Sunday, December 9, 2007


Here are the corrections and explanations for last week's postings.



Candelabrum” is a branched ornament containing lights.
The root is the Latin “candela” meaning branched candle.
Candelabra” is the plural form. “Candelabrums” is incorrect.
The confusion is in the “branching” concept of the item because a candelabrum has multiple arms.


What are the errors in the sentences below? (Hint: check punctuation also.)

Before that, she says to me, "Keep still."
“She says” is incorrect and unacceptable.
The terminal period should be outside the final quotation mark.

Before that, she said to me, "Keep still".

Set down on this couch.
“Set down” demands an object. The context demands “sit”.
Sit down on this couch.

Sit the money on the counter.
The action is performed on something so “Set” must be used.
Set the money on the counter.

The child felt kind of lonely.
“Kind of” is not acceptable. “Of” should have an object because it is a preposition, such as in, “This is a kind of (meaning type) orange”.
The child felt rather lonely.



Bust”, meaning "blow up, burst or explode" and “busted” are nonstandard and unacceptable; use “burst” in this context.
Burst” is the same in the present, past and past participle forms.


How many errors can you find in the sentence below?

"Paint isn't the only way lead gets in toys."
Paint doesn’t “get into” something; it is incapable of action so the structure is inane.
“In” is incorrect; it should be “into”.
The sentence should be reworded to make proper sense.

"Paint isn't the only way toys can be contaminated with lead."


Identify the errors in the following; be sure to give supporting reasons:

1. She asked Natalie and I to be guardians.
“I” cannot be used as an object; “me” must be used.
She asked Natalie and me to be guardians.

2. He implied from her stare that she was angry at him.
“Imply” means to suggest indirectly. “Infer” means to conclude or solve by guessing. In this sentence “he” is deducing a conclusion, so “infer” must be used.
He inferred from her stare that she was angry at him.

3. She wrote him a love letter and he responded back.
“Respond means to answer; therefore “back” is redundant and must be dropped.
She wrote him a love letter and he responded.

4. Snowfalls are reoccuring events in Canada's north.
There is no such word as “reoccuring”. Even if there were, it would be misspelled.
Snowfalls are recurring events in Canada's north.


Expository" (adj.) means to expose, clarify, set forth or elucidate.

Rationale" (n.) means an explanation, a principle or a statement of reasons.

Sanctimonious" (adj.) means self-righteous or excessively or hypocritically pious.

Chicanery" (n.) means guile, trickery or deceptiveness.

Cogent" (adj.) means persuasive, effective or forceful, as in a forceful or thoughtful presentation.


Identify the author, work and speaker of the following; be really clever and explain the reason for the statement:

"It is a far, far, better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known."

Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities.
This last line of the novel was said by Sydney Carton who had taken the place of another to be executed by guillotine during the French Revolution. It completed the resurrection theme of giving one’s life for another.

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