some questions on the english language (1 Viewer)

maxmc

Junior Member
Jul 27, 2002
347
#1
hi ppl

long time since my last visit at the list... I'm here because i've got a little problem and thought maybe someone in here could help me...

these are some extracts from my last english-test - my english teacher marked the bold ones false, but i found most of them in the dictionary, so i wonder if it's really impossible to express it this way... maybe you can have a look on it..

It was an incident, that occured to Rosa Parks.
They occured a boost.
She wrote down the daily happenings.
The Supreme Cout decided that bus segregation violated the constitution. (teacher told me that i have to write "the bus segregaton")
I sweared and hurried to the checkout counter.
They are confronted with discrimination in their daily life.
She threw swear words at me.
 

Majed

Senior Member
Jul 17, 2002
9,630
#2
++ [ originally posted by maxmc ] ++
hi ppl

long time since my last visit at the list... I'm here because i've got a little problem and thought maybe someone in here could help me...

these are some extracts from my last english-test - my english teacher marked the bold ones false, but i found most of them in the dictionary, so i wonder if it's really impossible to express it this way... maybe you can have a look on it..

[1] It was an incident, that occured to Rosa Parks.
[2] They occured a boost.
[3] She wrote down the daily happenings.
[4] The Supreme Cout decided that bus segregation violated the constitution. (teacher told me that i have to write "the bus segregaton")
[5] I sweared and hurried to the checkout counter.
[6] They are confronted with discrimination in their daily life.
[7] She threw swear words at me.
I'm no English expert, but let me take a stab at it:

[1] Sounds ok to me, a bit wordy, but ok. Though I probably would have replaced "occured" with "happened.

[2] I don't know what this means exactly.

[3] Other than being a bit informal, I don't see anything wrong with it.

[4] If you were referring to a specefic incident, then you should say "the bus segregation incident," but if you mean it ingeneral, then you're sentance sounds pretty good to me.

[5] "swore"

[6] I guess "daily life" makes it sound like there's a "weekly life" or "monthly life," which is incorrect. Would have been simpler to say: "They are confronted with discrimination everyday."

[7] I think that's slang/too informal. "She insulted me" would sound better IMO.
 

Martin

Senior Member
Dec 31, 2000
56,859
#5
I'll take a stab at this one myself..

1: I would replace "that" with "which". And if you mean to say that Rosa Parks experienced something, like Majed I would use "happened". "occured" to me implies that she had a moment of realization, which doesn't seem to match the context.

2: I don't get this one but if you mean to say that "they" inspired or triggered a boost, a different word than "occured" seems more appropriate.

3: I don't see a problem here. Perhaps "she recorded the daily happenings" would be more formal but not an error per se.

4: I disagree. Unless there are two or more different forms or kinds of segregation, "segregation" seems more appropriate than "the segregation". "the" only used to distinctly reference something, if there is only one such thing, "the" is obsolete.

5: Majed's.

6: Since "they" is plural, perhaps the indication points towards a plural formulation at the end. "daily lives". I'm not exactly sure how important this distinction is in terms of formal grammar. Majed?

I will say that I do think my explanation makes a lot more sense than Majed's though.. :p

7: Majed's

Burke: Webster is a fatass. Fine for home use but impractical on the road.
 
Jul 12, 2002
5,666
#6
++ [ originally posted by maxmc ] ++
hi ppl

long time since my last visit at the list... I'm here because i've got a little problem and thought maybe someone in here could help me...

these are some extracts from my last english-test - my english teacher marked the bold ones false, but i found most of them in the dictionary, so i wonder if it's really impossible to express it this way... maybe you can have a look on it..

It was an incident, that occured to Rosa Parks.
They occured a boost.
She wrote down the daily happenings.
The Supreme Cout decided that bus segregation violated the constitution. (teacher told me that i have to write "the bus segregaton")
I sweared and hurried to the checkout counter.
They are confronted with discrimination in their daily life.
She threw swear words at me.
I've a got a bit of expertise in this matter:

1. Martin is correct, when he says that "happened" is a much more appropriate word for the situation. "Occured" is rarely used when applying that action to a person. for example, things often happen to people or there was an incident that occrued last night...

2. "They occured a boost" Yeah, that one is definitely a bit off, I'd need a bit more information on the specific question to help out more...

3. "She recorded the days events"

4. That one is completely fine. It would, in fact, be inappropriate to say, "the bus segregation" The US Supreme Court reviews state and national laws and can declare them unconstituional and strike them down. Therefore, they can not be talking about a specific bus, or about a specific instance of segregation. That's the only reason why you would insert "the."

5. I swore and and hurried to the checkout counter. Tenses are so ****ed up in English....

6. Because you are talking about a group of people who are all different, they each have a seperate daily life and thus you would have to say "daily lives", instead. If you wanted to avoid that, I would write, "They are confronted with discrimination on a daily basis."

7. This is a tricky one. I personally like the way that you put it, but it only really works in that instance. You couldn't erally say that someone threw compliments at you..
 

Layce Erayce

Senior Member
Aug 11, 2002
9,116
#7
english is so ****ed. max the only way anyone can get these minor things right is to interact with people who speak english fluently, and emulate the way they speak. dont worry about it

1, 3, 4, 6, and 7 are technically correct, but are incorrect only because people dont say it like that.

Its not wrong, its just not "preferred".
 

Martin

Senior Member
Dec 31, 2000
56,859
#8
That pretty much goes for all languages.. outside grammar rules there are certain restrictions on formulation.
 
Apr 12, 2004
72,411
#9
++ [ originally posted by DukeVonEggwaffle? ] ++
english is so ****ed. max the only way anyone can get these minor things right is to interact with people who speak english fluently, and emulate the way they speak. dont worry about it

1, 3, 4, 6, and 7 are technically correct, but are incorrect only because people dont say it like that.

Its not wrong, its just not "preferred".
Agreed. Good call Duke.
 

Elnur_E65

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2004
10,848
#11
When I was in college I had a constant problem with using these "sophisticated" words. Professors kept telling me that I have to keep reading and writing.

Interestingly, I started to get fluent with English only after I graduated - and hit the real world.
 

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