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Vexing phrases

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    #51
    Originally posted by d000hg View Post

    To what sort of level? - functional or academic? I don't recall ever being taught grammar explicitly but I suppose I must have been. But I couldn't tell you what a past participle is, find what or where the gerund is, or any of that sort of thing.
    Primary level.

    Some authors, teachers and educationalists have been angered by it. As kids are learning grammar over creative writing and so are being put off reading.

    The Guardian has loads of articles on it e.g. https://www.theguardian.com/educatio...d-adverbial-is but I know primary aged children. It is interesting to see how teaching has changed over the years particularly with English (and Maths) since teachers have been dictated to.

    Originally posted by d000hg View Post
    Actually typing this reminded me of French lessons pre-GCSE, I think that was the only 'formal' grammar lessons we had. As he pointed out, he was teaching us English grammar to explain the French counterparts as none of us knew any of it (and this was at a reasonably good school).

    Latin seems to be having a small boost in popularity too from what I hear?
    I did have some grammar lessons in primary school but not as much as they have now. However most of my grammar I learnt from being taught foreign languages to understand how sentences are constructed in a particular language. Oddly it put everyone in my school, apart from about 3 people, off learning German.
    "You’re just a bad memory who doesn’t know when to go away" JR

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      #52
      Just expanding on the wider point, you can of course ignore the rules of grammar completely. But you really shouldn't unless first you know what they are. James Joyce was a very well educated man, but Finnegan's Wake and Ulysses are not pretty much unreadable because he didn't know what he was doing.
      Blog? What blog...?

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        #53
        More <anything> in place of an adverb. Even the BBC News uses this abomination. I got told 'it's modern functionality'. I think they should stop more fast.

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          #54
          Originally posted by NigelJK View Post
          More in place of an adverb. Even the BBC News uses this abomination. I got told 'it's modern functionality'. I think they should stop more fast.
          they should certainly do it less times anyway
          See You Next Tuesday

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            #55
            Originally posted by malvolio View Post
            Just expanding on the wider point, you can of course ignore the rules of grammar completely. But you really shouldn't unless first you know what they are. James Joyce was a very well educated man, but Finnegan's Wake and Ulysses are not pretty much unreadable because he didn't know what he was doing.
            They're not rules they're guidelines. Surely the rules follow popular usage rather than the opposite.

            Is starting a sentence with "Just" great grammar?
            Originally posted by MaryPoppins
            I'd still not breastfeed a nazi
            Originally posted by vetran
            Urine is quite nourishing

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              #56
              Originally posted by d000hg View Post

              They're not rules they're guidelines. Surely the rules follow popular usage rather than the opposite.

              Is starting a sentence with "Just" great grammar?
              No, they're rules, written down so they can be taught to others.

              If you want to bitch about something, try bitching about why the rules aren't updated in line with modern usage (written, not spoken; spoken is all on its own).
              Blog? What blog...?

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                #57
                Originally posted by malvolio View Post
                .. James Joyce was a very well educated man, but Finnegan's Wake and Ulysses are not pretty much unreadable because he didn't know what he was doing.
                I've never bothered even trying to read them, because for a start I understand they are chock full of exuberant bizarre linguistic aberrations, which from one or two examples I've seen suggest the author's mind was somewhat disordered, maybe addled by neurosyphilis, who knows? They didn't have a cure back then.

                Also a lot of allusions are to events and people long since forgotten, and I gather the plot is completely banal, verging on non-existent, literally no more than some loser ambling through Dublin over the course of a single day.
                Work in the public sector? Read the IR35 FAQ here

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                  #58
                  Originally posted by OwlHoot View Post

                  I've never bothered even trying to read them, because for a start I understand they are chock full of exuberant bizarre linguistic aberrations, which from one or two examples I've seen suggest the author's mind was somewhat disordered, maybe addled by neurosyphilis, who knows? They didn't have a cure back then.

                  Also a lot of allusions are to events and people long since forgotten, and I gather the plot is completely banal, verging on non-existent, literally no more than some loser ambling through Dublin over the course of a single day.
                  It was more an exercise in linguistics (then again, so was Tolkien's work, but he made a proper book out of it) and alternative ways of story telling. Not a very successful one, it has to be said, but it was entirely logical and intentional. The story is, as you say, quite banal, but that wasn't really the point of the exercise.

                  It's a bit like modern comedy. Just like the old comedy but without the irritating need to be funny...
                  Blog? What blog...?

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                    #59
                    Originally posted by malvolio View Post

                    Because I can read? And, unlike most of the last two generations, I was taught English, rather than picking it up from a variety of illiterate sources.
                    Like I said pedantic writing is for fools, the spoken word is primal, the written a poor abstract.

                    SOCRATES: Well, then, those who think they can leave written instructions for an art, as well as those who accept them, thinking that writing can yield results that are clear or certain, must be quite naive and truly ignorant of [Thamos’] prophetic judgment: otherwise, how could they possibly think that words that have been written down can do more than remind those who already know what the writing is about?

                    PHAEDRUS: Quite right.

                    SOCRATES: You know, Phaedrus, writing shares a strange feature with painting. The offsprings of painting stand there as if they are alive, but if anyone asks them anything, they remain most solemnly silent. The same is true of written words. You’d think they were speaking as if they had some understanding, but if you question anything that has been said because you want to learn more, it continues to signify just that very same thing forever. When it has once been written down, every discourse roams about everywhere, reaching indiscriminately those with understanding no less than those who have no business with it, and it doesn’t know to whom it should speak and to whom it should not. And when it is faulted and attacked unfairly, it always needs its father’s support; alone, it can neither defend itself nor come to its own support.
                    But I discovered nothing else but depraved, excessive superstition. Pliny the younger

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                      #60
                      Originally posted by Gibbon View Post

                      Context fecking hell M didnt expect you to roll out that trite example. Spoken it would make perfect sense, why should the written word be different?
                      Because when people speak, they add pauses - they don't need to say "apostrophe". Also, the reader might be partially sighted and using a screen reader, where punctuation informs the context.

                      (who wants to add "starting a sentence with Because" to the list?)
                      Last edited by Paralytic; 8 February 2022, 16:50.

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