Search Results for: split infinitive

The Pedant on the split infinitive

For readers of The Times or anyone who didn’t happen to be present: yes this was us, and thank you, Oliver Kamm for referring to the symposium! The column is a good read, and offers excellent advice: it is alright to … Continue reading

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Try and, only, split infinitives, dangling participles

(If this is your first time on this blog: please fill in the acceptability survey below. Thank you!) What do these features have in common? That is something Carmen Ebner and I are going to figure out in the article we … Continue reading

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Marilyn French and the split infinitive

I found another one! And once again in a novel by Marilyn French (1929-2009), this time My Summer with George (1996). The novel is situated in 1991 (p. 236), and it is about the dream of an affair in late middle … Continue reading

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Out with whom, in with the split infinitive

One of our blog authors recently tackled the “whom issue”, and it made me wonder if this word is really dying out. Our readers will also remember several posts featuring the split infinitive, the pedants’ pet peeve. I have decided … Continue reading

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Settling the split infinitive differences

Letters to the editor (LTE) sections in historical newspaper databases are rich sources for investigating the language pedants’ pet peeves.  The split infinitive seems to be among the prominent causes for their perpetual discussions. A 1904 article in the Washington … Continue reading

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The “split infinitive syndrome”

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The quotation in this title is from an article by David Crystal on the split infinitive which appeared in English Today in 1985. It was taken from a book by Robert Burchfield, The English Language, which had come out that … Continue reading

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Splitting only

What do try and, only, split infinitives and dangling participles have in common? This is a question we asked a few weeks ago, and I promised to let you know as soon as we found out. Here, then, is a partial answer … Continue reading

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The Grammarians – by Cathleen Schine

If you’re interested in prescriptivism, you might well want to read this recently published novel. It’s about twins who gradually grow apart, with the one thing binding them to the end being an old copy of a dictionary, probably  by … Continue reading

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Febuary, febry

‘Last February? Last February? Oh yes, I was here last February.’ He [the janitor]  pronounced it exactly as spelled.’  (p. 236) The passage is from Raymond Chandler‘s novel The Little Sister (1949). When I came across this metalinguistic comment, I was wondering … Continue reading

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How do the Dutch feel about non-standard features of English?

Here is Michèle Huisman’s first blogpost, and she too is doing a survey for her paper in the course Non-standard English which I’m teaching. So please help her collect data for her upcoming presentation! In 2017, The Netherlands came first … Continue reading

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