Questions tagged [register]

'Register' is the degree of formality called for in a particular written or spoken context. Very broadly, we distinguish 'formal', 'informal' and 'vulgar' usage in both writing and speech, but finer distinctions may be needed.

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21
votes
5answers
2k views

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 ...
9
votes
3answers
1k 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?
3
votes
3answers
466 views

Is “down” not meaning “below” (e.g. “down the line”) formally acceptable?

One of my biggest issues when learning the language was when I heard people saying "down there" or "down the line" when referring to a counter or a line in a bank, respectively, for example. That ...
6
votes
3answers
625 views

Are British words jarring in US English? [closed]

In particular, I don't mean mere alternate spellings like colour, honour, but words that are entirely different: using lift instead of elevator, fridge instead of refrigerator etc. What is the common ...
8
votes
2answers
601 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 ...
10
votes
4answers
1k 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 ...
22
votes
3answers
6k views

Is it common to use “gonna” in written English and even in business English?

Gonna is a short form of going to. That sounds a little bit like slang. Is it common to use it in written English and even in business English?
15
votes
5answers
63k views

Is “Bunch of people” a valid phrase?

Some time ago I was told that use of the expression bunch of people is incorrect. Apparently, bunch should not be used along with people meaning group of people. But the problem is that I can hear ...
10
votes
2answers
465 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? ...