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The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

Infinitives

Posted on Wednesday, September 1, 2021, at 6:00 am

Every English verb has an infinitive, which is the base form of the verb before it is conjugated. It consists of the word to and the present form of the verb (the infinitive stem): e.g., to run, to sing, to write, to follow. Although an infinitive is the base of a verb, it does not …

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Tenant vs. Tenet: Can You Tell Them Apart?

Posted on Monday, August 30, 2021, at 6:00 am

Two words might sound the same in American English, but when they appear in writing, we see that they have different spellings and mean different things. Such is the case with tenant and tenet, two words that reach the ear similarly sometimes but have no relation. We will spell out their differences, starting with the …

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Palette, Palate, or Pallet: Do You Know the Difference?

Posted on Friday, August 27, 2021, at 6:00 am

We may often find ourselves distinguishing between two words that sound the same but have different meanings. In today’s post, we have a threesome of such words. That’s because palette, palate, and pallet are all said the same way, but each has a unique meaning and spelling. To help you tell them apart, let’s begin …

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Subordinating Conjunctions

Posted on Wednesday, August 25, 2021, at 6:00 am

A subordinating conjunction is a word or a phrase that begins and therefore introduces a dependent (subordinate) clause. The subordinate conjunction marks how the dependent clause will modify the independent clause with information such as manner, place, time, contrast, cause, or a condition. Some common subordinating conjunctions include: after except that that although if though …

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Patients or Patience: Which Word Do You Need?

Posted on Monday, August 23, 2021, at 6:00 am

There are a lot of similar and confusing words in the English language, and you’ll often find patients and patience among them. In this post, we will look at the difference between the two. Patient and Patients These words create a challenge because patients and patience are homophones. That means they sound the same when …

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A Lot vs. Alot vs. Allot: Which Is Correct?

Posted on Friday, August 20, 2021, at 6:00 am

A lot, alot, and allot: These words are all used often in writing. Some people also consider them to be either interchangeable or the same word with different spellings. In truth, a lot, alot, and allot are not the same. Two of them have separate meanings, and one isn’t even a word at all. For …

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Inanimate Object

Posted on Wednesday, August 18, 2021, at 6:00 am

American English can be flexible and expressive in conveying thoughts and ideas. For example, we might write or say something such as that guitar has been lounging in my living-room corner since Reagan was president. Many of us may understand what that sentence conveys, but some of us might also ask ourselves if a guitar …

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Flier or Flyer: Which Word Is Correct?

Posted on Monday, August 16, 2021, at 6:00 am

You're walking down the street. Someone hands you a piece of paper explaining a community effort. Did that person just give you a flyer, a flier, or something else? Let's answer that. Flyer vs. Flier as a Word Choice In the U.S., a promotional piece of paper using words and pictures to deliver a message …

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Collectible or Collectable: A Matter of Noun vs. Adjective

Posted on Friday, August 13, 2021, at 6:00 am

The chances are good that you have seen (and may even own) some collectibles. At the same time, you probably have other things that were collectable. The real question, though, is whether you know the difference between the two words. If not, today's post should be a big help. Collectible vs. Collectable Let's start by …

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Phrasal Verbs

Posted on Wednesday, August 11, 2021, at 6:00 am

A phrasal verb, also known as a verb with a particle, is a verb that combines with another word to describe an action. The particles within phrasal verbs will typically be prepositions, adverbs, or both: e.g., in, up, up with, off, on, down, over, and out. Examples It's getting dark out, so I think I'll …

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