Category: Grammar and writing help

Any language arguments that you want to have?

5 language arguments you can stop having

Arguing about language is a passion for some people. However, Oxford Dictionaries is here to intervene and offer some insight into which arguments you don’t need to have anymore! 1. Literally Argument: Isn’t the use of literally when something isn’t actually real or happening incorrect? For some people, there is nothing worse than the figurative literally. […]

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Is it stationary or stationery?

Stationary or stationery?

This pair of confusable homophones (words that sound the same) and near-homographs (words that are spelled the same) causes no end of spelling-related fails: you can spot errors in places as diverse as blogs and online newspapers to scientific writing – no one seems immune! Does this matter? In my view, it does. These words […]

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Do you know when to use affect and effect?

Quiz: affect or effect?

Is it ‘side effect’ or ‘side affect’? Take this quiz to find out if you’re an ace at telling apart these two tricky words!

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Which of these grammar myths did you learn in school?

7 grammar myths you learned in school

Grammar can be tough. There are a lot of rules to follow, and a lot to wrap your head around. Some of the rules we learn in school, though, aren’t exactly accurate. While some function as helpful guidelines for style and form, other so-called ‘rules’ are inventions, or ‘superstitions,’ as the lexicographer Henry W. Fowler […]

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Tips on how to improve your writing.

10 tips on how to improve your writing

We’ve recently uploaded many writing tips for different types of writing to OxfordDictionaries.com, from crafting your CV to creating a short story. Today’s post gathers together sneak previews from each of the ten writing pages; follow the links to read more advice about ten different areas of writing. 1. Better writing: guide readers through what […]

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Video: what do you call a new word made by combining two other words?

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Russian_large

I object! (To the Russian case system)

Russian: what’s not to love? Alluringly exotic alphabet? Check. Tantalizingly challenging vocabulary? Check. Enough espionage associations to spice up even the dullest of online dating profiles? Check. But when you’re learning Russian, it’s the grammar that gets you. Like Latin, Tamil, German, and Finnish – to name a few – Russian relies on a complex […]

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Watch this oxford comma video to learn more about this piece of punctuation.

What is the Oxford comma?

The presence or lack of a comma before and or or in a list of three or more items is the subject of much debate. Such a comma is known as a serial comma. For a century it has been part of Oxford University Press style to retain or impose this last comma consistently, to […]

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