15

The other answer is a good one. Here's another suggestion: A1 and B1 are on par with A2 and B2, respectively. However, this wouldn't work if you were talking about (A1,A2) and (B1,B2,B3). Respectively adverb in precisely the order given; sequentially. (of two or more things, with reference to two or more things previously mentioned) ...


12

Is nothing singular or plural? All by itself, nothing is clearer than the fact that nothing is singular. However, the original question did not use nothing “all by itself”, and that is where things get sticky. The question asks which of these two versions should be used: Nothing but birds and a few insects was to be seen. Nothing but birds and ...


10

Your sentence contains an example of ambiguity resulting from a misrelated construction. The Oxford Dictionary of English Grammar defines misrelated as follows: Not attached grammatically to the word or phrase intended by the meaning, either joined to the wrong word or phrase, or completely unattached. Although terms such as misrelated, dangling, ...


9

“Very out of the way” It is a bit tough to find cases of very modifying individual prepositions, but it is easy to find cases of very modifying entire prepositional phrases as a unit, just as it does other adjectives and adverbs. I think it’s very out of character for him. Things can be very out of place. Or very out of date. And very out of the way. They ...


9

Support of an organization means that it is the organization that is giving the support. Support for an organization means that the organization is receiving support.


8

A prepositional phrase is a grammatical structure consisting of a preposition followed by a noun phrase. An adverbial complement is a grammatical function. Adverbial complements may be realized through prepositional phrases or other adverbials. Consider: I put the book down. I put the book on the table. I put the book down on the table. There are verbs ...


8

Reverse the order, "since before I started kindergarten" D


7

There are a number of cases where nouns are not preceded by any article (‘the zero article’). They include meals and places as institutions, times of the day, days, months and seasons and, as here, means of transport and communication. We speak of going by air, car, horse or rail and sending by mail, post or e-mail.


7

Prepositions are often interchangeable in English, even when they seem to mean exactly the opposite thing in their literal sense. It is possible, for example, to say You'll find a Chevron station down the road about five miles. or You'll find a Chevron station up the road about five miles. or even You'll find a Chevron station along the road about ...


7

Like a lot of, something like 90% of functions not so much as a preposition as it does a premodifier. And premodifiers work like adjectives. They do not change the head noun, which remains the grammatical subject and still must be agree with the verb in number. People are coming. Trouble is avoided. A lot of people are coming. A lot of trouble is ...


7

The question you ask, “Can the antecedent ever be used in a prepositional phrase?” is of course, certainly it can. Proof: After the meteorite fell on Jack, he was never again the same. Jack likes running with Jill. She is a good person. Jack likes running with Jill. He is a good person. As you see, I have constructed three such examples. The answer to ...


7

'On asserting ...' here requires a main clause which does not describe a consequence or restatement, but merely an event happening (almost) simultaneously. AHDEL sense 3 for on: b. Used to indicate the particular occasion or circumstance: On entering the room, she saw him. By introduces a consequence, and in an explanation, an apposition. Here, by ...


7

If we take your specimen text, The thing I'm most afraid of is me. Of not knowing what I'm going to do. Of not knowing what I'm doing right now it is apparent that it is semantically one sentence that has been turned into one sentence plus two sentence fragments for rhetorical effect. (The main verb that makes gives meaning to the two sentence fragments ...


7

Let's keep this simple. When looking at a picture, the idiomatic expression is: second from the left. = Starting from the left count to the right. By itself, second to the left does not establish a definitive location. A particular point of reference must be specifically identified or clearly understood. Example: Second to my left identifies me as ...


7

First, as Jim has commented, the word is spelled "wont" (though it's pronounced the same way as want in a typical American accent). Wont can be an adjective, as in I am wont to use antiquated language, or a noun, as in, I spoke in a stilted style, as is my wont. Because wont can be a noun, it's probably the case that "have wont" is grammatical (although, ...


6

After Understanding English Grammar by Martha Kolln, grammar.ccc.commnet.edu ... advises the following: Commas and Introductory Elements When a sentence begins with an adverbial clause, put a comma after it. Although we had reviewed the film twice before, we never noticed these details about the shooting. As the day drew to a smoky end, the firefighters ...


6

I looked at a bunch of style guides to see what they have to say on this subject. The vast majority of them dedicate at least a paragraph to the distinction (or nondistinction) between "in behalf of" and "on behalf of"—but not one addresses the question of how to handle "on behalf of" when used by a speaker to refer to another ...


6

The rule about ending sentences with prepositions is a bit of a dinosaur. It, along with the rule about not splitting infinitives, is an artifact left over from Latin, where such constructions are impossible. Quite often, the reworking you have to do in order to avoid ending a sentence with a preposition makes the sentence even more unreadable. Example: "X ...


6

'For' is implied by 'seeking' and therefore redundant. In 'searching an answer,' 'for' is not implied and should be added. One of those English mysteries, I guess.


6

Both expressions appear to have currency according to a very quick look through the Google periscope. The Ngram chart shows an interesting result, suggesting that scared of emerged in the mid to late 19th C., which is contemporary with examples offered up by couple of online dictionaries: Mark Twain's Adventures of Tom Sawyer. It's not quite a "smoking pen"...


6

The context makes it clear who had stab wounds. I don't see anything wrong with the headline, or with your alternative. Both are ok. Alternatively, it could say: Passer-by finds victim with stab wounds.


5

School without an article means the school as an educational system. It's sort of like an abstract noun, I think. A/the school places more importance on the physical aspect of school. (Not necessarily the case for "the".) He is in school. = He is a student. He is in the school. = He is in a school building.


5

The sentences are both grammatical, and mean the same thing. The difference between them is precisely that they are the two variants of the English Dative Alternation, also known as Dative Movement, or simply Dative. Most though not all bitransitive verbs (verbs that can have both a direct object and an indirect object, like give) participate in the Dative ...


5

I think this is called Amphiboly. The first example I ever read was the phrase "half baked chicken".


5

You could make a logical case for either variant, but the only one that native speakers of English would say is Half [of] the students don't bother to show up. This is a case in which the outcome is dictated by synesis (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synesis ).


5

Fixed in revision n says that the change occurred in that revision. That bug was fixed in revision 23. Fixed at revision n doesn't say when it was fixed, just that we know that revision n contains the fix. It could have been fixed earlier. Some people would use the two interchangeably.


5

The phrase of none effect is an archaic version of: of no effect Nowadays we see an alternation between the so-called determiner no and the pronoun none, such that when there is a following noun we use no, and when there isn't a following noun we use none. In response to Can I have one of your apples, therefore, we might observe either of the following: ...


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