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gram·ma·ry /ˈɡramərē/

noun: A blog of thoughts, news, and everything insightful! #Hello1HP

Much Obliged: Here’s What Makes Obligated Different from Obliged

May 15, 2019

Learning English? Then you’re obligated to read this article. We have learned over the course of this series that two words that sound alike don’t always have the same meaning. Once in a while, we get word pairs that sound so alike and have meanings that are pretty similar that differentiating one from the other can be pretty tricky. The words obliged and obligated are only two of many examples. Both obligated and obliged are what we call transitive verbs in the English language. This means that it is an action word that is always paired with a direct object. As we dive into the details of their difference, make sure to pay attention to the details because they make a whole world of......

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A Slippery Inquiry: Is Water Wet?

May 08, 2019

Is water wet? More importantly, is it grammatically correct to say water is wet? The easy answer is yes. Wet things are soaked in or splattered with water, and when we look at it, water is just a big pool of wetness. However, the real answer is not as simple as that. There is apparently a whole scientific discussion about it that involves terms like cohesive force and adhesive force, but long story short, water is not wet. However, it’s used to make other things wet. The very sensation or experience of being wet involves coming into contact with water, but water itself cannot be made wet because it is the substance used to achieve the condition. This is parallel with fire: one may......

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A Decisive Point: Differentiating May Be and Maybe

May 01, 2019

Homophones are easy to dismantle once you have the right information. The same goes for similar word pairs—all it takes is knowledge of the meaning of each word so that they can be differentiated. But what if there are two words that are spelled in nearly the same way, sound exactly the same, and have the same meaning? That’s the problem that ‘may be’ and ‘maybe’ present. The two words both indicate possibility for something to happen or to reach a potential state. So how does one differentiate between the two, especially when listening? The key is in knowing which figure of speech they fall under. On one hand, “maybe” is an adverb that indicates uncertainty and is synonymous t......

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Laying It All Out: To Flesh Out or to Flush Out?

Apr 24, 2019

Flesh out and flush out are phrases useful in extracting more information out of anything or anyone. In daily conversation, they can be fun to use because they’re easier to pronounce and understand than their formal one-word counterparts (i.e., explain, expound, reveal, etc.). However, daily conversation is also where these two phrases are often used mistakenly in place of the other. Only one letter differentiates them, but stay tuned—this difference will be helpful later. Out is the common denominator of flesh out and flush out. And true enough, their meanings are similar in that they both imply outward movements. However, the first words in either phrase mean completely differen......

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The Naked Truth: Differentiating Explicit and Implicit

Apr 17, 2019

Sometimes life forces us in situations where we have to be transparent with the messages we relay. Sometimes we have to be vague and hope that the person gets it. Both of these situations call for us to either be explicit or implicit. Do you know which is which? Explicit and implicit are adjectives that have similar endings. This can cause them to be confused for the other sometimes. Let’s break them down and find out what they actually mean. When something is explicit, it means that something stated is directly. Messages that are said explicitly are to be taken literally and at face value. Here are some easy examples: Professor told the class explicitly to not contact her via......

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Clarifying the News: Accident versus Incident

Apr 10, 2019

Journalistic writing, more specifically news reporting, requires the use of precise and simple language in order to convey events to a large and diverse audience. Incidents are reported all the time on the news, especially accidents. But what exactly is the difference between an incident and an accident? On one hand, “incident” is a synonym of event. This can be good or bad, intentional or unintentional, big or small. As long as it happens, it could be called an incident. Meeting a friend on the first day of school is an incident. An “accident,” on the other hand, is a more specific type of incident. Accidents are events that happen unintentionally. The word “accident” often......

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Into the Specifics of “Instill” and “Install

Apr 03, 2019

On top of having similar functions in sentences, some word pairs are spelled in almost the same way. “Instill” and “install” are two such words, having only one phonetic difference that could easily be mistaken for the other when spoken aloud. But however similar these two are in spelling and pronunciation, they are in no way interchangeable—they mean two different things. The similarity between “instill” and “install” can be drawn from their shared prefix “in-,” which means “into.” Their root words “still” and “stall” seem like variations of each other, but they actually come from two distinct Latin words. “Instill” takes most of its meaning from the Latin word “stillare,” “to dro......

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Get in Formation: Differentiating “Regime”, “Regimen”, and “Regiment”

Mar 27, 2019

So many words in the English language end up sounding and looking alike, despite how far apart the meanings could be. This is often because the English language is pretty much made up of words from other languages, plus years and years of language evolution. More often than not, however, words that are spelled alike have similar root words or a usage similarity that can be traced historically. Such is the case for the words “regime”, “regimen”, and “regiment”. These three words are pretty confusing and are interchanged from time to time. This happens not only because they are spelled and pronounced similarly, but historically, two of these three words were actually once synonyms.......

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