Questions tagged [formal-language]

is for questions about whether a word or phrase is appropriate in a formal context or that are requesting a word or phrase for use in a formal context.

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Reply to recepient who changed the tone fo the email

I wrote a work-related formal email to somebody and they replied back informally. Should my next reply match their informal tone (changing from my original Dear Name to Hi etc) or should I continue ...
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-1 votes
1 answer
21 views

All these books may be had of any bookseller.('be had')

All these books may be had of any bookseller. I came across the above sentence, which I discovered was taken from the Oxford English Dictionary, and thought that 'be had' would rarely or never be ...
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1 answer
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Is this paragraph informal conversation or in writing and formal format?

I just started learning English and I listen to podcasts like this. My question is that the following paragraph is an informal conversation or in writing and formal format: In 1436 in Germany, ...
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1 answer
35 views

The word "InnerTube" in a different context

I´m translating a subtitle of a movie but I have not understood this sentence: " The things these kids post out on them InnerTube, ohhh boy I do not get that" What is the meaning of "...
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0 answers
56 views

Using "be going to" in formal writing

This video says (at 1:07) we cannot use "be going to" to describe future plans in a formal writing because its informal. (I have already asked another question about an other claim of this ...
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1 answer
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Is using "did that" instead of "did so" a good choice in formal writing?

According to the answer to this question, saying "did so" is not a good choice in formal writing. Does replacing it to "did that" make it appropriate for a formal writing? For ...
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2 votes
3 answers
48 views

Is 'legitimately' informal when it means really?

In many videos, the streamers there use the word 'legitly' or 'legitimately' to mean very or really. For examples, the Anime Man says, I legitimately thought, the first time i saw this article, I ...
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0 votes
0 answers
31 views

Should we use "this" or "that" here

I feel a little sick. That/This is why I'm going home early. Should we use "that" or "this" here? Or are they both grammatically correct?
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1 answer
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Are these "not only...but..."structures right or wrong and why?

I have been taught that the same parts of speech should be used in "not only..but...". However, Vanessa used these examples and I was puzzled. Example 1. It is not only difficult to find a ...
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4 answers
50 views

Which one of the sentence is grammatically correct?

1: They would be happy if the road 'is not' bifurcated. 2: They would be happy if the road 'does not get' bifurcated. I am really confused with the use of 'is not' and 'does not get'. Are the above ...
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1 answer
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How do I treat the second part of "have either no" construction?

Consider the following sentence structure: If {some subject} has either no {one thing} or {another thing} then ... Does the no part of has either no apply to the {another thing} here? I.e. does it ...
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1 answer
44 views

How to indicate someone stood in for someone else on meeting minutes?

We have person A who normally takes notes. Person A was sick, now Person B did the notes. Would it make sense as follows in the meeting minutes? Secretary: Person A, but stand-in Person B
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1 answer
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Can a point be in the future without being "of time"?

I wrote the following. We will revise it at some point in the future. It's obvious, unambiguous and grammatically correct. However, I can't shake off the sensation that it's nonsensical because a ...
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2 answers
34 views

What are more formal words/phrases for "pass sth on to sb" and "get back to someone"?

In the following sentence, I feel that the phrases "pass on to" and "get back to" are rather informal. Am I right about this, and, if so, what are more formal expressions I could ...
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0 votes
1 answer
29 views

Is "I think leaving for the USA when I'm 20" correct? [closed]

I'm new here. I was taking quizzes because I'm having an exam tomorrow and once in a while I find something I had no idea about, such as this specific case. I thought that the only accepted forms were ...
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2 answers
135 views

How to reply to someone who introduced himself [closed]

How can I reply when I chat with a new person and he introduced himself and I want to show that I'm pleased to know him but in formal way
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1 answer
39 views

"translator of" or "Translator for"

Is "English translator of this company" correct or "English translator for this company"? I want to introduce my job somewhere and the position I work in it and I don't know which ...
0 votes
2 answers
21 views

Please explain the meaning of this phrase

Below sentences is confusingly structured. It is not uncommon for the person being sexually assaulted to have no physical injuries or signs of their assault. Is the meaning that it is common for ...
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1 answer
90 views

Can you use "please" at the end of a question when you request information?

In a previous question, people have noted one can use "please" at the end of questions which serve as a request but not others. However, what about questions which request information? For ...
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0 votes
1 answer
958 views

What's more natural - "when" or "what" time would be convenient to meet today?

Does it sound natural to ask in an email: Could you please let me know what time and where would be convenient for you to meet today? I thought it is more appropriate to use "when" if I ...
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1 vote
2 answers
108 views

"I have got to sing" or "I have gotten to sing"

I know that normally in American English we use "gotten" after has/have but in this type of construction, do Americans say "got" or "gotten"? As in "I have got to ...
0 votes
1 answer
163 views

Is it correct/natural to say "Can you confirm receipt of the email?"

What is the short formal wording to say "Can you confirm you have received the email?/Did you get the email?" I thought something like "Can you confirm receipt of the email?" is it ...
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1 answer
197 views

Is "happy with ..." formal?

Can I use the following sentence in an email? Is "happy with" formal? if not what are the alternative phrases? "My supervisor is happy with the attached version of the contract" ...
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1 answer
36 views

Inquiry vs Enquiry what's the difference?

Is there a difference between the two words Inquiry and Enquiry when being used in formal writing as the two have been used alternatively in literature. And if not which one should be preferred in ...
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3 votes
3 answers
943 views

Is "steer clear of" formal or informal?

In the following text, I need a formal language. Is "steer clear of" appropriately used with an awareness of style? Nature make a favourable impression on people. However, some people have ...
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9 votes
5 answers
2k views

Does saying "Keep it up" put me in an authoritative position?

As a way of congratulating someone on starting a new project, I recently said "Keep it up". The other person said that "keep it up" isn't a phrase one would use outside of work and ...
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1 vote
1 answer
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Does including 'to be' after linking verbs sounds informal?

Here I provide the excerpt I took from Advanced Grammar In Use: Before a noun we include to be when the noun tells us what the subject is, but often leave it out when we give our opinion of the ...
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1 answer
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Is it okay to ommit personal pronouns in such situations?

I'm wondering if it's considered casual and natural to start sentences without the pronoun, or if a native English speaker would find that odd and feel that I'm either being way too casual or that I'm ...
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1 answer
30 views

sentence falls apart when I add a second example

I wrote some programs in Python that basically reduced lead times and labour costs. I am having difficulty in expressing the whole idea; it's becoming too wordy and hard to follow. Let's start with a ...
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0 votes
3 answers
93 views

"respectively"—should only be used if your sentence would be unclear without it?

Should we use in academic writing the word "respectively" for the following case: Consider circles 1 and 2. These circles have radii r1 and r2, respectively. Maybe because it is obvious ...
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1 vote
1 answer
27 views

"or" between items

Which option is the proper in academic writing for "or" items (apples/pears/oranges): I am going to eat red apples or yellow pears or green oranges. I am going to eat red apples, or yellow ...
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1 vote
1 answer
95 views

Should "as" be dropped in "Incredible lock picking skills as demonstrated by ..."? Why or why not?

I know that "as demonstrated by" is correct usage here: I have incredible lock picking skills as demonstrated by abc and xyz. In the above sentence, dropping "as" would be ...
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0 votes
3 answers
57 views

Using a comma instead of "and" in "A and B are the objects that are part of the equation."

It is proper to use "," between A and B A, B are the objects that are part of the equation. instead of "and" A and B are the objects that are part of the equation. in formal ...
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1 vote
1 answer
74 views

Is the usage of "over" in the meaning of "finished" formal?

Is the usage of "over" in the meaning of "finish" like the below sentence formal? My project will be over by 2022.
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0 votes
1 answer
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Word that is equivalent to "wrote" but is more impactful/powerful and more appropriate in a formal context?

I wrote the following sentence in my resume and got blasted with criticism (intended to help me of course): Delivered over 100 reports summarizing x, y, and z for ... Complaint 1: Did you deliver ...
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5 votes
4 answers
7k views

What is a formal alternative for being "on the same page"?

I am working on a project where there are a number of different stakeholders (people funding the project, supervisor, secondary researchers, etc.). One of the things I do is document all my main ...
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0 votes
1 answer
46 views

Can the word "exam" be used in formal contexts?

I have looked up the word exam in Cambridge dictionary, Merriam-Webster and Longman. According to these dictionaries, the longer form examination is formal, but that doesn't mean that the shorter word ...
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0 votes
1 answer
76 views

at the same time as or at the same time when

The sentence: At the same time as the value of x decreases, the variable y and its absolute value decrease. Can we use when instead as? At the same time when the value of x decreases, the variable ...
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1 vote
1 answer
152 views

Formal you vs. informal you

Since there just one form for both cases and context is one way to get the idea which one is used, is there a way to understand it out of context?
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0 votes
0 answers
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What verb can I use instead of "get" in "which company should get the contract"?

As the heading suggests, I'm looking for an alternative to "get" in the sentence "Which company should get the contract". I guess "get" works, but I would like a more ...
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0 votes
1 answer
50 views

Does it sound werid to native speakers if the learners use formal words in casual/everyday speech?

I'm always curious whether using formal words in a casual/everyday speech sounds weird to native speakers. Or maybe the native speakers can notice such uses but don't care at all? For example, the ...
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0 votes
0 answers
26 views

Using a present or past passive form in a polite request with if

Which of the following forms are preferred in a formal letter, when you want to ask a client to sign your contract sooner. We would also be very grateful if our contract is kindly signed by Ms. X We ...
12 votes
3 answers
2k views

Is it okay to say "We are no more in the 20th century"? Using "no more" with periods of time

The most correct form is "We are no longer in the 20th century". But saying "We are no more in the 20th century" or "We are in the 20th century no more" is also correct? ...
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0 votes
1 answer
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"comma" or "and" between section names? [duplicate]

"Comma" or "and"? Case 1: In §2.1 and §2.2 we prove ... or In §2.1, §2.2 we prove ... Case 2: As mentioned in Section 2 (§2.1 and §2.2) ... or As mentioned in Section 2 (§2....
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0 answers
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How prejudice affects our lives? VS how does prejudice affect our lives? [duplicate]

I'm writting an essay and I have a question... Which one of these questions is correct? How prejudice affects our lives? How does prejudice affect our lives?
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1 answer
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Question about subjunctives in formal text

I am in the process of writing my dissertation (in maths/physics), and for some reason constructions like these come naturally to me: We impose that the background be symmetric. We also require that ...
-1 votes
1 answer
66 views

Commercial vs private financial gain

While prepping for IELTS academic reading, I've encountered the following passage: The penalties for breaching the copyright act differ slightly depending upon whether the infringing is for ...
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1 vote
1 answer
59 views

Is “The Tigris is the river we are investigating” grammatical?

I saw the following sentence in formal writing: The Tigris is the river we are investigating. (Please don't change the sentence to "We are investigating the Tigris river" or etc..) ...
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0 votes
1 answer
29 views

one shouldn't give due credit unless is given likewise

One shouldn't give due credit unless (one) is given likewise Is this sentence both grammatically and semantically alright? I tried to imply that one shouldn't respect others unless one is respected ...
0 votes
1 answer
129 views

Use of Whither and Whence

Could you check the following sentences: You should be concerned with where you are going to. You should be concerned with whither you are going. Where all those refugees came from? Whence all those ...

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