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Practical Guide to English Usage Comparing and Contrasting English and Catalan Language Service, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya© Fundació per a la Universitat Oberta de Catalunya, January 2013 Language Service, Universitat Oberta de Catalunya Av. Tibidabo 39-43, Barcelona, 08035 Design: Manel Andreu This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Spain Licence. You may copy, distribute, transmit and adapt the work under the same or a similar licence to this one provided you attribute the work. The full licence can be con- sulted here: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/es/deed.en.Authors Servei Lingüístic de la Universitat Oberta de Catalunya The Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (Open University of Catalonia, UOC) Language Service was opened in 1995, at the same time as the University itself. Since the start of the University’s activities it has played an important role in the tasks of editing and translating the texts produced for the University’s Virtual Campus and teaching materials. Likewise, the Language Service has worked to produce guidelines to help cover the language needs and to respond to the doubts that inevitably arise when dealing with large amounts of documents, as is the case at the UOC. Language Service, January 2013Practical Guide to English Usage© FUOC 5 Table of contents Table of Contents Presentation .................................................................................................................................................................... 11 Introduction .................................................................................................................................................................... 13 Spelling and punctuation .................................................................................................................... 15 1. Syllabification (separation of syllables) .......................................................... 15 2. Punctuation marks ................................................................................................................................ 15 2.1. Apostrophe ........................................................................................................................................ 16 2.2. Comma .................................................................................................................................................... 17 2.3. Semicolon ............................................................................................................................................ 18 2.4. Full stop (AmE: period) ................................................................................................ 19 2.5. Colon .......................................................................................................................................................... 19 2.6. Ellipses (suspension dots) .......................................................................................... 20 2.7. Question mark .............................................................................................................................. 20 2.8. Exclamation mark (AmE: exclamation point) .......................... 21 2.9. Dashes ........................................................................................................................................................ 21 2.10. Hyphen .................................................................................................................................................... 21 2.11. Parentheses ........................................................................................................................................ 23 2.12. Box brackets (square brackets) , curly brackets and angle brackets ...................................................................................................... 24 2.13. Quotation marks (single and double) .................................................. 24 3. Diacritical marks (accents and the diaeresis/umlaut) ............ 25 Morphology ...................................................................................................................................................................... 27 1. Nouns ...................................................................................................................................................................... 27 1.1. Noun formation ........................................................................................................................ 27 1.1.1. Nouns derived from adjectives .................................................. 27 1.1.2. Nouns derived from verbs .................................................................. 28 1.1.3. Nouns derived from other nouns .......................................... 32 1.2. Noun + noun .................................................................................................................................. 34 1.3. Plural nouns .................................................................................................................................... 34 1.3.1. Regular plural nouns .................................................................................. 35 1.3.2. Irregular plural nouns ................................................................................ 36 1.4. Capitalization ................................................................................................................................ 38 1.5. Formation of the Saxon genitive .................................................................. 39 Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 6 Table of contents 2. Adjectives ................................................................................................................................................................ 41 2.1. Adjective formation ............................................................................................................ 41 2.1.1. Adjectives derived from nouns .................................................. 41 2.1.2. Adjectives derived from verbs ...................................................... 46 2.2. Comparative and superlative adjectives ............................................ 47 2.3. Compound adjectives ...................................................................................................... 48 3. Determiners ........................................................................................................................................................ 51 4. Pronouns .................................................................................................................................................................. 52 5. Verbs ...................................................................................................................................................................... 53 5.1. Verb formation ............................................................................................................................ 53 5.1.1. Verbs derived from adjectives ...................................................... 53 5.1.2. Verbs derived from nouns .................................................................. 54 5.2. Verb forms .......................................................................................................................................... 56 5.2.1. The -s form .................................................................................................................. 56 5.2.2. The -ing form .......................................................................................................... 58 5.2.3. The -ed form ............................................................................................................ 59 5.2.4. The verb Be ................................................................................................................ 61 5.3. Verb contractions .................................................................................................................... 62 6. Adverbs ...................................................................................................................................................................... 63 7. Demonyms (gentilics) ...................................................................................................................... 64 7.1. Country demonyms ............................................................................................................ 64 7.2. City demonyms .......................................................................................................................... 67 Syntax ...................................................................................................................................................................... 69 1. Nouns ...................................................................................................................................................................... 69 1.1. The Saxon genitive .............................................................................................................. 69 1.2. Animal names .............................................................................................................................. 72 1.3. Partitives ................................................................................................................................................ 73 1.3.1. Quality partitives .............................................................................................. 73 1.3.2. Quantity partitives .......................................................................................... 74 1.4. Collective nouns ...................................................................................................................... 75 1.5. Noun + noun .................................................................................................................................. 75 2. Adjectives ................................................................................................................................................................ 78 2.1. Adjective order .......................................................................................................................... 78 2.1.1. Attributive adjectives .................................................................................. 78 2.1.2. Predicative adjectives ................................................................................ 81 2.2. Possessive adjectives (and pronouns) .................................................... 82 2.3. Quantifying adjectives (and adverbs) .................................................... 85 2.4. Comparative and superlative adjectives (and adverbs) .............. 89 Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 7 Table of contents 2.4.1. More and most ...................................................................................................... 89 2.4.2. Fewer, fewest, less and least .......................................................... 90 2.4.3. Comparative and superlative adjectives ...................... 90 2.4.4. Irregular comparative and superlative adjectives 91 2.4.5. Proportional comparative constructions .................... 91 2.4.6. Use of subject and object pronouns in comparisons .................................................................................................... 92 2.5. Participial and gerundial adjectives .......................................................... 92 2.6. Interrogative adjectives .................................................................................................. 93 2.6.1. The difference between which and what .................. 94 2.6.2. The interrogative adjective whose ........................................ 94 2.6.3. Use of which, what and whose in indirect questions ............................................................................................ 94 3. Determiners ........................................................................................................................................................ 95 3.1. Articles .................................................................................................................................................. 95 3.1.1. The definite article the .............................................................................. 95 3.1.2. The indefinite articles a and an ................................................ 96 3.2. Demonstrative determiners .................................................................................... 96 3.3. Indefinite determiners .................................................................................................... 97 3.3.1. Universal determiners .............................................................................. 97 3.3.2. Affirmative determiners ........................................................................ 99 3.3.3. Non-affirmative determiners ........................................................ 99 3.3.4. Elective determiners .................................................................................... 100 3.3.5. Negative determiners .................................................................................. 100 3.3.6. Alternative determiners .......................................................................... 101 3.3.7. The predeterminer half .......................................................................... 101 4. Pronouns .................................................................................................................................................................. 102 4.1. Personal pronouns ................................................................................................................ 102 4.1.1. Nominative personal pronouns ................................................ 102 4.1.2. Objective personal pronouns ........................................................ 103 4.1.3. Singular they ............................................................................................................ 103 4.2. The pronoun it ............................................................................................................................ 103 4.2.1. Anticipatory it ...................................................................................................... 104 4.2.2. Identifying it ............................................................................................................ 104 4.2.3. It referring to time, weather and distance .............. 104 4.3. Interrogative pronouns .................................................................................................. 105 4.3.1. Who and what as subjects ................................................................ 105 4.3.2. Who and what as direct objects .............................................. 105 4.3.3. Who and what as prepositional objects ...................... 105 4.4. Relative pronouns .................................................................................................................. 106 4.4.1. Adjectival relative pronouns .......................................................... 106 4.4.2. Nominal relative pronouns .............................................................. 109 4.4.3. Interrogative pronouns and adverbs used as relatives .................................................................................................. 110 Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 8 Table of contents 4.5. Indefinite pronouns (and adverbs) ............................................................ 110 4.5.1. Universal indefinite pronouns .................................................... 111 4.5.2. Affirmative indefinite pronouns .............................................. 111 4.5.3. Non-affirmative indefinite pronouns .............................. 112 4.5.4. Negative indefinite pronouns ...................................................... 112 4.5.5. Other indefinite pronouns ................................................................ 113 4.6. Reflexive and reciprocal pronouns ............................................................ 113 4.6.1. Reflexive pronouns ........................................................................................ 113 4.6.2. Reciprocal pronouns .................................................................................... 115 4.7. Translation of the Catalan pronouns ho, en and hi .......... 115 4.7.1. Translation of the Catalan pronoun ho ........................ 115 4.7.2. Translation of the Catalan pronoun en ........................ 119 4.7.3. Translation of the Catalan pronoun hi .......................... 121 5. Verbs ........................................................................................................................................................................ 122 5.1. Verb tenses .......................................................................................................................................... 122 5.1.1. Simple present and present continuous ...................... 123 5.1.2. Simple past and past continuous ............................................ 124 5.1.3. Present perfect and present perfect continuous 125 5.1.4. Past perfect and past perfect continuous .................. 126 5.1.5. Present and past subjunctive ........................................................ 126 5.1.6. Future .................................................................................................................................. 127 5.1.7. Conditional ................................................................................................................ 131 5.2. Non-affirmative constructions ........................................................................ 133 5.3. Question tags and short answers .................................................................. 135 5.3.1. Question tags .......................................................................................................... 135 5.3.2. Short answers .......................................................................................................... 136 5.4. Use of interrogative adverbs .................................................................................. 136 5.5. Use of interrogative pronouns and adjectives .......................... 136 5.6. Interrogative adverbial expressions .......................................................... 138 5.7. Modal verbs ...................................................................................................................................... 140 5.7.1. Can, could, be able to, be allowed to ............................ 141 5.7.2. May and might .................................................................................................... 143 5.7.3. Will, shall, be going to, be to ...................................................... 144 5.7.4. Must, have to, be supposed to, should, ought to, have got to .................................................................................. 146 5.7.5. Would rather .......................................................................................................... 149 5.7.6. Had better .................................................................................................................... 149 5.7.7. Be about to ................................................................................................................ 150 5.7.8. Dare and need ...................................................................................................... 150 5.8. Prepositional verbs ................................................................................................................ 150 5.9. Adverbial verbs (phrasal verbs) ........................................................................ 154 5.10. Use of infinitives ...................................................................................................................... 157 5.10.1. Use of the bare infinitive ................................................................ 157 5.10.2. Use of the full infinitive .................................................................. 158 Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 9 Table of contents 5.11. Use of gerunds (present participles) .......................................................... 159 5.12. Use of past participles ...................................................................................................... 162 5.13. Imperatives ........................................................................................................................................ 163 6. Adverbs ........................................................................................................................................................................ 164 6.1. Position of adverbs ................................................................................................................ 164 6.2. Adverbs of manner ................................................................................................................ 165 6.3. Adverbs of place and direction .......................................................................... 168 6.4. Adverbs of time .......................................................................................................................... 172 6.4.1. Frequency adverbs .......................................................................................... 172 6.4.2. Adverbs of relative time ........................................................................ 173 6.4.3. Adverbs of specific time ........................................................................ 174 6.5. Adverbs of affirmation and doubt .............................................................. 176 6.5.1. Adverbs of affirmation ............................................................................ 176 6.5.2. Adverbs of doubt .............................................................................................. 176 6.6. Adverbs of degree .................................................................................................................... 177 6.7. Interrogative adverbs ........................................................................................................ 177 6.8. Conjunctive adverbs .......................................................................................................... 177 6.9. Adverbs modifying adjectives or other adverbs .................... 179 7. Prepositions ........................................................................................................................................................ 180 7.1. Prepositions of place .......................................................................................................... 180 7.2. Prepositions of time ............................................................................................................ 183 7.3. Prepositions of movement ...................................................................................... 185 7.4. Placement of prepositions ........................................................................................ 187 8. Conjunctions .................................................................................................................................................... 188 8.1. Coordinating conjunctions .................................................................................... 188 8.2. Correlative conjunctions ............................................................................................ 189 8.3. Subordinating conjunctions .................................................................................. 189 8.4. The conjunction that ...................................................................................................... 193 8.5. The conjunctions if and whether ................................................................ 193 Style ...................................................................................................................................................................... 197 Introduction .............................................................................................................................................................. 197 1. Abbreviations, acronyms and symbols .............................................................. 198 1.1. Abbreviations ...................................................................................................................................... 198 1.2. Acronyms .................................................................................................................................................. 199 1.3. Symbols ........................................................................................................................................................ 201 2. Capitalization .................................................................................................................................................. 203 2.1. General conventions .............................................................................................................. 203 2.2. People .............................................................................................................................................................. 204 2.3. Places ................................................................................................................................................................ 204 2.4. Things .............................................................................................................................................................. 205 2.5. UOC-specific usage .................................................................................................................... 208 3. Type ...................................................................................................................................................................... 210 Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 10 Table of contents 3.1. Bold .................................................................................................................................................................. 210 3.2. Italics .............................................................................................................................................................. 210 3.3. Underlining .......................................................................................................................................... 212 3.4. Miscellaneous .................................................................................................................................... 212 4. Numbers .................................................................................................................................................................. 213 4.1. Numbers written as words .......................................................................................... 213 4.2. Numbers written as figures ........................................................................................ 214 4.3. Ranges .......................................................................................................................................................... 216 4.4. Times and dates ............................................................................................................................ 216 4.5. Roman numerals .......................................................................................................................... 218 5. Lists, tables and figures ................................................................................................................ 219 5.1. Lists .................................................................................................................................................................... 219 5.2. Tables .............................................................................................................................................................. 220 5.3. Figures .......................................................................................................................................................... 221 6. Bibliographical references ...................................................................................................... 222 6.1. The Oxford system .................................................................................................................. 222 6.2. Other referencing systems ............................................................................................ 225 7. Criteria for translations into English .................................................................. 226 7.1. General conventions ............................................................................................................ 226 7.2. Names of people .......................................................................................................................... 226 7.3. Names of places ............................................................................................................................ 227 7.4. Names of things ............................................................................................................................ 229 8. UK/US differences .................................................................................................................................. 234 8.1. Spelling ........................................................................................................................................................ 234 8.2. Dates ................................................................................................................................................................ 239 8.3. Punctuation ........................................................................................................................................ 240 8.4. Prepositions and articles ................................................................................................ 242 8.5. Vocabulary ............................................................................................................................................ 243 8.6. Helpful links ........................................................................................................................................ 243 9. Gender ...................................................................................................................................................................... 244 10. Names and forms of address .......................................................................................... 246 Bibliography .................................................................................................................................................................. 249 Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 11 Presentation Presentation The following guide comes in response to the language needs that have arisen at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (Open University of Catalonia, UOC) since its founding. These needs regarding the English language have been met by the University’s Language Service. This guide provides a comprehensive review of issues with the language that could be resolved by consulting textbooks or dictionaries, but which are brought together here in one volume and linked to the texts produced at the University. This guide is also special and unique in the way it links its contents and examples to the Catalan language. It offers guidance for those problematic aspects of the language that are often found when revising or translating the texts produced at the University: academic and administrative documents, websites, opinion articles, teaching materials, emails, etc. When applying the criteria from the different sections of this guide, we always bear in mind that the original text has an author who has left their imprint and any subsequent handling of the language should ensure the highest levels of consistency in the document without losing sight of the original meaning of the text. Generally speaking, the examples herein are taken from texts that have been revised by the Language Service, and reflect the desire to bring coherency to the documents handled while being careful not to make more corrections than strictly necessary. Imma Sánchez Director, Language Service Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 12 Presentation Presentació La guia que us presentem a continuació és fruit de les necessitats lingüístiques que han sorgit a la Universitat Oberta de Catalunya (UOC) des que es va crear i que el Servei Lingüístic ha estat encarregat de satisfer adequadament pel que fa a l’anglès. D’una banda, aquesta guia és un recordatori d’algunes qüestions de llengua que, si bé es podrien resoldre consultant gramàtiques i diccionaris, recollides en un volum i relacionades amb la documentació de la Universitat donen una visió global del ventall de dubtes que poden aparèixer i, al mateix temps, fan que la guia es converteixi en un mòdul especial i singular perquè el contingut i els exemples es relacionen amb la llengua catalana. D’altra banda, és una orientació en els casos vacil·lants, que sovint es presenten a l’hora de fer les revisions i les traduccions dels textos de la Universitat: documents acadèmics i administratius, espais web, articles d’opinió, materials docents, missatges de correu electrònic, etc. A l’hora d’aplicar els criteris dels diferents apartats de la guia, sempre tenim en compte que els textos tenen un autor que hi ha posat una intenció i que qualsevol tractament lingüístic posterior ha d’intentar aportar la màxima homogeneïtat al document final mirant de no desviar-se del sentit del text original. En general, el recull d’exemples que hi hem incorporat és extret de textos que s’han revisat al Servei Lingüístic i respon a la intenció d’ajudar a unificar cada un dels textos tenint cura a no fer més correccions de les necessàries. Imma Sánchez Directora del Servei Lingüístic Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 13 Introduction Introduction Content The contents of this Practical Guide to English Usage are designed to provide support for members of the university community who need to write in English. The Guide is based on the work carried out by the Language Service over the years since the UOC’s founding to produce similar guides to aid the work of those writing in Catalan and Spanish at the University. Organization The Guide has been divided into four main sections: Spelling and punctuation, Morphology, Syntax and Style. These sections offer guidelines and examples for the proper use of the English language. They are designed to help writers with any level of competence in the language to overcome the common problems encountered with English. The Guide is not intended to be exhaustive, but to cover as many points as possible in a clear and easily understandable way. Each point has a brief introduction and examples of actual usage to guide writers. Further information The Language Service has a webpage on the UOC’s portal where you can find more resources on the Catalan and Spanish languages. The address is as follows: uoc.edu/serveilinguistic Target audience This Guide is designed, above all, for university students, faculty, researchers and staff who have to write in English. Nonetheless, it is also designed to be of use to all those who are interested in improving their level of competence in English, and to Catalan speakers in particular. Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 14 Introduction Contributors This Guide was commissioned by the UOC’s Language Service. Sections 1, 2 and 3 were written by Martin Louis Hevly, of VISCA.com, author of the five-volume Gramàtica anglesa, a reference work for Catalan-speakers interested in learning more about the English language, and section 4 by Kari Friedenson, a freelance writer, editor and translator based in Barcelona. The Language Service’s experts, Alba Corral Serramià, David Cullen, Pilar Gispert- Saüch Viader and Xavier Marzal Doménech, then contributed by editing and adapting the initial text to the university context. Key Words in bold are either key points that need to be highlighted or examples of correct use of the language, eg learning. Words and phrases that have been crossed out show erroneous use of the language, eg ours friends. The points where the English is being compared and contrasted to the Catalan are highlighted by the word CATALAN in small capitals. Catalan translations used to illustrate examples are in italics, eg punt. The following abbreviations are used in this Guide. BrE British English → AmE American English → Internal references to other sections of the Guide. Sp Spelling and punctuation → Mo Morphology → Sy Syntax → Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 15 Spelling and punctuation Spelling and punctuation This section looks at the common difficulties that writers may encounter with the spelling of words in English. These include English’s irregular separation of syllables or use of the apostrophe to indicate omissions. There are also sub-sections to highlight the differences between punctuation in English and CATALAN. 1. Syllabification (separation of syllables) The division of syllables in English is extremely complex because English is not written as it is spoken. For example, we pronounce learning /ˈləː.nɪŋ/ but we separate it learn-ing. The separation method depends on the etymology and spelling of the word. Even most native English speakers occasionally need to consult a dictionary to know definitely how a word should be separated. As is the case in CATALAN, all doubled consonants are generally separated: rub·ber, broc·coli, ped·dle, scuf·fle, smug·gle, yel·low, gram·mar, ten·nis, cop·per, cor·rect, fos·sil, glut·ton, guz·zle. The suffixes -ing and -er are almost always separated, except when following a doubled consonant. So, tub·ing, spac·ing, hold·ing, brief·ing or grudg·ing, but, run·ning, pas·sing, bet·ting, run·ner, pas·ser, bet·ter, etc. There are a few words ending in -ling and -ler for which this rule also does not apply. The most important are an·gling, crack·ling, cy·cling, dan·gling, kin·dling, sti·fling, twin·kling and wres·tling, an·gler, han·dler, knuck·ler, ram·bler, sam·pler, spar·kler, sprin·kler, tum·bler, whis·tler and wran·gler. We might also mention words ending in the suffix -ling for which, obviously, the -ing ending is not a suffix: dar·ling, duck·ling, dump·ling, earth·ling, ink·ling, sap·ling, seed·ling, sib·ling, star·ling, ster·ling. Compound words are of course separated between the words: bag·man. If you are in doubt, consult a good dictionary. Here, for example, is the entry in Webster’s Dictionary for learning showing both its syllabification and pronunciation: learn·ing (/ˈləːnɪŋ/). 2. Punctuation marks The use of punctuation marks in English and CATALAN is quite similar, though there are differences. In the following thirteen sections we will give a brief description of the use of punctuation marks in English, paying special attention to those cases in which it differs from that of CATALAN. Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 16 Spelling and punctuation 2.1. Apostrophe The most important use of the apostrophe in English is in contractions, constructions in which a letter or group of letters is elided. Contractions are nearly always used in oral English and in written English they are generally considered to give a more relaxed and informal tone to the writing; they should therefore be avoided if this is not the intention of the writer. Some common examples of contractions are: Between a pronoun and the following verb forms: am, are, is, have, has, had, will and would: I’m, she’s (she is or she has), you’ve, they’d (they had or they would) Between all auxiliary verbs except am and not: aren’t, isn’t, wasn’t, weren’t, haven’t, hasn’t, don’t, doesn’t, didn’t, can’t, couldn’t, shan’t, shouldn’t, won’t, wouldn’t, mustn’t Because the verbs is and are can be contracted with both the personal pronouns and the adverb not, negative constructions using these elements can be expressed in two ways: for example, You aren’t thinking = You’re not thinking; She’s not here = She isn’t here. In informal style, apostrophes are used to form contractions between the words how, when, where, why, who, what and that and the auxiliaries is, has, have, did, will and would. However, not all combinations are possible. The words how, when, where, why, who, what and that can all contract with is: How’s he doing? When’s the meeting? Where’s your brother? Why’s that? Who’s she? What’s going on? That’s funny. The auxiliaries have and has are generally limited to contractions with how, where, who and what; has can also be contracted with that: How’ve you been? Where’ve they gone? Who’ve they seen? What’ve we got here? Where’s he gone? Who’s fallen? What’s he done? That’s been used. The auxiliary did can be contracted with how, where, why and who: How’d (How did) you get there? Where’d they take my clothes? Why’d you lie to me? Who’d you see? The auxiliary will can be contracted with who, what and that: Who’ll know? What’ll happen? That’ll be nice. The auxiliary would can only be contracted with who: Who’d like more cake? Other common contractions include: bo’s’n (boatswain), fo’c’s’le (forecastle), ha’penny (half-penny), jack-o’-lantern (jack of the lantern), ma’am (madam), o’clock (of the clock), rock ‘n’ roll (rock and roll), will-o’-the-wisp (will of the wisp) and young’un (young one) Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 17 Spelling and punctuation Besides their use in contractions, apostrophes are also used to mark the Saxon genitive (see section Sy 1.1.) and in the plural of letters: Tom’s, Neus’s, the Virtual Library’s website. How many s’s are there in Mississippi? 2.2. Comma As is the case in CATALAN, in English the comma is used in the following contexts: To separate enumerations Examples: The assignment requires us to think, write and speak. The University’s governing team meets with students in China, Mexico, Brussels, Santo Domingo and Puerto Rico. As shown in the examples above and in line with the UOC Language Service’s recommended style, a comma is normally not used before the last element in a series, that is, before the conjunction and. An exception is made, however, if the sentence would otherwise be ambiguous: The months with the most connections are October and November, and March, April and May, coinciding with the start of the semesters. Before a coordinating conjunction Examples: Our physics teacher is receiving an award next week, and we’re having a party to celebrate it. English has very few verb forms, but their various functions often cause problems. The comma is normally omitted if the coordinated sentences are short: My name is Esteve and I work at the University. Before or after subordinate and prepositional clauses The comma is generally used when the subordinate or prepositional clause precedes the main clause, or, if following the main clause, when the main clause is long or complex: Since you’re here, you might as well help me. While I agree with your goals, I abhor your methods. If we come to the extreme, our society will come to resemble the type of society that Hobbes described. Under the new concept of education, schools are no longer places to teach, but rather places to learn. The teachers’ group has agreed to go on strike next Wednesday, even if the official union position is against it. The comma is not generally used if the subordinate or prepositional clause is short and follows the main clause, or, in the case of prepositional clauses, if the clause is very short: Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 18 Spelling and punctuation The evaluation is complex because there are different kinds of impacts. I’ll do it even if they tell me not to. In Seattle people live well. After dinner we went for a walk. In parenthetical expressions Examples: My mother, who lives in Scotland, is coming to stay with us next week. Roger, noticeably excited, began to speak. He came up and, looking him up and down, gave him a dressing down. In elisions Examples: Sweden is a grand country; and its capital, a beautiful city. Italy is famous for her composers and musicians, France, for her chefs and philosophers, and Poland, for her mathematicians and logicians. When addressing another person Examples: Hey, Joe, where are you going? Listen, honey, they’re playing our song. In interjections and asides Examples: Good grief, what a mess Your comments, if you don’t mind my saying so, reveal an astonishing ignorance of the situation. In the separation of digits It is important to keep in mind that, unlike CATALAN, English uses commas to separate figures larger than 9999: 10,000; 25,950, etc. (in CATALAN, 10.000; 25.950, etc.). Moreover, English uses the full stop to separate decimals, whereas CATALAN uses the comma. Compare: 525,429.50 (525.429,50 ). 2.3. Semicolon The semicolon is used in English exactly as it is used in CATALAN; specifically, it is used in the following three cases: To separate two closely related sentences: It was the best of times; it was the worst of times. Women’s conversation is cooperative; men’s is competitive. A semicolon is often used before adverbial conjuncts such as however, on the other hand, otherwise, etc.: Schools have considerable autonomy; however, they must meet certain objectives. We’ll fight the eviction; otherwise we’ll be homeless. Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 19 Spelling and punctuation To separate elements in a series when the elements are long or complex, or when they include other punctuation marks (especially commas): A study was done; next, an interactive consultation; and lastly, a digital terrain model was introduced. Of these three special prizes, one is for projects; one is for products and one is for services. 2.4. Full stop (AmE: period) The punctuation mark called punt in CATALAN has various names in English. When used to indicate the end of a sentence or in abbreviations, it is called full stop in BrE and period in AmE. When used as a decimal separator it is generally pronounced point (eg 6.2 is pronounced six point two). Finally, when used to separate internet protocol addresses and named web addresses, it is called dot: 69.94.110.70 is pronounced sixty-nine dot ninety-four dot one ten dot seventy; google.com is pronounced google dot com. Its use is exactly the same as in CATALAN, with the exception that CATALAN uses a comma rather than a full stop to separate decimals (eg 650.50, 650,50 ). However, there are questions of style: In BrE the full stop is normally omitted after titles and in initialisms – abbreviations pronounced as letters – (Mr, Ms, Dr, USSR, etc.), whereas it is normally included in AmE (Mr., Ms., Dr., U.S.S.R., etc.). However, the full stop is never used in acronyms (abbreviations pronounced as words, such as NATO: /ˈneɪtəʊ/). In AmE, full stops are used inside quotation marks even when they are not part of the quoted sentence; in BrE, the punctuation indicates whether the full stop forms part of the quotation. Compare: “Carefree” means “free from care or anxiety”. (BrE) “Carefree” means “free from care or anxiety.” (AmE) 2.5. Colon As is the case in CATALAN, a colon is used to indicate that what follows is a demonstration, an example or a consequence of what is referred to before; sometimes it is simply an enumeration of elements. Examples: I know one thing: I’m never going to live in a big city. Please send photocopies of the following documents: your passport, your driving licence and your birth certificate. In BrE, the first word following a colon is always in lower case, unless there is some other reason for capitalizing it. In AmE, it can also be capitalized if what follows is a complete sentence. Compare: BrE: I’ve just had some good news: my brother-in-law has been offered a job. AmE: I’ve just had some good news: My brother-in-law has been offered a job. Language Service, January 2013© FUOC 20 Spelling and punctuation Colons are also used for speech in scripts: Groucho: How many children do you have? Contestant: Sixteen. Groucho: Sixteen That’s amazing Contestant: I love my wife very much. Groucho: I love my cigar, but I take it out every once in a while. Unlike CATALAN, English usually uses a comma before quotations: I believe it was Pope who said, “To err is human, to forgive divine”. Em penso que va ser Pope que va dir: “Errar és humà, perdonar és diví”. An exception is made when the quote is in apposition, when it explains what comes before: He reminded me of Alexander Pope’s words: “To err is human, to forgive divine”. (The quote explains what Alexander Pope said.) Also unlike CATALAN, which uses the full stop, in English the colon is used to separate hours, minutes and seconds: The file was last modified at 12:35:10. Es va modificar l’arxiu per última vegada a les 12.35.10. Finally, the colon is used to separate chapters and verses in the Bible and other sacred texts: Matthew 7:12, Sura 5:18. 2.6. Ellipses (suspension dots) As in CATALAN, ellipses are used in English to indicate a pause, an incompletion, a reticence or an interruption in the sentence. They are also used to indicate that a part of a quotation has been omitted. Examples: I’m sure he’s a charming young fellow, but... Don’t count your chickens... If she’d only get better... or die. “I’m broke; can you lend me...” “Don’t even think about it” In the Times it says, “Prisoners from allied countries... were due to be released Thursday.” Unlike in CATALAN, in English ellipses should not be used as a synonym for etc. S’hi inclouen alguns tipus de noms (composició, finalitat, pertinença...). Certain nouns (composition, finality, belonging, etc.) are included. Finally, an ellipsis at the end of a sentence with no sentence following should be followed by a period (for a total of four dots). They talk a lot, but when it’s time to get down to work.... 2.7. Question mark As in CATALAN, the question mark is used in English to signal that the sentence should be pronounced in an interrogative tone of voice. It is never used initially. Language Service, January 2013