Grammar |
The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

Category: Adjectives and Adverbs

Like vs. As, Such As

Posted on Wednesday, June 12, 2024, at 6:00 am

Most of us are likely aware of the give and take of spoken and written language. We give extra license for looseness when speaking; we take that license back to ensure and protect proper form when writing (or at least that should be our aim). Like a thriving rooftop cocktail party at sunset, American English …

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Onto vs. On To

Posted on Wednesday, May 29, 2024, at 6:00 am

(This discussion revisits the subject of On to vs. Onto first posted in January 2010.) English is a rich, descriptive language with a versatile vocabulary. It also is one that can keep even well-studied native writers on their toes with its many nuances, such as those we'll find among homophones. Another English subtlety lies in …

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Top 10 Grammar Mistakes in English

Posted on Wednesday, May 8, 2024, at 6:00 am

Grammar mistakes remain common in daily communication. While those of us who spend time at can reduce such solecisms, even the most observant can still potentially be duped by the occasional sneaky error. Because grammar mistakes in American English have always been and likely always will be, we thought it'd be fun and informative …

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Transitional Words and Phrases

Posted on Wednesday, July 26, 2023, at 6:00 am

Each writer's art is the formation of voice and technique over time. The more we write, the more we find and reveal thoughts and words connected only as we might convey them. The more we study and apply the principles for shaping good writing, the more eloquent and precise we can become. Writing differs from …

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Verbals: Definition & Examples

Posted on Wednesday, July 12, 2023, at 6:00 am

English includes words that look and sound like verbs but are not serving a sentence as such. You likely hear them often: You said you like skydiving? What about cliff jumping? The door was closed, so I couldn't hear them—their voices were muffled. Alexander said their plan is to escape. Each underlined word is an …

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How to Use Only Correctly

Posted on Wednesday, May 3, 2023, at 6:00 am

Any language has its accepted daily misuses, even as they miff the grammatical purist. In English, we might often deal in statements with solecisms such as: Please inform Sheila and I about the tickets. I must of left my backpack on the bus. Every dog has it's day. We're still in awe of the enormity …

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What Are Qualifiers and Intensifiers?

Posted on Wednesday, March 1, 2023, at 6:00 am

The Mediterranean Chicken on the menu is really recommended. You seem seldom energetic this week. This hotel room is quite nice. When we express ourselves, we might include words meant to further limit or amplify what we aim to communicate. For example, we aren't just happy—we are very happy. After working a full day in …

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What Is a Predicate Adjective?

Posted on Wednesday, January 25, 2023, at 6:00 am

Paulina seems optimistic. The blueberry muffins smell delightful. That essay is certain to persuade people. Most of us will be familiar with sentences such as these. We may even find ourselves using such expressions daily, as they contain a common structure for describing something in writing or speech. Each sentence includes a subject, a verb …

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Object Complements: Usage and Examples

Posted on Wednesday, December 7, 2022, at 6:00 am

Those who speak, write, and study English are typically familiar with how nouns are enhanced by adjectives and other nouns, such as appositives and subject complements. Examples The brown satchel belongs to the lawyer. (adjective describing the subject noun, satchel) Jenna is a lawyer. (subject complement renaming the subject noun, Jenna) My sister Jenna, a …

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Subject Complements: Usage and Examples

Posted on Wednesday, November 9, 2022, at 6:00 am

The word complement in English means "something that completes or makes perfect; either of two parts or things needed to complete the whole." A subject complement in English describes or renames a sentence subject and completes the sense of the verb by means of an adjective, a noun, a pronoun, a possessive noun or pronoun, …

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