Thursday, October 4, 2007

Don't Forget the Verb!

Sorry for the very late post! I was out all day.

While driving home one day, I saw this sign on EDSA: "Provincial Buses Prohibited on Yellow Lane." This sign shows poor grammar because it omits the verb "are" and the article "the." The proper grammar for this is "Provincial buses are prohibited on the yellow lane. I would like to concentrate on the verb "are" in this post (see my previous post on "the").

"Are" is the plural version of the verb "be." Sadly, the verb "be" is often omitted, although I don't know why. "Be" is a simple verb meaning "to exist." The buses meant by the sign exist; therefore, the verb must be included. Think about it this way: you do not say, "The buses fast." Instead, you say, "The buses are fast."

I understand that signs can take short cuts with the English language but it's always best to be conscious of correct English.

I hope you are well.

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