Usage of they,their,they’re

There are many words that are constantly misused like: there, they’re or their. But in order to use them correctly you have to first know what they mean!

Here is a rough guide…

There indicates a place or a situation.

Example: There is so much I have to do before I go on vacation.

They’re is a contraction of the two words: they are.

Example: They’re a wonderful couple and it is such a pleasure to be with them.

Their is a plural possessive: something that belongs to more than one person. If you can substitute more than one name (or thing) and not change the meaning of the sentence, then use their.

Example: Raja and Rani lost their father last week.Similarly a lot of us don’t use the words that and which in the right context.

The rule of thumb would be to use which when the phrase is merely an add-on thought or not essential.

Example: She bought me a lovely vase, which was made of terracotta.

The sentence She bought a lovely vase is complete in itself made of terracotta is not essential in completing the sentence and is just an add-on.

If made of terracotta was essential to the sentence you would use that. Example: Do buy that vase that is made of terracotta.

Now the phrase made of terracotta is needed as it specifies the particular vase to be bought.

 

Article Source: DECCAN CHRONICLE

Usage of Conjunctions

Linking words/phrases like and,but,because,therefore,if and in order,help us link our ideas together.In traditional grammar,they were called conjunctions.Let us consider: and,also,too,as well,anyway,besides and furthermore.

And is used to join two things,actions or ideas in one sentence.We can use and to join phrases and clauses,as well as sentences.

Example

  • My uncle would never steal.He worked in a bath house and never took a bath for five years.
  • Laugh and the world laughs with you;snore and you sleep alone. (Anthony Burgess)

Note: Do not start a sentence with and.

Also is used to link an idea,thing or action to another;this time from the previous sentence.It is placed directly before the verb.

Example

  • They also serve who stand and wait.(Milton)

Note: When we use the auxiliary verbs,can and have,the word also is placed after the auxiliary.

Example

  • We can also dream.We have also won laurels.

Note: With negative statements don’t use also Use either.

Too is used at the end of a sentence,when you are adding something to a list of things you have given in the previous sentence.

Example

“Hold up your right arm,”the judge said.

“Can’t,your honour.Got a shot in it.”

“Then hold up your left arm.

“”Can’t.Got a shot in that too.

“”Then hold up your leg,”the judge said,”No man can be sworn into this court,sir,unless he holds up something.”

Note: Don’t use too with negative statements.Use either.
Example

  • He didn’t smoke or drink.He didn’t gamble either.

As well is used at the end of a sentence,when you’re adding something to a list of things that you have given in the previous sentence.
Example

  • Shakespeare has written 37 plays.He has composed a sonnet sequence as well.

Note: Don’t use as well with two negative statements.Use either.

Example

  • Priya is not coming to the party.Prem can’t come either.

Anyway/Besides is used at the beginning of a sentence,when you have given one reason for something and you want to add another.This is used in informal,especially spoken,contexts.
Example

The following is supposedly a true story.Besides being true,the story is strange,weird,surprising and funny.

A Japanese rancher told reporters,in July,in Tokyo that he herds cattle by outfitting them with pocket pagers (beepers),which he calls from his portable phone.After a week of training,the cows associate beeping with eating and hustle up for grub.

Furthermore is used at the beginning of a sentence,to add a more important fact than the one you gave in the previous sentence.This is used in formal,written contexts.

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This article has been written by Dr V Saraswathi for Times of India