Category: Prepositions

Taking Charge of Transitive and Intransitive Verbs

Posted on Wednesday, November 1, 2017, at 1:44 pm

Verbs are the drivers of language. All other parts of speech rely on them for momentum. Without effective verb usage, they lose the extra thrust that they’re made to provide and become mere golf-cart motor components. Mastering verbs includes understanding the difference between transitive and intransitive action words. A transitive verb is one that requires a direct …

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Diving Back Into Different From and Different Than

Posted on Tuesday, September 5, 2017, at 11:15 pm

It’s déjà vu for linguistic purists and caretakers of American English: We’re reading an article, having a chat, listening to the radio, or watching TV, and we receive the expression that something is different than something else. We close our eyes, lower our chin, softly sigh, and shake our head. No matter what we do, we just can’t …

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In Behalf Of vs. On Behalf Of

Posted on Tuesday, June 13, 2017, at 3:24 pm

Sometimes in writing and speaking we arrive at a phrase that forms a fork in the road to expression. Ideally, we can distinguish one path from the other, even if by subtlety. Other forks pose a greater challenge. Each way looks the same, and the sounds from both are familiar. We pick our path and …

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Proper Prepositional Pairing

Posted on Wednesday, June 7, 2017, at 8:23 am

Like any other language, English functions best when its parts are correctly connected. During grammatical evolution, parts of speech have bonded with certain prepositions for concise expression. An exacting writer observes these couplings and upholds their intended use and integrity. The noun “affinity” (a natural connection or attraction to a person or thing) is but …

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Among vs. Between

Posted on Wednesday, January 11, 2017, at 11:48 am

Many of you sent in comments on last week’s Year-End Quiz. The question receiving the most comments was: 7. James is trying to decide between three college majors; accounting, finance, or economics. Our point with this question was to demonstrate that the semicolon should instead be a colon. We didn’t anticipate the many comments exemplified …

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