Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 175 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
171

When the adverb really comes before a negated auxiliary, the effect is of emphasising the truth of the sentence: I really cannot tell the difference. Here the speaker is emphasising that they honestly are unable to detect any difference. However, when really comes after the negated auxiliary, the effect is usually quite different. Instead of making the ...


26

Ultimately the word "really" means the same in both cases, of adding strength or emphasis. If we swap "really" for "definitely" this becomes more clear: The first one is like "It definitely doesn't matter" (I am sure that it doesn't: certainty) and the second is like "It does not definitely matter" (I am not sure that it does: uncertainty)


25

This "Member FDIC" is simply the shortest way allowable by law for a banking institution to indicate its affiliation with that organization. According to the relevant regulation: 328.3(1) Optional short title and symbol. The short title "Member of FDIC" or "Member FDIC," or a reproduction of the symbol of the Corporation (as described in § 328.1(b)), ...


22

As far as I can tell, there are only a limited number of nouns that work with "be of". I would classify them as idioms. I am listing the most common ones I can think of, where commonness is judged by Google Ngrams. I have grouped them into sets of near synonyms. There are be of use, be of help, be of aid, be of service, be of assistance; these ...


18

Michael Swan's book "Practical English Usage" has this to say: There are two possible negatives, with let us not and do not let us (informal let's not and don't let's) Let us not despair. (formal) Let's not get angry. (informal) Do not let us forget those who came before us. (formal) Don't let's stay up too late tonight. (informal) Forms ...


18

I think it helps a lot to break these two sentences down: It really doesn't matter: The base sentence here is It doesn't matter. Really is an adverb which modifies doesn't. In this case, it puts emphasis on doesn't, meaning that it does not matter to a high degree. It doesn't really matter: The base sentence here is It really matters. Doesn't modifies ...


15

A third, like any other unit of measurement, is dependent on the number of units described. For example, we describe 'one apple' and 'two apples'. The same goes for fractional units. 'one third' is simply a single unit of 'third'. Two or more and we use 'thirds'; hence, 'two-thirds' is the correct usage.


13

The phenomenon of verbing spans several other, slightly broader phenomena - some of which intersect or are subsets of one another. Anthimeria is the rhetorical use of a word as if it were a member of a different word class. I would expect that most examples of verbing begin as rhetorical devices. Conversion, also called zero derivation, is the creation of a ...


13

Morning! The below is just an hypothesis, but it sounds convincing enough to me. A gerund is special kind of word: it is both noun and verb at once (just as a participle is both verb and adjective). In its function as a verb, it can have an object: Augustus condemned his daughter's adultery. By condemning Julia, he set an example for the Empire. ...


12

We can use 'could have' to talk about something somebody was capable of doing in PAST but didn't do. (Possible in Past) I could have gone to Oxford University but I preferred Harvard. She could have married him but she didn't want to. They could have bought a house here 20 years ago but chose not to. We can use 'could have been' to talk about possible ...


12

Let me start with the grammatical structure. But just briefly, the appearance of the word degree is indeed a mistake, and I will omit it in the discussion of grammar. I will say more about degree at the end. Grammatical structure The structure may be clearer if some (optional) commas are inserted: Global temperatures have already risen 0.9℃, and ...


11

Contributors to the discussion of this question have pointed out that to need is a stative verb, one that expresses a state of lacking rather than some action. The present tense "I need" is an enduring present: I have discovered something I lack, I don't have it now, and the remedy is some ways into the future. This would seem to cover the time period of ...


11

"Don't let's" wins before 1930... LINK


11

You could avoid the echo by saying we will take care of it this afternoon as you have established the it in the previous sentence. I believe the term is doubled words.


11

Even were he not to care himself. . . is an alternative way of saying Even if he were not to care himself . . . The stress in the clause would naturally fall on not. Another example is Were he to work harder, he might make a success of his business instead of If he were to work harder, he might make a success of his business. It is a rather literary form, ...


11

I think that linguistics, the study of language, is a very scientific field, but the difficulty is in its massive breadth of data. Rather than being like classical mechanics it is more akin to the chaos of meteorology. Yes we can model the weather, but there's just too much data to produce specific narrow predictions with certainty. Every speaker has a ...


11

It's an archaic construction, inverting the verb and the subject, and using the (nearly obsolete) subjunctive form of the verb, to convey a conditional. It survives much more in the past (where, apart from were, the subjunctive is the same as the ordinary past). So: Had I known ... = If I had known ... Had he seen it, ... = If he had seen it, ... ...


11

Regard the following sentence: Bob's a mighty fine guy. The Subject of this sentence, clearly, is Bob. Now consider this one: Bob, he's a mighty fine guy. Here Bob has been shunted to the left of the clause. The word Bob is now like an announcement of the topic of the rest of the sentence. This is known as a left dislocation. Some constituent of the ...


10

The term sic indicates "that an incorrect or unusual spelling, phrase, punctuation or meaning in the quote has been reproduced verbatim from the original". As you have not reproduced the quote verbatim – you interpolated (to) – it would be wrong to also add sic. See How do you quote a passage that has used '[sic]' mistakenly?, What can I do instead of [sic]...


10

This is a good question. Traditional nineteenth century grammarians and most twentieth century ones classified it as an adverb. The reason is that it did not fit their definitions of nouns, verbs, adjectives or prepositions. However, many twentieth century grammarians since the 1920s, realised that back and similar words have none of the properties of ...


9

There's no difference in meaning between "without xxx" and "with no xxx", but the former is far more common. For example, "walked with no haste" gets only 3 hits in Google Books, whereas "walked without haste" gets 5310 (an extreme example, but the preference is always there). The other main difference in usage is we tend to avoid "with no xxx" with gerunds ...


9

No. This is an example of illiterate newspaperese. I assume it is meant to be short for "being charged with tresspassing."


9

I believe it is a subjunctive masquerading as an imperative. From the Wikipedia article on the subjunctive: A present subjunctive verb form is sometimes found in a main clause, with the force of a third-person imperative (and such forms can alternatively be analyzed as imperatives). This is most common nowadays in established phrases, such as (God) bless ...


9

It should be most of whom, not most of *them. Otherwise it is a comma-splice error caused by incorrectly attempting to join together two independent clauses with a mere comma and no conjunction. These are all correctly formed: There are more than 300 million English speakers in India. Most of them acquired English as a second language. There are more than ...


9

When dealing with modifiers, it is crucial to understand what is being modified, and in English, this is typically determined positionally: modifiers tend to come directly before the thing being modified. So here are the original sentences, adding arrows to indicate what's being modified by "really": It (really -> doesn't) matter.1 It doesn't (...


9

Another way to say this: "Global temperatures have already risen 0.9℃ [degrees] and continental temperatures [have already risen] 1.5℃ [degrees] above pre-industrial levels." If it sounds too wordy, that's because it is. For the sake of brevity, we commonly yoke together words and phrases that can govern multiple syntactical elements, which enables ...


8

Your ‘quality evaluator’ (whatever that may be), is wrong. The short story is that all formulaically interrogative sentences in English always take a question mark. it doesn’t matter whether it is a rhetorical question, a polite request, or an honest inquiry that expects an answer. In English, polite requests still use a question mark, even though you are ...


Only top voted, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible