Category: Definitions

You Lost Me After “Feb”

Posted on Wednesday, February 14, 2018, at 8:30 am

In honor of both our present month as well as the birthday of our late writer Tom Stern, today we repeat his classic pronunciation article first published on February 3, 2016.   Feb-yoo-ary. Febber-ary. Feb-wary. Can’t anyone around here say “feb-roo-ary”? It’s time to revisit dissimilation, the labored linguistic theory that purports to explain why so …

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Grasping the Grammatical Expletive

Posted on Wednesday, February 7, 2018, at 8:45 am

There is/are…, It is…: We often use these constructions in communicating, perhaps without being aware they have a grammatical classification, the expletive. Expletives introduce clauses and delay sentence subjects. Unlike nouns and verbs, which have well-defined roles in expression, expletives do not add to sense or meaning; rather, they let us shift emphasis in sentences …

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Year-End Quiz

Posted on Tuesday, January 9, 2018, at 12:01 pm

Review is good for retention. That’s why GrammarBook.com likes to start the new year with a jumbo quiz that spans the last twelve months of topics we’ve covered with you. In 2017 we explored an array of ways to enhance your grammar and writing. We hope what you learned follows you well into 2018 as …

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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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Commonly Confused Words That Bring Bumps to Writing

Posted on Wednesday, October 4, 2017, at 9:07 am

The English language—its words, its structure, its stylistic possibilities—is rich, descriptive, and versatile. It can communicate with precision and convey vivid, persuasive thoughts and ideas. At times, it can also confuse. Those not familiar with the nuanced or multiple meanings of many English words and the finer points of grammar can sometimes trip where they’re …

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