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English Usage
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Erekose


Posts: 557
Joined: May 2010
Post: #461
24-01-2015 10:15 PM

Yes time think is good.

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BT


Posts: 163
Joined: Jul 2003
Post: #462
25-01-2015 10:00 AM

What really annoys me is the way people, mainly youngsters end sentences with 'so' ,as if they've forgotten what they want to say next.

'We went to the pub last night, so....'

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Erekose


Posts: 557
Joined: May 2010
Post: #463
25-01-2015 03:17 PM

Now dont get me started on poor endings to sentences......you know?

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Tim Lund


Posts: 255
Joined: Apr 2008
Post: #464
25-01-2015 09:56 PM

It irritates me at the beginning of an explanation, but I know I need to guard against becoming a linguistic fuddy-duddy. Robin, you are my exemplarSmile

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PVP


Posts: 271
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #465
26-01-2015 10:22 PM

Looking at the title of this thread. Would either 'use of English' or 'English usage' be correct?

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robin orton


Posts: 716
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #466
26-01-2015 11:27 PM

I agree. Either, I guess, although 'English usage' would be less ambiguous, and would also pay due honour to Fowler. This has been raised before on this thread, I think

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admin
Administrator

Posts: 407
Joined: Dec 2002
Post: #467
27-01-2015 09:12 AM

Ok, you goddit.

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lacb


Posts: 624
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #468
27-01-2015 01:14 PM

Oh no, what a missed opportunity. Grammar trumps content. A better rename might have been 'pedant's corner'. Place the apostrophe wherever you like!

http://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php/1429:_Data

This post was last modified: 27-01-2015 01:19 PM by lacb.

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robin orton


Posts: 716
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #469
27-01-2015 04:32 PM

Quote:
Grammar trumps content. A better rename might have been 'pedant's corner'.

A little harsh. Some people are interested in football, others in language. Which is the more pointless?

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 513
Joined: May 2012
Post: #470
27-01-2015 05:53 PM

Quote:
A better rename might have been 'pedant's corner'. Place the apostrophe wherever you like!

The pedants are revolting! Rofl

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lacb


Posts: 624
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #471
27-01-2015 06:18 PM

Quote:
A little harsh. Some people are interested in football, others in language. Which is the more pointless?


Sorry, didn't mean to sound harsh. Was meant mostly in jest, had hoped link would make that clear but should have used smiley. :-) Am actually more interested in meaning than grammar, am happy for you to differ but yes, way more interesting than football IMO but probably equally pointless!

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robin orton


Posts: 716
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #472
27-01-2015 09:30 PM

I was in jest, too.

I stubbornly refuse to use those smiley things. Perhaps I am wrong, and risk being misinterpreted, particularly when I am trying to be ironic or facetious. But I always feel that if Shakespeare, Addison, Johnson, Macaulay, Newman, Dickens and Orwell managed to do without them, we ought to be able to as well.

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lacb


Posts: 624
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #473
27-01-2015 10:28 PM

Well I just misinterpreted you just now. So either your language is not as concise as Shakespeare or, more likely, forum English is more akin to conversation which has actual smiles and other expressions to aid it. I would contend that, if he were alive today, StratfordBard would use smileys on a forum.

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robin orton


Posts: 716
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #474
28-01-2015 10:18 AM

You're quite right, this has been pointed out to me in the past Blush.The trouble is. I'm a written word sort of person and keep forgetting.

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robin orton


Posts: 716
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #475
10-02-2015 04:36 PM

'Will customers please note that you can only alight from the first four carriages?'

I find this recorded advice on Overground trains rather puzzling. What else might 'customers' want to do from the first four carriages (apart from admire the view)? Launch paper aeroplanes? Release homing pigeons? Relieve themselves?

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Sherwood


Posts: 1,375
Joined: Mar 2005
Post: #476
11-02-2015 11:19 AM

Why do they always use the posh word Alight?

Most people would say something like get out of.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 513
Joined: May 2012
Post: #477
11-02-2015 11:42 AM

A special treat for you when you have your next coffee break: George Orwell's 1946 essay, Politics and the English Language.

Enjoy!

https://www.mtholyoke.edu/acad/intrel/orwell46.htm

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robin orton


Posts: 716
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #478
12-02-2015 01:34 PM

Thanks, Mr N. Would a fair summary of Orwell’s essay be (1) that we should do our best to choose the words that express our meaning accurately, clearly and vividly and (2) that modern politicians are often tempted not to do this (OK, they sometimes manage 'vividly'), in order to pull the wool over our eyes? If so, I guess we would all agree.

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Mr_Numbers


Posts: 513
Joined: May 2012
Post: #479
13-02-2015 12:31 PM

Looks like a perfectly reasonable summary to me, Robin!

I'd just add, I'm sure that elsewhere Orwell wrote about the use of over-elaborate 'officialese' - deployed by petty bureaucrats and officials to make themselves sound more important than they really are. I have nagging me at the back of my mind a mention of railway station announcers or something like that. Ring any bells?

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robin orton


Posts: 716
Joined: Feb 2009
Post: #480
13-02-2015 06:34 PM

The two things that irritate me most in railway announcements both involve using more words that are necessary:

'The next station stop will be ....' (Do they really think that if they just said 'the next stop will be ...' we'd sue them if the train had to stop between stations e.g. at a red signal?)

'... stopping at Felpersham, Borchester, Hollerton Junction, where the train will then divide....'

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