Ephreak Title

Monday, January 22, 2007

"Proper" English

There are some rules concerning proper English that we know and try to respect. However, the importance of style is something frequently done away with nowadays.

I personally find some of these rules quite annoying -and btw demand an opportunity to express my concept of proper-, but it is obvious that they are still important within certain contexts, so there is nothing left for us but a long and nice study of its conventions.

Some stuff on this topic:

Famous quotations:

- "Ending a sentence with a preposition is something up with which I will not put."
(Winston Churchill, writer and politician)

- In a letter to The Times newspaper:

"There is a busybody on your staff who devotes a lot of his time to chasing split infinitives. Every good literary craftsman splits his infinitives when the sense demands it. I call for the immediate dismissal of this pedant. It is of no consequence whether he decides to go quickly or quickly to go or to quickly go. The important thing is that he should go at once."
(George Bernard Shaw, playwright)

20 tips for proper English:

1.- A preposition is a terrible word to end a sentence with. Never do it.
2.- Remember to never split an infinitive.
3.- Don't use no double negatives.
4.- Don't ever use contractions.
5.- And never start a sentence with a conjunction.
6.- Write "i" before "e" except after "c". I'm relieved to receive this anciently weird rule.
7.- Foreign words and phrases are not 'chic'.
8.- The passive voice is to be avoided wherever possible.
9.- Who needs rhetorical questions?
10.- Reserve the apostrophe for it's proper use and omit it when its not necessary.
11.- Use 'fewer' with number and 'less' with quantity. Less and less people do.
12.- Proof read carefully to see if you any words out.
13.- Me and John are careful to use subject pronouns correctly.
14.- Verbs has to agree with their subject.
15.- You've done good to use adverbs correctly.
16.- If any word is incorrect at the end of a sentence, an auxiliary verb is.
17.- Steer clear of incorrect verb forms that have snuck into the language.
18.- Take the bull by the hand and avoid mixing your idioms.
19.- Tell the rule about "whom" to who you like.
20.- At the end of the day avoid clich├ęs like the plague.

There you are, proper English :-P


Blogger Tiny Dancer said...

I break myself!!!!

I add number 21: Avoid translating idioms and collocations from your own language.

1:42 PM  
Blogger Soldier of Fortune said...


1:45 PM  
Blogger sham_rock said...

Please allow me to introduce rule number 22, concerning pronounciation. Always remember to say ad'veeeeb, pro'naun, etc.

This will reinforce your nice Scottish accent :) jijijiiji

12:52 AM  
Anonymous Sarah said...

Well said.

11:47 PM  

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