Ever evolving language

Lots of fun on the BBC on Thursday morning with pronunciation. Unlikely you think? But pronunciation is a highly partisan sport.

If you say “misschivus” you’re likely to feel quite strongly about those who say misscheevus.

I was particularly interested by something that John Wells, a professor of phonetics who is researching our changing habits, said: “There’s no real way of determining what is correct except what is generally approved of.”

It’s not exactly the same with the written word, but it’s not far off.  Meanings change over time, as we’ve discussed before on this blog.

Even some rules of grammar change. My first editor was adamantly opposed to the use of split infinitives.  For those of you who are unfamiliar with the beast, “to boldly go” is a guilty party because boldly splits “to go”.

Now no one cares much about split infinitives.

Which grammar rules are you ignoring these days? (For the ones you can’t afford to miss, check out Top 20 grammar mistakes and how to fix them).

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