Are You a Grammarian?

I’m going to go in a different direction here with my usual pithy and challenging brain teasers.

In today’s challenge, answer the following 7 Grammatical Questions correctly.

And if you do, you will be a Grammarian!

1. Which of these sayings is using the correct pronoun?

  • This is I, Hamlet the Dane!
  • It ain’t me, babe.

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It ain’t me, babe. – This is correct because me is an object pronoun (It is the subject).

2. Which of these is grammatically incorrect?

  • Different to
  • Different from
  • Different than

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Different than – This is the correct answer; however, some grammarians also say Different to is also grammatically incorrect. Therefore, I’m giving credit for both.

3. Which is these is correct?

  • The Californian Poppy is the state flower.
  • The California Poppy is the state flower.

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The California Poppy is the state flower. – This is the correct answer, probably because the whole noun is California Poppy. Californian is an adjective.

4. Which is ungrammatical?

  • Telephone
  • Television

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Television – This is the correct answer because…well, I don’t really know.

The word television most likely comes from the Greek tele meaning distant and visio meaning sight.

Why is that ungrammatical? I can’t really say. Probably because it was shortened down to TV so people might assume that it’s two words.

5. What is the error in the popular Star Trek overture: To seek out new life and new civilizations. To boldly go where no man has gone before.

  • Fractured infinitive particle
  • Wrong use of a determiner
  • They are both subjunctive clauses

Click for Answer

Fractured infinitive particle – This is pretty straight forward. An infinitive is a verb like to run; however, when you split it like to boldly go… that is poor grammar. Captain Kirk should be saying, “To go boldly where man has gone before.” But when does Shatner ever say anything that is conventional? LOL!

6. Which of these is a grammatically incorrect phrase?

  • A book well worth the read
  • A path well worth the walk
  • A meal well worth the eat

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A meal well worth the eatEat is a verb, read and walk are nouns. You cannot use the word eat as a noun.

7. Why isn’t it Bill’s and Ted’s Excellent Adventure?

  • Only Ted had the adventure
  • It’s a compound possession—only one apostrophe is needed.

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It’s a compound possession—only one apostrophe is needed. – This one is a bit trickier because we use compound possessions in our daily communications all the time. E.g. I really loved Jim and Kathleen’s panel discussion on executive vision for the company.

It gets even more complicated when you use pronouns as compound possessions. E.g. My wife’s and my new car really rocks!

There you have it!

Did you get 7 out of 7?

If so, then you are a Grammarian!

If not, then I highly suggest you read this book! LOL!