Tag Archives: Verbs

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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The difference between “ask” and “request”

These words have similar meanings, but they are used a little differently. Usage as verbs  “Request” means “ask for”, NOT “ask”. You “ask a question”, but you can’t “request a question”. E.g.:  WRONG He requested whether I’d read the email. … Continue reading

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How to use the word “holiday”

WRONG I am currently on holidays. He is on his holidays now and will be returning to the office next week. RIGHT I am currently on holiday. He is on holiday now and will be returning to the office next … Continue reading

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How to use “provided that”

The phrase “provided that” has numerous possible meanings, which can result in ambiguity if it is not used properly.   First of all, “provided that” can simply be a verb + conjunction combination. This is a common structure in legal … Continue reading

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How to use “provide for”

“Provide for” can be a phrasal verb or simply a verb + preposition combination. Here are some examples of “provide for” as a verb + preposition combination: I will provide the wine for the meal. We care about the service … Continue reading

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How to be polite in English

Non-native English speakers sometimes sound abrupt and impolite to native English speakers. This is because they often use language that is too direct, and does not have the correct “distance” from the hearer or reader. It is therefore important to use … Continue reading

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The differences (and similarities) between “compose” and “comprise”

Non-native speakers of English are not the only ones who regularly confuse these words or use them incorrectly. Unfortunately, native speakers are equally guilty of mistakes. Here’s how to use them correctly: “compose” – to make up, i.e. the parts … Continue reading

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