Author Archives: Ingrid Tieken

Fingers crossed, please!

A few weeks ago, I submitted our HUGE database as a candidate for the Nederlandse Dataprijs. By mid-September, the jury will nominate three potential winners, and we hope to be among them. What is more, we would really like to be … Continue reading

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“Basically … rather good”

Just decided to check up on the reception of Simon Heffer’s new (well, two years old by now) usage guide called Simply English, and found that Ben East, in The Guardian, described it as “basically … rather good”.  Interesting, in view … Continue reading

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Frank Sinatra and prescriptivism

This summer, driving through France, one of the CDs we played was “The best of Frank Sinatra”. Singing along with his very popular “That’s Life” (1966), my attention was suddenly caught by his use of laying for lying: “Each time I find myself … Continue reading

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9 December: preliminary programme

We have now drawn up a preliminary programme for the symposium on 9 December. Details about how to register will follow towards the end of July, beginning of August. Symposium: Life after HUGE? Speakers: Rebecca Gowers, “Another One?” Why I … Continue reading

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How do sticklers react to linguistic findings?

Here is Lingyun Lai’s second blogpost: Sometimes, grammar handbooks and usage guides address similar usage issues, but their conclusions are not always the same. Nowadays, quite a few grammar references are based on corpus linguistics, and many such descriptive findings disaffirm … Continue reading

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Forever dangling? The unstoppable dangling participle under scrutiny

Here is Ina Huttenga’s second blog post: The dangling participle is a pervasive structure in the English language. These “misrelated” modifiers have been used throughout English language history, but they seem to have become problems only recently, in the 20th … Continue reading

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Write it Right: A very pedantic usage guide

Here is Madeleine Ibes’s second blog post: Ambrose Bierce (1842-1914) was an American short story author, journalist and satirist who authored books like The Devil’s Dictionary (1906/1909), which contained definitions like this one for grammar: “A system of pitfalls thoughtfully prepared for … Continue reading

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