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August 26, 2016


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Thank so much Lynn! This is a very handy reference to us. Great efforts as usual!

Business Writing Blog

Glad you like it!


Kim Knight

Is there a way to print this article for future reference and study?

Thank you!

Analina B

I find this to be very helpful! Thank you

ann a

This is great, and so thorough!! I have a question. In some of the highlighted examples, "to" is marked as a preposition where I think it might be part of an infinitive. (I'm not a grammar expert, so it may not be!) When you talk about the prepositional phrase, you point out that "to know" is not a prepositional phrase, but an infinitive. In the highlighted examples for finding nouns and verbs, "to" in "to express" and "to relax" is marked as a preposition. When "to" is part of an infinitive, is it also a preposition (but not part of a prepositional phrase)? Thank you so much! I love your blog and am learning so much.


As always, you provide useful information! Especially for a non-native english speaker...

This part had me shocked:

You still need to watch out for redundant prepositions:
There are fees you will have to pay for.
What time is the meeting at?
Where did Charles go to?

I'm quite sure I learned you have to put those prepositions a the end! Could it be an AE rule only?

Business Writing Blog

Thanks for your comments, everyone. I am sorry for the delay in responding. I have been traveling and away from computers (which can be a joy!).

Kim, you can copy the content into a Word or text document and print it that way.

Analina, you are welcome!

Ann, my dictionary indicates that the only part of speech possibility for "to" is preposition. I know that seems weird for an infinitive. When I am back in my office filled with reference books, I will explore the topic further. UPDATE: I checked my dictionaries, and the "to" in an infinitive is labeled as a preposition. However, my dictionary reminded me that "to" can also be an adverb, as in "to and fro" and "Eventually the patient came to."

Deborah, these are correct in American English--and in British English, I believe:

--There are fees you will have to pay.
--What time is the meeting?
--Where did Charles go?

I will do research when I am back in my office to find out who might use the prepositions you learned.


Irene Fenswick

Thank you, Lynn, this article is massive and very helpful! It is very important to know parts of speech and after reading your post, there is simply no chance that someone can mix them up.

Business Writing Blog

Thanks for the positive feedback, Irene. If you do have trouble identifying a part of speech, the dictionary can help.



That's the term I was looking for - preposition! I had some difficulties in identifying these parts of speech when I was in Grade school (30 years ago). :)


Thanks so much for this great article! What a refresher it was for me, so many things I had forgotten since my grade school days.

Liande van Eeden

Good morning Lynn
I came upon your site while searching for proofreading exercises. So glad I found this site. I do, however, have a question with regards to "they" and "their" being used as singular. If so, isn't the verb then supposed to get an "s" Your example: Ask the teacher whether they require a group project. Shouldn't it then be "requires?"
Hope you enjoyed your well-deserved rest.

Business Writing Blog

Hi Liande,

Good question! The pronoun "they" still takes a plural verb, even when it represents a singular. I plan to write more about the topic this month now that I have returned from five weeks of relaxation and travel.

If you are looking for proofreading exercises, I hope you have found my "Error Quests" booklet. Learn more at http://syntaxtraining.com/products/error-quests


uday cheedella

He works as an editor.
What is the parts of Speech of as in this sentence. Please reply this fast.

Business Writing Blog

If you review the post above you, will get four of the words easily. The one tricky word is "as," which can be four parts of speech. In your sentence, it's a preposition.


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