12 December 2011

Frighteningly pedantic

Oh yes, adverbs: pesky little fellows.  Avoid if at all possible.  The Telegraph reports (apparently):

Officials at the Department for Transport have produced a 1,500-word report which details ministers' pet grammatical hates in remarkable detail.
The guidance sent to civil servants and MPs lists the particular linguistic errors which infuriate Justine Greening, the Transport Secretary, and her fellow transport ministers.

The five-page document indicates that the member for Putney, Roehampton and Southfields, 42, does not approve of the use of adverbs or abbreviations in official documents. 

When I was a young nipper, I was taught that an adverb modifies the verb.  But that was just one of those things that teachers say.

Football commentators seem to avoid adverbs as if they had a bad smell.  So we get "Mr X played brilliant".

As for me, I can live with a few adverbs.  But then I don't have to write submissions to Ms Greening ...

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