Grammar & Vocabulary
1. the whole system and structure of a language or of languages in general, usually taken as
consisting of syntax and morphology. 2. knowledge and use of the rules or principles of grammar : bad grammar. 3. a book on
grammar. 4. the basic elements of an area of knowledge or skill.
- ORIGIN from Greek grammatike tekhne ‘art of letters’, from gramma ‘letter of the alphabet’.
[pl. vocabularies] 1. the body of words used in a particular language or in a particular sphere. 2. the body
of words known to an individual person. 3. a list of words with an explanation of their meanings. 4. a range of artistic or
stylistic forms or techniques.
- ORIGIN Latin vocabularius, from vocare ‘to call’.
An understanding of Grammar and a strong vocabulary are at the core of most language studies. Without them, our understanding of both oral and written language becomes at best difficult, at worst non-existent.
This page provides assistance in developing both. Covered are grammar, its rules and structures, examples, tutorials, exercises, more. Vocabulary is also covered with examples and explanations of special types of vocabulary from individual words to abbreviations and expressions .
Punctuation and Spelling are considered more closely linked to Writing and are found on that page.
Classic English Language Texts
This section includes Australian sites and those from the United Kingdom, as we base our grammatical structures on that. Those from other English speaking countries, particularly the United States, while in many respects the same, do have a number of differences, and are listed separately.
- English User Guides
Use the menu on the left to access these. They provide an overview, explanation and examples for each. A good start is the English Grammar at a Glance page.
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AskOxford. Word Classes, Sentences, Clauses & Phrases, Prefixes & Suffixes, plus :.
- English Grammar Guide
UK. An extensive presentation of all aspects of grammar. Selecting each topic allows you to narrow the topic and find multiple examples of appropriate usage for these.
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Grammar A to Z - Oxford Dictionaries Online
‘If you find grammatical terms confusing or hard to remember, you can use this quick-reference list to help you. All the main terms are listed in alphabetical order’. Each word has an explanation, some examples, sample sentences and sometimes other information.
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Find help for the correct use of English.
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Oxford Dictionaries Online. ‘Lots of advice on good writing, helping you to avoid making some of the most common mistakes of usage’.
A huge, English site that goes into considerable detail and covers lessons, tests, common errors, grammatical terms, easily confused words, grammar checker and much more.
- Skillswise, Word Grammar
Multiple topics. You can also access Skillswise - Sentence Grammar here. From the BBC.
- Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar
Brief descriptions of terms such from abstract noun to homophone, relative pronoun to vowel. Done by an English school for parents.
- The Internet Grammar of English
‘Online course in English grammar primarily for university undergraduates. Useful to everyone who is interested in the English language’.
University Help Pages
- How Do I Improve My Grammar ?
Monash University. They also have a separate Grammar page.
- The Learning Centre
Curtin University. Use the “Better Sentences”. lessons which include grammar.
Online Grammar Exercises
Curtin Business School.
- Useful Websites for Self-Learning [Grammar]
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Woodlands Literacy Zone - Interactive English
Check this Grammar section for a range of activities and information.
- American Heritage Book of English Usage
Find grammatical rules using the search engine. Further information.
- English Education
: Grammar and Punctuation
‘In order to fully understand grammar and how to use it properly you must spend some time learning and reading about the guidelines, rules, and exceptions’. Most suited to people at secondary and tertiary levels.
- English Exercises : Grammar
Extensive listing of these.
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‘Grammar lessons, exercises, and rules for everyday use’. A blog covering multiple aspects of grammar, video grammar lessons, downloadable lessons and much more.
- English Grammar and Punctuation Guide
‘A working knowledge of basic grammar and punctuation skills will help you avoid making common mistakes. Keeping your paper free from run-ons, fragments, agreement issues and confusing words will help your ideas stand out instead of getting lost in a sea of errors’.
- English Grammar Rules & Grammar Usage
YourDictionary. ‘YourDictionary’s collection of articles on grammar rules and usage is here to help you get started on this pursuit, dig deeper, and become a true grammarian’.
- English Grammar, Tenses & Verbs
Rules plus a range of interactive exercises of various kinds.
- English Page
Select from the menu on the left. A range of grammar sections are available as is a weekly lesson, Mini-tutorials and games.
- English the Easy Way
Covers major aspects of grammar.
- Free Online English Grammar Test
‘The test consists of 40 short multiple choice questions about English Grammar. We suggest you take 10-15 minutes to complete the test’.
‘Fast, 100% free scans for your writing. It checks for all types of grammar mistakes, contextual errors, modifiers, prepositions, punctuation, quantifiers, and more’.
- Grammar Bytes
‘Find detailed definitions of common grammar terms - everything from abstract nouns to verbs’. Interactive exercises.
‘Head for the online grammar checker and enter your completed text into the text field above. Once you click the ABC button, all you need to do is sit back and let the checker do its work. It will check grammar usage and spelling and give you the final verdict’.
- Grammar Handbook
‘Explains and illustrates the basic grammatical rules concerning parts of speech, phrases, clauses, sentences and sentence elements, and common problems of usage’. Compiled by the University of Illinois in the US.
- Grammarly Handbook
‘English Grammar Rules’. Quite extensive.
- Grammar Rules
Part of a presentation on English rules from GrammarBook. Select the individual rule you want to check.
- Grammar Style and Usage
‘There are plenty of grammar do’s and don’ts and we’ll guide you through them all from Academic Writing Skills and Steps to Writing a Research Paper to some Commonly Confused Words, Examples of Misplaced Modifiers and the 100 Most Often Mispronounced Words and Phrases in English’.
University of Ottawa, Canada. ‘Welcome to HyperGrammar electronic grammar course at the University of Ottawa’s Writing Centre’. Use the Hypergrammar menu link for individual aspects.
- Kid Info Grammar Helper
‘KidInfo.com’s Grammar Helper Resource Page. Become an expert in the field of grammar by exploring the best available links to Grammar Guides and Grammar Skill Learning Activities’.
- Online Grammar Handbook
Done from the University of Minnesota. ‘A Grammar Guide : 21 Chapters of Links to Grammar, Punctuation, Writing, Research Help and more’. For tertiary level.
- Road To Grammar
A site which includes Quizzes, Extra Practice, Games, some downloads and has links to a blog, R2G2, and more. Quizzes are well presented and give feedback after choices are made.
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The Farlex Grammar Book
‘Find clear, easy-to-understand explanations of everything you need to master proper grammar, including complete English grammar rules, examples, and exceptions - plus a grammar quiz at the end of every topic to test what you’ve learned’. Also has English Punctuation help.
- The Student’s Guide to
Grammar and Punctuation
‘The following resources and tips will give you a good grasp of the basic rules of grammar and punctuation’. Quite extensive. Scribendi.com, USA.
- The Tongue Untied
‘Offers instruction in basic grammar, sentence structure and word choice, as well as rules for punctuation. The menu offers links to quizzes, curriculum and discussion’.
- 100 Most Common Words
‘Oxford English Corpus. Oxford have identified the hundred commonest English words found in writing globally. Note these are the commonest words found in writing, which will not necessarily be the same as in speech’.
- 100 Most Often Mispronounced Words And Phrases in
‘Here are the 100 most often mispronounced English words [“mispronunciation” among them]’. Be aware this is an American site and spelling can be different.
- 100 Words That All High School Graduates
What a dictionary producer and publisher believes these are.
- Banished Words List
Words and expressions people feel should be banished. See what is recommended and why.
- Behind the Name …
The Etymology and History of First Names. Where first names come from, what they mean. Names from different languages.
- Common Errors in English Usage
Concerned with usage. Considered to be more vocabulary than grammatical. Select from alphabetical grouping of words and/or word pairs.
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Commonly Confused Words
Part of the Better Writing information from Oxford Dictionaries [AskOxford]. ‘Here’s a quick-reference list of pairs of words that regularly cause people problems’.
- Confusing Words - Misused Words in English
‘Many words in English sound or look alike, causing confusion and not a few headaches. This section lists some of these words, and other troublemakers’.
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‘Learn new and unfamiliar words which you probably won’t need in everyday conversation or writing, but which are fun, interesting, and unusual’. Oxford Dictionaries.
- Language Toolbox - iTools
‘Look up words to find out what they mean, how to spell or pronounce them. Solve word games with the language toolbox full of the best vocabulary reference tools’.
- The LINGUIST List
Linguistics/Language Resources. Virtually all things linguistic - dictionaries of all descriptions, thesauri, acronym explanations, translators, more.
- The Origins and Meanings of Financial Sayings and
‘Surprisingly enough, a ‘gravy train’ was never a rush to a roast dinner, and ‘making a mint’ never freshened your breath. In and across the English language, there are many phrases and sayings that we still use every day with strange meanings - and even stranger origins’.
- The Word Detective
‘Online version of The Word Detective, a newspaper column answering readers’ questions about words and language’. Words and Language in a Humorous Vein on the Web Since 1995.
- The Word Spy
‘Devoted to recently coined words and phrases, old words that are being used in new ways, and existing words that have enjoyed a recent renaissance, new words and phrases that have appeared in newspapers, magazines, books, press releases, Web sites’.
Improve your vocabulary by working through the resources.
Tracking the Way We Use Language. ‘Presents the 86 800 most frequently used English words, ranked in order of commonness’.
- World Wide Words
Articles, topical words, turns of phrase, weird words, more. Indexes and a search engine. You can find the meaning of expressions such as Get One’s Goat and Caught Red-Handed. Interesting site, lots of information.
- Acronym Finder
Explains most acronyms you will encounter. More than 580 000 definitions supplied.
- All Acronyms
‘Free website with more than 600 000 published abbreviations.’. Multiple searches - alphabetical, specific, category popular.
- Anagram Genius
Create anagrams. Download a free copy of the software.
- Anagram Solver
‘The free online Anagram Solver will find one word anagrams and Scrabble anagrams using your letters’.
- Andy’s Anagram Solver
Type in a word and the program provides all possible anagrams.
- Internet Anagram Server
‘Discover the wisdom of anagrams. Enter the word or phrase in the form’. Anagrams supplied for the word chosen.
‘Metaphors are comparisons that show how two things that are not alike in most ways are similar in one important way’.
- Metaphor : A Practical
‘This clear and lucid primer fills an important need by providing a comprehensive account of the many new developments in the study of metaphor over the last twenty years and their impact on our understanding of language, culture, and the mind’. Google Books.
Structure, terms & categorisation, metaphor & simile, use in literature and language, use in historical linguistics, literature, references, links. Wikipedia.
- Metaphor Examples
‘Each link points to a different collection of metaphors found on this site. For example, metaphors from cooking or farming. Essays and lessons on metaphors’.
‘A big list of metaphors and what they mean’.
- Using Metaphors in Creative Writing
Purdue Online Writing Lab. What a metaphor is, related terms, why use them, creative ways to use them, examples.
Other Vocabulary Specialities
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‘There are several kinds of abbreviation : the way an abbreviation is written usually depends on the category to which it belongs. Click on the links to find out more : shortenings, contractions, initialisms and acronyms’.
What it means, use in poetry, other writing forms.
‘Heteronyms are words that are spelled identically but have different meanings when pronounced differently. For example : Lead, pronounced LEED, means to guide. However, lead, pronounced LED, means a metallic element’.
- Heteronyms [Homographs]
‘Heteronyms [Homographs] are words that are spelt the same but when pronounced differently, they mean different thing’.
- Nym Words - Hereronyms
‘A pair [or group] of heteronyms are words that have the same spelling [they are homographs] but different pronunciation [they are heterophones] and also different meanings’. Talks about subsets of these such as Capitonyms.
- Nym Words
‘Don’t know your acronyms from your antonyms, your aptronyms from your autonyms ? Confused about what tautonyms and toponyms are ? We guide you through explanations of each term, with helpful examples’. Links to anagrams, palindromes, spoonerisms, oxymorons, malaproprisms, more.
Hundreds of oxymorons listed.
- Jim Kalb’s Palindrome Connection
‘Lists, links and anagrams too !’
- Palindrome List
‘A word, phrase, number, or other sequence of symbols or elements, whose meaning may be interpreted the same way in either forward or reverse direction’.
‘The web’s most comprehensive synonyms resource. Simply type a word in the search box and click the Search button. A list of synonyms and antonyms for the different word senses will be returned followed with images and translation options’.
Princeton University. Enter a word to find its homonym, antonym, synonym, etc..
Special Expressions in Language
- Cliché Finder
‘Enter any words in the form, and this search engine will return any clichés which use that phrase’.
Claimed to be the biggest database of clichés on the internet. Also has euphemisms and figures of speech.
- Idioms 4 You
Idiom of The Day, what they are, how to find idioms, Ask The teacher, why they are important, more.
Extensive alphabetical listing, with explanations.
- Idioms, Slang, Colloquialisms, Proverbs, …
Introduction, examples, MP3 audio files, more.
- The Idiom Connection
Search alphabetically or by topic.
- Phrases, Expressions & Sayings
‘Have you ever wondered where some of the phrases, clichés, expressions & sayings used in everyday language come from ?’.
- The Phrase Finder
Find ‘the meanings and origins of thousands of English sayings, phrases, idioms and expressions’, use The Phrase Thesaurus as a writer resource, get Famous Last Words and much more.
- Tongue Twisters
2 000+ entries in over 90 languages.
- Tongue Twisters [British Council]
‘It’s very difficult to say tongue twisters in English so don’t worry if you can’t do it very well at first, just have fun’.
- Tongue Twisters
A mix of tongue twisters [and jokes] suited to children.