Troublesome Words : Troublesome Words Understanding Them Their, They’re, or There? : Their, They’re, or There? There is the possessive of they.
Example: The Martins claimed their dog from the pound. There : There There is the contraction for they are. If you use “they’re” correctly, you must be able to substitute “they are” for in the sentence.
Tom and Marie said that they’re going skiing. There : There There means at that place.
Example: You may park your car over there. There is no one here by that name. Your or You’re? : Your or You’re? Your is the possessive of you.
Don’t forget your hat. You’re is the contraction for you are. If you use “you’re correctly, you must be able to substitute “you are” for it in the sentence.
When we finish caroling, you’re all coming inside for hot chocolate. Whose or Who’s? : Whose or Who’s? Whose is the possessive who.
Example: The handwriting is very distinctive, but I cannot remember whose it is. Who’s is the contraction for who is. If you use “who’s” correctly, you must be able to substitute “who is” for it in the sentence.
Example: Who’s calling at this hour of night? Its or It’s? : Its or It’s? Its is the possessive of it.
Example: The injured cat is licking its wound. It’s is the contraction for it is.
Example: It’s too much early to leave for the airport. Between or Among? : Between or Among? Ordinarily, between when referring to two persons or things.
Example: Let us keep this secret between you and me.
Exception: Between may be used with more than two objects to show the relationship of each object to each of the others, as in the “The teacher explained the difference between adjective, adverb, and noun clauses.” Continued : Continued Among always implies that there are more than two.
Example: The profits are to be divided equally among the three partners. Many/Much Fewer/Less Number/Amount : Many/Much Fewer/Less Number/Amount The use many/much, fewer/less, number/amount is governed by a simple rule of thumb. If the objects can be counted, use many, fewer, number. If the object is thought of as a single mass or unit, use much, less, amount.
Example: Many raindrops make much water.
If you have fewer dollars, you have less money.
The amount of property you own depends upon the number of acres in your lot. Already or All ready? : Already or All ready? Already means prior to some specified time.
Example: It is already too late to submit your application. All ready means completely ready.
Example: The cornfield is all ready for the seed to be sown. Lay or Lie? : Lay or Lie? The verb lay (except when referring to hens) may be used only if you cold replace it with the verb to put or to place. It signifies that someone is placing something in a reclining position and it requires an object to complete its meaning.
Example: You may lay the books upon the table.
You may place the books upon the table. Continued : Continued The past tense of lay is laid.
Example: She laid the books on the table.
The past participle of lay is laid.
Example: She laid the books there often. Continued: : Continued: The verb lie means to recline, rest or stay or to take a position of rest. It refers to a person or a thing as either assuming or being in a reclining position.
Example: The lazy boy lies on the couch all day.
The past tense of lie is lay
Example: The dog lay before the fire all evening. Continued: : Continued: The past participle of lie is lain.
Example: The beautiful dress has lain on the floor all day.
Test: In deciding whether to use lie or lay in a sentence, substitute the world place for the word in question. If it does not fit, then use some form of lie. Good Luck! Beside or Besides? : Beside or Besides? beside: preposition (location) Put the paper beside the desk.
besides: adverb (in addition) Besides the math problems, he also did his essay exam. Farther or Further? : Farther or Further? Farther/further
farther: adverb, adjective (distance) — notice the word “far” which will help you remember this word always has to do with distance. He walked farther than he intended.
further: adverb, adjective (more) There is nothing further to say. May be or Maybe? : May be or Maybe? May be/maybe
maybe: adverb (perhaps) Maybe I should ask the professor about it today.
may be: modal + verb (might be) He may be out of town for a week. Than or Then : Than or Then Than/then
than: preposition (used only in comparison) He had more than she did.
then: adverb (time) He went home. Then he went to bed. Affect or Effect? : Affect or Effect? affect: verb He was affected by the new grading system.
effect: noun The effect was great