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Relatively Speaking

Relatively Speaking

You might be asking what we are relatively speaking about, which is a fair question. In this blog, I want to start looking at relative clauses, like the one I stuck onto the end of the previous sentences with a which and the one I’m making now without bothering to put...
Phrasal Verbs: Catching Up

Phrasal Verbs: Catching Up

In my last blog, I tried to explain how phrasal verbs enable native English speakers to go into detail about how they go up stairs (we walk up them, run up them or stagger up them drunk). If we move something else to a higher place, we generally just pick it up and...
Phrasal Verbs: Catching Up

Phrasal Verbs: How do you “UP”?

Most of my students like phrasal verbs about as much as they like exercise bikes and try to use them with roughly the same frequency.  Native speakers, on the other hand, find them so easy and flexible that we can invent them spontaneously to serve when we don’t know...
How do you like your English?

How do you like your English?

American English When I was a kid growing up in 1970s England, I never really had any concept of “American English”. I decided that the candy I saw advertised in Marvel comics was just another of those cool American things (like “sea-monkeys”) that weren’t available...
Still not sure?

Still not sure?

STILL, YET and ALREADY Last time, I shared my misgivings about the slippery present perfect tense in English. As if it wasn’t bad enough alone, this tense also provides a favourable habitat for three of our most exotic and user-hostile adverbs: still, yet and already....

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