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August 02, 2016

Common Errors in English Usage with Explanations - Part 51

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  • It is better to keep one's head in the face of danger than losing one's courage and getting panicky.  (wrong)
  • It is better to keep one's head in the face of danger than to lose one's courage and get panicky.  (correct)
    • Explanation : A case of confusion with verbs; one form of verb should not be mixed with another form of verb in this way - if the first verb is in the infinitive mood, the second verb should also be in the infinitive mood. 
  • Are you a vegetarian ? Yes, I am not. (wrong)
  • Are you a vegetarian ? No, I am not. (or Yes, I am).  (correct)
    • Explanation : When the answer is in the affirmative, say 'Yes' and drop the negative form 'not'. If the answer is in the negative, say 'No', and you may also retain the negative 'not'. 
  • When he lost my book I became very angry. (wrong)
  • When he lost my book I felt very angry. (correct)
    • Explanation : It is better to use 'feel' or 'get' with adjectives such as 'angry', 'hungry', 'thirsty', 'tired', etc. 
  • I went to London with a view to investigate the matter.  (wrong)
  • I went to London with a view to investigating the matter.  (correct)
    • Explanation : 'With a view to' is always followed by a gerund and not an infinitive. 
  • I did nothing but cried.  (wrong)
  • I did nothing but cry. (correct)
    • Explanation : Use the infinitive after 'but'
  • Will you kindly mend this pencil ? (wrong)
  • Will you kindly sharpen this pencil ? (correct)
    • Explanation : One 'sharpens' a pencil, but 'mends' a pen.
  • I want you to fully realize the consequences of this.  (wrong)
  • I want you to realize fully the consequences of this.  (correct)
    • Explanation : Avoid the use of split infinitive. Don't insert anything between the words 'to feel', 'to remember', etc.
  • The thief escaped before I opened the door.  (wrong)
  • The thief had escaped before I opened the door.  (correct)
    • Explanation : The earlier action should always take the past perfect verb. 
  • Rita and I was walking in the garden. (wrong)
  • Rita and I were walking in the garden. (correct)
    • Explanation : The verb has to be in plural when the subject of the sentence Rita and I is plural. 
  • The whole class were playing.  (wrong)
  • The whole class was playing.  (correct)
    • Explanation : 'The whole class' indicates a single entity. 
  • Both of us was present at the bus stop. (wrong)
  • Both of us were present at the bus stop. (correct)
    • Explanation : The verb has to be in plural because both of us is a plural expression.
    Shared by Bhargav Gupta Yechuri
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