Exceptions to Rules of Parallelism

Ok, it all starts with this thing we learned back in our elementary school that is called parallelism. What it basically says is that you can’t compare a thing to a person and vice versa. But here is something I personally think is different from parallelism, but am not so sure if it is. Is … Read more

Obligatory punctuation for independent clauses as parts of a noun phrase?

Consider the following sentence: I remember the time I pushed John and he fell over. Is that sentence correctly punctuated as written? I ask because it has no commas. As I understand it, the phrase “the time I pushed John and he fell over” is a noun phrase with time as its head word. However, … Read more

Correct usage of *which* and *that*

I keep seeing written usage of which in cases where the writer clearly intends it to be restrictive. For example: “Is there a word which means whatever you want it to mean? Or has no meaning?“ “It will only contain elements from the input sequence which pass the predicate.” (And other occurrences on the same … Read more

“between” vs. “among”

Today I was cut off in the middle of the following sentence: Between Cook, Strauss, and Pietersen— My friend said I was wrong. He said that for more than two entities, among/amongst are used, and that between is only for two entities. I vaguely remember some rule like this, but I asked him to hear … Read more

Is using passive voice “bad form”?

Whenever I create a document in Microsoft Word, it complains about a lot of my sentences being in passive voice. But, when I read that sentence aloud, it sounds fine to me. I am not sure if it is just me and will a statement in passive voice sound strange to a native speaker? So, … Read more

Does any English dialect use any non-English foreign letters in their alphabet?

Which English dialects use non-English foreign letters in their alphabets? Does any English dialect currently include any foreign letters as part of their alphabet? Are any English dialects currently planning to add foreign letters to their alphabet in the future? For example, under the international treaty known in English as the Portuguese Language Orthographic Agreement … Read more