Category Archives: Uncategorized

The difference between countable and uncountable nouns (unit and mass nouns)

Distinguishing between countable nouns (unit nouns) and uncountable nouns (mass nouns) can be very difficult. This area is the source of many mistakes. Unit nouns have two forms, singular and plural: e.g. a chair, chairs. You can say 1 chair, … Continue reading

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“Prepare for” or “prepare to”?

WRONG She spent three hours preparing to the court hearing. RIGHT She spent three hours preparing for the court hearing. This is a very common mistake. But “prepare” is not always followed by “for”. Sometimes “to” is correct. The rule … Continue reading

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The “family is” or the “family are”?

Collective nouns are words that describe groups of people or things, e.g. “family” or “team”. Grammatically they are singular, but as they describe more than one individual, they may also take the plural form of a verb or use a … Continue reading

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Communication fail :)

Conversation overheard in a lift: English businessman – So, what does your company do? Polish businessman – Boring. E – Excuse me?… P – Boring. E – [blank stare] P – It is mine company. E – Oh, I see … Continue reading

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Order of adjectives

Remember the film “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”? I didn’t see it either. But it doesn’t matter. The point I’m going to discuss here is why we can’t say “My Greek Fat Big Wedding”. In English there are rules about … Continue reading

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How to use “all”, “whole” and “entire”

The words “all”, “whole” and “entire” are quantifiers. This means they indicate aspects of quantity. Their usage depends on the type of noun they describe, i.e. singular or plural, countable or uncountable. ALL “All (of the)” can generally be used … Continue reading

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Phrasal verbs for business: Z

to zero in to focus attention: We need to zero in on the client’s exact expectations for this software. Don’t bother with any additional functionality at this stage. to zip up  to keep something quiet: Keep this matter zipped up … Continue reading

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