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One for the grammar police

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  • Grammar rules were mostly invented by Victorians Latin scholars who thought English had become corrupted by the proletariats who because they had no classical education didn't appreciate there should be rules about pronouns, tenses, subjects and objects even if everyday language was perfectly well understood.

    When asked "Who did you give it to?" did you last reply "Sorry I don't understand your question, the verb 'to give' is a transitive verb and it must have an object as well as a subject and I only heard the subject pronoun 'who' ".


  • "To whom did you give it.".....?
  • "This very superficial grammatist, supposing empty criticism about the adoption of proper phraseology to be a show of extraordinary erudition, was displaying, in spite of ridicule, a very boastful turgid argument concerning the correction of false syntax, and about the detection of false logic in debate."
  • edited October 2019
    Grammar rules were mostly invented by Victorians Latin scholars who thought English had become corrupted by the proletariats who because they had no classical education didn't appreciate there should be rules about pronouns, tenses, subjects and objects even if everyday language was perfectly well understood.

    When asked "Who did you give it to?" did you last reply "Sorry I don't understand your question, the verb 'to give' is a transitive verb and it must have an object as well as a subject and I only heard the subject pronoun 'who' ".


    "Ooooooo get you, clever clogs.' Almost forgot 😺
  • "To whom did you give it.".....?
    Whooosh I think.
  • eats, shoots, and leaves or eats shoots and leaves.. BIG difference
  • Let's eat granny vs. let's eat, granny
  • Let's eat granny vs. let's eat, granny
    No distinction, I’ve eaten granny, she wasn’t very happy.
  • There was a massive sell off by investors in the Woodford Fund recently which caused the fund to close down.

    Rather than an instruction not to place any value on their research conclusions, how many Hargreaves Lansdown investors thought this was an instruction to sell their Woodford Fund on seeing there was no news or research item on the Woodford fund:

    "Woodford Fund - NO RECOMMENDATION

    No news or research item is a personal recommendation to deal. ........"

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  • I know language has to evolve but sumfin, whatevs, Jafaican, simples all added to the oed this month.

    Mind you I like omnishambles and nomophobia (Anxiety about not having access to a mobile phone or mobile phone services).

    Complete list here. 
    https://public.oed.com/updates/new-words-list-october-2019/
  • edited July 2021
    Grammar rules were mostly invented by Victorians Latin scholars who thought English had become corrupted by the proletariats who because they had no classical education didn't appreciate there should be rules about pronouns, tenses, subjects and objects even if everyday language was perfectly well understood.

    When asked "Who did you give it to?" did you last reply "Sorry I don't understand your question, the verb 'to give' is a transitive verb and it must have an object as well as a subject and I only heard the subject pronoun 'who' ".


    That reminds me of the illiterate prostitute who approached a plainclothes police officer. Her proposition ended with a sentence.
  • "To whom did you give it.".....?
    Surely that's a dangling participle...
  • I watched the new Flintoff thing last night ... "A Field of Dreams".

    After the team's inaugural game against a bunch of old boys from the Lake District, one of the Preston kids (who spoke a sort of Northern version of MLE) remarked how the old men pronounced all their letters ... "like all their 'ts' and 'cs' and that."

    I found it extraordinary.  The fact that the lad was aware of it, and thought it odd.

    I blame Boris.
  • Whisper it but English grammar is just a huge pile of baseless convention.  There never has been a definitive rulebook on what is or ain't pwoppa english.
    We cock a snook at the French with their language and grammar fascists at the Sorbonne handing down strict regulation to preserve some notion of the language's integrity and status.  Franglais is technically against the law.
    That said, I'm all for "correct" spelling, syntax, punctuation and grammar.  The apostrophe's correct utilisation is a reliable barometer of the worth of the scribe.  The dismantling of standards accelerates at ever increasing rates and I'll remain a rare critical voice from my imaginary pedestal in pedants' corner.
  • edited July 2022
    How many times can you use the word “that” sequentially so that it’s still grammatically correct…..answer, believe it or not, is five
    Example….a teacher asks a pupil to give a sentence with two “that’s” in sequence.
    The pupil answers “I think that that hat looks nice.”
    The teacher then says to the class…..”That that that, that that    student just gave me is a good answer.”
    Doesn’t seem possible at first does it.
  • How many times can you use the word “that” sequentially so that it’s still grammatically correct…..answer, believe it or not, is five
    Example….a teacher asks a pupil to give a sentence with two “that’s” in sequence.
    The pupil answers “I think that that hat looks nice.”
    The teacher then says to the class…..”That that that, that that    student just gave me is a good answer.”
    Doesn’t seem possible at first does it.
    Did my head in — but I got there in the end 😀
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  • How many times can you use the word “that” sequentially so that it’s still grammatically correct…..answer, believe it or not, is five
    Example….a teacher asks a pupil to give a sentence with two “that’s” in sequence.
    The pupil answers “I think that that hat looks nice.”
    The teacher then says to the class…..”That that that, that that    student just gave me is a good answer.”
    Doesn’t seem possible at first does it.

    Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo

  • ....and and, and and and....
  • How many times can you use the word “that” sequentially so that it’s still grammatically correct…..answer, believe it or not, is five
    Example….a teacher asks a pupil to give a sentence with two “that’s” in sequence.
    The pupil answers “I think that that hat looks nice.”
    The teacher then says to the class…..”That that that, that that    student just gave me is a good answer.”
    Doesn’t seem possible at first does it.
    Eight “had”s are also possible. 
  • ...out of about down under up for?
  • edited July 2022
    Dave Rudd said:
    Let's go further, @Billy_Mix.

    I'd say that, in general, correct grammar (both written and spoken) tells you quite a bit about the person you are with.

    You can infer level of education, intelligence (note that I am generalising here) and also whether that person 'can be arsed'.  It's interesting that most people who decry the importance of correct grammar are usually the least adept.

    Right ... let's see how that goes down.

     :) 

    3 full stops. Whatever next?

  • Dave Rudd said:
    Dave Rudd said:
    Let's go further, @Billy_Mix.

    I'd say that, in general, correct grammar (both written and spoken) tells you quite a bit about the person you are with.

    You can infer level of education, intelligence (note that I am generalising here) and also whether that person 'can be arsed'.  It's interesting that most people who decry the importance of correct grammar are usually the least adept.

    Right ... let's see how that goes down.

     :) 

    3 full stops. Whatever next?

    Oh!  Keep up, dear boy.

    It's a stylistic approach intended to bring a speech-like pause into the written word.  It makes it so much more ... 'conversational', don't you think?
    I believe the word is ellipsis or ellipses (plural).  Can also represent missing words or trailing off.
  • No such thing as bad grammar if your words are clearly  understood. The meaningless grammar rules that get ignored were invented by John Dryden so he could appear superior. Making you feel superior remains the main purpose of grammar rules
  • No such thing as bad grammar if your words are clearly  understood. The meaningless grammar rules that get ignored were invented by John Dryden so he could appear superior. Making you feel superior remains the main purpose of grammar rules

    Don't get me started re double spaces between words.
  • Dave Rudd said:
    Let's go further, @Billy_Mix.

    I'd say that, in general, correct grammar (both written and spoken) tells you quite a bit about the person you are with.

    You can infer level of education, intelligence (note that I am generalising here) and also whether that person 'can be arsed'.  It's interesting that most people who decry the importance of correct grammar are usually the least adept.

    Right ... let's see how that goes down.

     :) 

    3 full stops. Whatever next?

    It’s one ellipsis, it only looks like three full stops. 
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