Grammatical Correctness. Part 3
6. I was staying at home. Shall you stay at home? Shall you be at home 1 Are you going home 1
7. Two besides me were standing beside him.
8. Divide an apple between two or among three.
9. He spoke between mouthfuls [not, between every mouthful].
10. These goods are better than those and different from them.
11. It was all very different from what we expected [not, than we expected].
12. Go into the house [not, in]. He went into the water and frolicked in it.
13. Off the car [not, off of]; off the books; off the pay roll; off the earth.
14. Jones, than whom there are few better clerks, needs a vacation.
15. None was more faithful than he. Few are so useful as he.
16. I don't doubt that it is so. There are few of these goods but what are sold.
§ 45. Forms Of Verbs
I trust that older students will not be offended if here I affix a list of the principal parts of certain English verbs.
No college-trained or well-trained high-school graduate ever goes wrong in the use of any of these forms. But many a successful business man not so trained has had difficulty with such words as lie and lay. Laid for lain is the commonest error. The correct uses are such as follow:
The goods have lain there a long time. I had just lain down. I had lain asleep for some time. To have lain there so long means that the goods are spoiled.
I had laid myself down. There I lay. I lay there worn out. Don't touch that piece of machinery; let it lie. The launch lay beside the steamer. Lie down, Rover! That shipment lies heavy on my conscience.
Certain contractions of verbs with pronouns or the word not are permitted in colloquial speech. Isn't is good spoken English for is not. Don't stands for do not, and may be used after we, you, and they, though careful speakers do not use it after he.
Just how far these contractions may be used in written work is a question of tone, or degree of dignity. In the present book certain of these contractions are freely employed. Each writer must take the responsibility for his own usage in this matter.