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76. Don’t use since to talk about the future.
I’ll be home fromthree o’clock. (NOT
I’ll be home since three o’clock.)
The shop will be closed for two weeks from Monday. (NOT
The shop willbe closed for two weeks since Monday.)
77. Singular fra*ction + plural noun: use a plural verb.
A third of thestudents are from abroad. (NOT
A third of the students is fromabroad.)
A quarter of the trees have been cut down.
78. You listen to something.
She never listensto me. (NOT
She never listens me.)
Listen to this! (NOT
79. Don’t use the past progressive for past habits.
When I was 20 I smoked/ I used to smoke. (NOT
When I was 20 I was smoking.)
I played / I used to play a lot of football at school. (NOT
Iwas playing a lot of football at school.)
80. Don’t use most of directly before a noun.
Most of these people agree with me.
Most people agree with me.
Most of people agree with me.)
81. In ‘unreal’ conditions with if, use would, not will.
If I knew the price,I would tell you. (
NOT If I knew the price, I will tell you.)
It would be better if he told the truth. (NOT
It will be better if hetold the truth.)
82. Don’t use later with an expression of time to talk about thefuture.
I’ll see you later.
I’ll see you in a few days.
I’ll see you a few days later.)
83. Don’t use in case to mean ‘if’.
I’ll take an umbrella in case it rains. (= ‘… because it might rain.’)
I’ll open the umbrella if it rains. (NOT
I’ll open the umbrella incase it rains.)
84. Use so before an adjective, but not before adjective + noun.
I love this country– it’s so beautiful. (NOT
I love this so beautiful country.)
Thanks for your help. That was so kind of you. (NOT
Thanks for yourso kind help.)
85. Only use unless to mean ‘except if’.
I’ll see you tomorrow unless I have to work.
I’ll be really upset if I don’t pass the exam. (NOT
I’ll bereally upset unless I pass the exam.)
86. Use be with adjectives, not have with nouns, to talkabout physical sensations like cold, hunger, thirst etc.
I am thirsty.(NOT
I have thirst.)
We are cold in this house. (NOT
We have cold in this house.)
87. Don’t use to-infinitives after can, could, will, would,may, might, shall, should or must.
I can swim.(NOT
I can to swim.)
Must you make so much noise? (NOT
Must you to make so much noise?)
88. Use not, not no, to make sentences negative.
I’m notasleep. (NOT
I’m no asleep.)
We are open on Saturdays, but not on Sundays. (NOT
… but no onSundays.)
89. We don’t usually use present tenses after past reporting verbs.
She told me she hada headache. (NOT
She told me she has a headache.)
I asked him what he wanted. (NOT
| asked him what he wants.)
90. Use to after married, engaged.
He’s married to a doctor. (NOT
He’smarried with a doctor.)
My sister is engaged to a computer engineer. (NOT
My sister isengaged with a computer engineer.)
91. Use which, not what, to refer back to a wholesentence.
She passed her exam,which surprised everybody. (NOT
She passed her exam, what surprisedeverybody.)
My father has just climbed Mont Blanc, which is pretty good for a man of75. (NOT
… what is pretty good for a man of 75.)
92. Don’t use the with society when it has a generalmeaning.
We all have to livein society. (NOT
We all have to live in the society.)
Rousseau said that society makes people evil. (NOT
Rousseau said thatthe society makes people evil.)
93. Use a to-infinitive after want.
I want to gohome. (NOT
I want go home.)
The children want to stay up late. (NOT
The children want stay uplate.)
94. Use make, not do, with mistake.
I have made amistake. (NOT
I have done a mistake.)
You can’t speak a language without making mistakes. (NOT
… withoutdoing mistakes.)
95. Don’t repeat a relative pronoun with another pronoun.
There’s the man thatI work for. (NOT
There’s the man that I work for him.)
She saw a doctor who sent her to hospital. (NOT
She saw a doctor whohe sent her to hospital.)
96. After a superlative, use in with a place expression.
Which is the biggestcity in the world? (NOT
Which is the biggest city of the world?)
This is the best restaurant in the city. (NOT
This is the bestrestaurant of the city.)
97. You explain and suggest something to somebody.
Please explain tome what you want. (NOT
Please explain me what you want.)
Can you suggest a good restaurant to us? (NOT
Can you suggest us agood restaurant?)
98. Work is an uncountable noun.
I’m looking for work.(NOT
I’m looking for a work.)
My brother has found a new job. (NOT
My brother has found a new work.)
99. Be careful of the word order in negative infinitives.
It’s important notto work too hard. (NOT
It’s important to not work too hard.)
I asked her not to make so much noise.
100.Possessives replace articles.
We stayed in John’s house at theweekend. (NOT
We stayed in the John’s house at the weekend.)
She’s been studying Britain’s foreign policy since 1980. (NOT
She’sbeen studying the Britain’s foreign policy since 1980.)
Golden Rules of English 3
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