Blog Index and Archives

Explore my explanations of commonly confused words, the parts of speech and punctuation in categories by using the drop-down menu on the ‘Blog Index’ tab in the menu at the top of the page, or click on a specific link in the more detailed Index below. Indexing is one of the services I offer; if you would like to talk to me about an indexing project, just contact me!

Index to blog topics

abbreviations: full stops with

abstract nouns

acronyms: full stops with

adjectives: hyphens in


agreement: collective nouns

and: and/or; at start of sentence; comma before

ancient names: use of apostrophes with

animals: use who or that for

antecedents: of pronouns; of reflexive pronouns

apostrophes: and ancient names; for contractions; in place names; season’s greetings; use of; when needed; with plurals

appostion: commas and

aspect, of verbs

Austen, Jane

auxiliaries: do as auxiliary; to form tense and aspect

Black Friday

but: at start of sentence

capital letters: in dot-point lists; with proper nouns

catenative verbs



clauses: defining and non-defining, use of relative pronouns with; restrictive and non-restrictive, use of relative pronouns with


commas: after introductory phrase; costly mistake in usage; for apposition; parenthetical; serial; vocative; where not to use; with direct speech

compound words: hyphens in

concrete nouns

conditional verbs

contractions: apostrophes with; it’s; see also abbreviations



count nouns

defining clauses

direct speech: commas and; full stop or question mark with

do: as auxiliary verb

dot-point list: punctuation of and capital letters in



evolution of language: pronouns

fewer, use of,

full stops: versus question mark; with abbreviations; with acronyms and measurements







forward slashes

gender-neutral language: pronouns


good writing: avoiding abstract nouns; avoiding contractions; nouns as verbs; pronouns and antecedents; that or which; use of colons; use of semicolons; verbs as nouns; who or whom

grammar checker (Microsoft Word tool): asks whether to use that or which; does not recognise when to use who or that; highlights reflexive pronoun use

he or she: gender-neutral third-person singular pronoun





its or it’s: explained

less, use of,

lists: punctuation of and capital letters in

mass nouns

measurements: abbreviated units, full stops with

Microsoft Word (grammar checker): asks whether to use that or which; does not recognise when to use who or that; highlights reflexive pronoun use


MS Word, see Microsoft Word

modal verbs: contractions using

negatives: contractions; use of do to form

non-defining clauses

non-restrictive clauses

nouns: agreement with verb; as verbs; collective; common; count; introduction; mass; proper; unit

objects (grammatical): whom

participles: gerunds; to form tense and aspect

parts of speech: introduction

parenthetical commas: costly mistake with; explained; further examples

people: singular gender-neutral pronoun issue; pronoun to use for (that or who)

personal pronouns: gender-neutral third-person singular problem; introduction; order of

place names: apostrophes in; full stops with abbreviated forms

politeness, shown in writing: through order of pronouns

possessive pronouns: introduction; its

prepositions: whom after



pronouns: apostrophes with; and their antecdents; contractions of; gender-neutral third-person singular; he or she; introduction; its or it’s; order (of personal pronouns); reflexive pronouns;relative pronouns (that or which); relative pronouns (who or whom); rules about usage (antecedents); rules about usage (that or which); rules about usage (whom)

proper nouns


question marks: or full stop for direct speech

questions: do to form; interrogative pronouns to form; question mark or full stop with



reflexive pronouns

relative pronouns: that or which; that or who; who or whom

respect, shown in writing: through order of pronouns

restrictive clauses

‘rules’ of grammar: and or but at start of sentence; pronouns and antecedents; split infinitives; that or which; that or who; who or whom

season’s greetings


serial commas

Shakespeare, William: gender-neutral pronoun use




subjects (grammatical): reflexive pronouns and; who as

tense, of verbs

that or which: which one to use

they: use as gender-neutral singular pronoun

titles: as part of proper noun; commas with

unit nouns

verbs: as nouns; chains of; do; infinitives; introduction; modals; quasimodals; tense

vocative commas

who or whom

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