It is not + noun + to infinitive

I do know an adjective (without a noun) in this construction can be followed by a to-infinitive, as in: It is not acceptable to kill a goat in that way. It is not good to kill him here. But, is it also grammatical to insert a noun after the adjective without changing anything else in … Read more

What is the proper term for etching or digging of wall to hide conduit of cables

I am creating a scope of work and I can’t seem to find the right term to say… (including context) Contractor should provide in wall conduit. If no in wall conduit is available, contractor should arrange “wall digging/wall etching” at their own expense. Thanks Answer It’s called chasing. It took three goes to find this … Read more

Threat on/to/for

As I was writing a sentence, it struck me that I am not all that quite sure about the noun ‘threat’, and how a sentence using the words ‘threat’ and ’cause’ can be constructed. For instance: “Considering the threat that the A is causing on/to/for the B…” Firstly, what would be the right preposition to … Read more

Selective with/in/about

I need to find out which preposition is more suitable for the sentence below; “Could we not just be selective with/in/about our potential themes.” Thanks! Answer The following are fine: Could we not just be selective with our potential themes. Could we not just be selective in our potential themes. Could we not just be … Read more

a-verb-ing construct (e.g. a-hopping)

I sometimes here casual phrases in English like a hipping and a hopping (a hippin and a hoppin). How exactly does this fit into English grammar and what is the history of the construct? Answer If you have access to the Oxford English Dictionary (e.g. through your local library), this is covered under a, prep.1. … Read more

Have someone/ something do something (not the usual meaning)

Have someone do something usually means asking a subordinate or a qualified worker etc to do something. But I keep coming across this construction, only with what seems to be a different meaning. I’d love it if somebody could shed some light on it, or refer me to a source where I can find out … Read more

Is the construction “as… also” grammatically correct?

I came across the following sentence: “Every element of visual data can be viewed as in 3D also in 2D” Is it correct to use here the construction “as…also…”? Answer I have not heard of it(i’m not native though). you could say “…. viewed as in both 3D and 2D. by the way here is … Read more

When do you use “what’d you say” and when do you use “what d’you say”?

In informal writing you can say: “What’d you say” or “what d’you say?” When do you choose the former or the latter? Which one is more common? Answer They might be pronounced differently. “What’d you say” might be pronounced with four syllables, as something like [wəɾədʒjəseɪ]. Compare the pronunciation of “isn’t” which often has two … Read more

What is the difference between “Human brain” and “Human’s brain”

Many times i get confused whether i should use ‘s with a noun or not. For example: Engine parts or Engine’s parts Human brain or Human’s brain WordPress plugin or WordPress’ plugin Computer program or Computer’s program etc. I want to know why and when we use one or the other. What do you call … Read more