suggest

ALL + clause (the only thing) ‘all I can say is…’

‘All’ with the meaning ‘the only thing’ is listed at B1 in the English Vocabulary Profile. For example: All I can say is I‘m sorry. listen   All it does is tire your mind and stops you thinking for yourself. listen   That‘s all I can suggest. Stranger Than Fiction An iWeb search for: All * _VM _VVI _VB 1 ALL I CAN SAY IS 19460 2 ALL WE CAN SAY IS 1135 3 ALL …

ALL + clause (the only thing) ‘all I can say is…’ Read More »

modal verb (question)

Here are more overlapping points across the English Grammar Profile.  We have included their examples when needed too elaborate: A2 point 14 in CLAUSES: AFFIRMATIVE interrogative clauses (‘yes/no’ forms) with modal auxiliary verbs. Would you like to come with me? Will you go with me? Can I come tomorrow to collect it? (Can you|we…? is listed at A1) Shall we meet at 7.30 pm? (Here are …

modal verb (question) Read More »

future in the past

The English Grammar Profile (EGP) B1 point 23 in the category of future is defined: past form of ‘be’ + ‘going to’ (future in the past) EGP B1 point 36 in FUTURE  is defined: PLANS IN THE PAST (often followed by ‘but’) to talk about a plan, sometimes one that may have changed. These grammar …

future in the past Read More »

may | might (modal verbs)

A2 points 34 and 48 in the category of MODALITY are defined as: ‘may‘ to talk about weak possibility referring to the present and the future affirmative A2 point 47: ‘might’ … weak possibility. An iWeb search for: may_VM _VVI 1 MAY NEED 294017 2 MAY WANT 253501 3 MAY TAKE 159078 4 MAY INCLUDE 156112 …

may | might (modal verbs) Read More »

I suggest | apologise | recommend

Point 21 in the category of PRESENT/simple is defined: a limited range of speech act verbs, including ‘suggest’, ‘apologise’, ‘recommend’. *Some of these will clash with C1:  suggest-recommend-insist + present-simple   PELIC STUDENT EXAMPLE: In conclusion, I suggest that international students whose English abilities are not strong enough should study in the ELI for at least one term before attending colleges or universities. Chinese male – level 5 writing class. A search for: I suggest|recommend|apologize * …

I suggest | apologise | recommend Read More »

anything (ellipsis)

Here are two examples of indefinite pronouns in ellipted conditional clauses: Anything we can do, anything you need, just tell us. listen Anything you want there, anything at all, just take it. Kings Row (1942) *They mean:  “if there is anything that we can do” or “if there is anything that you want” C1 point 100 in PRONOUNS/indefinite is defined as: ‘anything’ in an ellipted clause.   (‘if there is anything …’) When …

anything (ellipsis) Read More »

as if + NON-FINITE CLAUSE

‘As if’ means ‘as would be the case if’. Here’s an example of the subordinators as if +  Verb-ing clause. She studied the bracelet as if trying to estimate its fair market value. Listen ‘trying to estimate…’ is a manner clause, it describes how she studied. We could ask the question, How did she study it?   C2 point 133 CLAUSES/comparatives is defined as: ‘as if’ + …

as if + NON-FINITE CLAUSE Read More »

Verb + VerbING

Point 29 in the category of verbs/patterns is B1 and defined as: limited range of verbs followed by an ‘-ing’ form. Point 56 in Verbs/patterns is B2 and defined as an increasing range of verbs followed by an ‘-ing’ form. A search for _VV _VVG in iWeb corpus: 1 KEEP GOING 656012 STARTED USING 54040 …

Verb + VerbING Read More »

suggest | recommend | insist + present simple

C1 English Grammar Profile point 62 in the category of FUTURE is defined as: present simple after speech act verbs expressing suggestions and obligation. For example: l cannot recommend that you go heliskiing. listen   But remember where we left off because I insist you finish later. listen This is not easily located formally in corpora but we can start with a search in iWeb for the speech act verbs …

suggest | recommend | insist + present simple Read More »

would (habitual past)

B2 point 160 in MODALITY is defined as: ‘would’ to talk about habitual actions and events in the past It formally overlaps A2 point 26 in MODALITY: ‘would’ to talk about imagined situations. Looking in iWeb corpus manually for collocates of ‘every’ ‘time‘ with ‘would’ is 1 in 5 on the usage: … my mom also helped raise my nephews, who would stay with her every summer when school was out. Gone …

would (habitual past) Read More »

dare (not) infinitive

In the English Grammar Profile, using the word ‘dare’ is b2-c2 and rare. The other strange thing is that some of the most common Ngrams (words found together) are C2 and less common seem to be B2 according to Cambridge research.  For that reason, the complexity checking ability around this vocabulary item should be taken …

dare (not) infinitive Read More »