Common errors – miscellaneous
May 3rd, 2012 in Common Mistakes
Incorrect: My hairs are grey.
Correct: My hair is grey.
Hair is an uncountable noun in English and as such it does not have a plural form.
Incorrect: I availed of this opportunity.
Correct: I availed myself of this opportunity.
Incorrect: I enjoyed during the holidays.
Correct: I enjoyed myself during the holidays.
To talk about having a good time, we use enjoy yourself, enjoy myself etc.
Incorrect: He is guilty, isn’t it?
Correct: He is guilty, isn’t he?
Incorrect: The gold is a precious metal.
Correct: Gold is a precious metal.
Material nouns are used without articles.
Incorrect: It is raining for four hours.
Correct: It has been raining for four hours.
To talk about an event that started in the past and has been continuing up to the present, we use a present perfect continuous tense.
Incorrect: Work hard lest you may fail.
Correct: Work hard lest you should fail.
The only auxiliary verb that can be used after lest is should.
Incorrect: Please describe us your wife.
Correct: Please describe your wife to us.
Incorrect: Could you suggest me a good dentist?
Correct: Could you suggest a good dentist to me?
The verbs explain, suggest and describe cannot be used with the structure indirect object + direct object.
Incorrect: He is cleverest of the four brothers.
Correct: He is the cleverest of the four brothers.
We use the article the with superlative adjectives.
Incorrect: Choose the best of the two options.
Correct: Choose the better of the two options.
When a group has just two members, we use the comparative instead of the superlative.