Here are the explanations of the various errors and examples posted last week.
“The store also held a barbecue in their parking lot Thursday that raised more than $1,900 for the baby, $400 of which was donated.”
“The store also held a barbecue in its parking lot Thursday that raised more than $1,900 for the baby, $400 of which was donated.”
Sense question: if they raised more than $1,900 and only $400 was donated, how did they obtain the $1,500 difference? This is a very poorly constructed thought.
“The survey also shows that nearly one in five Canadian parents believe that if their children have taken swimming lessons, fences and gates around home pools are not needed.”
“The survey also shows that nearly one in five Canadian parents believes that if his children have taken swimming lessons, fences and gates around home pools are not needed.”
The author must learn subject-verb agreements.
“Prophesy” is a verb meaning to foretell or predict and the emphasis is on the last syllable.
“Prophecy” is a noun meaning foretelling and the emphasis is on the first syllable.
Other forms of the words are prophet (n.) and prophetic (adj.).
The old prophets prophesy that the world will someday turn to jelly. The people do not believe their prophecy.
“Rise” is an intransitive verb meaning to get up or elevate. It never takes an object.
“Raise” is a transitive verb meaning to cause to grow or to elevate. It normally is done to something and thus takes an object.
A transitive verb is one that takes an object.
An intransitive verb never takes an object.
The boy continually raised his hand in class. He was very polite and would always rise when he spoke.
“Schwartzenegger is here to sell Canadians on his highly unique environmental agenda.”
“Schwartzenegger is here to sell Canadians on his unique environmental agenda.”
Unique means one of a kind. It cannot be raised, lowered or altered by a modifier.
“A pair of wayward whales are almost back home.”
“A pair of wayward whales is almost back home.”
“Pair” is a collective, singular noun and must have a singular verb.
What is the difference between “disinterested” and “uninterested”?
“Disinterested” mean impartial or taking no side.
“Uninterested” means not being concerned or caring about something.
A good arbiter is disinterested and has no favourites.
The child became uninterested in the boring game very quickly.
“Gender” refers to the classification of nouns in various languages usually as masculine, feminine or neuter. It has nothing to do with human sexuality.
“Sex” designates one’s maleness or femaleness. It should not be confused with gender.
Boys are of the male sex and girls are of the female sex but when they meet they should never confuse what they want with the concept of gender because they will get all mixed up. (I couldn’t resist that.)
“Taciturn” (adj.) means inclined to silence or not inclined to conversation.
The taciturn old man would rather play bridge than chat with his friends.
“Promulgate” (v.) means to make known, to proclaim formally or to set forth.
The workers tried to promulgate their leader’s message to the voters.
“Dilettante” (n.) means a dabbler, pretender or one who pursues an art merely for amusement.
The self-absorbed actor was considered an emotive ham by his more professional peers.
“Exigency” (n.) means a need , demand or requirement needing quick action.
The exigencies of the war are always in the forefront of our thoughts.
“Glib” (adj.) means ready and fluent, often insincerely or thoughtlessly.
The politician was always superbly dressed and always had a glib observation about his opponents.