Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

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Proofreading Service - Pain in the English
Proofreading Service - Pain in the English

Your Pain Is Our Pleasure

24-Hour Proofreading Service—We proofread your Google Docs or Microsoft Word files. We hate grammatical errors with passion. Learn More

Username

Warsaw Will

Member Since

December 3, 2010

Total number of comments

1371

Total number of votes received

1526

Bio

I'm a TEFL teacher working in Poland. I have a blog - Random Idea English - where I do some grammar stuff for advanced students and have the occasional rant against pedantry.

Latest Comments

The 1900s

  • June 12, 2015, 7:55am

Some pre-1960 examples of "in the 1800s" at Google Books, (there are less than thirty entries all told) which I presume refer to the century:

"it would triple the former record set in New York during subway construction late in the 1800s" 1958

"The minor force behind output expansion in the 1800s became the major force in the 1900s." 1958

"Most breeds were established in the 1800s by dog fanciers, using a small number of founders that featured traits of particular interest" 1952

"Now, Sir, I would suggest that if that was true in the 1800s, it is probably no less true to-day," 1959

Only a few appear to definitely refer to the decade:

"Land disturbance began again in the 1800s and culminated in the 1880s" 1923

"It appears that a previous pastor of the same church back in the 1800s had a son, Woodrow Wilson, who grew up there" 1944

Though many are admittedly ambiguous without looking at the actual contexts. Going back further we find:

"The Lakota had migrated from Minnesota to the plains in the 1700s. Here they developed the classic plains culture. After the Civil War they fought against the United States to keep their lands but were concentrated on reservations in the West," 1846 (perhaps ambiguous)

In all countries having the social cleavages and the feudal survivals of England in the 1700s and early 1800s, the offenders against the criminal law come in the far greater proportion from what are known as the " lower classes," 1899

" Men and women of both classes flooded the colony in the 1600s and early 1700s and had an enormous impact on both the population of the colony and its laws. U.S.A. " 1895

But there are also examples where no doubt the decade is being referred to.

I imagine that this expression has long been used in both senses, except when talking of the century we're living in. For us oldies, much of our lives was lived in the twentieth century, when naturally the 1900s was used for the decade, but I'm not so convinced about the 1800s. As with much in language, it simply depends on context. And as soon as things like "early, mid, late" are added, it seems more likely that the century is being referred to.

Interestingly Ngram suggests that this expression wasn't much used before the mid twentieth
century, even for the 1700s and 1800s. Incidentally, the written out forms hardly register.

http://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=the+seventeen+hundreds%2Cthe1600s%2Cthe+1700s%2Cthe+1800s%2Cthe+1900s&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1600&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t1%3B%2Cthe%20seventeen%20hundreds%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Cthe%201700s%3B%2Cc0%3B.t1%3B%2Cthe%201800s%3B%2Cc0%3B.t4%3B%2Cthe%201900s%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bthe%201900s%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BThe%201900s%3B%2Cc0

“In the long term”

  • June 12, 2015, 7:01am

Sorry, that link won't work. I forgot PITE doesn't like asterisks in web addresses.

“In the long term”

  • June 12, 2015, 6:59am

For what it's worth, there's not a lot of difference at the BBC website, 473 for "in the long term", 517 for "in the long run". And at the Economist it's even closer: 480 to 485 respectively. But these are both British, of course, and if you go to jayles's Ngram link and narrow it down to British books and American books, the use of "in the long term" in books seems somewhat more popular in the UK (1/3) than in the US (1/5).

There is a small problem with the figures for "in the long term", however. In two of the first ten entries at the Economist, for example, the expression is being used adjectivally - "in the long term value", "in the long term trend", although there are none like that in the first ten entries at the BBC, nor inthe first ten collocations at Ngram.

http://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=in+the+long+term+*%2Cin+the+long+run+*&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1800&year_end=2008&corpus=18&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t2%3B%2Cin%20the%20long%20term%20*%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20the%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20to%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20it%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20and%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20by%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20as%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20than%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20if%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20term%20they%3B%2Cc0%3B.t2%3B%2Cin%20the%20long%20run%20*%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20to%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20the%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20it%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20be%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20than%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20by%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20is%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20they%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20a%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bin%20the%20long%20run%20and%3B%2Cc0

Generally, I reckon if something's good enough to be printed in the Economist, it's good enough for the rest of us. Some examples:

"So technological progress squeezes some incomes in the short term before making everyone richer in the long term"

"That could have profound effects, in the long term, on the economy and the markets"

" ... suggest though that economic conditions are not repeatable in the long term."

It seems that "in the long term" is especially used when contrasting with the short term, and it seems to be often used at the end of the sentence.

It's definitely officially with a hard z sound in BrE. Check out (and listen at) Oxford. But after repeating it to my (British) self several times, I think you might well be right that the s sound tends to soften in practice.

In academic writing (especially, I think, in the US), commas seem to be expected, unless the second clause is very short. But I can't imagine your example occurring in any formal context, so I don't see any problem. In non-academic writing I go with jayles and use a comma when I would pause, rather than worrying about formal rules.

My usage bible, Practical English Usage, and Oxford dictionaries online seem to suggest that commas are only necessary in complex sentences or where clauses are longer:

I came home and the others went dancing.

I decided to come home earlier than I had planned, and the others spent the evening at the local disco.

In academic writing (especially, I think, in the US), commas seem to be expected, unless the second clause is very short. But I can't imagine your example occurring in any formal context, so I don't see any problem. In non-academic writing I go with jayles and use a comma when I would pause, rather than worrying about formal rules.

My usage bible, Practical English Usage, and Oxford dictionaries online seem to suggest that commas are only necessary in complex sentences or where clauses are longer:

I came home and the others went dancing.

I decided to come home earlier than I had planned, and the others spent the evening at the local disco.

Just one small point: you should keep the same grammatical form for the listed items after the colon. You have noun, clause, noun; so better would be: study skills etc, counsellors who will give advice etc, and the option etc.

I don't think there is any reason why you can't use both in one sentence, but in this particular case I would probably go for two sentences as your second clause is quite long.

Past tense of “text”

  • May 7, 2015, 9:22am

There are approximately twenty irregular verbs that have all three forms the same, and most of these have been around for hundreds of years. And, as you show, most of these have a single vowel followed by a single consonant - hit, cut, etc and so are not really analogous. Only two, I think, end with a double consonant - cost and burst.

Meanwhile there are thousands of similarish verbs, such as test, post etc which form their 2nd and 3rd forms regularly. It's arguable whether text is a new verb or not, but in any case virtually all new verbs take regular past forms - fax, faxed; google, googled, tweet, tweeted etc. Why on earth should text be any different? What makes it so special that it should it be included in a tiny group which has been closed for over two centuries?

On an idiomatic note, the British (and I believe, original) version of 'get your panties in a bunch' is 'get your knickers in a twist'.

Capitalizing After the Colon

  • April 20, 2015, 4:36am

@HS. Well, I keep looking in hope that someone will provoke one of my rants, or, simply an explanation, if I can give one. I often prefer PITE to other language forums such as Stack Exchange or Word Reference, because it' s not as hectic (or as competitive, pointswise), but I agree things are getting a bit too quiet around here, which is a shame.

Questions

When “one of” many things is itself plural November 27, 2011
You’ve got another think/thing coming September 29, 2012
Fit as a butcher’s dog May 22, 2013
“reach out” May 25, 2013
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tonne vs ton January 25, 2014
apostrophe with expressions of distance or time February 2, 2014
Natural as an adverb April 13, 2014
fewer / less May 3, 2014
Opposition to “pretty” March 7, 2015