Author Topic: Cato's Grammar Grumble  (Read 556005 times)

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karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #600 on: May 20, 2009, 01:29:30 AM »
I think the Grumble should be pinned  8)

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #601 on: May 20, 2009, 02:42:56 AM »
"Who would of thought?"'
One of the more common means of signaling brain death these days. 
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #602 on: May 20, 2009, 08:25:45 AM »
A former employer spent lots of money on a full-page ad in the NY Times. A third of the space was taken up with the words "Who would of thought?"'

I have seen the verbifying of "of" in novels, where one wonders if the author is sending a signal about the speaker's intelligence, or did the writer fall prey to plebeian-speak?

Using pronouns for possessives ("You age, they car") is found in dialect, although I have been told that some primitive languages allow it.

"Primitive" in the sense that such languages have small vocabularies, e.g. pronouns but no possessives.

English, however, is not supposed to sound primitive!   0:)
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #603 on: May 20, 2009, 08:29:30 AM »
Earlier this week I heard Diana Rigg speak the line "Me, Emma" in a 1966 episode of The Avengers

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #604 on: May 20, 2009, 08:37:15 AM »
"There's a lot of people there" instead of There are -.  I hear it all the time, it makes my skin crawl.
Isn't "a lot" singular?  There are many people here, but there is a lot of people there.
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #605 on: May 20, 2009, 10:20:21 AM »
We need a ruling:

"thusly": a real word?

 8)

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #606 on: May 20, 2009, 10:54:09 AM »
We need a ruling:

"thusly": a real word?

 8)

No!  Not a real word: it is an over-correction.  Thus is already an adverb and needs no -ly ending.

David Ross wrote: "Isn't "a lot" singular?  There are many people here, but there is a lot of people there."

And yes: "Lot" is a collective singular, although the phenomenon of "last-word attraction" is at work in your example, i.e. "people" forcing itself as the subject, even though "lot" is the subject, and "people" the object of the preposition "of."

I have tricked my (weaker) students with the following example:

The steaks my father is grilling, and that my mother says (has/have) too much fat, (is/are) very expensive.

Interesting results at times, with some students insisting on "has" while correctly choosing "are" at the end.  Others insist on singular verbs for both spots.


"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #607 on: May 20, 2009, 10:59:34 AM »
I just read thusly in a movie review . . . and it sounded desperately wrong, but I wanted to make sure I wasn't prejudiced by the textual environment  8)

Offline Jay F

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #608 on: May 20, 2009, 12:15:45 PM »
I have tricked my (weaker) students with the following example:

The steaks my father is grilling, and that my mother says (has/have) too much fat, (is/are) very expensive.

Interesting results at times, with some students insisting on "has" while correctly choosing "are" at the end.  Others insist on singular verbs for both spots.
You want "have" and "are," don't you?

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #609 on: May 20, 2009, 12:27:34 PM »
I just read thusly in a movie review . . . and it sounded desperately wrong, but I wanted to make sure I wasn't prejudiced by the textual environment  8)
Cato is right (as usual).  "Thus" suffices.
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #610 on: May 20, 2009, 12:57:38 PM »
You want "have" and "are," don't you?

Yes, the plural is correct in both cases!
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #611 on: May 22, 2009, 03:19:14 AM »
Not a grammar grumble at all, but linguistic ingenuity: I have a 7th-Grade boy, barely cracking 4' 10'', with a piercing soprano voice, both contrary to a last name indicating the toughest Viking heritage, who is running for Student Council President 2009-2010.

His slogan: "Think BIG, Vote small!"   8)

And he thinks he is indeed the biggest rooster around!  Napoleon complex extraordinaire!   0:)
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #612 on: May 22, 2009, 03:20:52 AM »
Oh, I've got to watch Ian Holm as Napoleon in Time Bandits again soon!

Papageno

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #613 on: May 22, 2009, 03:39:12 AM »
No!  Not a real word: it is an over-correction.  Thus is already an adverb and needs no -ly ending.

But

Interesting...

karlhenning

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #614 on: May 22, 2009, 03:42:47 AM »
But, in that example, the 'unadorned' thus works perfectly suitably.

What was the source, Pap? (And at least sensibly, it is marked informal.)

Papageno

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #615 on: May 22, 2009, 03:59:46 AM »
But, in that example, the 'unadorned' thus works perfectly suitably.

What was the source, Pap? (And at least sensibly, it is marked informal.)

Pap!?  That reminds of Pappy, or Pop... My god, my posts make you look at me like an old man.
Oxford Dictionary
« Last Edit: May 22, 2009, 04:03:49 AM by Papageno »

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #616 on: May 22, 2009, 04:10:29 AM »
Pap!?  That reminds of Pappy, or Pop... My god, my posts make you look at me like an old man.
Oxford Dictionary

The Random House College Dictionary states: "Since thus is an adverb, thusly is avoided by careful speakers as a grammatical tautology."

Marvelous explanation!   $:)

Another source says that "thusly" was coined by 19th-century British writers to mock lower-class speakers who were trying to sound educated.  (No specific writer was mentioned, however.)
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline DavidRoss

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #617 on: May 22, 2009, 04:25:18 AM »
An old goof that's been making a comeback lately: "effect" used when the writer means "affect."
"Maybe the problem most of you have ... is that you're not listening to Barbirolli." ~Sarge

"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later you run out of other people's money." ~Margaret Thatcher

Offline Cato

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #618 on: May 22, 2009, 09:37:15 AM »
An old goof that's been making a comeback lately: "effect" used when the writer means "affect."

I have heard teachers say they have given up on that one!   >:D

Cato is nothing if not Quixotic, and refuses to surrender to the windmills of the Illiterati Conspiracy.

One mnemonic device I have taught: "An effect is a result."

That has helped some students throughout the years to keep them straight.
"Meet Miss Ruth Sherwood, from Columbus, Ohio, the Middle of the Universe!"

- Brian Aherne introducing Rosalind Russell in  My Sister Eileen (1942)

Offline knight66

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Re: Cato's Grammar Grumble
« Reply #619 on: May 22, 2009, 12:29:55 PM »
This isn't a grammar problem - it's just silly :P I heard this on the news yesterday:

"I'll take responsibility, but it's not all my fault"

Would that have been a politician?

Mike
DavidW: Yeah Mike doesn't get angry, he gets even.
I wasted time: and time wasted me.