Grandma\’s Tales

May 3, 2007

Grammar – What’s wrong with these sentences? 2

Filed under: Language — Rajesh @ 9:52 pm

I found these sentences in Rediff.com. The website had asked readers to contribute English howlers they had come across. I think we make these errors because we tend to translate what we think in our own language. When we do that we don’t follow rules. We just do a word-for-word raw translation and these are the results. Try and correct the errors in these sentences.

1.  Please return my book back.

2.  Could you repeat the last line again?

3.     I, my sister and Deepa went to the mall.

4.      The fish aquarium is very large.

5.      The dance ballet was lovely.

6.      I could not able to do it, sir.

7.      I’m going to give an examination.

8.      The city bus service is highly erotic!
There was also this letter. See what you can make of it.
Dear Sir,
We are glad to tell you that we are manufacture of disappearing ink pen attached please check our disappearing ink pen catalogue with price pictures and other details. Any interested itmes please kindly inform us.

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10 Comments »

  1. 1.Please return my book. 2.Could you repeat the last line. 3.My sister,Deepa and Iwent to the mall. 4.The aquarium is very large. 5.The dance was lovely. 6.I could not do it, sir. 7.I am giving an examination. 8.The bus service in our city is highly erotic.

    Comment by Srinidhi — May 4, 2007 @ 5:26 pm | Reply

  2. Hi Srinidhi! The first six are on the dot.
    For 7, you don’t “give” an exam. You “take” it. I used to say this in my classes all the time. I would say, “I am the one “giving” the exam. You jolly well take it!”:-)
    For the last one, just check the meaning of the word “erotic”!

    Comment by Geeta Padmanabhan — May 4, 2007 @ 8:47 pm | Reply

  3. Hi Srinidhi, what about the letter?

    Comment by Geeta Padmanabhan — May 4, 2007 @ 8:47 pm | Reply

  4. Corrected sentence #8:
    The city bus service is highly erratic!

    Here’s the corrected letter:
    Dear Sir,
    We are glad to inform you that we are manufacturers of disappearing ink pens. Please check our attached disappearing ink pen catalogue with price, pictures and other details. Kindly inform us if you are interested in any item.

    Comment by VSu — May 5, 2007 @ 12:05 am | Reply

  5. Excellent, VSu! I still have a problem with the “disappearing ink pens” though. Do these pens disappear after use:-)?

    Comment by Geeta Padmanabhan — May 5, 2007 @ 5:57 pm | Reply

  6. Hello ma’m.

    I am a student of Sriram Law Academy.

    Corrected letter:

    Dear Sir,
    We are glad to inform you that we are manufacturers of pens that erase ink. Please check our attached catalogue with price, pictures and other details. Kindly inform us if you are interested in any item.

    Comment by Shreya — May 7, 2007 @ 6:39 pm | Reply

  7. Excellent, Shreya! Way to go!

    Comment by Geeta Padmanabhan — May 7, 2007 @ 6:47 pm | Reply

  8. There sentences are redundant, and have unnecessary words in them. I have finally mastered the art of humour, and am very funny.

    Comment by Navaneethan Santhanam — July 17, 2007 @ 11:17 pm | Reply

  9. I’m not sure if you’ve ever visited the social networking site Orkut. Perusing the archives of topics of a committee, I came across some atrocious punctuation. It made me gag, gasp and choke. I was angry for almost a day after reading some of the posts by forum members.

    Quoting one post, “Had visited Cream Center last evening…found the ambience fantastic…however everything is far too overpriced!! we ordered a couple of iced floats and found it quite disappointing for 90 bucks….
    nachos was good….the sizzler and the cholle bhaturre were okay!!”

    If the sizzler & cholle bhaturre were just OK, why did this person have to suffix the sentence with exclamation marks? UGH.

    Comment by Navaneethan Santhanam — July 17, 2007 @ 11:22 pm | Reply

  10. You read comments anywhere online, you’ll see errors, NS. This guy you quote is probably surprised that he could make a good sentence on his own.:-)

    Comment by Geeta Padmanabhan — July 18, 2007 @ 11:38 am | Reply


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