When not to use the 5 – Names We do not use the when referring to people or animals by their names. Examples The Bill Gates is a clever guy. ✘ incorrect Bill Gates is a clever guy. ✓correct The Gromit is a dog. ✘ incorrect Gromit is a dog. ✓correct The Leia […]
The Everyday Language Grammar Archive
Here are my notes on difficult but useful English grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation for English learners.
For a list of all grammar posts on one-page click here.
Usage of the 1 – When both the speaker and listener know We use the when we believe the reader or person we are speaking to knows what we are referring to. Examples The moon is very bright tonight. The cat sat on the window ledge. The clock showed midnight. 2 – Only one Use […]
This is an English ‘old ditty’, or rather an old, short simple song. It is also good pronunciation practice for ‘f’ sounds. Please try listening a few times and then try to pronounce the words by shadowing just after the recording. Meaning Felt is a type of material often used to make hats (see the […]
These two words are often confused with each other. However, they have different meanings. Sight Meaning Anything that is seen; an instance of seeing something. Examples: I have poor eyesight. He knows her by sight. It is quite a sorry sight. Site Meaning A piece of land where something is located; a location on the […]
These two words are often confused. Here are some differences. Principal Meaning (noun) head teacher; lead actor/ dancer; (adjective) – the most important element; chief; main; primary Examples He must be the principal. (noun – head teacher) Chicago is the principal city of the Midwest. (adjective – Chicago is the main city…) Principle Meaning (noun) […]
in Usage In general, we use in for anything inside an enclosed space. For example, in a building/house/office/shop, in a country, in a city/town/village, in a car, in a pocket, in the sky, in the sea, in a book/magazine/newspaper, in a box, in a photo, in bed, etc. Examples All the floors in her house […]
On Usage 1 Use on for talking about things on surfaces. Examples There is an orange on the table. He stood on the surface of the moon. There is a restaurant on the top floor. Usage 2 Use on for talking about position on a line. For example, on the river, on the road. Examples […]
at At is a preposition that can be used to indicate place. Here are 8 rules on how to use at, and an exception to one of the rules. Usage 1 Use at for exact positions or specific places. For example, at the corner, at the top of the page, at the bottom of the page, […]
Past Past can be a noun, adjective or an adverb. Meaning Noun – time that has elapsed; an earlier period in someone’s life Adjective – earlier than the present time; no longer current Adverb – a position beyond a certain point. Examples History deals with the past. (noun) My past self is another person. (adjective) […]
Usage Some words have two possible forms of the past tense and past participle. In British English both forms are used frequently whilst in American English there is a preference for –ed endings. Basically you can use either. Here is a list of common words: burned, burnt dreamed, dreamt kneeled, knelt leaped, leapt leaned, leant […]