Essential Essential English grammar -1

Essential English grammar for English Grammar speaking series- Part 1

I normally do not emphasize on the grammar. Infact, I always say that grammar is not that important for english speaking.

But here I am going to talk about grammar part. This part is mainly for those who are already speaking. If you have not yet followed my advice and using our Marathi 2 English Speaking Course, then pl do skip this article.

A noun is the name of a person, place, or things, Amitabh Bachhan, Mumbai, pencil. A noun may also name an idea, a quality, or an action. Such names as beauty, noise,odor, and pain express ideas that one gains through the senses. Names of qualities include such words as honesty.

While names of actions comprise hundreds of words like counting, filing, writing.

A pronoun is a word that is used instead of a noun.
Pronouns are classified as follows:
Personal pronouns: I, you, he, she, it, we and they.

Relative pronouns: who, which, that, and what.

Interrogative pronouns: who, which, and what.

Demonstrative pronouns: this and that, and the plurals these and those.

Indefinite pronouns: one, any, anyone, someone, none, each, both, another, etc.

Reciprocal pronouns: each other, one another.

Compound personal pronouns: myself, ourselves, yourself, yourselves, himself, herself, themselves, and itself.

A verb is a word that asserts as, ” Business men work.”

Sometimes a group of words, called a verb phrase, is used to make an assertion. Such a phrase consists of a principal verb and one or more helping words, called auxiliary verbs.

The auxiliary verbs include the various forms of the verbs be (is, am, are, was, were, has been, have been), may, can, must, might, could, would, should, will, shall, ought, have, do, and did.

The following sentences contain verb phrases –

1. Your order will receive prompt attention.

2. We shall he glad to hear from you in a few days.

3. Our draft has been returned.

An adjective –
An adjective is a word that modifies a noun or a pronoun.

An adverb –
An adverb is a word that modifies a verb, an adjective,
or another adverb. The following sentences contain adverbs:

1. You are cordially invited to be present at a Private Exhibition of our new spring hats.

2. We were extremely sorry to learn from your letter of April 4 that the table was damaged.

3. We will very gladly take back the two coats.

An adverb answers the question when? where? why? how? how many? or how much?

The words how, when, where, and why are sometimes used in asking questions, and in
such cases are called interrogative adverbs.

A preposition
A preposition is a word that is used to show the relation between a noun or a pronoun and some other word in the sentence as, ” Our draft of November 10 has been returned to us.”

A conjunction
A conjunction is a word that connects words, phrases, or clauses. These sentences illustrate the three uses:

1. Manufacturers and wholesalers allow credits varying from ten to ninety days.

2. The business envelope bears in its upper left-hand corner or on the flap the name and address of the house.

3. Some business houses prefer to have all letters single spaced, hut others prefer to have them double spaced.

To determine what part of speech a word is, therefore, you must answer the question,How is it used in the sentence?
It will be necessary also in this lesson to review briefly sentence, clause, and phrase.

A sentence is the expression of a complete thought in words. The simplest sentence must necessarily have a subject, the word or expression that names the person, thing, idea, quality, or action about which an assertion is made, and a predicate, the word or words that say something about the subject.

In the sentence, ” The customer paid cash for the goods,” the subject is The customer and the predicate paid cash for the goods, of which paid is the verb.

Some sentences also contain an object, that is, a word or group of words that completes the meaning of the verb and tells what is acted upon,as, ”The salesman broke his pencil. ”

Here pencil is the object of broke.

Simple sentences become more complex as modifiers words, phrases, and clauses are added.

A phrase is a group of words that does not have a subject and predicate. It generally consists of a preposition and its object, or of an infinitive or participle and its object.

The following sentences contain phrases:

1. The president of the company resigned.

2. The man wanted to study salesmanship.

3. The bond, torn to pieces, was found in the waste basket.

As I said, do not get overwhelmed with this grammar part. But if you are already confident about it, then be sure to read other articles in this series.

Rajesh Gurule

Similar Adjectives and Adverbs

Similar Adjectives and Adverbs Distinguished

Since every person should acquire an accurate and varied vocabulary, your attention is again directed to the study of certain words commonly misused. It is, of course, impossible to present here a complete list of similar words.

They constitute a study of importance and would require a large book. The intention of the lesson is to present a few of the most common illustrations and to show how such words can be studied, with the aid of a good dictionary.

All definitions are taken from the New Standard Dictionary. ContinuaL Renewed in regular succession; oft’en repeated; very frequent as, continual interruptions.”
Continuous. Connected, extended, or prolonged without separation or interruption of sequence; unbroken; uninterrupted; unintermitted.

Continuous describes that which is absolutely without pause; continual, that which often intermits, but as regularly begins again.
1. Continual interruptions made it impossible to complete the work according to contract.

2. Mr. Johnson’s connections with this concern have covered fifteen years of continuous service.
FEW, LESS Few. Small or limited in number; not many; only a small number of. . Less. I. Smaller, as in capacity, quantity, or scope; not so large, great, or much; used as the comparative of little as, ‘Hess time.”

2. Lacking full number or quantity; smaller by subtraction or omission as, ”a year less a month.” 3. Of smaller import, of slighter consequence; inferior. use few when speaking of numbers; less, when speaking of capacity, quantity, or scope.

1. We have received fewer orders than usual. (Do not say less orders unless you wish to indicate their size rather than the number of them.)

2. There is less demand for cotton goods than there was a year ago.GRAND, SPLENDID Grand, i. Of imposing character or aspect; magnificent in proportion, extent, or belongings as, ”grand scenery “; “a grand palace.”

2. Characterized by striking excellence or impressive dignity; inspiringas, ‘ ‘a. grand idea ” ; “a grand oration. ” 3 . Preeminent by reason of great abihty or high character; noble; worthy of exalted
respect as, “the grand old man.” Splendid, i. Giving out or reflecting brilliant light; brightly
shining; glittering.

2. Magnificent; imposing; gorgeous as, “a. splendid pageant.” 3. Inspiring the imagination or causing emotions of great admiration; illustrfous; grand; glorious; heroic as,
“splendid achievement.” The foregoing definitions make clear the distinction in meaning between these words. You should not allow yourselves to fall into the habit of speaking of everything that pleases you as grand or splendid, though sometimes either is correct. These words are correctly used in the following expressions

1. grand jury i. splendid display
2. grand review of troops 2. splendid necklaces
3. grand cathedral 3. splendid pageant
4. grand opera 4. splendid parade
5. grand river 5. splendid sunset
6. grand old man 6. splendid costumes
7. grand result 7. splendid coronation robes
8. grand bridge . 8. splendid stone (diamond)
9. grand fireworks 9. splendid achievement
10. grand achievement 10. splendid scenery

Hardly, i. In a hard or rough manner; rigorously; harshly ;oppressively; severely; unfavorably as, “to deal hardly with one.” 2. With difiiculty or great pains as, ”Seamen’s wages are hardly earned.” 3. Almost not; not, with few exceptions; not wholly; barely: noting that the qualified clause is untrue, but lacks little of being true as, ‘ ‘He had hardly escaped when he was recaptured.”

4. Not quite; not, though almost: a euphemism for not, noting that the qualified clause is untrue, though approaching very nearly to truth as, “That is hardly the way to do it.”

5. Improbably; not likely as, “He will hardly take such a risk.” Scarcely, i. Only just; with difficulty or with little lapse of time; barely: signifying that the qualified attribute or action is true, but lacks little of being untrue as, “I had scarcely spoken.”

2. Not quite; hardly: negativing the qualified word, but asserting that it lacks but little of truth as, “You will scarcely maintain that proposition.” Scarcely is often improperly used for hardly. In strict usage scarcely has reference to quantity; hardly, to degree.

You may rightly say, “It is scarcely dun hour to nightfall” and “He will hardly finish his task before nightfall.” Do not say scarcely than as, ‘Scarcely had I recognized him than he addressed me.” In such sentences, use no sooner than. HEALTHY, HEALTHFUL Healthy, i. Having health; being in a condition of health; sound; well as, “a healthy body.”

2. Conducing or tending to health, etc. Healthful. Efficacious in promoting health or causing health;
sanative; salubrious as, “a healthful climate.” Healthy is most correctly used to signify possessing or enjoying health or its results as, ‘a. healthy person “; ”a healthy condition.” Healthful signifies promoting health, or tending, or adapted to confer, preserve, or promote health as, “a healthful climate.” MAD, ANGRY Mad. I. Disordered in mind; lunatic; insane; crazy.

2. Subject to overmastering emotion; excited intensely or beyond self-control; inflamed or infatuated, as with jealousy, terror, or grief. Specif, I. Strongly moved by desire or curiosity; eager; infatuatedas,
‘mad for gold.”

2. Wild with animal spirits; extravagantly gay.

3. Distracted with trouble or anxiety, as mad with grief; angry; furious; enraged. 4. Uncontrollable, as an animal through rage or disease, especially rabies. 5. Proceeding from or indicating a disordered
mind; rash, as a mad project.

6. Tumultuous or uncontrollable in movement or action: said of things, as a mad torrent. Angry, i. FeeHng anger; moved by violent resentment or indignation against the agent or cause of the trouble as, “angry with his brother.”

2. Showing or wearing the marks of anger; caused, occasioned, or aflfected by or as by anger as, ”an angry sky.” 3. Med.: inflamed as, “an angry sore.” 4. Vexed, grieved, etc. Mad in the sense of angry is colloquial. Do not say, ”You make me mad” or “I am mud at you.” In about nine cases out of ten the correct word is angry. You may very properly speak of a mad man, meaning an insane person, of a mad scheme, or of a mad dog.

NOWHERE, NOWHERES Nowhere, somewhere, and some place are correct. Avoid nowheres,
somewheres, and someplace. Do not say nowhere near for not nearly. REAL, VERY Real. I. Having actual existence; not theoretical or imaginary as, “That is a real instance of success.”

2. Being in fact according to appearance or claim; genuine; not artificial, false, spurious SIMILAR ADJECTIVES AND as, ”real diamonds.”
3. Philos. Having actual being, whether spiritual or material; etc.

4. Law. (i) Relating or pertaining to, or arising out of, lands. \2) Civ. Law. Relating to or connected ith things, including things movable and immovable, as distinguished from persons. Very. i. In a high degree; in a large measure; extremely; exceedingly as, ”very generous. Do not say, “I am very pleased to meet you” or ”He was very provoked.” You should say, ”I am very much pleased” or ”He was very muck provoked.” Avoid the very common error of using the adjective real for very.

The foregoing definitions leave no doubt about the distinction in meaning between the two. Do not say, “This book is real deep.” Say, “This book is very deep.” Here are several incorrect expressions: “real tired,” “real hungry,” “real pretty,” “real busy,” and “real unjust.” Very or really is correct in each case. RESPECTFULLY, RESPECTIVELY Respectfully. With due respect. Respectively.

As singly or severally considered; singly in the order designated as, “John, James, and William were elected president, secretary, and treasurer respectively.” In closing a letter in which Yours respectfully is to be used, be especially careful not to use respectively. SOME, SOMEWHAT Some. I. Of indeterminate quantity; of indefinite number or amount as, “He bought some land in Texas.” 2. Appreciable
yet limited in degree or amount; moderate as,

“The report is in some measure true.”

3. Conceived or thought of, but not definitely known: used to express ignorance or uncertainty in regard to the person or thing referred to as, “Some person drove past” or “He may fall into some ditch.”

4. Logic. Part at least; etc. 5. Colloq. Of considerable account; noteworthy or eminent As an adverb the word som. has the following meanings: i. Colloq. In an approximate degree; as nearly as maybe estimated; about as, “Some eighty people were present.”

2. Dial, or Prov. Somewhatas, ”He was some tired” or “I like it some.” Somewhat. Adv. In some degree; to some extent sls, *’somewhat hastily,” “somewhat more than a year ago.” Remember, therefore, that some should not be used in the sense of somewhat. Do not say, ”Business is some better this year.” It is incorrect to say, “Shipments were delayed some” for ‘Shipments were delayed somewhat.” NICE, AGREEABLE Nice. I. Characterized by discrimination and judgment; discernin as, “a nice criticism.”

2. Refined and pure in tastes and habits; refined; hence overparticular; dainty; modest; fastidious; etc. From the above definition it is clear that nice in the sense of agreeable or attractive is colloquial. All such expressions as “nice time,” “nice man,” “nice business,” etc. are incorrect. APT, LIKELY, LIABLEApt. I. Having a natural or habitual tendency (to); liable, likely, or given (to) as, “Iron is apt to rust.”

2. Adapted by nature; naturally gifted; fitted; able as, “apt to rule.”

3. Adapted to the purposeas, “an apt illustration.” Likely, i. Apparently true or real; easily credible; plausible; probable as, “a likely explanation.” 2. Reasonably expected; showing a tendency; etc. Liable, i. Exposed, as to damage, penalty, expense, burden, or anything unpleasant or dangerous; open; contingently subject; with to as, “liable to insult or injury.” 2. Justly or legally responsible; answerable as,

“The endorser is liable.” 3. Having a tendency, inclination, or likelihood (to do something unfortunate or undesirable); likely (with unfavorable sense) as, “All men are liable to err.” There are some places in which these words are exact synonyms and one may, therefore, be used for the other. For example,

you will note that likely is given as one of the meanings of liable and that both likely and liable are given as synonyms of apt. Words that have the same meaning in some cases, however, have different meanings in others, and the selection of the correct word where the meanings are different is important.

If you eliminate the first definition of apt, because this meaning of the word is the same as one of the meanings of the words liable and likely, you get its distinctive meanings, naturally gifted and
adapted to a purpose. Neither liable nor likely has these meanings. Similarly in the first two definitions of liable you get its distinctive meanings, exposed to danger and legally responsible. Neither apt
nor likely has these meanings. The distinctive meaning of likely is the first one given plausible.
Neither apt nor liable has this meaning. So much for the distinctive meanings that is, the place where

one cannot be substituted for the other. But even where the meanings are similar there is a slight difference. Apt refers t o a natural tendency; liable, in the sense of likelihood, refers to something unfavorable; and likely refers to something expected merely.

Thus you say “Iron is apt to rust” when you have in mind its natural chemical qualities; you say ”Men are liable to err” when you have in mind an undesirable possibility; and you say “That man is likely to do wrong” when you have in mind a real probabiUty. None of the three words is wrong in the sentences just given, but the slight shade of difference in them is worth noting.

The following is a list of similar words to be studied with the help of the dictionary or a good book of synonyms: adequate, enough, sufficient disinterested, uninterested apparent, seeming due, owing credible, creditable exceptionable, exceptional delicious, delightful funny, odd, peculiar desirous, anxious human, humane
ingenious, ingenuous
mutual, common
new, novel, modern
noted, notorious
partly, partially
pitiable, piteous, pitiful
plenty, plenteous, plentiful
practicable, practical
sincere, frank
sure, certain
surprised, astonished, astounded
valuable, valued

Rajesh Gurule



I. Why Worry About English?
1. The student who is looking forward to a business career is inclined to dislike anything that takes his attention from the profession he has chosen to master.

Accordingly, when some one says to him, ”You should learn more about English, it will help you in your work,” he is Ukely to reply with a question: “Why should I worry about that? If I know my own business I’ll get on all right, won’t I?” And not infrequently he turns away from his adviser, confident that the study of English has little or no place in the training of a business man or woman .

2. Yet many people know that this skepticism concerning the importance of English in business is not shared by progressive men of affairs. Large firms are every day establishing classes in English for the benefit of their employees; questions concerning correct usage come with astonishing regularity to teachers of English. It is plain that the gulf which once was thought to separate the business man and the teacher is rapidly narrowing.

The teacher can learn much from his friend in business; the business man can learn some things from the schoolmaster

3. When they have gone so far as to accept in a vague way this truth that good English has a place in successful business, some persons, however, make a mistake. They think that there is such a thing as ”business EngUsh,”

2 ftftie iSNGtlSHvOF BUSINESS entirely different from the literary English of the schools.
They realize that the phraseology of a business letter differs in many respects from that, say, of Macaulay’s Essays, and are inclined to make for themselves a new business rhetoric, and to feel, unconsciously perhaps, that the less they interest themselves in the old principles, the easier it will be to master the new.

4. In a limited way, of course, this is true. The ordinary student of English, unless he be a sort of ”perpetual Freshman, ” has in mind the attainment of *’ style ” ; he is interested in the creation of beautyto use words of perhaps too large significance. The typical business man has no such ideal.
His purpose is, let us say, to sell automobiles. If by his writing he can realize this ambition, he is quite satisfied. He does not concern himself with aesthetics.

And yet to think that the English he uses differs in any fundamental way from that of his friend who writes short stories, is to err. There is no more a “business English” than there is an ”historical English” or a “geological English”; it is all one speech, one written language. What differences there are between the pages composed by story-teller, historian, geologist, and automobile salesman, arise only from the necessity of adapting one written language to the solution of different problems.

5. To return, however, to the main question: why is it that thoughtful people today realize that good English, in the largeand truesense of the phrase, has an important relation to business? Why are firms and individuals each year paying more attention to the letters and other written matter they send out? Why should the young business man undertake to master the writing and speaking of English?

6. First of all, because the habitual use of good English, whether in speaking or writing, helps one to make a good impression upon other people. It is in a real sense a mark USINESS 3of distinction. A business house is particular about the appearance of its letter paper; it should be equally concerned
with what is written on that paper.

The young man who is advised to be careful about his personal appearance, in order to make a favorable impression upon his associates or employers, should be equally careful about his use of the national tongue.

7. Today, as most people know, the bulk of all business is transacted by letter. A firm is known to its clients not only by the goods it sells, but by the letters it writes. It often makes its first appeal to a prospective customer by a letter. If the letter is carefully typed, on good paper, and is well composed, it makes a favorable initial impression.

The high school graduate applying for a position writes a letter; if it is a good letter, he may receive a personal interview. The outcome of that interview will depend to a considerable xtent upon the candidate’s ability to express himself well in onversation. From this point of view, then, a command of
English is highly desirable: it enables one to make a better mpression, in writing or in speaking, than is possible when ne is not master of his tongue or pen. .

In the second place, a good command of English will nable a person to convey ideas to other people effectively; it will help him to do more business. The world of trade moves through the exchange of ideas. Smith has something to sell; Jones wants to buy. If Smith can show Jones that Smith’s goods will satisfy his demand, he will get the business he wishes. Whether or not he succeeds will depend to a considerable extent on his ability to express himself in English.

9. This practical value of the command of a language has seldom been more clearly recognized than by Benjamin Franklin and Lincoln. Neither man had the opportunity o secure a formal education; each man yearned for power toinfluence others; and each, as a young man, set dehberately about the task of learning to write well in order to convey his ideas to others in the most effective way. Today we still
read Franklin’s letters and Lincoln’s speeches, and wonder at the lucidity and force with which they expressed themselves.

They made the language their tool, and used the tool to admirable purpose. 10. A command of English, then, will aid the business man in these two ways : it will help him make a good impression on others, and will render easier his task of conveying ideas effectively.

The very fact that a command of English has this immediate value to the business man, suggests that it will aid him in still a third way: it will give him self-confidence. Watch a skillful artisan ten minutes, and see how his mastery of his tools enables him to go about his work easily and swiftly. Put those same tools into the hands of a man unacquainted with their use, and the result will be a bungling jobor a wreck.

This lack of confidence which the untrained man is so conscious of is one of the most certain
causes of his failure. Similarly, the business man who “knows what he means, but can’t express himself,” makes a poor showing beside his rival who, no more skillful perhaps than the inarticulate competitor, has yet the confidence which comes from mastery of the chief tool with which business is
transactedthe English language.

11. The chief toolbut not, of course,- the only tool. Mere mastery of language will not ensure any person’s success. But of two men equally endowed in other respects the one who has most effectively mastered the English language will attain the fullest measure of success.

Rajesh Gurule

Unity of the Sentence

Careless writers often express two or more unrelated thoughts in the same sentence as :
1. We are at a loss to understand why you did not keep your promise to remit, and we have begun many suits lately to collect past-due accounts.

2. St. Louis should always extend a hearty welcome to manufacturers, and it has one of the largest parks in the United States. Sometimes a sentence contains two ideas that it is really absurd to connect as : Mr. Annis was a successful manufacturer, but he died in California.

Sometimes also a sentence contains too many members or is unduly lengthened by the addition of several subordinate clauses as : 1. We agree that it is somewhat late to address you in regard to this, but we are trying to get your account in proper balance, and as you know we are having a hard problem to solve in handling our returned goods, we have been unable to give everything its proper attention.

2. We have some customers who wish to return goods which were shipped according to the contract which we have taken great pains to make clear to all that do business with us. But quite often there is not enough in the sentence.
For example, a subordinate clause will be mistaken for a sentence and made to stand alone as : You having made no effort to pay your past-due account. Although we have extended to you most courteous treatment.

Again, a relative clause will be connected with a statement by and or but when the connectives should be omitted as: We wrote you January 7 about the invoices of October and November and which should have been paid before the Christmas holidays. Sometimes there is a needless change of the subject as :

Our Iowa representative visited the house today, and business in his territory was reported good. Note the improvement when the subject is made the same as : Our Iowa representative visited the house and reported business good in his territory. In all of the foregoing cases, the writers failed to make their meanings clear because they did not express their thoughts, one at a time, in complete units.

That is, their sentences lacked unity. Unity in the sentence is the expression of but one main idea.

Rule I

Do not unite two or more statements unless they are closely related in thought. Original: I was greatly disappointed this morning to find that your check had not yet reached us, and I told the manager of the Credit Department that you would pay your bills promptly. Improved: Several months ago I told the manager of the Credit Department that you would pay your bills promptly.

This morning, however, I was greatly disappointed to find that your check had not reached us. Rule II. Do not include in the same sentence inconsistent or absurd ideas.

1. Original: Hoping to hear from you at an early date, we trust that you will find the sale of our line satisfactory. Improved: We hope to hear from you at an early date. Meanwhile we trust that you will find the sale of our goods satisfactory.

2. Original: The hat was undoubtedly crushed in shipping, and it was a John B. Stetson hat. Improved: This Stetson hat was undoubtedly crushed in shipping.

Rule II

Do not use and or hut to connect a relative clause with a sentence.
1. Original: Referring to your account on our books, we find that since the date of this statement you have paid us $155.51, and which remittance we appreciate. Improved: We appreciate the payment of $155.51 which our record of your account shows you made since your last statement.

2. Original: We have received many orders from Mr. W. A. Miller, a well-known retailer, and who understands the conditions in that part of the state. Improved: We have received many orders from Mr. W. A. Miller, a well-known retailer, who understands conditions in that part of the state.

Rule III

A sentence should not contain too many members even though they are closely related in thought,

I. Original: This statement is sent for comparison, and if, at your convenience, you will be kind enough to check it over and if found to be correct, favor us with a remittance, we shall be enabled to balance your account down to the point mentioned. Improved:

This statement is sent for comparison. Please check it over at your convenience, and if you find it correct, favor us with a remittance. We shall then be able to balance your account down to the time mentioned.

2. Original: We are sure you do not wish us to discriminate against our good customers; however, we do just this, if we waive interest in your favor while other customers who for some reason could not pay for their purchases on the maturity date allow us interest for the overtime. Improved:

We are sure you do not wish us to discriminate against our good customers who for some reason could not pay for their purchases on the maturity date and have allowed us interest for the overtime. If, however, we waive interest in your favor, this is precisely what we do.

Rule VI

Do not mistake a phrase or a clause for a complete sentence.

1. Original: We do not urge our customers to put their private funds into these bonds. Although we have ourselves bought heavily of them. Improved: Although we have bought heavily of these bonds, we do not urge our customers to put their private funds into them.

2. Original: We shipped one case June 7, price twenty-seven dollars. The other June 23, price thirty-six dollars. Improved: We shipped one case June 7, price twenty-seven dollars, and the other June 23, price thirty-six dollars.

Rule V

When clauses, phrases, and single parts of speech are connected by and, or, but, either or, neither nor, etc., they should be made similar in form. Careless writers often join a clause and a phrase by one of the foregoing connectives when both expressions should be clauses or nouns.

I. Original: We could not continue longer in business, or very few orders had come in and on account of the high cost of labor. Improved: We could not continue longer in business, for very few orders had come in and the cost of labor was high

2. Original: The company decided that it would raise the wages of its employees and to grant them a bonus. Improved: The company decided to raise the wages of its employees and to grant thtm a bonus.

3. Original: As we have written you many letters and no reply having been received, we are placing your account in the hands of our attorney for collection.

4. Improved: As we have written you many letters and have received no reply, we are placing your account in the hands of our attorney for collection. Careless writers also unconsciously shift from one form of the verb to another, from present time to past time, from one pronoun subject to another and from one form of verb to an unlike form as, ” My duties are to answer the telephone and filing letters. This, of course, should be written: “My duties are to answer the telephone and file letters.

The following sentences illustrate these types of errors :

1. Original: Mr. Hart will call on you in a few days, and samples of our goods will be shown to you. Improved: Mr. Hart will call on you in a few days and show you samples of our goods.

2. Original: Just then a customer comes in and wanted to return some goods which she had bought. Improved: Just then a customer came in and wanted to exchange some goods which she had bought.

3. Original: We appreciate his going on the road for us, his loyalty to the house, and that he has made money for us. Improved: We appreciate the fact that he went on the road for us, was loyal to the house, and made money for us.

4. Original: We regret being unable to replace the broken chair and that you have decided not to give us future orders. Improved: We regret that we are unable to replace the broken chair and that you have decided not to give us future orders.

Rule VII

Avoid any needless change of the subject,
1. Original: You may give us a promissory note for the amount, or a check may be sent by you. Improved: You may give us a promissory note for the amount or send us your personal check.

2. Original: Our salesman will call on you next week, and our proposition will be explained to you in detail. Improved: Our salesman will call on you next week and explain our proposition in detail.

Rajesh Gurule

Order Your Course Today


Choosing subjects in Chapter X definite subjects were assigned for talks. Getting a subject for yourself sometimes seems difficult; you are likely to think that there is no topic upon which you can say more than a few sentences. Isn’t it true that when you are talking to your friends you seldom are at a loss for something to say?

Of course, what your companion says often suggests an idea on which you give your opinion. You speak about things that interest you, and the words come fairly easily. Why not apply the same principle to more formal composition, whether oral or written? Unless a subject interests you, do not use it. But be careful that you do not reject it as uninteresting until you have thought about it carefully, considering it from all sides.

Often one subject will suggest another akin to it, but more interesting to you because you know more about it. For this reason choose very simple subjects, and become thoroughly familiar with them by thinking or reading about them, before you attempt to explain them. Sometimes, again, you will find that the subject you have chosen is not good because it is not definite enough. You hardly know where or how to begin to explain it, because it suggests no definite ideas.

Perhaps, for instance, you have decided to write on the automobile aijd can think of nothing to say until you remember that you once saw an automobile race about which you can tell several interesting details; or you have seen an automobile accident and can write on the topic A Runaway Electric, If you can speak or write on topics taken from your own observation, your composition will probably be good.

You know the facts, you have an interest in the subject, and you will very likely say something of interest to others. Subjects taken from school life or neighborhood happenings, especially such things as you yourself have seen, are excellent. Perhaps on your way to school you noticed that several old houses are being torn down.

You remember that you heard that a candy factory is to be erected. At once several suggestions for themes will come to you; as, Why the Factory is Being Erected in this Neighborhood, How eighborhoods Change in a Large City, The Work the Wrecking Company Carries on. Perhaps your father owns property in the neighborhood, and you could write on How Real Estate Values have Changed in this Neighborhood. Next to your own experience, the best source from which to draw subjects is your reading.

This may be divided into (i) books, (2) magazines and newspapers.

Recall one of the books that you read in the grammar grades, perhaps The Courtship of Miles Standish. Drawing your material from this source, you can write A Picture of Early Plymouth Days, or a sketch of Miles Standish’s character, using the title Practice What You Preach. But to try to tell the whole story to any one in two or three minutes would result in failure, for it would be a subject entirely too big to treat in so short a time.

All the interesting details would have to be omitted, and, if the details are omitted, the story loses its vitality. It is the newspaper or the magazine, however, that offers us the most available source of subjects. Practically all that we know of the modern world and of the wonderful progress being made in invention and discovery, as well as of the accidents and disasters that take place, we have learned first from the newspaper and have verified later by the articles in magazines.

Every issue of a newspaper or of a magazine contains suggestions for many subjects. Such magazines as The World’s Work, System, The Outlook, The Technical World, and other magazines that deal with technical subjects in a popular way are excellent for this work. A third important source of subjects is the studies that you are now pursuing.

Every new study affords a new point of view, which should suggest many topics for oral and written themes. Sometimes a good subject is the comparison of two of your studies by which you try to show, perhaps, how the one depends on the other. The subject, of course, is but the beginning of the composition.

Developing the subject is fully as important as having a subject to develop. The ability to develop a subject clearly is very important in the business world. A business man sells his goods either by talking or by writing; by the salesman or by the letter and the advertisement. Unless the salesman talks in a convincing way, he probably will sell few goods. He must know not only what to say, but how to say it.

Rajesh Gurule

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English Pronunciation

We are judged by our speech. If we clip syllables, run words together, or pronounce them incorrectly, we shall merit the criticism of being careless or even ignorant. Yet clear enunciation and correct pronunciation are sometimes difficult.

We learn most words by hearing others say them, and, if we do not hear the true values given to the different syllables, we shall find it hard to distinguish the correct from the incorrect forms. Children whose parents speak a foreign language usually have to watch their speech with especial care; Germans, for example, find difficulty in saying th and Irish people in saying oi as in oil.

The exercises in this chapter are given for the purpose of correcting such habits. The words in the exercises should be pronounced repeatedly, until the correct forms are instinctive. Train the ear to hear the difference between sounds, as in just and in jest. Don’t slide over the final consonant in such words as going and reading. Watch words containing why.

The dictionary tells us that where was originally written what, the he coming before the w; and we still pronounce it so, although we write the w before the h. The word whether is of the same kind. The dictionary tells us that it was first spelled hweder. Such words should be carefully noted and their pronunciation practiced. Then there is the habit of slurring syllables.

We may understand what is meant by the expression “Cm* on” or “Waja say?”, but most of us would prefer not to be included in the class of people who use either. Correct speech cannot be mastered without an effort. In the following exercises watch every vowel and every consonant so that you may give each one its full value.

Rajesh Gurule

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