Amina Zinab Nigeria 8 Questions 19 Answers 1 Best Answers 432 Points View Profile 2 Amina Zinab Asked: May 11, 2019In: Education What are the common grammatical errors we make in English? 2 Tell others:ShareWhatsAppTweet 1 Answer Izuoma Ibe Nigeria 10 Questions 37 Answers 5 Best Answers 684 Points View Profile Izuoma Ibe Added an answer on May 11, 2019 at 3:26 pm Depends on what you mean by “grammar.” Most people lump all sorts of things into that label that aren’t, by linguists’ standards, actually about grammar: misspellings, misplaced apostrophes, jargon, etc. So I’ll focus on three things that actually touch a bit on grammar. “Who” vs. “whom”: This confuses even the best of us, and people tend to hypercorrect themselves and use “whom” any time they aren’t sure which one to use. In general, “whom” is used when it’s the object of a verb, and “who” when it’s the subject of a verb. The confusion often happens in question: “Who/whom got the invitation?” “You gave that invitation to who/whom?” The trick is to substitute “he” for “who” and “him” for “whom.” So it’s “Who/he got the invitation?” and “You gave that invitation to him/whom?” “Than I” vs. “than me”: This is a grammatical mess, really, and it’s “than’s” fault. “Than” can either be a conjunction joining two clauses (“She’s messier than I am”) or a preposition (“She’s messier than me”). In general, if you go with “than I,” add the verb after it; if you drop the verb, use “me.” “Was” vs. “were”: The subjunctive. Bleh. The subjunctive is a mood of English verbs that gets used to describe wishes, hypothetical situations, demands, suggestions, and conditions that are contrary to fact. If you’re still with me, the form for most English subjunctive verbs is identical to the infinitive form: “He demanded that she leave the premises.” The problem is that the subjunctive form of the verb “be” isn’t “be,” but “were.” (English!) Because “were” is also a past form of the verb “be,” people often substitute in “was” accidentally. The general rule is this: if you’re talking about something that isn’t real right now, and you’re using the verb “be,” you should probably use “were” and not “was”: “if I were a rich man [but I’m not]”; “if I were you [but I’m not, and you should be grateful for that, trust me]”; “if it were up to be [but it’s not, and again, ditto on the grateful].” 0 Reply Share Share Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on WhatsApp Leave an answerLeave an answerCancel reply Featured image Select file Browse Save my name, email, and website in this browser for the next time I comment. Notify me of new posts by email.