whymzycal: A ladybug on a leaf (ladybug)
[personal profile] whymzycal
In February 2015, io9 writer Lauren Davis tackled a list of “10 Things People Once Complained Would Ruin the English Language,” a fun article that explains 10 things that grammarians and other language lovers used to freak out about. Unsurprisingly, it’s easy to see parallels between past concerns and the language worries of today. Spoiler alert: English hasn’t been ruined yet, and it probably won’t be. )
ariestess: (grammar use it -- from shoegal_icons)
[personal profile] ariestess
Welcome to another installment of the Friday Funnies! Just on a Monday!

{Bonus points to anyone who gets that reference.}


Cyanide & Happiness (Explosm.net)


Even when I hear things like this being said in Westerns or by "hillbillies", it still makes my skin crawl. But I'd be a hypocrite if I said I've never used a double negative before. My prime transgression? "Ain't nobody got no time for that."

So what's your favorite double negative to say?
chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

Last year, Guardian opinion desk editor David Shariatmadari, who often writes about language and communication, considered some of the ways that pronunciation of the English language has changed with time. His article examined eight specific types of changes, some of which are quite recent. I already knew about some of these shifts— for example, that "adder" and "apron" used to start with "n" (nadder and napron)—but others were new to me. In general, I enjoyed the article.

Learn more about Shariatmadari's discussion … )
ariestess: (grammar use it -- from shoegal_icons)
[personal profile] ariestess
Hello there, fellow grammarians! Today we're going to answer the question, What are "false friends"?, with a little help from our friends over at Captain America: The First Avenger.

What are 'false friends'? )
[identity profile] green-grrl.livejournal.com
[livejournal.com profile] debirlfan wants to know: What is the difference between "maths" and "math," including British and American usages?

The short answer is, the only difference between the two is British and American usage. Let's take a look, with examples from Teen Wolf and Torchwood. )
chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

Let's explore a curious quirk shared by a very few English verbs. They're all a bit irregular, and they all have to do with putting things or people into position.

With the help of the cast of the CLAMP manga series xxxHoLic ... )
[identity profile] melayneseahawk.livejournal.com
At Dinosaur Comics, T-Rex drops some knowledge about how awesome English used to be. Click the preview for the full comic:

chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

Reader [livejournal.com profile] garonne asked us "What are the rules for archaic declension and conjugation? (thou, art, etc.)" Although we can't present all the details of Early Modern English in the scope of a Fandom Grammar article, we'll take look at some of the most characteristic features of this romantic-sounding ancestor of the language that we use here today.

With the help of the cast of the classic fairy tale 'Snow White' ... )
chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

[livejournal.com profile] debirlfan asked us "What are the rules for American versus British usage for 'hospital' and 'surgery'?

It's true that British usage on these common medical terms differs from what's encountered in the United States. We'll take a closer look at how these words work.

With help from the cast of Bleach )
[identity profile] pinkeuphoria1.livejournal.com
What is the difference between 'advisor' and 'adviser'?

Today we're answering this question! Find out when and where 'advisor' is used, as well as how it's different from 'adviser'. Fandom example was taken from Confessions of a Shopaholic.

adviser versus advisor )
chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

[livejournal.com profile] todeskun asked us, "When do you use 'fit' versus 'fitted'? As in, 'it fit him to a T' or 'it fitted him to a T'?"

It turns out that which one you use depends on which side of the Atlantic you live. Let's take a closer look.

We'll be assisted by the cast of Batman ...  )
[identity profile] lady-ganesh.livejournal.com
[livejournal.com profile] lilmoonbunny16 asked: What is the difference between "theatre" and "theater"?

"I'm doing my homework," Buffy protested. "Do you spell theater 'e-r' or 'r-e'?"

"Ah, yes," Giles sniffed. "The manufactured American dilemma, one of my perennial favorites."

Giles is right: Unless you're an American author or are using American spellings, the answer is that 'theatre' is the correct spelling.

Generally, 'theatre' is used through most of the world. The most plausible difference for the difference in the US I've found is that in the 1820s, Noah Webster (of Webster's dictionary fame) worked to simplify American English spellings by making all 'er'-sounding words consistent in spelling, which meant turning 'theatre' to 'theater.' However, the difference didn't stick (though as noted below, it did with 'color' and 'center'), and now in American English we have the National Theatre of the Deaf as well as the Charles Theater of Baltimore.

There are a few vague, non-binding rules of thumb:
  • Some organizations use 'theatre' as the art form and 'theater' as the building the art is staged in.
  • A movie palace is more likely to be a 'theater' than a venue for live performance (much less the performance itself). I've read theories that theatrical companies held on to 'theatre' in an effort to distinguish themselves from movie houses, but I couldn't find any proof of that.
  • In Canada, India, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, and Australia, the word of choice is 'theatre.' Only the Americans tried this 'reform the spelling' idea.

"I'm going to be on Broadway," Rachel declared. "So that's what I wrote my article about."

"Well," Kurt sniffed, "in your enthusiasm you forgot how to spell the name of the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre."

Rachel pouted. "I did not! It's got two 'n's, and--"

"'T' and 'e' at the end, not 'e' 'r.'" Kurt snapped his copy of the school newspaper at her.

Rachel's face fell in horror. "That copy editor!"
In general, unless you're not American or are working from a specific style book, you can use whichever spelling feels more comfortable to you. If you're talking about a specific building or theatrical company, look up the official name of the theater (or theatre) you're using to be certain.

Here's an article from Theatre in Chicago that endorses the Webster theory.
[identity profile] chiroho.livejournal.com
Question: [livejournal.com profile] akasha_lilian asks ‘Why is it "welcomed" and not "welcame"?’

With examples from NCIS )
chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

riverfox wants to know "Is there a rule/permission that allows for the literal drawl of words? ('Jaaaaaaaaack!' versus 'Jack,' Daniel drawled)."

The only answer that's been discovered is "Not exactly."

With examples from Saiyuki )
[identity profile] whymzycal.livejournal.com
What are different "high point" and "low point" synonyms, and how can you tell the difference?

Unfortunately, since I’m not well versed in Greek and Latin roots—which would make identifying “high point” and “low point” synonyms much easier—I’ve got to look things up. Lucky for me, dictionary.com’s thesaurus function makes it easy to find synonyms for any word.

To the synonyms! With examples from Supernatural and Saiyuki. )
[identity profile] kay-brooke.livejournal.com
This week's question: What is the correct past tense of "slay?" When is "slayed" correct?

With examples from Stargate.

For this answer, we get to talk about conjugating an irregular verb in English! )
chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

What exactly is the difference between uninterested and disinterested? These two words are close - but they are not identical.

With examples from Saiyuki )
[identity profile] chiroho.livejournal.com
Question: What is the difference between "right", "rite", "wright", and "write"?

With examples from NCIS )
chomiji: Tenpou from Saiyuki Gaiden. with the caption Not necessarily by the book (Tenpou - Not by the book)
[personal profile] chomiji

Inquiring minds want to know the difference between vicious and viscous.

With examples from Antique Bakery )

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