Over the summer I attended a New Testament Greek class. It’s been great fun to be geeky about Greeky grammar with like-minded individuals. Of the eight of us, there were quite a few languages represented. My chum has a Polish background, there was someone who had studied Hebrew, another had some Latin and someone else had dabbled in a little Arabic. In the last lesson yesterday, our tutor, an enterprising Oxford Theology undergraduate, let us loose on translating verses from the Bible. In pairs, we puzzled out all the elements of grammar she had taught us; tenses, genders, cases, exceptions to the rules and so we creaked our way through the actual text rather than the practice sentences that had been used to demonstrate the point we had been learning.
Grammar provides the scaffolding for building sentences. English grammar has its pitfalls – and because I hear so many mistakes made in the British media these days – I am going to write a series of short posts on correct usage. Shockingly, basic mistakes are not only made in speech when one might be forgiven for speaking quickly or forgetting what one has said at the beginning of a long sentence, I see these mistakes in print, too.
The first post to be published shortly will be on when to use ‘I’ and ‘me’.
I know, I know. It seems elementary, dear Watson, but clearly not so simple because so many people get it so wrong. So frequently, in fact, that I cannot stay silent on the subject any longer.