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9 Annoying Grammar Errors


Nine common and frustrating modern misuses of grammar:

1. The confusion "have" and "of", as in: "I could of learnt how to write properly."

2. The phrase "for free" should be "for nothing".

3. There is no such time as 12 pm; "meridiem" as in am ("ante meridiem" means "before noon") and pm ("post meridiem" means "after noon") means midday. The 12th hour is neither before nor after midday. It should read '12 noon'.

4. If you do something to change a situation, then– you "effect" a change. If your circumstances are changed by an action, then the change has caused an "effect". "Affect" a change in something is incorrect; nor can you be "effected" by one.

5. The plural of CD is not "CD's".

6. "She said some things about Mildred and I" is incorrect, but believed to be polite or grammatically correct. To remember which to use think of this: if you would say him or her on its own, use me; if you would say he or she on its own, use I. For example, "She said some things about her".

7. "None of them is" and "none of them are": the former is correct. "None" is short for "not one" therefore "not one (none) of them is" would be used. Though Fowler's Modern English Usage says that "none" is not short for "not one" and although using a singular verb is more common, using a plural verb has also been an acceptable option since the reign of King Alfred.

8. The proper use of "its" and "it's": "its" is a possessive and "it's" being a contraction of "it is".

9. The use of a single noun with a plural verb, for example: "the team are happy with their victory", or "management have congratulated the workforce on the recent increase in productivity". Team is a singular noun so it should read "the team IS happy..." or "the team members ARE happy", the same applies "management HAS congratulated..."


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