There are 7 posts.
Over the course of its existence, the number of speakers of English and the number of words they use have grown exponentially. In terms of grammar and syntax, however, English has generally become a simpler, more user-friendly language. Whereas nouns in Old English could be declined into one of six cases (as in Latin or […]more
If you’ve ever stopped to think about it, you may have noticed that there’s something wrong with you. ‘You’ is what is called a personal pronoun. In English, as in most languages, these are grouped into three distinct ‘persons’: the first person (‘I’), the second person (‘you’), and the third person (‘he’, ‘she’, or ‘it’). […]more
Where do you stand regarding the pronoun, themself? Is it perfectly OK to use it, or do you reckon that it’s beyond the pale? When I blogged about reflexive pronouns a while ago, I promised to revisit this grammatical outsider. Judging by the debate on the Net, themself stirs up much passion, with several pundits […]more
Myself and my wife have for some time been amazed at the appalling driving habits of the general population of Grantham. When you read the above sentence, what goes through your mind? Do you think ‘What a perceptive comment, and what an elegant turn of phrase’ or does your internal grammar monitor shriek ‘Eek! Yet […]more
I enjoy reading your comments on Oxford’s blog posts: they provide an invaluable insight into your language concerns, likes, and dislikes. Your remarks strengthen my awareness that we have a sophisticated and grammatically knowledgeable audience: this keeps me on my toes, to say the least. Of course, I always aim to stay within the bounds […]more
Choosing whether to use ‘I’ or ‘me’ can be tricky, but it’s something that often pops up in both written and spoken communications, and it’s important to get it right. As the results of our poll shows, it’s not always clear which is the right choice. Here’s some advice taken from our Better writing section, […]more