A friend of mine can't stand (from a grammatically correct point of view) people saying 'it's just a bit further'
What's her beef? Other than it being an oxymoron, I can't figure out the grammar problem?
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28-10-2011 08:24 #881Senior Member
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- Dec 2010
28-10-2011 08:48 #882
Double post sorry
Last edited by saltygirl; 28-10-2011 at 08:50.
28-10-2011 08:49 #883
I think "further" refers to time or amount and "farther" refers to distance. Maybe that's why?
28-10-2011 22:44 #884Senior Member
- Join Date
- Dec 2010
Ah! Most likely that is it, although how does that work, like "how much longer do I have to sit in the car" - really the kid is asking how much longer in minutes/hours (not really caring about mileage) in which case "it's just a bit further" would be the more correct response?
29-10-2011 02:09 #885
29-10-2011 03:40 #886
The rule states that “a” should be used before words that begin with consonants (e.g., b, c ,d) while “an” should be used before words that begin with vowels (e.g., a,e,i). Notice, however, that the usage is determined by the pronunciation and not by the spelling, as many people wrongly assume.
You should say, therefore, “an hour” (because hour begins with a vowel sound) and “a history” (because history begins with a consonant sound).
Similarly you should say “a union” even if union begins with a “u.” That is because the pronunciation begins with “yu”, which is a consonant sound.
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29-10-2011 15:00 #887
The thing to remember about vowels is that they're sounds rather than letters. My understanding is that a vowel is any sound which doesn't cause any part of the mouth to touch another part, whereas with consonants two parts of the mouth will connect (teeth on tongue, tongue on roof of mouth, etc... those who have been through speech therapy will be more than familiar with this!). It is common to teach children that the vowels are "aeiou", but there are actually many, many more vowels than this. Sounds like "oo" and "aah" are also vowels, even though there is no one letter that represents them. So in "yak", y is a consonant, but in "happy" it is a vowel.
Onto the next point... it is correct to drop the "h" sound when words like "historian" and "hotel" are preceded by the word "an". Because the "h" sound has been dropped, the words can now be said to begin with a vowel. (So while I'll agree that most newsreaders are morons, this is not actually a case in point!)
PS So happy to see this thread up again! Ahhh
Last edited by lambjam; 29-10-2011 at 15:03.
29-10-2011 15:05 #888
I would love some feedback on this comma issue that I am having with my boss. He regards me as a serial comma-abuser but I think that there are times when they are justified. He is of the opinion that you should never use a comma after *and* but I think that there are.
As an example - We had a lovely day at the beach and, despite the cold, even went for a swim.
29-10-2011 15:19 #889
That's nuts, that comma is absolutely justified! It's using a comma before the "and" that really gets people divisive...
Personally I'm a fan. Let me tell you a story that illustrates why.
A man writes a will leaving his inheritance to his three children. He states that "the estate is to be divided between Tom, Judy and Charles". Tom takes the matter to court and argues that the estate should be split two ways, between himself as one beneficiary, and Judy and Charles as the other. In order to make it clear that the estate should be split three ways, the wording would have to be "the estate is to be divided between Tom, Judy, and Charles".
Ok fine people, argue away...
29-10-2011 15:19 #890
I believe in the example you gave the comma is correct because the part between the commas can be removed from the sentence and it still makes sense. I was taught this is a correct way to use commas.
I may be wrong though...
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