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Malcolm Pemberton:

Some Easter fun :-)

Originally posted on Malcolm's English Pages:

I have adapted this from a longer text which has been flying around the Web for years (author unknown). It is, of course, only a joke, but it does, however, raise more serious questions about reforming the way in which English words are spelled. British and American dictionaries feature many different spelling variations, most of which are not based on pronunciation differences, but on who got to write the dictionary.

First though, here is the comic side of things:
The European Commission has just announced an agreement whereby English will be the official language of the European Union rather than German, which was the other possibility. As part of the negotiations, the British Government conceded that English spelling had some room for improvement and has accepted a 5-year phase-in plan that would become known as “Euro-English”.

In the first year, “s” will replace the soft “c”. Sertainly, this will make…

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Happy Easter Everybody!

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Here’s wishing you a really Happy Easter, wherever you may be. There’s lots of Easter-traffic chaos on the British roads (so I hope you’re not in it), but the weather here in Devon was genuine T-shirt, shorts and summer frocks today. Lovin’ it!

Those of you in Finland will need to stock up on sweets for the traditional invasion of witches …

Brush up your business English!

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The Many Ways to Use ‘Get’

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‘Get’ is an amazingly flexible word in English, particularly in spoken language. ‘Get’ is often used with prepositions to replace more complex words.  However, it is a good idea to learn these fancier words, especially for your emails and reports. Let’s take a look at the wonderful world of ‘get’ – you will be amazed!

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How to Use Illude, Allude and Elude

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These three words look rather similar, but have very different meanings.

An optical illusion tricks the eye.

An optical illusion tricks the eye.

To illude is to cheat or deceive. As a verb it is not often used, but here is an example: the confidence trickster (con artist) illuded the old man into investing his savings in the scam. As a noun it is very common. An illusion is an act or art work that cheats the eyes or logic into thinking something has happened, or just is. An illusionist (sometimes called a magician) is a stage artist who apparently pulls rabbits out of empty hats and saws women in half. I’m sure you have also seen those pavement drawings on the Internet where the artist, with his chalks, has created the illusion that there is a huge hole in the ground.

To allude is to refer to somebody who is known, or something which has happened, for example in history, to illustrate your point and perhaps to avoid saying something directly. For example:
He alluded to his poor beginnings when he said, “I was born in Manchester just after the war.”
“I’m not Bill Gates, you know.” This means I am not rich.
“He’s a real Scrooge.” He doesn’t like spending money and doesn’t care about other people.
It is, of course, necessary for the listener or reader to know the person or event being referred to, or the allusion won’t work.

To elude means to avoid or evade something. It is a word used more in literature and news than in speech. For example:
The thief managed to elude the police by hiding in a rubbish skip.
The solution to the problem continues to elude researchers.
The fox eluded capture by squeezing through a tiny hole in the fence.

20,000 hits! Thank you everybody!

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Malcolm’s English pages just passed 20,000 hits. It’s great to know how many people are out there reading my stuff. Thank you so much everybody :-)

Look good out there!

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Contact me at malcolm.pemberton@gmail.com

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