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Questions tagged [rules]

Questions about the rules of English. This tag is overly broad and discouraged.

1
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1answer
26 views

Past tense of “ I have to”

Question 1: How do I change this correctly and accordingly to the past perfect tense example: He have to do that because someone has told him to possible answer: He had to do that because someone ...
3
votes
1answer
137 views

Where is the stress of the noun “Portuguese”?

Studying suffixes I've learned that "-ESE" is a strong suffix, therefore it holds the main stress when it's added to a word (e.g. China -> Chinese; Japan -> Japanese; journal -> journalese; etc.). ...
7
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2answers
108 views

Any advice for agentive suffixes of single-syllable words ending in y?

I got stuck on whether I should say I'm a frequent flier or flyer. I came across an article on writingexplained.com and it confirmed pretty much what I suspected, that there's no consensus on the ...
3
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2answers
72 views

River's Name as an Adjective

Is there any rule that describes the cases when one can use a river's name as an adjective and when it should be with the -ian suffix? There is the so-called Danubian corridor, but it's the Danube ...
0
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1answer
61 views

Wanting to know the word for 'one rule for me, another for them' [closed]

Is there a single-word term that expresses 'one set of rules/principles for me, and another for everyone else'? I.e. the opposite of universalising your principles, and what is implied by ...
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0answers
28 views

Origin of different approaches to convert parts of speech

This post is inspired by the post What's the noun for “synchronous”? Responses to the linked post were quite varied, with responses including: synchrony, synchroneity, synchronism, synchronousness, ...
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2answers
159 views

“atheistic scientist” vs “atheist scientist” [closed]

I know that it's "atheist scientist" but "atheistic regime", "atheist YouTuber" but "atheistic channel" in common use but I can't find out why. When do we use "atheistic" and when "atheist" and why? ...
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1answer
37 views

When to use “the” and when to take it out

I've a question about the usage of "the". I had written the sentence with "the" and I've been told to take it out because they said it's redundant, however, I disagree. Thoughts, grammar rules...? ...
0
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1answer
63 views

How are dashes used when referring to the work of someone? [closed]

Example: [Artist] - [Song] Is that little line supposed to be a hyphen, non-breaking hyphen, figure-/en-/em-dash, horizontal bar, minus sign or double oblique hyphen? Are there supposed to be spaces ...
3
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1answer
143 views

What's the history of the English letter “Y” as a “sometimes vowel”?

Wondering when and why historically the Anglo-Saxon letter "Y" became a (part-time) vowel substitute for the letter "I", leading to "gymnasium" instead of "gimnasium" or "cyanide" instead of "cianide" ...
5
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2answers
107 views

Is there any rule which dictates the ordering of non-proper, non-pronoun nouns in a list?

For example, Is "Design, Operation, and Management," as equally good of a list as "Management, Operation, and Design?" My colleagues and I are having a tough time reasoning why one sounds better ...
2
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1answer
49 views

When did rules change for hyphenation [closed]

When did the rules change for hyphenating the word "service." It should be hyphenated after the v. example: serv - ice.
3
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1answer
744 views

Rules of metrics rhythm and rhyme in poetry, do they exist in English?

I know there are a lot of rules and guidelines in english, for writing a good essay (especially around S.A.T. season!) No such thing in spanish, though! However, for writing poems Spanish does have a ...
2
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1answer
499 views

Using the definite article describing a general thing [closed]

I have a question about using articles. Consider the following sentence. "The/a right side of a rectangle can be found ..." "The perimeter of a rectangle may be / is found by" The question is : ...
5
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0answers
675 views

Notable English grammar rules changes in modern grammar books [closed]

Modern English grammar books like English Grammar In Use, first published in 1985, for example, has four editions till now, I am wondering if there are any notable worthy examples of changes in modern ...
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0answers
342 views

Is there a rule for when to pronounce “ah” instead of “ae” in RP versus GA? [duplicate]

I would like to know if there is a rule when to pronounce ah in RP versus ae in GA. Is it a question of vocabulary or is there a rule for that? Examples: dance- in RP is pronounced ah but in GA it ...
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1answer
1k views

Past tense means politeness? [closed]

Questions asked using past tense, some examples like: "Would you mind...?", "Could you please...?", "Should I do...?", "Did you want...?" It seems people are using past tense in these sort of ...
2
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2answers
175 views

Comma rules - found a lot of special rules, but not general ones

I have read a lot on proper punctuation: grammar.ccc.comnet.edu grammarbook.com And some more... Now I remember my English teacher warning me that in English, you should use a lot less commas then in ...
1
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1answer
151 views

Are there Official Rules for Comma Placement?

In this answer, the linguist John Lawler gave the following advice concerning comma placement: If you would use that intonation in speaking, write a comma. Otherwise don't. This sounds like as if ...
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1answer
402 views

Grammar rule for 'the' in front of a noun

Is there an exhaustive list of rules for when to put 'the' in front of a noun, more specifically a location? I want my program to be able to be smart about doing exactly this when building sentences. ...
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votes
1answer
126 views

Mystery behind silent letters [closed]

I have doubts about words in the English language that have a silent letter. So I want to know how to understand whether a letter is silent or not.
1
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1answer
367 views

as little as 1 day as an adjective object phrase of a preposition

You can get your money back in as little as 1 day! It is a sentence I heard from an advertisement. Sadly, I cannot tell if this is what the advertisement said, for I did not pay much attention to ...
2
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1answer
6k views

I would love it versus I would love

What is correct? "I would love if you could do that" versus "I would love it if you could do that" Is there a general rule I can follow in cases like this?
0
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1answer
535 views

English Production Rules [duplicate]

Does an official set of production rules (formal grammar) for English exist? Something along the lines of: Sentence -> Clause EndPunctuation Clause -> Subject Predicate Subject -> NounPhrase ...
0
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1answer
602 views

Definitive way to separate prefixes from roots

Prefixes and suffixes change the meaning of roots, therefore to properly analyze a word it is often helpful to know what is the prefix and what is the root. Prefixes are a syllable or syllables in ...
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1answer
272 views

Pronunciation rules [closed]

I was always wondering if there is a compact set of rules that helps readers enunciate English words. One of the reasons why I believe there are such rules is that there are some online dictionaries ...
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1answer
334 views

Referred as … below [closed]

When I'm writing a rule, I meet a problem that I need to define a word used below. For example: "Group", or "The Group" below means "the ??? Group." The Group will not...... How can I ...
0
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1answer
1k views

Phonics, the letter “I” and its rules

Logo/Linguaphiles, I am in need of your guidance. What were you taught when it came to phonics of words that start with the letter "I"? When is a short/long "I" sound used and what are the rules ...
3
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1answer
699 views

Use/non-use of articles before Adjective + Abstract noun

I have confusion regarding use/non-use of articles before adjective + abstract noun. Eg. competent handling, prolonged tread life, enhanced durability Providing COMPETENT HANDLING and PROLONGED TREAD ...
2
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0answers
46 views

Are there rules about where a long title should be broken across lines? [closed]

Here is the title: Clean your vessel & everything on it in a single session! Clean your vessel & everything on it in a single session! Clean your vessel & everything on it in ...
0
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2answers
2k views

Is there a rule for when to write numbers in full?

I was recently taught that numbers should be written in full if: The number is between zero and ten. The number has three or less digits. The number is present at the start of a paragraph. (...
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0answers
973 views

“She talked about how…” Grammar Rule

I'm trying to find the grammar rule or name that explains these types of sentences: The movie was about how we all need to love each other. She talked about how there is a great fear of technology. ...
0
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1answer
187 views

Order of prefixes when more than one is present

In Words having two prefixes incorporated the person asking the question is curious about the name for words with more than one prefix. I am interested in knowing the rules dictating their order. Why ...
3
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1answer
558 views

Semi-colon or colon?

I'm writing a descriptive piece, and can't figure out whether this is grammatically correct, or whether I ought to place a semi-colon between "entry" and "crooked": "As I walked in using the cobbled ...
0
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0answers
69 views

Singular vs plural: the effect of conjunctions [duplicate]

Consider: Please check that the username and password is correct. Please check that the username and password are correct. If I had to break the statement into its parts: Please check that the ...
5
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2answers
5k views

A case of optional “that”: “check the” vs. “check that the”

Consider the following use case: Please check the username and password are correct. Please check that the username and password are correct. In this case, I would say that that is required because ...
0
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0answers
40 views

Are there any rules for genitive case not indicating possesion? [duplicate]

My teacher, a native English speaker, was quite puzzled when I asked this and could not answer this question. Why there is: child seat but children's love //why these are different ...
3
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2answers
28k views

Is it proper grammar to write a number with “th” after the month or only if it is used before the month? [closed]

Is it proper grammar to write July 17th or would it be the 17th of July?
0
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2answers
2k views

Why are there exceptions for the i before e except after c rule? [duplicate]

The exceptions such as"foreign" and "weird" seem abnormal to me because most of the rest of the ie or ei words follow the i before e rule. They don't have a "c". Why does that happen?
4
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1answer
35k views

“24 years old or 24 year old”? [closed]

I'm wondering if there should be an "s" when telling about ages. I have heard from my native English friend says "I'm 24 year old" is it correct?
3
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1answer
2k views

Comprehensive list of grammar rules? [duplicate]

Does anyone know of a near-comprehensive list of grammar rules? (Specifically those which a poor writer of English might violate.) The most amusing candidate I've found was http://www.listsofnote.com/...
2
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1answer
2k views

In a combination of two vowels (such as “ae”), what rule determines if the first (“a”) or second (“e”) is silent?

In a combination of two vowels (such as "ae"), what English rule determines if the first ("a") or second ("e") is silent? For example, in the word "praetor", the vowel "a" is silent but in the word "...
1
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1answer
5k views

Usage of “go to” vs “go”

I'm trying to explain the difference between "go to" and "go" and I'm not sure what the actual rule is. I've tried searching about it, but I couldn't find anything. When should I use "go to" and when ...
2
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2answers
328 views

Is there a grammar rule that defines the properties of a legally accepted word [closed]

I would like to know if there is a grammar rule(s) that defines whether a word is gramatically legal or not. I understand a word is given meaning by a human and anyone can give meaning to anything. ...
10
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6answers
59k views

What's wrong with “We hope you will find our Qualifications to be well-organized, concise, and most of all, to exceed your expectations.”

Why is the following sentence grammatically incorrect? We hope you will find our Qualifications to be well-organized, concise, and most of all, to exceed your expectations. I've asked three ...
3
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1answer
617 views

What are the implicit rules for creating new portmanteaux in English?

Wikipedia defines a portmanteau1 as: “Portmanteau word” is used to describe a linguistic blend, namely “a word formed by blending sounds from two or more distinct words and combining their meanings....
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2answers
3k views

Payed or paid, is there a rule for this change in vowels?

Why do some verbs combine the "y" and the "e" in the past tense, while others retain "ye"? For example, pay to paid, but flay to flayed? Is there a rule for this change? Any help would be ...
2
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2answers
2k views

Use of “either/or” in a negative phrase

I'm not sure if a sentence I wrote is correct: "The last one didn't get neither my changes nor thiago's". I'm trying to say that the last activity I ran in a system didn't get the changes I sent ...
2
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1answer
378 views

Suffered from vs suffered

When should I use from? Example: His company suffered a setback. Vs His company suffered from a setback. She suffered from a heart attack. Vs She suffered a heart attack I realise that sometimes ...
1
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2answers
19k views

Rules of thumb on using the correct tense forms and auxiliary verbs

For example, when using "since", you should use "present perfect": Mr Smith _ _ _ the company since 1990. runs has run is running ran Is there any reference on similar rules, ...