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The Semicolon and Its Usage

The semicolon is a commonly misunderstood punctuation mark. It may be useful to think of it as something between a comma and a full stop; it both separates and links the clauses that it appears between. Although opinions vary about the instances in which a semicolon is required, the three usages that follow are widely … Read more

Apostrophes, Parentheses, Brackets and Ellipses

Apostrophes ’ Apostrophes are very handy indicators to use in sentences. They are used to indicate possession. Here are some examples: ‘John’s car was a different colour from my sister’s car.’ ‘I turned the corner to be confronted by my manager’s assistant.’ ‘The politician met his mother’s expectations but failed to meet his electors’ expectations.’ If the apostrophe is not used, then Johns and sisters … Read more

Correct Use of the Phrase ‘Due to’

The phrase ‘due to’ tends to be overused in academic writing and, although it is becoming increasingly acceptable in modern usage, your writing will be more professional and concise if you understand when it is most appropriate. Often, ‘because’ or ‘because of’ should be used instead. If you could substitute ‘attributable to’, ‘caused by’ or … Read more

But why can’t I use ‘as such’ instead of ‘therefore’?

It seems to be increasingly common for students, and others, to use ‘as such’ as a replacement for ‘therefore’. However, if you think ‘as such’ and ‘therefore’ have the same meaning and are thus interchangeable, read on. ‘Therefore’ is a conjunction (a part of speech that joins words, phrases, clauses or sentences) that, according to the Macquarie … Read more

Grammar in Enid Blyton : “ Jolly Good ! ” said Dick, “just wait till I get it !

Did you notice any glaring errors in this blog’s title? If you didn’t, then I can only assume you worked for Enid Blyton’s English publisher, Dean & Son Ltd, during the 1960s. I’ve been reading my old Enid Blyton books to my children for several years now (I cannot bear the recent editions, with all … Read more