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Profile: leonAzul
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User Name: leonAzul
Forum Rank: Advanced Member
Occupation: musician, computer consultant
Interests: reading, bicycling, taijiquan
Gender: None Specified
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Joined: Thursday, August 11, 2011
Last Visit: Saturday, March 25, 2017 12:07:15 PM
Number of Posts: 7,836
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  Last 10 Posts
Topic: Should it be three or four dots to indicate ellipsis?
Posted: Saturday, March 25, 2017 1:11:52 AM
If anyone wants to know how to do this under Mac OS, the key combination is option (alt) + ; (semi-colon)…

"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: breather
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 7:03:20 AM
Drag0nspeaker wrote:
Hi Fruity.

The phrase just a little more 'casual' and informal.

In my opinion, it is the original statement which sounds too formal for a conversation.

I would probably say something like "The meeting's tough today". "Negotiation" is a five-syllable word - they're not that common.

'Rest' or 'breather' - I wouldn't say either of them was out-of-place there. They both sound fine to me.


But does she have a lovely pair of lungs?

Sorry, I went there

Whistle

"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: tentative
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 6:49:43 AM
Penpen wrote:
Thanks, leonAzul. But I'm still confused. You said "would" is expressed as conditional mode. But, I don't see any condtitional mood in the sentences above. The speaker directly uses "would". That's what is making me puzzled. My textbook says that:
1. "Would" is used to show hypothetical, about something which is possible but not real.
2. Used to give a opinion when we're not sure.
3. As a softener or downtoner: in statements when we're not sure.

So, what does "would" express in the sentences above?


In these examples the use of the conditional mood expresses a hypothetical meaning, that is to say, something that has a stated or unstated condition in order to be true. The difference between the conditional and the subjunctive is that the subjunctive explicitly states the condition which is required for the conditional statement to be true. In English this has unfortunately lost the clarity which can be immediately appreciated in other languages, yet the distinction between conditional and subjunctive moods in English does in fact exist, even though the grammar might seem to be simplified.

Think


"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: definite article
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 5:27:21 AM
Penpen wrote:
By the way, thar, my textbook says that if there is the word "ground", "the" is not used. I'm sure that my textbook is wrong.


My very knees have been brought down to the ground with that advice.

Brick wall

"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: What's the difference between the sentences?
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 5:24:50 AM
DavidLearn wrote:
Hi teachers,
Are both sentences correct? If so, what's the difference?
1. If the weather had been nice today, they would have gone to the beach.
2. If the weather were nice today, they would go to the beach.

Thanks.


Each sentence is correct, yet each sentence has its own meaning.

Quote:

1. If the weather had been nice today, they would have gone to the beach.


This expresses the sense that this day, today, has passed, and the opportunity to go to the beach has passed with the time.

Quote:

2. If the weather were nice today, they would go to the beach.


This expresses the sense that the current understanding of the weather is unknown, and that knowledge shall be improved over time.

Think


"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: Meaning of words
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 5:11:42 AM
thar wrote:
Number 2 seems poorly punctuated , to me.

It does seem incomplete (he seems really what?) if you don't understand that 'really' is just a adverb relating to the whole phrase.

2. Nick, as ever, looks relatively sane by comparison, but then most people would.


2. Nick, as ever, looks relatively sane by comparison, but then most people would, really.

If you read it that way, then it becomes clearer that it is just omitting the repetition of the earlier phrase.

2. Nick, as ever, looks relatively sane by comparison, but then most people would [look relatively sane by comparison], really.

It's a bit illogical, as well. In the absence of context, you don't know what they are being compared with.



3 makes no sense without context.

'Originality' is an uncountable nouns, so it is treated as singular. Therefore 'these' refers to plural items or ideas that have been previously mentioned, or are being presented.



For a dictionary, I think these are poorly-chosen examples. They invite confusion from learners, when they should be a vehicle for clarifying the use of 'ever' in real examples.



Sorry thar, you often get it, but this time you missed.

This is not literal writing, but rather quite arch and cynical. It is intended to be slightly awry. I can't tell you why, yet I recognize when someone intentionally twists and warps the language like that.


"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: tentative
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 5:01:22 AM
Penpen wrote:
I meant: how does "would" work in the sentences above? I don't understand its use. Could you explain?


The grammatical explanation would be as "conditional mode". That may or may not make sense with regard to your particular understanding of your own native language. In fact, much of what is prescribed for "proper" English is more or less rehashed Latin. There are reasons for that, mostly hoary and needlessly arcane, yet they persist.

In these examples, the use of the conditional mood expresses that a certain expression is desirable, that is to say it is more desirable to say or write in American English, the phrase "go to the hospital" rather than "go to hospital" as it is written and spoken in much of the rest of the world.

This is merely an observation of style. Quite frankly, if I were a student of English as a second language, I would quite naturally listen to the mother tongue, and tell those cretinous yanks to sod-off.

Whistle



"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: Meaning of words
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 4:16:48 AM
Nousher Ahmed 1 wrote:
1. My guess is that he sold the film rights to his life, faked his own death and lived happily ever after.

I coudn't figure out the meaning of film rights to his life, faked his own death. I would feel happy if anyone tells the meaning of it and rewrite these parts with other words.

2. Nick, as ever, looks relatively sane by comparison, but then most people would really.

What would most people really do? This sentence is not complete, and the omitted part has been mentioned before. But I cannot find which part that has been omitted has been mentioned before.

3. Originality, ever prized, is increasingly scarce, but we can offer you these.

I cannot understand this sentence at all. It would be helpful if experts of this forum rewrite it in an easier way, and explain it.

All these three sentences have been from this link. All this three sentences have a common word, ever.

Thanks in advance! Boo hoo!


Each of these are examples of humour; they are not intended to be understood literally.

Nousher Ahmed 1 wrote:
1. My guess is that he sold the film rights to his life, faked his own death and lived happily ever after.


The meaning is that a person created a fictional account of his life, sold that fiction to a production company, erased his identity, and enjoyed the profit without the liability of being blameworthy. Nice work, if you can get it ;^)

Quote:
2. Nick, as ever, looks relatively sane by comparison, but then most people would really.

Most people look crazy compared to Nick. Nick has the knack of appearing sane compared to most people.

Quote:
3. Originality, ever prized, is increasingly scarce, but we can offer you these.

This is truly cynical: instead of genuine originality, "we" can offer you trite conventions.


Edited to Add

Is this a grammar question, or a vocabulary question? Enquiring minds want to know…


"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: tentative
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 4:00:00 AM
Penpen wrote:
First, what does "tentative" mean in the use of "would"?

Is this use of "would" in the following sentences?

- In British English, the comma would go after the closing quotation mark.
- In American English, the phrase "go to hospital" would not be correct. One of the articles "a" or "the" would be necessary.


The wood is harder than the would. Think

Yes, these are uses of would. Furthermore, these are proper examples of how the word "would" ought to be used.

If you want to know the meaning of the word "tentative", then TheFreeDictionary is not the worst place to search. Whistle

Where the comma is placed has nothing to do with British nor Canadian nor North American nor Irish nor Indian nor Australian English, but rather with a particular style guide. The Times of London is a good guide. The New York Times is also good, yet the Chicago Manual of style is also well recognized as an authority for well-written English.

"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."
Topic: my egotistical and selfish nature
Posted: Sunday, March 19, 2017 3:15:38 AM
Koh Elaine wrote:
I also realised that besides the grudge that I had against my father, the other causes of my depression may be due to my egotistical and selfish nature.

I think the part in bold should be replaced by "my egotistical and selfish nature". Am I correct?


In short, not at all.

The attribution of one's depression to a particular character trait is very different from the assertion that depression is inevitably caused by an "egotistical and selfish nature", aka narcissism.



"Make it go away, Mrs Whatsit," he whispered. "Make it go away. It's evil."

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