Beyond the Rhetoric

 
 
 

Posts Tagged ‘grammar’

Grammar 101: Leech and Leach

November 17th, 2014

If you have a good-for-nothing acquaintance who is constantly mooching off of the people around him, if this person is always trying to extract resources from others, you might call this person a leech. Or is he a leach? Both leech and leach are pronounced exactly the same way, but just like site and cite, […]

Grammar 101: Nip It In The Bud or Butt?

October 30th, 2014

It’s time to explore another English idiom that many people often get wrong. Just as someone might refer to a “mother load” when they really mean to say “mother lode” instead, it is surprisingly common to hear people talking about nipping something in the “butt” when the correct idiom is to “nip it in the […]

Grammar 101: Extract or Exact Revenge?

October 20th, 2014

Perhaps you’ve heard the line in a Hollywood blockbuster involving a superhero and his quest for vengeance. Maybe you’ve heard it in the context of a video game or television show filled with explosive action and intense drama. When a character says that he will not rest until he exacts his revenge, what exactly does […]

Grammar 101: For All Intents and Purposes

October 9th, 2014

English can be confusing enough for someone who has grown up as a native speaker, never mind for someone who is trying to learn it as a second language. For every rule in English, there are innumerable exceptions. And then there is the never-ending list of English idioms that either don’t make logical sense or […]

Grammar 101: Toe the Line or Tow the Line?

October 2nd, 2014

You may have heard the English idiom “to toe the line.” Oftentimes, it’s used in the context of work, where employees are told to “toe the company line.” The workers are being told to conform to the rules, principles and policies of the company, to do exactly as they are told and not to veer […]

Grammar 101: European and American Date Formats

September 25th, 2014

When you’re filling out a passport application, a courier waybill or any number of other documents, there’s a good chance that you have to enter the date. Even when you were handing in your elementary school assignments, there was a line near the top of the page where you were told to enter today’s date. […]

Grammar 101: Nerve-Racking or Nerve-Wracking?

September 16th, 2014

English idioms don’t necessarily make a lot of logical sense. You can’t literally offer a salesperson an arm and a leg for the latest sports car. You’re not exactly “spilling the beans” when you “let the cat out of the bag” either. And these idioms get even more challenging when they are used verbally more […]

Grammar 101: On Plural Forms and Adding S to Everything

September 5th, 2014

When toddlers and children first start learning the English language, they have an intuitive sense for picking up on grammar rules. Without even knowing it, they pick up on the idea that adding -ed to the end of a verb makes it past tense. I climbed the tree. I played the piano. The problem is […]