Category: Verbs

Irregular Verbs: Handle with Care

Posted on Tuesday, May 17, 2016, at 4:20 pm

During a recent broadcast of America’s professional-basketball playoffs, a popular commentator said, “I wish he had did it” instead of had done it. A few days later, a longtime Washington insider with his own TV show said “if he had ran” instead of had run. When those who should know better misuse irregular verbs, it is …

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Media Watch

Posted on Wednesday, May 11, 2016, at 7:46 am

Here is another set of recent flubs and fumbles from usually dependable journalists. • “Yet my relationship with the game was simple and uncomplicated.” How did this one get by the editors? One of those two adjectives has to go. • “He is accused of fleeing to London in March while owing more than $1 …

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No Shortcuts with Irregular Verbs

Posted on Tuesday, February 23, 2016, at 10:22 am

It isn’t just the disadvantaged or disaffected among us who struggle with irregular verbs. A political insider with his own long-running TV show keeps saying “has ran.” Fifty years ago a textbook called Warriner’s English Grammar and Composition said: “Irregular verbs … cause the greatest single problem in standard verb usage because there is no …

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Year-End Quiz

Posted on Tuesday, December 15, 2015, at 2:31 pm

To close out 2015 we have put together a comprehensive pop quiz based on the year’s grammar posts. The quiz comprises twenty-five sentences that may—or may not—need fixing. Think you can fix the ones that need help? You’ll find our answers directly below the quiz. Each answer includes, for your convenience, the title and …

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Things We Will Never Say

Posted on Tuesday, November 17, 2015, at 10:49 am

There are certain words or phrases that seem to cast a spell over people. All at once some expression is all the rage, and there is no escaping it. It is hard to say anything positive about this particular manifestation of herd mentality but we’ll try: It’s better than a lynch mob. Have you noticed …

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