Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Candy asks 2 grammar questions

Candy sent me an email from China, asking about 2 questions from a test:

08/15/06 4:53 PM

1. Precisely the same thought sent the three of us in two different directions,_____.
A.they to San Franciso and I to New York
B.them to San Franciso and I to New York
C.them to San Franciso and me to New York
D.themselves to San Franciso and myself to New York

I choose A but the answer is C, Why?

2. Every teacher and pupil at Eton Girls'college is proud of ____school.

I choose B but the answer is C, Why?

regards Candy

Hi Candy

I also hate this kind of grammar work. REAL English doesn't bother so much with grammar. With the first question, the three people must be the objects, because 'the thought' is the subject which sent them. Many English speakers would have given the same answer as you.

For the second question, I like your answer the best! These days it sounds unnatural to use a singular pronoun for a plural' subject, even if the use of 'every' or 'each' makes the subject singular. Almost nobody uses the pronoun 'one' in daily life anymore. 98% of all English speakers agree with you!


By the way, I am sending another email to invite you to to join gmail. This will allow you to join a chat group with other students in my class.


Mami said...

I started looking at your students' blogs. They are really good. I already put some comments in a couple of students' blog. I'll try to read more and leave more comments. So be warned everybody, I'll be on your heel!

Michael said...

Hi Candy - in the first grammar example C is the correct example because you have to use the object form of the pronouns because they are controlled (are the object of) by the verb sent.

The second example is trickier. Each and every are often used as plural words in spoken English, but according to the rules of English grammar they are singular. But everyone breaks this rule all the time in spoken English so don't worry too much about it!

Congratulations to you and your class on this great blog? Are you endjoying it? Is blogging useful for you?