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poisonedantidote's avatar

Have I spelt the words in bold correctly for their intended context?

Asked by poisonedantidote (21643points) November 10th, 2010

As some of you probably know, I’m trying to improve my English spelling and grammar. Below are a few phrases, each with a word or so in bold. I am curious to know if i have spelt those words correctly, and used them in the proper context.

1. Me and my friends wear gloves.
2. We were all happy yesterday, but not today.
3. I tried to sell him some of my wears/wares?.
4. We had no idea where we had ended up.
5.The car was wearing out.
6. I use the keyboard to type.
7. It was a type of monster.
8. the weather was terrible.
9. I did not know whether i was coming or going.
10. the armour had become weathered.

Furthermore, I have a couple of bonus questions, here they are:

When do I use stops and full stops?—All I have ever been told regarding stops and full stops, was about their usage in Castillian Spanish, and even then I was not really paying attention in school that day. This is how I understand it: A comma is used almost whenever you like, It’s basically there to let you create little pauses. As for stops, they go at the end of a sentence or the end of a paragraph, and their pause is longer than that of a comma. Also, stops go at the end of thoughts or when your point has been made.

When is this ”;” symbol used?

Am I mistaken in thinking you can’t use the words And or But at the beginning of a sentence?


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15 Answers

SundayKittens's avatar

Yes! #3 should be wares, I believe.
Good job!

I only proofread the usage of the bold words…

Ivy's avatar

It’s ‘spelled’, not ‘spelt’. Good luck. I admire anyone who’ll tackle another language.

poisonedantidote's avatar

@Ivy Is it not “spelt” when in past context? what is “spelt”? my spell checker says it’s a word

CyanoticWasp's avatar

The words in bold are all correct, except for the one you left in doubt, which should definitely be wares.

But there’s another mistake in #1: “My friends and I wear gloves.” Never “me”. “Me wear gloves,” is incorrect, but “I wear gloves,” is not. “My friends wear gloves,” and you combine the clauses the same as you would in math: “I wear gloves and my friends wear gloves” can ‘simplify’ to “My friends and I wear gloves.” (We put the “first person singular”—I—second in the combination sentence.)

The semicolon ”;” is used as a conjunction, similar to “and”, “because” and other conjunctions between independent clauses:

“I wear gloves; my friends wear gloves” is just as acceptable as “I wear gloves and my friends wear gloves.”

Ivy's avatar

@poisonedantidote According to my dictionary, ‘spelt’ is a primitive species of wheat with grains that do not thresh free of the chaff. It is ‘spelled’.

nikipedia's avatar

(3) wares. Otherwise, you look good!

I’m not familiar with the terms stops and full stops. Do you mean periods?

There are specific rules for when to use commas, but more people ignore them. Here’s a good summary of things to do and not to do with them.

Your questions about using periods and semicolons have to do with independent clauses—that is, a complete thought that has at least a subject and a verb. If you have one independent clause, end the sentence with a period. If you want to join two independent clauses, you can do this with a semi-colon (the ; character). For example:

I like going to the beach; I also like going to the woods. (I can join these with a semicolon or separate them as two sentences: I like going to the beach. I also like going to the woods.)

You can use “and” or “but” at the beginning of a sentence, but sometimes this means that you do not have a complete sentence. For beginners, it might be better to avoid starting sentences this way just to be safe.

CyanoticWasp's avatar

“Spelt” is an English variant of “spelled”, and perfectly acceptable. Same as your spelling of “coloured” where Americans spell “colored” ... and a ton of other examples.

CMaz's avatar

I coloured my scone with jelly.

poisonedantidote's avatar

@nikipedia Yes, periods. My mother aways used to call them stops or full stops. a stop being the previous dot, and a full stop being the following dot.

@CyanoticWasp I thought spelt was a word. Is spelt exclusively a british thing then? Just I’m more interested in the American methods. The English may have invented the language, but there are far more Americans using the language on a daily basis. Therefore, I’m more likely to spell it “color” than “colour”, but i may sneak in a ‘u’ here or there.

mistic84's avatar

Spelt is also a type of grain.

the100thmonkey's avatar

I’m a Br.Eng speaker, and I use “spelt”. The Cambridge Advanced Learners’ Dictionary lists it as acceptable in all inner circle dialects apart from American.

Spanish is well-known among English teachers as permitting what seems (to native speakers of English) a rather over-liberal use of the comma. In most English written discourse, the average clause:sentence ratio is between 1:1 and 2:1. I can’t remember where I read that statistic, but I know it was in a paper statistically analysing the differences between academic and social written English.

There are some rules for commas, as evinced by the Purdue link @nikipedia posted, but the metalanguage is often confusing, even for educated native speakers of English.

@poisonedantidote – it’s not necessarily important (or true) that there are more American English users on a daily basis. Canadian, Australian and New Zealand English are closer to British English than American, in my opinion, and British English is the standard variant taught across Europe. Actually, far more people use English as a contact language (lingua franca) than native speakers. Studies estimate that about 80% of the daily use of English is undertaken between non-native speakers of the language!

It’s a question of taste and identity, ultimately – the differences in the ‘standard’ varieties of the language are too small to lead to serious miscommunications, but your choice of words does say something about who you are/want to be.

Ivy's avatar

@CyanoticWasp and the100thmonkey: I bow to your knowledge of English .. English.:) My degree is in American English, and ‘spelt’ for ‘spelled’ would be incorrect here. Thank you for teaching me something new today, and my apologies to poisonedantidote for any confusion.

Smashley's avatar

@the100thmonkey – speaking as a Canadian, we absolutely use “spelled,” at least, in our inner circle dialect we do.

Adagio's avatar

It is my understanding that India has the highest number of English speakers in the world… not the highest percentage of English speakers but the highest population of English speakers in the world.

the100thmonkey's avatar

@Smashley – thanks; I didn’t know that.

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