timeodanaos wrote:Normally, I would consider this practise bad grammar, but since I see it very often, doubts have been raised and help is sought.
duh, its calld THEIR will be some dissenting!!1!11!edonnelly wrote:Now, I'm sure they're will be some dissenting opinions, so let's hear 'em!
Though I hate to go off-topic, even in 'my own' threads, this is peculiar when I compare to my native Danish language - the level of reduction of forms is about equal to that of English (though we do preserve some rather nice things such as a passive voice), but the Danish cognate to 'who, whom, whose', 'hvo, hvem, hvis' had its meltdown about 150 years ago - only to make the oblique 'hvem' the general form in the nominative! But anyway, this has nothing to do with collective nouns.benissimus wrote:Though I hate to see "whom" go, this is just the way that "who" came to be acceptable as an object case in English.
benissimus wrote:What I mean to say is that "unacceptable in writing" and "bad grammar" are not the same thing. In fact, I propose that the latter does not exist at all, provided the speakers of so-called "bad grammar" are fluent speakers of the language. The idea behind a collective noun is plural, so the verb is plural. People often criticize the use of split infinitives ("to boldly go"), but how can you ban that when English adverbs instinctively go directly before the verb most of the time? Also inane is the rule that you cannot end a sentence with a preposition, for how else can you phrase this sentence without totally butchering it: "this is more than I can put up with!".
(i) Never use a metaphor, simile, or other figure of speech which you are used to seeing in print.
(ii) Never us a long word where a short one will do.
(iii) If it is possible to cut a word out, always cut it out.
(iv) Never use the passive where you can use the active.
(v) Never use a foreign phrase, a scientific word, or a jargon word if you can think of an everyday English equivalent.
(vi) Break any of these rules sooner than say anything outright barbarous.
benissimus wrote:Though I hate to see "whom" go
I think bad grammar exists and doesn't change from bad grammar to acceptable unless a lot of people are speaking (or writing) incorrectly. Languages do change; Not that many years ago, keyboard was a noun. Now it can be a verb as well.benissimus wrote:
What I mean to say is that "unacceptable in writing" and "bad grammar" are not the same thing. In fact, I propose that the latter does not exist at all, provided the speakers of so-called "bad grammar" are fluent speakers of the language.
This does indeed get criticized but I can't recall ever hearing that it is against a grammatical rule. Maybe it is a matter of style, so a matter of preference.benissimus wrote: People often criticize the use of split infinitives ("to boldly go"), but how can you ban that when English adverbs instinctively go directly before the verb most of the time?
I read once that this "rule" is a result of snobbish people, who have learned Latin or Greek, insisting that a PREposition has to be positioned before the verb. I am with Churchil on this one; [this rule] is something up with I can not put.benissimus wrote: Also inane is the rule that you cannot end a sentence with a preposition, for how else can you phrase this sentence without totally butchering it: "this is more than I can put up with!".
That sentence seems perfectly fine to me. (That doesn't make it correct though.) Isn't whomever the object of the preposition so should be in the objective case?edonnelly wrote:
Strangely, though, it seems like I've been seeing much more of whom (and whomever) lately; it's just that the word appears incorrectly, as a sort of hyper-correction. Something like: "Give it to whomever wants it."
Bert wrote:That sentence seems perfectly fine to me. (That doesn't make it correct though.) Isn't whomever the object of the preposition so should be in the objective case?edonnelly wrote:"Give it to whomever wants it."
benissimus wrote:These sentences are always tricky. Strictly speaking, there is an omitted antecedent which acts as the object of the preposition, but it is rare in English to say "give it to the person, whoever wants it." At least, I think that is right
benissimus wrote: "a number of people are listening to the speaker"
"a series of murders has/have terrified the villagers"
It is possible to replace 'whomever wants it' with a noun or pronoun but it is not relevant whether 'whoever' is referring to an antecedent or not. In your sentence; ("give it to the person, whoever wants it") 'whoever' is not the object the preposition anymore but is a relative pronoun and subject of the verb in the relative clause. If you want to replace 'whoever wants it' with a noun to make the sentence simpler, you should pick a noun that has an objective case. "give it to him."
(Until proven wrong, I am going to consider this correct. )
Lucus Eques wrote:The collective plural that Britons often insist upon (e.g. "My troupe are...," "My team are..." "My family are...") is absolutely incorrect. There is no precedent linguistically, and it makes no sense in the first place.
In effect, one could say that all objects, being composed of parts, molecules, atoms, and subatomic particles, are inherently collectively plural as well, meaning that we should just do away with the singular construction altogether.
"absolutely incorrect" on what grounds?
Surely you would not go so far as to say that Caesar, a fluent speaker of Latin, was abusing the language when he said "Nam cum tanta multitudo lapides ac tela coicerent, in muro consistendi potestas erat nulli"?
Nor would you say that the whole Greek process of using singular verbs with neuter plural subjects is a corruption of proper grammar, I hope?
Lucus Eques wrote:"absolutely incorrect" on what grounds?
On the grounds that 1 â‰ 2.
I see no problem at all: "For while such a multitude, [while] they were casting stones and darts, no one was able to maintain his position on the wall."
Remember that Latin is implicit with regard to pronouns. English is explicit.
I am greatly fond of this aspect of Greek. But the analogy is specious, I'm afraid, since that's regarding plural as singular â€” regarding singular as if it were plural is quite a different thing. And is core to a completely different language. Analogies are helpful for perspective, but define no rules.
Users browsing this forum: anphph, Bing [Bot] and 31 guests