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Questions tagged [formality]

is for questions about whether a word or phrase is considered formal or informal. Be sure to include as much context as you can, because sometimes how formal or informal a word or phrase is can be different in different situations.

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20 votes
5 answers
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Is ending a sentence with a preposition acceptable?

When I learned English at school, I was taught that I should not end a sentence with a preposition. Is it correct to end a sentence with a preposition? To avoid starting a sentence with a ...
avpaderno's user avatar
  • 20.9k
38 votes
6 answers
101k views

Is it "I" or "me" in "Keep Tom and I/me updated"?

In this case what is correct? Keep Tom and I updated. or Keep Tom and me updated. I understand that me is an object pronoun. And therefore I feel the second option is correct. ...
Dzyann's user avatar
  • 1,071
5 votes
2 answers
3k views

"I have" vs "I have got"

I don't know what is the difference between using "I have got" and "I have" For example: He's got broad shoulders. Is it possible to say: He has broad shoulders. If yes, so what is the ...
Fattaneh Talebi's user avatar
44 votes
6 answers
58k views

Do you really answer “How do you do?” with “How do you do?”

I'm a non native speaker of English. In our learning we were told that when we say hello to someone we use equivalent phrase: How do you do? In response we do say: How do you do? But I'm ...
Sudhir's user avatar
  • 2,005
0 votes
2 answers
3k views

Can/could vs. may/might (expressing typical occurrences)

The following parts are taken from PEU:1 122.2 common or typical We often use can to say what is common or typical. Scotland can be very warm in September. Ann can really ...
Kinzle B's user avatar
  • 7,105
11 votes
7 answers
2k views

Which version is correct and normally used, "between you and me" or "between you and I"?

I was listening to the song Superman by Eminem. I've listened it before many times but from the time I've started learning English grammar I am getting confused while reading or listening English. ...
user31782's user avatar
  • 1,763
11 votes
4 answers
3k views

Meaning and usage of ain't

Sometimes I encounter ain't, but I really don't know how to translate it properly. What does ain't stand for? If I really wanted to use it, in which contexts would you say it's acceptable using it?
haunted85's user avatar
  • 1,029
10 votes
1 answer
8k views

Use "got" or "have got"?

Could you please tell me if you got some time to read the report? In this sentence, I have to use got or have got ? what is the difference between these two w.r.t. the meaning of the sentence?
tam's user avatar
  • 477
9 votes
2 answers
1k views

Appropriate usage of "can't" and "cannot"

Are there any rules for using can't and cannot since they mean the same thing, and they are used interchangeably, but they sound weird in certain contexts?
Arpith's user avatar
  • 299
8 votes
3 answers
3k views

When can't we shorten It is to It's

I have noticed that in some cases people write it is while in others it's. And in some cases you just cannot write it's. Is that your book over there? Maybe it is. It's a beautiful flower. Yes, it is,...
SovereignSun's user avatar
  • 25.1k
7 votes
2 answers
2k views

How to concisely express 'at many place' similar to somewhere, nowhere and everywhere?

I searched on the Internet and found the opposite of 'somewhere' is 'nowhere.' This confuses me, because I see it like this: The opposite of "everywhere" (at all places) is "nowhere" (at no places). ...
Maulik V's user avatar
  • 66.2k
6 votes
2 answers
154k views

"You are" vs. "you're" — what is the difference between them?

“You are” vs. “you're” — what is the difference between them? I get confused between the two a lot. I want to understand how to use them appropriately, because I hate making mistakes.
user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
5k views

Is using "while" instead of "whereas" discouraged in academic writing?

Some time ago, I was participating in a course for academic paper writing in which the professor cautioned the students against using while instead of whereas. It was surprising for me; I supposed ...
hossayni's user avatar
  • 295
2 votes
2 answers
10k views

Thanks vs Thank you vs Thank you so much? [closed]

What is the correct way to say "thanks" to anyone in any situation? Does it make any difference depending on context or situation?
user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
13k views

Third Conditionals: "If I knew..." instead of "had known..." in casual register

I know that in the following sentences "If I had known" has to be used in the place of "If I knew" to form the grammatically right sentences. What I really want be sure of is that as a native if all ...
Cavid Hummatov's user avatar
10 votes
2 answers
526 views

Under what circumstances does an adverb not get -ly?

I learned in school that it's correct to say really good. On the internet I've also seen real good. Is this grammatically incorrect, or are there particular circumstances under which this is correct? ...
gerrit's user avatar
  • 4,745
10 votes
4 answers
2k views

Is "You alright?" (without "are") acceptable?

I'm having a hard time figuring out which is the correct form of asking this kind of question. I mean speaking strictly, this doesn't sound right: You alright? or You eaten anything? compared to Are ...
2hamed's user avatar
  • 223
9 votes
2 answers
794 views

Lite instead of Light

I commonly see lite version, lite cream, etc. When is it acceptable to replace light with lite? Is Lite already accepted as correct English or is it just an informal/incorrect spelling? Are there any ...
SF.'s user avatar
  • 10.2k
8 votes
2 answers
51k views

“Both you and he are very happy” or "Both you and him are very happy"?

It's a sentence on a test paper: Both you and he are very happy. The sentence itself sounds awkward. Let's cast the awkwardness aside and look into the grammar. It's understandable that as part of ...
dennylv's user avatar
  • 4,211
4 votes
4 answers
9k views

How to ask someone to move from their seat?

For example, if there was a sofa in the room, and there were 3 people sitting on it, and there was a little space between their seat. How do you ask them to "move" or to "come close" to each other so ...
John Hark's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
5k views

"It is not well" or "it is not good"?

Watching an old Dr. Who episode, one character said to another, "Highness, it is not well to think of the past, there is still the future to make." ("The Ribos Operation", 1978) To my ear, this ...
oldbrit's user avatar
  • 41
4 votes
1 answer
1k views

How to learn English in quick way [closed]

I am not very good with the English language. I have three questions: While talking to others, most of them ask me why I am talking in much too complex a fashion (that is, they are not understanding ...
Balamurugan's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
11k views

Is it the formal writing to use double adverbs like "very very" or "really really"?

I am writing a letter, I want to mention a thing by using double adverbs. For instance, it is really really cool, it is very very nice. Something Like that, is it the formal writing or not?
Ronald's user avatar
  • 482
3 votes
2 answers
4k views

Is it rude to tell someone "I need to talk to you about this paper"

Today I wrote this sentence to my supervisor who is a native speaker of English: I need to talk to you about this paper. Now I am worried this could be rude. Would you say this is rude, or not?
antmw1361's user avatar
  • 133
3 votes
1 answer
3k views

' being ' in participle clauses

According to the source " we can use an adverbial participle clause to express reason or cause as an alternative to a because/since/as clause. Using a participle clause in this way is more ...
Mrt's user avatar
  • 11k
2 votes
1 answer
660 views

The usage of "see"

Are the following sentences grammatical? The summer of 2000 saw me in a research project at a museum in Africa. The summer of 2000 saw me doing a research project at a museum in Africa. The ...
Eddie Kal's user avatar
  • 18.9k
2 votes
2 answers
7k views

Is "don't" considered informal In writing?

Is "don't" considered informal In writing? Originally, I thought that all contractions are informal, but I remember later I saw "don't" also used in formal writings, or am I wrong?...
Tim's user avatar
  • 4,059
2 votes
2 answers
27k views

Usage of "after that"

I wrote: Then, we review the related works and after that we present our algorithm. Is it a correct usage of "after that"? I don't want to repeat "then". Is "after that" formal? what about saying ...
Ahmad's user avatar
  • 8,949
1 vote
2 answers
221 views

"Very well so" correctness and formality?

Person 1: "I hope I answered all your questions." Person 2: "Yes, you did, very well so." Is the "very well so" grammatically correct? What about formality?
WalksB's user avatar
  • 113
1 vote
2 answers
2k views

Saying "You'll feel me on this"

So, recently, I saw someone commenting, "You'll feel me on this" on a certain post. Since I'm not really familiar with phrases that are more informal (even regarded as slang) in English, I wanted to ...
Rabi's user avatar
  • 37
1 vote
4 answers
5k views

With that or without "that", which one is more formal to write?

I have this sentence: There is an engine inside me that keeps saying "someone must be at the top, why isn't that you?" Should I write that or leave it out? I know both ways are correct, but I am ...
Marco Dinatsoli's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
1k views

omitting "that" is "so ... that ..."

Is it considered informal to omit "that" in "so ... that ..."? What would style guides say about the following? John is so intelligent (that) he can learn any language in two months. If this ...
Apollyon's user avatar
  • 5,986
1 vote
1 answer
14k views

Is there a website that can tell whether a word or phrase is formal or informal? [closed]

Is there a website that can tell whether a word or phrase is formal or informal? For example, I would like to know if "before long" is formal or informal, and if it is informal, what its formal ...
Tim's user avatar
  • 4,059
0 votes
0 answers
30 views

Do dictionaries sometimes say nonsense?

For example, plural nouns like 'clothes' and 'pants' actually are singulars, but we call them 'plural nouns.' If it's true, what words is appropriate to describe these cases? 'Formal'?
yourfriend's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
137 views

Subjective or Objective pronoun in this case?

I have recently been considering the correct use of "I" and "Me" in this particular case; Someone posted a picture of themselves, standing next to a celebrity, on a social media site, with the caption ...
Marv Mills's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
17k views

Why is 'He is a man whom I look up to.' not quite right even though it is not wrong?

There is nothing grammatically wrong with 'He is a man whom I look up to.' The relative clause is non-defining, so no comma; the relative pronoun refers to a person, so 'who', not 'which'; the ...
user58319's user avatar
  • 282