descriptivist dictionaries, how is linguistic relativism avoided in discussions?

“If you wish to converse with me, define your terms.” —Voltaire During discussions and debates, especially those of a more academic or technical nature, it is important to establish agreed upon ...
-1
votes
2answers
206 views

We are a group of people who/which/that..?

Which of these three is correct? We are a group of people who meet.. We are a group of people which meets.. We are a group of people that meets.. This is different from the case when "People" is the ...
1
vote
1answer
18 views

Defining and Non defining Relative clauses

Is the following sentence a define or not defining relative clause. Since, when we remove the part enclosed in commas, the remaining part doesn't make sense, I think it is a defining relative clause ...
0
votes
2answers
52 views

Alternative to “less good at” [closed]

Is there an alternative, yet polite way of saying: "For those less good at English" I know it's technically correct but it doesn't sound right to me. The context is that we are offering a service ...
0
votes
3answers
67 views

Pronoun: what does it refer to here?

In the following sentence, what does the pronoun it refer to? A differs from B in that it is.... I read before that a pronoun refers to the closest name (B in that sentence); however, here it ...
0
votes
0answers
13 views

Will vs going to [duplicate]

I want to say the feeling of missing to my friend but i'm confused to say,i will miss you or i'm going to miss you
13
votes
1answer
2k views

He discovered that his father had a special box in the basement

He discovered that his father had a special box in the basement I was told that I should not use "that" in the above sentence although it is grammatically correct to use it. Why I shouldn't use "that"...
1
vote
0answers
26 views

parts of speech of a word in a sentence

What is the part of speech of before in the following: Long before anyone coined the term sci-fi? I am wondering whether it is an adjective, an adverb, or a preposition?
0
votes
0answers
126 views

Using 'by + -ing' form in a sentence and it's difference without 'by'

I've come across several (scientific mostly) literature where the use of by+-ing was present. However, every time I do, I just get the feeling that is redundant. (I actually once thought that it was ...
0
votes
0answers
1k views

Neither will I. / I won't, either. What is the difference?

If you hear the following conversation between A and B, which line would you say, B1 or B2? What is the difference? What is the point of learning inversion as is used in line B1? Thank you! A) "I ...
0
votes
2answers
54 views

Is “Provincial Centre for Public Administration Services” correct phrase?

My little province in Vietnam has just established a center, which is meant to be a central place for all services provided by the local government that the provincial citizens can come and deal with ...
0
votes
0answers
53 views

Cohesion in English writing using antonyms

Can someone help me to understand how antonyms can be used effectively to achieve cohesion in English writing along with some simple examples? I have tried to search the relevant information a lot on ...
0
votes
2answers
1k views

of the highest quality vs high quality

Which sentence makes the most sense: ...produce the most sophisticated tool and of the highest quality to perform the job or ...produce the most sophisticated and high quality tool to perform ...
0
votes
0answers
24 views

Omission of repeated components in the sentence

Is it correct to say: "The A ratio is increased by 20%, and B ratio by 30%"? I feel the omission grammatically correct and more natural in: "The A ratio has increased by 20% and B ratio by 30%,"...
1
vote
0answers
40 views

What is the phrase called when a noun is either given an article or doesn't need one? [closed]

As I understand it, there are singular nouns such as cat and spaceship that need to be preceded with some kind of specifier like an article (a, an, the) or a possessive word (my, Jane's, etc.) or the ...
0
votes
1answer
57 views

is “all” implied in a list?

If I have a list that begins with: "Cars He Wants to Buy" Is it implied that that list contains ALL the cars he wants to buy? Or is it implied that it is just some? My thought was that an "all" is ...
2
votes
2answers
388 views

Why do we say “eat healthy” instead of “eat healthily”? [duplicate]

Why do we say "eat healthy" instead of "eat healthily", even though the latter is the only "correct" one, according to the comments in "eat healthy" or "eat healthily" What ...
1
vote
4answers
149 views

I am looking for a word that can be used to describe a person who can switch bodies with another human

Not to be confused with a person who can morph themselves into someone else or a creature by will, but someone who has an ability to body swap - without necessarily having control over it. I am ...
1
vote
2answers
57 views

When describing an action by two persons is it ever correct to name oneself first? [duplicate]

When describing an action by two persons and that action has a negative outcome or nature, is it correct to name oneself first? As in I and he played poorly.
-1
votes
2answers
64 views

“you is” in place of “you are” [closed]

Recently I listened to this song "You is smart, you is important ..." This is the link for this song: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3H50llsHm3k Can I say "you is" in place of "you are"? Thanks ...
0
votes
1answer
164 views

Harry Potter grammar question

In the book Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets, Chapter 2, page 14, last paragrapgh appears 2 sentences like this, "They lets Dobby get on with it" and "Sometimes they reminds me to do extra ...
0
votes
1answer
45 views

Difference between “as” and “like”

Can anyone please tell me what the difference between as and like in the following sentence is. And which one is correct? Here's the example: None of the other students helped the old man across the ...
0
votes
0answers
15 views

Proper wording for health assistance

Is the following correct? Psychological counselling, as well as support from a health assistance team during recovery. We are unable to use the phrase medical assistance team.
1
vote
1answer
149 views

Multi-colorful or multi-colored? [closed]

Is multi-colorful a word? Or is the correct word multi-colored?
0
votes
1answer
936 views

“no one” vs “no one else”

Can anyone please tell me if I should use no one or no one else in the following sentence? Here is the example: John is a very good friend of mine. No one (else) likes me more than he does. I think ...
0
votes
0answers
28 views

Different tenses in paragraph writing [duplicate]

I am trying to write a paragraph about Mahatma Gandhi Who died in 1948. Can you please tell me which tense I should choose? My problem is that I can't decide present or past which tense I should ...
1
vote
1answer
93 views

The usage of “…that one might assume” [closed]

I have a question about the following sentence. In the (A) option, I'm aware that's a classical "as .... as you assume". But my main confusion is that (B) option seems really legit to me gramatically. ...
0
votes
2answers
97 views

Would a drinking straw, made out of natural straw, be called a 'straw straw'?

Significant efforts are afoot to reduce plastic waste and one way of doing so is to revert to using natural straws as drinking straws. This example uses wheat straws but it doesn't matter which plant ...
1
vote
2answers
50 views

Term for noun phrase containing contrasting things

For a sentence along the lines of "There were celebrations and not-so-celebrations among the people." what would the correct term for a this phrase? I thought it may be a comparison or something along ...
3
votes
1answer
91 views

Are people now “watching a lot of phone”?

It used to be said of some people that they "watched a lot of television". In those days there was nothing else to watch, in that kind of way. But how do I describe what is being done today ? Are ...
0
votes
0answers
796 views

Tense in newspaper reporting

I have a grammar question. I have seen that in news paper reporting writers almost always use "past tense". Can you please tell me why? Silliguri, November 15 : Another Mig fighter plane of the ...