If you are an American speaker, you probably pronounce the word err to rhyme with air.
A reader asks to know the past tense and past participle of the verb “to plead”: I have heard “pled” being used. Is this correct?
Here are three word pairs that are often confused.
The use of both where neither would be clearer and more idiomatic is fairly common, but inherently ambiguous.
Linking verbs, also called “copulative verbs,” “being verbs,” and “state of being verbs,” do not describe an action. This type of verb links a subject and the noun, pronoun or adjective that restates it or describes it.
Judging by the Google Ngram Viewer, the verb inculcate has declined considerably in popularity in recent decades. So, apparently, has understanding of its meaning.
A reader has asked me to “shed some light” on the expression “at the end of the day”: I know it means “after everything has been taken into consideration” and it is an integral part of our everyday vocabulary but some of my colleagues seem to find it inappropriate in its function. Could you please help me understand this better?
Someone in my Facebook feed posted this about an aging celebrity who has recently published a book: “Don’t buy her books and don’t patron her movies.”
In this morning’s paper, I read the following in a guest column written by a recent college graduate: I [won’t] deny knowing people who skipped college and ended up with the sorts of careers most grads would cut their eyeteeth for.
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Written errors in the use of lose, loose, and loss are common. One error is to write the adjective loose (rhymes with moose) as if it were the verb lose (rhymes with booze).
A reader who edits financial news has observed that some writers seem to be unaware of the specific connotation of allegedly and gives this example.