Diction Exercise (400)

Edit the following sentences to rid them of unnecessary wording without altering meaning.

Answers and Explanations

1.
Original: I’m looking for a rectangular-shaped canvas.
Correct : I’m looking for a rectangular canvas.

The word rectangular describes a specific shape.

2.
Original: Do you see that insect? It’s barely visible to the eye.
Correct : Do you see that insect? It’s barely visible.

The word visible denotes that a thing is perceived with the eye.

3.
Original: May I go to bed now, Miss Hannigan? I’m entirely finished with washing the floor.
Correct : May I go to bed now, Miss Hannigan? I’m finished with washing the floor.

The word finished denotes completion. If a thing is not finished, then an appropriate modifier may be used. For example, "half-finished," "nearly finished."

4.
Original: The Texas governor wants to assemble together a task force to study beginning reading instruction in the public schools.
Correct : The Texas governor wants to assemble a task force to study beginning reading instruction in the public schools.

The verb assemble means "to bring together."

5.
Original: A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.
Correct : A people without the knowledge of their history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.

The significant thing about history is that it is past. There’s no need to refer to "past history."

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