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Daily Archives: August 8, 2019

Compared “to” or Compared “with”?

A reader writing a report emailed me to ask: Should I write “compared to previous years” or “compared with previous years” or doesn’t it matter? Here is what three popular handbooks have to say on the matter. Strunk and White (The Elements of Style) To compare to is to point out or …

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Fly, Flew, (has) Flown—-Flied?

Reader Michelle asks if the past tense of the verb to fly can ever be flied. Your column on  wake etc. reminded me of a verb form that I haven’t been able to figure out – fly, flew and flied.  I know that the past simple of fly is flew.  But is it …

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Connotations of 35 Words for Funny People

Fun and folly are endemic elements of human nature, and the English language abounds with words to label people who inspire laughter, whether light-hearted or lacerating and whether intentional or otherwise. Here are terms describing funny and/or foolish individuals or characters. 1. Antic: now mostly confined to refer in plural noun …

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