Glossary Of Usage - Rowan County Schools

Glossary Of Usage
Warriner’s English Composition and Grammar
a, an
• These short words are called indefinite articles. They refer to
one general group.
• Rule:
• Use a before words beginning with a consonant sound;
use an before words beginning with a vowel sound.
• An is used before hour because hour begins with a vowel sound.
• Examples:
• A woman bought Larry’s car.
• Maria was in an accident in her father’s car.
accept, except
• Rule:
• Accept is a verb; it means “to receive.”
• Except as a verb means “to leave out”; as a preposition it means
• Examples:
• I accepted the gift gratefully.
• Debbie has a perfect attendance record, if you except the day she
stayed home with the flu.
• We were busy every evening this week except Tuesday.
adapt, adopt
• Rule:
• Adapt means “to change in order to fit or be more suitable; to
• Adopt means “to take something and make it one’s own.”
• Examples:
• When it rained on the day of the senior class picnic, we adapted
our plans.
• The Broadway play was adapted from a popular television
• The couple who adopted the baby read many books and adopted
some suggestions for infant care.
affect, effect
• Rule:
• Affect is usually a verb; it means “to impress” or “to influence (frequently the
mind or feelings.)”
• Effect as a verb means “to accomplish, to bring about.”
• Effect as a noun means “the result of some action.”
• Examples:
• Try not to let careless remarks affect you.
• The school board effected (brought about) drastic changes in the budget.
• The effects (results) of the hurricane were shown on the evening news.
Practice for affect/effect Activity: Complete on your own. Compare with a
partner. Vote as a class. Check responses.
all the farther, all the faster
• Rule:
• Used informally in some parts of the country to mean “as far as,
as fast as.”
• Examples:
• Dialect:
• Thirty miles per hour was all the faster the first airplane could travel.
• Standard:
• Thirty miles per hour was as fast as the first airplane could travel.
allusion, illusion
• Rule:
• An allusion is a reference to something.
• An illusion is a mistaken idea.
• Examples:
• In her essay she made many allusions to the American pioneers.
• The behind-the-scenes report destroyed her illusions of
alumni, alumnae
• Rule:
• Alumni is the plural of alumnus (male graduate).
• Alumnae is the plural of alumna (female graduate).
• The graduates of a co-educational school are referred to (as a
group) as alumni.
• Examples:
• All of my sisters are alumnae of Adam’s High School.
• Both men are alumni of Harvard.
• My parents went to their college alumni reunion.
amount, number
• Rule:
• Use amount to refer to a singular word.
• Use number to refer to a plural word.
• Examples:
• The amount of research (singular) on stress is overwhelming.
• A number of reports (plural) on stress are available.
and etc.
• Rule:
• Since etc. is an abbreviation of the Latin et cetera, which means
“and other things,” you are using and twice when you write “and
• Examples:
• The new store in the mall sells DVDs, cameras, radios, video
games, etc.
and which, but which
• Rule:
• The expressions and which, but which (and who, but who)
should be used only when a which (or who) clause precedes
them in the sentence.
• Examples:
• Nonstandard: Our jazz band was pleased with the audience’s
enthusiastic response and which we had not expected before the
• Standard: Our jazz band was please with the audience’s
response, which was enthusiastic and which we had not
expected before the concert.
• Standard: Our jazz band was please with the audience’s
enthusiastic response, which we had not expected before the
anywheres, everywheres,
• Rule:
• Use these words and others like them without the final s.
• Examples:
• I could not find my keys anywhere; I looked everywhere, but they
were nowhere in the house.
• Rule:
• Do not use at after where.
• Examples:
• Nonstandard: Where are they living at now?
• Standard: Where are they living now?
Formative Assessment:
• Complete Exercise 1 on your own without using your notes.
• Once you have finished, partner up and discuss your answers.
You may use your notes as reference at this point.
• Each group member must have the right answer AND
understand the justification of that answer.
• I will be calling on students to tell me the correct answer AND
explain why it is the correct answer.

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