Glossary Of Usage Warriner’sEnglish Composition and Grammar
a, an • These short words are called indefinite articles. They refer to one general group. • Rule: • Use a before words beginning with a consonant sound; use an before words beginning with a vowel sound. • An is used before hour because hour begins with a vowel sound. • Examples: • Awoman bought Larry’s car. • Maria was in anaccident in her father’s car.
accept, except • Rule: • Accept is a verb; it means “to receive.” • Except as a verb means “to leave out”; as a preposition it means “excluding.” • Examples: • I accepted the gift gratefully. • Debbie has a perfect attendance record, if you except the day she stayed home with the flu. • We were busy every evening this week except Tuesday.
adapt, adopt • Rule: • Adapt means “to change in order to fit or be more suitable; to adjust.” • Adopt means “to take something and make it one’s own.” • Examples: • When it rained on the day of the senior class picnic, we adapted our plans. • The Broadway play was adapted from a popular television miniseries. • The couple who adopted the baby read many books and adopted some suggestions for infant care.
affect, effect • Rule: • Affect is usually a verb; it means “to impress” or “to influence (frequently the mind or feelings.)” • Effect as a verb means “to accomplish, to bring about.” • Effect as a noun means “the result of some action.” • Examples: • Try not to let careless remarks affect you. • The school board effected (brought about) drastic changes in the budget. • The effects (results) of the hurricane were shown on the evening news. Video: http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=Examples+of+Affect+Vs.+Effect&Form=VQFRVP#view=detail&mid=BD59B16A8ED6C56ED431BD59B16A8ED6C56ED431 Practice for affect/effect Activity: Complete on your own. Compare with a partner. Vote as a class. Check responses. http://www.towson.edu/ows/_vti_bin/shtml.dll/exerciseaffect2.htm
all the farther, all the faster • Rule: • Used informally in some parts of the country to mean “as far as, as fast as.” • Examples: • Dialect: • Thirty miles per hour was all the faster the first airplane could travel. • Standard: • Thirty miles per hour was as fast as the first airplane could travel.
allusion, illusion • Rule: • An allusion is a reference to something. • An illusion is a mistaken idea. • Examples: • In her essay she made many allusions to the American pioneers. • The behind-the-scenes report destroyed her illusions of Hollywood.
alumni, alumnae • Rule: • Alumni is the plural of alumnus (male graduate). • Alumnae is the plural of alumna (female graduate). • The graduates of a co-educational school are referred to (as a group) as alumni. • Examples: • All of my sisters are alumnae of Adam’s High School. • Both men are alumni of Harvard. • My parents went to their college alumni reunion.
amount, number • Rule: • Use amount to refer to a singular word. • Use number to refer to a plural word. • Examples: • The amount of research (singular) on stress is overwhelming. • A number of reports (plural) on stress are available.
and etc. • Rule: • Since etc. is an abbreviation of the Latin et cetera, which means “and other things,” you are using and twice when you write “and etc.” • Examples: • The new store in the mall sells DVDs, cameras, radios, video games, etc.
and which, but which • Rule: • The expressions and which, but which (and who, but who) should be used only when a which (or who) clause precedes them in the sentence. • Examples: • Nonstandard: Our jazz band was pleased with the audience’s enthusiastic response and which we had not expected before the concert. • Standard: Our jazz band was please with the audience’s response, which was enthusiastic and which we had not expected before the concert. • Standard:Our jazz band was please with the audience’s enthusiastic response, which we had not expected before the concert.
anywheres, everywheres, nowheres • Rule: • Use these words and others like them without the final s. • Examples: • I could not find my keys anywhere; I looked everywhere, but they were nowhere in the house.
at • Rule: • Do not use at after where. • Examples: • Nonstandard:Where are they living at now? • Standard:Where are they living now?
Formative Assessment: • Complete Exercise 1 on your own without using your notes. • Once you have finished, partner up and discuss your answers. You may use your notes as reference at this point. • Each group member must have the right answer AND understand the justification of that answer. • I will be calling on students to tell me the correct answer AND explain why it is the correct answer. • You will need to grade your paper accurately: I will be taking it up to enter as a Formative Assessment for this unit.
because • Rule: • The use of because after reason is common in informal English, but it is generally avoided in formal writing. • Examples: • Not Standard: The reason is because…. • Not Standard: The reason she arrived late was because her car had a flat tire. • Standard: The reason she arrived late was that her car had a flat tire. • Standard: She arrived late because her car had a flat tire.
being as, being that • Rule: • Nonstandard English when used for since or because • Examples: • Nonstandard:Being as Emily had lived in Montreal for five years, she could speak both French and English. • Standard:Because Emily had lived in Montreal for five years, she could speak both French and English.
beside, besides • Rule: • Beside means “by the side of” someone or something. • Besides means “in addition to.” • Examples: • Who sits beside you in English class? • Besides my homework, I have an errand to run.
between, among • Rule: • Use between when you are thinking of two items at a time, whether or not they are part of a larger group. • Use among when you are thinking of a group rather than of separate individuals. • Examples: • We have to choose between Anne and Lisa. • She is respected among her peers. • I cannot remember the difference between the polka and the two-step. • I hated to decide among so many qualified applicants.
bring, take • Rule: • Use bring when the meaning is to convey something to the person speaking. • Use take when the meaning is to convey something away from the person speaking. • Bring is related to come; take is related to go. • Examples: • Remember to bring your new albums when you come to my house. • Take your warm jacket when you go to the game this afternoon. • http://www.englisch-hilfen.de/en/exercises/confusing_words/bring_take.htm
could of • Rule: • This phrase is sometimes carelessly written for could have. • Examples: • Nonstandard: Wanda could of told us it wasn’t a costume party before we rented these chicken suits. • Standard: Wanda could have told us it wasn’t a costume party before we rented these chicken suits.
credible, creditable, credulous • Rule: • Credible means “believable.” • Creditable means “praiseworthy.” • Credulous means “inclined to believe just about anything.” • Examples: • The child gave a credible excuse for breaking the window in the kitchen. • Her quick thinking and competent action were creditable. • The credulous woman and her neighbors signed up for the trip to Mars.
data • Rule: • Data is the plural form of the Latin datum. • According to the book, “You will be safer if, in your writing, you use the word as a plural.” • Examples: • The census datawere finally published.
discover, invent • Rule: • Invent means “to make something not known before, to bring something into existence.” • Discover means “to find something that has been in existence but was unknown.” • Examples: • Elias Howe invented the sewing machine. • The engineers discovered new oil deposits in Michigan.
done • Rule: • Done is not the past form of do. The past form of do is did. • Done always needs a helping verb: has done, was done, will be done, etc. • Examples: • Nonstandard: We done all our chores in an hour. • Standard: We did all our chores in an hour. • Standard: We had done all our chores in an hour. • Nonstandard: I done that. • Standard: I did that. • Standard: I have done that.
don’t • Rule: • A contraction of do not, don’t should not be used with a singular noun or the third person of singular pronouns (it, he, she). • Use doesn’t. • Examples: • Nonstandard: It don’t worry us. (It do not worry us.) • Standard: It doesn’t worry us. (It does not worry us.)
emigrate, immigrate • Rule: • Emigrate means “to go from a county” to settle elsewhere. • Immigrate means “to come into a country” to settle. • Examples: • The war has forced thousands of people to emigrate from their homeland to other, more peaceful countries. • Marie’s grandparents immigrated here in 1950.
famous, notorious • Rule: • Famous means “well and widely known.” • Notorious means “widely known” but in an unfavorable sense. • Examples: • Oprah is famous. • Al Capone was a notorious gangster in the 1920’s.
fewer, less • Rule: • Fewer is used before a plural noun. • Less is used before a singular noun. • Examples: • We printed fewer prom tickets this year. • I spent less time in the library this morning.
good, well • Rule: • Good is always an adjective. It should never be used to modify a verb. • Well may be used as an adjective or adverb. • Examples: • Nonstandard: The choir sanggood at the concert. • Standard: The choir sangwell at the concert. • Nonstandard: We bowled very good as a team. • Standard: We bowled very well as a team.
Formative Assessment: • Complete Exercise 2 on your own without using your notes. • Once you have finished, partner up and discuss your answers. You may use your notes as reference at this point. • Each group member must have the right answer AND understand the justification of that answer. • I will be calling on students to tell me the correct answer AND explain why it is the correct answer. • You will need to grade your paper accurately: I will be taking it up to enter as a Formative Assessment for this unit.
Mini Summative Assessment Complete Exercise 3 (pg 606)
Had of • Rule: • The of is superfluous. • Examples: • Nonstandard: IF we had of asked permission, we could have used the auditorium for our meeting. • Standard: If we had asked permission, we could have used the auditorium for our meeting.
Had ought, Hadn’t ought • Rule: • Do not use had with ought. • Examples: • Nonstandard: They had ought to be more patient. • Standard: They ought to be more patient. • Nonstandard: I hadn’t ought to go to the movies again. • Standard: I ought not to go to the movies again.
He, she, they, etc. • Rule: • Do not use unnecessary pronouns after a noun. • This error is sometimes called the double subject. • Examples: • Nonstandard: My cousin she designs her own clothes. • Standard: My cousin designs her own clothes.
Hisself, theirselves • Rule: • These words are sometimes incorrectly used for himself,themselves. • Examples: • Nonstandard: Lou built the shed hisself. • Standard: Lou built the shed himself.
Imply, infer • Rule: • Imply means “to suggest something.” • Infer means “to interpret, to get a certain meaning from a remark or action.” • The speaker or writer implies. The listener or reader infers. • Examples: • Mrs. Hanson implied during her lecture that we needed more practice. • We inferred from her comments that we need to practice more.
In, into • Rule: • In standard formal usage, observe the difference in meaning between these words. • In means “within.” • Into suggests movement from the outside to the inside. • Examples: • Standard: Feeling nervous, I walked into[not in] the personnel office. • Nonstandard: We threw some pennies in the well and made a wish. • Standard: We threw some pennies into the well and made a wish.
Kind of, sort of • Rule: • In standard formal usage the adjectives this, these, that, thoseare made to agree in number with the words kind, sort, type; this kind, these kinds; that sort, these sorts. • Examples: • We prefer this kind of magazines. • We prefer these kinds of magazines.
Kind of, sort of • Rule: • In standard formal usage, avoid using these expressions to mean “rather” or “somewhat.” • Examples: • Informal: I feel kind of depressed today. • Formal: I feel rather [somewhat] depressed today.
Kind of a, sort of a • Rule: • The “a” is superfluous. • Examples: • Informal: What kind of a sports car is this? • Formal: What kind of sports car is this?
Lay, lie • Rule: • The verb lie means “to assume a lying position” or “to be in a lying position.” Its principal parts are lie, (is) lying, lay, (have) lain. This verb is intransitive; that is, it never has an object. You never “lie” anything down. • The verb lay means “to put” or “to place something.” Its principal parts are lay, (is) laying, laid, (have) laid. This verb is transitive; that is, it may have an object or be in passive voice. • Examples: • The pattern lies on top of the fabric. (intransitive/no object) • You lay the fabricon a flat surface. (transitive/object: fabric) • The fabric is laid on a hard, flat table. (passive voice) • Strategy: • When faced with a lay-lie problem, ask yourself two questions:
Learn, teach • Rule: • Learn means “to acquire knowledge.” • Teach means “to dispense knowledge.” • Examples: • If Mrs. Green teaches [not learns] us, we will learn more.
Leave, let • Rule: • Leave (left) means “to go away.” • Let means “to allow, to permit.” • Examples: • Nonstandard: Leave us finish our dinner. • Standard:Let us finish our dinner. • Nonstandard: He shouldn’t have left us borrow his car. • Standard: He shouldn’t have let us borrow his car.
Like, as • Rule: • Like is a preposition and introduces a prepositional phrase. • As is usually a conjunction and introduces a subordinate clause. • Examples: • Jo sings like her sister. [prepositional phrase] • Jo sings asher sister does. [subordinate clause]
Like, as if • Rule: • Like should not be used for as if or as though, which are conjunctions used to introduce clauses. • Examples: • Informal: She looks likeshe studied all night. • Formal: She looks as if [as though]she studied all night. (clause)
Likely, liable • Rule: • These words are often used interchangeably, but some writers of standard formal English prefer to observe the following distinctions. • Likely is used to express simple probability. • Liable is used to express probability with a suggestion of harm or misfortune; it is also used to mean “responsible” or “answerable.” • Examples: • Ginny is likely to arrive at any minute. • The children playing near the gravel pit are liable to get hurt. • Mrs. Lee is liable for the damages her daughter caused.
Myself, ourselves • Rule: • Most careful writers of English avoid using pronouns ending in –self, -selves to replace personal pronouns as subjects or objects. • Examples: • Amy and I [not myself] are in charge of decorations. • Could you do a favor for Wanda and me? [not myself]
Formative Assessment • Complete Exercise 4 (pg. 611)
Nauseated, nauseous • Rule: • These words do not mean the same thing. • Nauseated means “sick.” • Nauseous means “disgusting, sickening.” • Examples: • After riding on the roller coaster, the child became nauseated. • The chemical reaction gave off a nauseous odor.
None • Rule: • None may be either singular or plural. • Examples: • None of the story makes sense. • None of the movies were exciting.