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4 votes

Can someone share with me an article that studies the decline of by-phrases in the passive?

This thesis studies the history of passives and as part of the study looks at the instance of by-phrases, in the journal American journal of botany, grouping articles into three historical clusters – ...
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1 vote

When does language "evolve" and when is it just wrong grammar?

The question (as well as the existing answers) is based on a confusion of categories: wrong is a normative (prescriptive) category, while evolving is an empiric (descriptive) category. Those ...
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4 votes

What are some rules that native speakers instinctively know about English that non-native speakers usually don't?

The countability of nouns and the transitivity of verbs are among the things dictionaries of English aimed at learners always make note of while native-speaker dictionaries do so only occasionally. It'...
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3 votes

What are some rules that native speakers instinctively know about English that non-native speakers usually don't?

Instinct doesn't play a role in human language, instead native speakers have automatic unconscious knowledge of a cognitive system ("the rules") that allow them to understand and produce ...
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