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The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation

What Are Correlative Conjunctions?

Posted on Wednesday, February 23, 2022, at 6:00 am

A conjunction is a part of speech that connects words, phrases, or clauses. The two types of conjunctions are coordinating conjunctions and subordinating conjunctions. Correlative conjunctions are coordinating conjunctions used in pairs. They connect two items of equal rank and grammatical unit. Some common correlative conjunctions include: either…or neither…nor both…and not only…but also as…so rather…than …

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Regards, Best Regards, or Kind Regards: What Is the Best Usage for Each?

Posted on Monday, February 21, 2022, at 6:00 am

Most of us have probably seen the word regards at the end of an e-mail or letter—or possibly a variation such as best regards or kind regards. But some people might not always be ready to explain what regards actually means or when the best time to use each version might be. Today we'll look …

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Ordinal vs. Cardinal Numbers

Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2022, at 6:00 am

Numbers can often present different style questions in American English. When should we spell them, and when shouldn't we? In particular, what are ordinal numbers and what are cardinal numbers, and how do we treat them? Mastering these distinctions will refine your precision in your daily writing. For this discussion, we'll review style guidance from …

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Is It President’s Day, Presidents’ Day, or Presidents Day?

Posted on Tuesday, February 15, 2022, at 6:00 am

As the third Monday in February approaches, some people may wonder how to write the name of the American holiday that honors U.S. presidents. The answer may surprise you, since authorities seem to disagree on the spelling as well as the name itself. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the official name is "Washington's Birthday" …

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What Are Auxiliary Verbs? (Including Examples and Usage)

Posted on Monday, February 14, 2022, at 6:00 am

We use auxiliary verbs—also known as helping or modal verbs—all of the time in American English. Even if you aren't familiar with the definition of an auxiliary verb, there's a great likelihood you've used many today before reading this. In this discussion we'll review what an auxiliary verb is. We'll also provide you with examples …

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Abbreviating Professional Titles and Academic Degrees

Posted on Wednesday, February 9, 2022, at 6:00 am

American English includes many details concerning items of style. One such item is the abbreviation of professional titles and academic degrees. By becoming more familiar with this usage, you will become more precise in your daily formal writing. This precision can then also potentially conserve more space for other words you're expressing. Abbreviating Professional Titles …

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What Is the Plural of Diagnosis?

Posted on Monday, February 7, 2022, at 6:00 am

Could you give the correct word for the plural of diagnosis? This question can sometimes trip writers, speakers, and even editors. In today's review we'll give you the answer, as well as touch on the reason these types of words can be tricky to form and remember. We'll also share a few tips to help …

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Types of Nouns

Posted on Wednesday, February 2, 2022, at 6:00 am

We know that a noun in English is a person, place, or thing that functions as a subject or an object in a sentence. A noun also can operate as a subject or object complement or as an appositive. Nouns can further be grouped into types of nouns: common nouns (concrete, abstract, collective) proper nouns …

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Have Patience or Be Patient: Which One Should You Use?

Posted on Monday, January 31, 2022, at 6:00 am

Patience is a virtue, but it can also be a grammatical snag. That's because even though we know the importance of waiting for the best things in life, we might at times be unsure of how to express that practice. Specifically, a writer might wonder when or whether to use the phrases have patience or …

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Is It Valentine’s Day or Valentines Day?

Posted on Friday, January 28, 2022, at 6:00 am

As February 14 approaches, some people may wonder how to write the name of the holiday that honors Saint Valentine. Do You Use an Apostrophe When Spelling Valentine's Day? The day was first recognized as “The Feast of St. Valentine” in A.D. 269. Both The Chicago Manual of Style and The Associated Press Stylebook identify …

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