Search Results for: literally

Sitcoms and language humour

Those who are familiar with Frasier would certainly recall that language was one of the things Frasier and Niles were nitpicky about. In one episode, Frasier manages to irritate a caller by commenting on his inappropriate use of literally: “I’m sorry Doug, … Continue reading

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Linguistic Girl Power

We have dealt with numerous language issues such as the oddly misplaced apostrophe, the dangling participle and the new “like” on our blog, but what interests me in particular are the social factors that may or may not pull the strings behind the scene. … Continue reading

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23 April: Correct-your-English Language Day

This blog features a Language Calendar, and it includes 23 April – English Language Day (UN). Why was 23 April chosen for this, and why have an English Language Day to begin with? As a World Language, English is important enough as it is. So … Continue reading

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Thumbs up for IKEA!

One of Simon Heffer‘s pet hates is the use of singular they: “Being a pedant,” he writes, “I regard [its use] unacceptable” (2010:110). Unacceptable or not, singular they, as Mittins et al. point out in Attitudes to English Usage (1970!), has been … Continue reading

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David vs Goliath: Oliver Kamm’s take on English usage

I have to admit that reading usage guides can get somewhat boring. Their authors, most of them prescriptivists and literally old-school, frequently use a similar set of usage problems discussing them in a similar manner and expressing similar attitudes. If … Continue reading

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Practicing with the HUGE database

Last week we ran a workshop with a group of language professionals in which they explored the HUGE database with some practice searches. Those practice search questions are now also available on the database page so you can do the same. … Continue reading

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practice searches

This page is for if you want to try your hands at a few searches to get a better idea of how the HUGE database works in practice. The practice searches start with relatively straightforward searches and progress to more complicated ones. These … Continue reading

Fix Your Grammar

If you are in a grammar or usage dilemma and looking for a clarification, you can find a huge number of useful and informative websites on grammar and usage advice online. Sometimes you come across advice presented in a somewhat … Continue reading

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No hard language feelings?

The use of English, or rather its misuse, has often caused the one or the other to throw up his or her (or their?) hands in horror. Last month I attended the English Grammar Day at the British Library in … Continue reading

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Begging the question?!

During the past few weeks, two readers of this blog commented on Jasper Spierenburg’s use of the expression “begging the question“. As far as I know, there is nothing wrong with it, so why the comments? To check my (non-native … Continue reading

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