Common errors in the use of tenses

July 28, 2010

Incorrect: It is raining for two days. Correct: It has been raining for two days. Incorrect: The baby is sleeping for three hours now. Correct: The baby has been sleeping for three hours now. Here the error lies in using the present continuous instead of the present perfect continuous. We use the present perfect continuous […]

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Repetition of the article

July 27, 2010

Read the sentence given below: I have a black and white cow. This sentence means that I have a cow which is partly white and partly black. But If I say ‘I have a black and a white cow’, I have two cows – one black and the other white. Hence when two or more […]

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Omission of the articles

July 25, 2010

Before uncountable nouns We do not use articles before uncountable and abstract nouns used in a general sense. Honey is sweet. (NOT The honey is sweet.) Sugar is bad for your teeth. Wisdom is better than riches. Virtue is its own reward. Note that uncountable nouns take the article the when used in a particular […]

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What are articles?

July 22, 2010

The words a or an and the are called articles. Articles come before nouns. There are two articles – a/an and the The article a or an is called the indefinite article because it doesn’t state which person or thing we are talking about. For example, a doctor means any doctor. A child means any […]

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The phrase and the clause

July 18, 2010

When we make a sentence, we name a person or thing and say something about that person or thing.  Every sentence has two parts – The part which names the person or thing we are speaking about is called the subject of the sentence. The part which says something about the subject is called the […]

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Verb – Moods

July 11, 2010

The simplest use of a verb is to make a statement or to ask a question. I got up early in the morning. Who wrote that story? A verb may also be used to express a command. Shut up! Or a verb may be used to express a mere supposition. If I were you, I […]

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Tenses different forms

June 29, 2010

Now read the following sentences: * I write. * I am writing. * I have written. * I have been writing. The verbs in all of these sentences refer to the present time, and are, therefore, said to be in the present tense. In sentence 1, however, the verb simply talks about the action. It […]

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Tenses – introduction

June 29, 2010

Read the following sentences: I write the letter. I wrote the letter yesterday. I will write another letter tomorrow. In sentence 1, the verb write refers to present time. In sentence 2, the verb wrote refers to past time. In sentence 3, the verb will write refers to future time. Thus a verb may refer: […]

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