English Essay Writing

What   is   an Essay? An essay is a short composition treating of a particular subject in a methodical and orderly manner. Etymologically, it means an attempt to express one’s mind about a given subject-matter. Dr. Johnson, the famous literary essayist, defines it as “a loose sally of mind, an irregular and disorderly composition.” Walker thinks of it as a short, incomplete and unsystematic   composition. Bacon defines it as “’dispersed   meditations”. An essay may be written on any topic.    It may be whimsical or logical, auto­biographical or satirical, highly imaginative or playful.

Kinds of Essays

Essays are generally divided into six classes, viz :

(a)        Narrative      
(b)        Descriptive
(c)         Reflective
(d)        Expository
(e)        Argumentative
(f)      Imaginative.
This division is useful, so long as it is remembered these are not the only divisions, and that there are essays which include the characteristics of more than one class example, a narrative essay may contain a good deal of description, and a descriptive essay may contain in it much of reflection.
Narrative Essays: A Narrative Essay consists of the narration of some event, or series of events. Narrative composition may be on subjects as the following.
(i)    Incidents  (e.g.   a    street    quarrel, a festival, a marriage).
(ii)   All accident   or   disaster of Nature (e.g. a fire, a river in flood, etc.)
(iii)  A journey or voyage
(iv)  A Trip or Walk
(v)    Biographies (e.g., life   of Quaid-e-Azam or Allama Iqbal)
(vi)  A Real or Imaginary Story.
Descriptive Essay: 
A Descriptive Essay may consist of description of some place or thing. Descriptive composition may treat of such subject as the following:
(i)      Animals, plants, metals, etc. (such as the lion, the cow, iron, gold).
(ii)      Towns, buildings etc., of all kinds (such as my city, museums, bridges).
(iii)      Aspects   and   phenomena   of  Nature  (such   as  the monsoon, a waterfall, a moonlit night)
(iv)    Manufactured articles (motor cars, radio, television).
 (v)    Character Sketches.
             Description of Favourite Books.
Reflective Essays: 
A Reflective Essay consists of reflective upon some topic, which is generally of an abstract nature reflective composition may be on such subjects as the follow-:
(i)        Habits, feelings, and capacities (such as thrift, discipline, patriotism).
(ii)       Social, political, and domestic topics (such as riches and poverty, 
                        education, democracy, and co-operative system).
(iii)      Philosophical subjects (such as morality, righteousness, virtue, the
                   meaning and purpose of life).
(iv)      Religious and theological topics (such as the power of prayer, the
Expository Essays:       
An Expository Essay consists of the position or explanation of some subjects. Subjects for Expository essays may be:
1.      Institution, industries, occupations (e.g. Parliament, press, cottage
2.      industries, the sugar industry, garden­ing, photography, electroplating, etc).
3.      Scientific topics (e.g. wireless, the telephone, the radio, astronomy, etc.)
4.      Literary topics (e.g. the nature of poetry, The apprecia­tion of a novel or play, The appreci-ation of an author, the Romantic movement).
5.      Quotations or Sayings (e.g., ‘The child is father of the man’. ‘Time is money,’ ‘Honesty is the best policy.’
Argumentative Essays:
In an Argumentative Essay the writer is required to give his arguments for and against the proposition. The topics for argumentative essays are:
(i)     Who is more useful   to   the   country—the   soldier or the teacher?
(ii)    Who is more useful to the country-the soldier or the teacher?
(iii)   Is war justifiable?
Imaginative Essays:
In an imaginative Essay the writer has full scope for his imagination. In writing such an essay, he has to place himself in a position of which he has had no actual experience. The topics for imaginative composition are:
(i)    If I were the Prime Minister,
(ii)    The Autobiography of a Horse
(iii)  The Adventures of a Rupee.
How to write an Essay?  
The   following   hints   will   be found useful in writing an essay:
1.      Devote at least ten minutes to understanding the subject. Plan out the essay first.
2.      Think over it, until ideas about it come into your mind. Jot down the various points on a piece of paper.
3.      Set down the plan. Arrange and group your ideas under different heads.  Reject the points that are unsuit­able.
4.      Arrange these heads in bare outline.
5.      Collect material to fit your ideas and fill out your
6.      Now begin to write the essay, dividing it into paragraphs. Try to make every paragraph as clear, well-ordered, and complete as possible. Remember that a paragraph is a small essay, and that you cannot write a good essay unless you can write a good paragraph which is in itself a compact whole. Further, all these paragraphs must be linked up in such a way as to make of he essay an organic unity.
7.      The essay should consist of introduction, body and conclusion. Conclusion.
8.      Make the introduction effective.
9.      Keep the parts of the essay in proper proportion. Do not fill the body of the essay with irrelevant matter.
10. Make the conclusion effective and satisfying. A common-place ending is no good.
8.      Suit your style to the subject. Be simple as well as sincere in what you write. Be clear as well as brief. Be interesting as well as to the point. Do not write what you yourself don’t understand. Make your sentences short. Avoid writing long and involved sentences. Make your essay lively and readable.
9.      Resist all temptation to wander from the point. There is no room for the introduction of irrelevant matter in a short essay.
Style in Writing
You must try to write the whole essay in a simple, direct and forceful style. To acquire this you must pay attention to the following point: –
1.       Beware of using a word or phrase the meaning and application of which you do not thoroughly understand. Many writers are fond of using what they ‘call fine words’, whose meaning they do not know. The use of such words gives rise to foolish mistakes.
2.      Beware of using too many adjectives. Some people have a mistaken notion that the abundant use of superlatives makes their remarks more forceful.
3.      Rather the use of too many adjectives spoils the total effect of the essay.
4.      Do not try to air your knowledge by using a long word or phrase where a shorter and simpler one would express the meaning more effectively.
5.       Avoid the use of unnecessary words. In revising your essay find out useless repetitions and superfluous expressions, and strike them out mercilessly.
6.      Take pains to select such words and phrases as exactly express the ideas you have in mind. Frame your sentences in such a way that they appear quite clear and forceful.
7.      Let your words suit the sense, and your style suits the subject matter. In other words, the words and phrases should be so chosen and arranged as to fit in the subject under discussion. A serious subject should not be treated in a light or humorous style nor should a bright and humorous subject be treated in a heavy style.
8.      Stick to the main point of the essay as far as possible. See that your thoughts do not wander away from the main theme of your essay. Thus, for instance, if you are asked to write an essay on “Country life”, you should avoid unnecessarily dwelling at length upon the various points connected with “town life.”
9.      Be clear in what you write. Do not leave the other people to guess your meaning. Search for the clearest way of expressing each idea. Prefer the concrete word to the abstract.
10.   Be direct: use short sentences in preference to long and involved ones.
11.   Be simple: don’t attempt to write in a flowery langu­age. Avoid the use of metaphors. Shun gaudy phrases and bombastic words. Use simple words and constructions.
12.   Be varied: don’t make every sentence of the same length and of the same construction. Don’t overwork words.
13.   Be natural: do not try to imitate another’s style. Be yourself. Say things in your own way.

English Translation Skills

English Translation Skills
            Translation is an art, and, like all other arts, it is difficult to master, for it seeks to convey the exact meaning of what is expressed in one language into another. Its very nature, therefore, requires an intimate knowledge of both the languages concerned – a requisition not easily to be met with. Knowledge is here intended to imply capacity to comprehend and express. We must first be able to understand exactly what is intended to be conveyed, and then to express the very same thought in the other language. So the whole art of translation lies in expressing exactly and precisely without either omitting thought from the original passage or adding any unnecessary or superfluous idea to it, the sense and meaning of the Vernacular passage in simple, idiomatic English.

Some Important Hints:
            Study carefully the following hints:
(1)                First read the vernacular passage carefully, marking all such words or phrases as you do not clearly understand. Remember that words do not have a fixed meaning. They have more than one meaning, and you have to find out exactly the meaning intended by the writer. Then and then only will you be able to translate exactly into English the main thought of the writer given in the vernacular passage.
(2)                Now you are in a position to translate the vernacular passage into English. In translating try to express as a whole the sense of the vernacular passage into English, employing exact English equivalents for vernacular words, phrases and idioms.
(3)                But avoid literal translation. You are never required to give a word-for-word translation. If you do so, you will not be able to convey exactly the meaning and intention of the writer. We do not think or speak in words: we think and speak in sentences. Translate a sentence as a whole; do not translate words.
(4)                But if too literal and translation is to be avoided, at the same time you should guard yourself against too free a translation An excessively free translation sometimes lacks the essential thought without which the whole translation looks absurd.
(5)                Do not use either unfamiliar or archaic words. Choose only such words as you know well. The use of bombastic, high-sounding words, and of foreign words and terms does not in any way add to the beauty of translation.
(6)                Try to avoid the use of many words when a single word, rightly chosen, will do. The whole art of translation lies in the careful choice of exact words.
(7)                If a sentence is inconveniently long or bears an involved construction, break it up in your mind in three or four shorter sentences, and then translate them into English but see that in doing so you have not sacrificed or mutilated the sense of the original.
(8)                Lastly, see that your English translation reads like a continuous piece of prose, written in simple, idiomatic English. It should give exactly the same impression as the vernacular passage.
Test of a Good Translation
            What are the tests of a good translation? Your translation is a success if:
1.                   It is a faithful translation of the original into English.
2.                   It conveys exactly the sense and meaning of the original.
3.                   It reproduces all the details, omitting nothing.
4.                   It is a translation as a whole.
5.                   It is a continuous piece of good English.
6.                   Its total impression is the same as that of the original.

English Power Writing and Speaking

English Power Writing and Speaking
            A figure of speech is a deviation from the ordinary use of words. It is used to emphasise ‘or increase the effectiveness of words in a sentence. For example, if we say, ‘There are four pillars to the verandah.’ here the word pillars is used in its ordinary sense. But when we say, an independent judiciary is a pillar of Pakistani democracy, here pillar is used in figurative sense. By using these figures of speech, you can add power to your English writing and speaking.
            Here is a simple analysis of some of the important figures of speech commonly used:

It is a figure of comparison in which two dissimilar things belonging to two different planes are compared. The simile is usually introduced by such words as: like as, so, such as, just as.
1.          She sways like a flower in the wind of our sing.
2.          Errors, like straws, upon the surface flow.
3.          So like a shattered column lay the king.                            
4.          O, my love is like a red, red rose.
5.          Your face is as a book where man may read strange letters.
A metaphor is an implied simile without using words such as: tike, as, just as, and so on. In it, the two objects of completely different orders are identified.
  1. Our eldest son is the star of the family.
  2. The camel is the ship of the desert.
  3. The soldier was a lion in the battlefield.
  4. Life is a tale.
  5. Revenge is a wild justice.
In personification, inanimate (lifeless) objects and abstract notions are spoken of as having life and intelligence.
1.       Death lays its icy hand on kings.
2.       But patience, to prevent that murmur, soon replies.
3.       The sea that bares her bosom to the moon.
4.       Let no ambition mock their useful toil.
5.       Authority forgets a dying king.
6.       Melancholy marked him for her own.
By this figure the speaker addresses some inanimate things or some abstract ideas as if it were a living person. It therefore includes personification:
1.       Frailty, thy name is woman!
2.       O Death! Where is thy sting?
3.       O World! O Life! O Time!
4.       Sail on, O Union, strong and great!
5.       Ethereal minstrel! pilgrim of sky!
This consists in the repetition of the same sound or syllable at the beginning of two or more words:
1.       Glittering through the gloomy glads.
2.       Full fathom five thy father lies.
3.       A load of learning limbering in his head.
4.       A strong man struggling with the storms of fate.
5.       Wilful waste makes woeful want.
6.       Rum seize thee, ruthless king.
7.       An Austrian- army awfully arrayed.
8.       A reeling road, rambles round the shine.
In hyperbole a statement is made emphatic by overstatement. Such language is not meant to be taken literally:
1.       She shed an ocean of tears.
2.       Belinda smiled, and all the world was gay.
3.       I loved Ophelia; forty thousand brothers could not make up their sum.
4.       The sky shrunk upward with unusual dread.
5.       Ten thousands saw I at a glance.
6.       All the perfumes of Arabia will not sweeten this little hand.
            It is a figure of speech which combines two seemingly contradictory elements:
1.       He is regularly irregular.
2.       This is like a living death.
3.       And having nothing, he had all.
4.       Our sweatest songs are those that tell of saddest thoughts.
5.       His honour rooted in dishonour stood.
6.       The kind cruelty of the surgeon’s knife.
By this figure of speech we speak in gentle and favourable terms of some person, object, or event which is ordinarily seen in less pleasing light.
  1. He was gathered to his forefathers (= he died).
  2. He was Her Majesty’s guest (= in prison) for two years.
  3. Discord fell on the music of his soul.
  4. He were no less a loving soul although he was so broken-hearted.
            This is a Greek word signifying a ladder. This figure raises the sense by successive steps to what is more and more important and impressive.
  1. I came. I saw. I conquered.
  2. I laugh, I run, I leap, I sing. I dance for joy.
  3. I thought. I built it. I lived here forever.
  4. We planned, we laboured, we succeeded in our mission.
  5. They moved, they stopped their rivals, and they won the match.
This is just opposite to climax and signifies a ludicrous descent form the higher to lower
  1. He lost his wife, his daughter, his son and his watch.
  2. Here thou great Anna! Whom three realms obey. Dost sometimes counsel take — and sometimes tea.
A paradox is a statement which, though outwardly contradictory, is perhaps really well founded:
  1. There is no one so poor as a wealthy miser.
  2. There is plenty in poverty.
  3. He that loses his life shall save it.
This consists in a play on the various meanings of a word and is mostly used in humorous sense:
  1. Is life worth living? That depends on the liver.
  2. Yes, the leopard changes its spots, whenever it does from one spot to another.
  3. An ambassador is a man who lies abroad for the good of his country.
Sometimes, a statement is made more emphatic by the use of words denoting the opposite of what is really meant. This is called irony.
  1. She speaks ironically other unnatural sisters as “the jewels of our father.”
  2. ­Yet Brutus says he is ambitious, and Brutus is an honourable man.
When words echo their sense through their sound effect we have the Figure of onomatopoeia.
  1. And beauty born of murmuring sound.
  2. I heard the water lapping on the crag.
  3. The murmurous haunt of flies on summer eves.
  4. The moan of doves in immemorial elms.
  5. The curfew lolls the knell of parting day.
  6. Grunt, grunt goes the hog.
  7. Our echoes roll from soul to soul.
This means the setting of one thing against another. This figure of speech consists in an explicit statement of an implied contrast.
  1. Man proposes. God disposes.
  2. To err is human, to forgive divine.
  3. Speech is silver, but silence is golden.
  4. He can bribe but he cannot seduce, he cannot deceive.
  5. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.
The language of epigram must be marked by wit and brevity.
  1. We all have sufficient strength to endure the misfortunes of others.
  2. Experience keeps a dear school, but fools will learn in no other.
  3. Hypocrisy is the homage vice pays to virtue.
  4. Treason doth never prosper; what is the reason?
Why, if it prosper; none dare call it treason.

English Punctuation and Capitals

English Punctuations and use of Capitals
            Punctuation is the art of using proper stops or marks in writings, so as to make the meaning clear and easily understood. The following are the chief marks of punctuation.
  1. The full stop                                         [.]
  2. The comma                                          [,]
  3. The semi colon                                     [;]
  4. The colon                                             [:]
  5. The hyphen                                          [-]
  6. The dash                                              [–]
  7. The question mark                              [?]
  8. The exclamation mark                        [!]
  9. The quotation marks                         [“  ”]
  10. The apostrophe                                    [‘]
1.         The Full Stop [.]
(i)         The full-stop marks the end of a sentence which is neither interrogative nor exclamatory; as,
                        1.         Always work hard.
                        2.         Slow and steady wins the race.
(ii).       The full stop is used at the end of abbreviations and initials; as,
                        B.A.      (Bachelor of Arts)
                        P.T.O. (Please turn over)
                        M.A.    (Master of Arts)
(iii)       Three full stops are inserted in the place of material omitted from a quotation.
            If a man holds up a mirror to your nature and shows that .it needs washing… go for soap and water.
(a)          The full-stop is not used after the abbreviations of compound    names of international organisations and government agencies; as,
            UNO, UNESCO, WAPDA        
(b)          (b) Sometimes the full-stop is not placed after Mr, Mrs, Dr
(c)          The full-stop is not used after the title of books, magazines, and articles; as,
                        A book of English prose
                        Devil’s disciple
2.         The Comma             [,]
            The comma is the shortest pause. It is used;
i.              To separate two or more parts of speech when they come together, as,
         1.         Dogs, horses and camels are faithful animals.
         2.         Eat, drink and be merry.
3.         The country needs honest, intelligent, obedient and healthy young       men.
ii.             To separate words or phrases in apposition; as,
                     Allama Iqbal, the poet of the east.
               Quaid-e-Azam, the founder of Pakistan.
iii.          To separate the nominative of address; as,
         Boys, it is time to work hard.
iv.           To separate pairs of words and phnises; as,
         1.         Rich and poor, high and low, young and old, all attended         the       lecture.
         2.         Islam looks alike rich and poor, men and women, high and       low, weak and strong.
v.             After an absolute construction; as,
         1.         Having completed their work, the labourers went home.
2.         Having taken his meal, he set to work.
vi.           To separate words, phrases, or clauses inserted into the body of a sentence; as,
            1.         The man, who was there, is my friend.
            2.         He is, today, a great man.
            3.         His condition, to-tell you the truth, is very pitiable.      
vii.          Before and after a participle phrase; as,
            1.   The teacher, having punished the boys, returned to office.
viii.       To separate certain clauses; as,
            1.         Since you have confessed it, I pardon you.
               2.         If you want to succeed in life, work hard.
ix.            To separate full coordinate clause of a compound sentence, as,
                     1.         Men may come, and men may go, but I go for ever.
2.         I came, I saw, I conquered.
x.             To avoid the repetition of a verb; as,
               He went with Farzana; I, alone.
xi.           To mark off a direct quotation; as,
                     1.         She said to him, “I will stand by you in weal and woe.”
               2.         “Come,” said the judge, “I will help you”.
xii.         To separate noun clause from one another; as,
               I do not know who he is, where he lives and what he does.
xiii.       To separate the date of month from the year; as,
               Umair was born on December 8, 1982.
xiv.       To mark off words like “yes”, “no”, “well”, etc; as,
                     1.         Yes, my father has come.
                     2.         No, he is not here.
xv.         The co-ordinate clauses with different subjects connected by and require a comma; as,
               His father is an old man, and his mother is sick.
xvi.       If there are more than two co-ordinate clauses, a comma is used after each of them, together with a final and joining the last two clauses.
                     Shy dyes her fair, paints her face, and plucks her brows.
xvii.     The comma is used to mark off the subordinate clauses when they precede the main clause, but not when they follow it:
                     If a man is diligent, he will be successful.
                     I will go when I like.
xviii.   Clause beginning with although, since and because are generally set off by a comma; as,
                        I will not oppose you, although I do not agree to your                           proposal.
                     He succeeded, because he worked hard.
xix.       Adjective clauses have a comma when they describe or comment but no comma when they define; as,
                     He abused the beggar, which was wrong.
                     He met a stranger who had come from a distant city.
xx.         Adjectives, when not connected by and^ require a comma; as,
                     A tall, muscular man entered the room.
xxi.       Adjectives, when they come after the noun they qualify, are separated by commas;
                     The book, torn and dirty, lay on the table.
xxii.     When two adjectives precede a noun and the first adjective modifies the second adjective and the noun, no comma is used to separate them; as,
                     He is wearing a vivid red tie.
                     The moon shone in the clear blue sky.
xxiii.   Adverbs and adverbial phrases that modify the whole clause or sentence are marked off by a comma.
         Luckily, he escaped unhurt. In fact, he is to blame in this matter.
xxiv.    Contrasted words and phrases are separated by a comma.
                     Action, not words, will make a man of you.
                     The higher we go, the cooler it is.
xxv.      etc., or the like, and so on, when occurring in the middle of a sentence, are followed by a comma.
3.         The Semicolon        [;]
            The semicolon acts as a sort of lighter full-stop. It is used when the two sentences are closely connected in thought and cannot be marked of  by a full-stop.
(i)         The semicolon is used to separate coordinate clauses when there is a marked change in thought as,
                        1.         You must work, work and work; else you will fail.
                        2.         Patience is holding on; perseverance is holding out;     faith is holding up.
(ii)        It is used when two clauses are joined by accordingly, consequently, also, therefore, hence, however, moreover, indeed, nevertheless, otherwise, etc., as,
                        1.         He recommended your application; therefore I shall give          you this job.
                        2.         He failed thrice in his attempt to pass the examination;
                                    nevertheless, he did not lose heart.
(iii)       It is used to separate phrases or clauses already containing commas; as,
                        1.         Cannons were left of them, cannons were right of them, cannons were in front of them; but they were not afraid of death
                        2.         He knows English, I know Mathematics, he knows Persian, I know Arabic.
4.         The Colon     [:]
(i)         The colon is used to introduce a formal direct quotation, and a formal enumeration of particulars; as,
                        1.         Someone had said: it is no use crying over spilt milk.
                        2.         The Holy Quran says: The Muslims are one brotherhood.
(ii)        The colon is used after a clause when the following clause restates the same thought; as,
                                    We must fight or die: there is no alternative.
(iii)       The colon is used before enumeration, examples etc.,
            The principal parts of a sentence in English, are: the subject and the predicate.
(iv)       The colon is used between sentences grammatically independent but closely connected in sense; as
                                    Man proposes: God disposes
5.         The Hyphen            [-]
(i)         A hyphen is used to join the different parts of a compound word; as,
            Commander-in-chief,      Father-in-law,      One-third, three-pronged.
(ii)        It is also used to connect the parts of a word divided at the end of a line; as,
            laugh-ed, need-ed
6.         The Dash      [-]
(i)         A (lush is used to mark a sudden turn in speech; as,
            1.         If only I had not done this — but why cry over spilt milk.
            2.         If I had a lakh of rupees — but why to think of such a foolish    idea.
            3.         Abu Ben Adham — may his tribe increase
(ii)        It is used on either side of a word or phrase repeated for the sake of emphasis;
                        He will never – never – stop to flattery.
(iii)       It is used to set off parentheses from the rest of the sentences.
                        When I saw that horrible scene-I shudder even now at the thought-I fell down senseless.
(iv)       It is used to indicate the omission of a word, or letters in a word;
                        Mr. H—is a person who is liked by all.
7.         The Question Mark [?]
(i)         The question is played after a direct question; as,
                        How old are you? How do you do?
(ii)        The question mark is used after the direct interrogative speech; as,
                        He asked me, “Have you done your work?”
8.         The Exclamation Mark     [!]
            The Exclamation mark is used at the end of a word, a phrase, or a sentence to indicate strong feeling or violent emotion; as,
                        1.  Hurrah! We have won the match.
                        2.  Alas! I am undone.
9.         Quotation Marks    [“  ”]
(i)         The quotation marks are used to denote a speaker’s actual words; as,
                        1.  He said, “God is one.”
                        2.  Shakespeare says, “Uneasy lies the head that wears a                                                crown.”
(ii)        The quotation marks are used when reference is made to the title of a book etc; as,
                        “Hamlet” is Shakespear’s finest tragedy.
(iii)       Single quotation marks are used to indicate a quotation within a quotation; as,
                        He told me, “I heard him say, ‘Forgive me, please”.
10.       The Apostrophe [ ‘ ]
(i)         It is used to indicate possessive case of nouns; as,
                        Umair’s book, Farzana’s purse.
(ii)        It is used to form the plural of letters and figures; as,
                        1.         Add three 5’s to six 9’s.
                        2.         Dot your I’s and cross your T’s.
(iii)       It is used to show the omission of a letter or letters; as
                                    Don’t   =         Do not
                                    Haven’t            =         Have not
The use of capital letters
            The capital letters are used as follows.
(i)         At the beginning of every sentence.
                        1.  We are Pakistani.
                        2.   Never tell a lie.
(ii)        With the name of the Deity; as,
                        1.   Praise to be to God, the Merciful.
(iii)       At the beginning of a Quotation.
                        1.  She said “Man is mortal.”
                        2.   My father said, “Life is not an empty dream.”
(iv)       At the beginning of a line of poetry.
                        And then my heart with pleasure fills,
                        And dances with the diffodils.
(v)        With important words in the title of a book, newspaper, journal, public institution, article, etc.
                        Holy Quran, Madrasa-tul-Banat, The Nation, The Pakistan                   Times, The Muslim League,
(vi)       With the days, moths, festivals etc.
                        Umair was born on Wednesday, the 8th December, 1982.
                        Monday, Eid.
(vii)      With proper nouns and adjectives formed from them; as,
                        Pakistan, Pakistani
                        Farzana and Farhana are real sisters.
(viii)     The personal pronoun I is always written in capital I; as,
                        I am a young man of 22.
(ix)       At the beginning of common nouns which are personified; as,
                        O Death, where is thy string!

English Spelling System

English Spelling System
            Knowledge of correct spelling is essential for writing correct words. Sometimes we know words but cannot use them as we are not sure about how they are spelt. But if we follow the simple rules, we will be able to rectify our weakness and enhance word power.

            Certain words are formed by an addition to the beginning or the end of a word, e.g.,
            Beside, forgive, foretell, gainsay, income, unkind etc.
            Freedom, friendship, darkness, hopeful, weaken, boldly, sleeping.
            Words mentioned in example 1 show the use of prefix (in the beginning of) and that of example 2 show the use of suffix (in the end).
            Now see the following rules carefully:
            Final ‘e’ is dropped before a suffix beginning with a vowel sound.
Come   —
Prone           —
Shine   —
Shave           —
Take     —
Approve                   —
Fertile —
Pure             —
Severe —
Supreme                   —
Vice     —
Waste           —
Luster   —
Nerve           —
Space   —
Ease             —
Ice        —
Cure             —
Note: There are few exceptions. Final e is retained in the following conditions:
            (a) In all words ending in –ce, –ge before suffixes beginning with a, i, o, u, provided the soft sound of e or g is retained. e,g.
Notice        —
peace           —
trace           —
Service         —
advantage    —
Courage                   —
       (b) In all words ending in –ee, -ye, e.g.
dye       —         dyeing              eye       —         eyeing
            But monosyllabic words ending in –ie change ie into y before ing,         e.g.
            die       —         dying               tie        —         tying
            lie        —         lying
2.         Final e is retained before suffixes in the following words:
            amuse  —         amusement       move    —         movement
            manage            —         management     base     —         baseness
            free      —         freedom            brave    —         bravery
            knave   —         knavery                        home    —         homely
            hope     —         hopeful             use       —         useful
            care      —         careless                        life       —         lifeless
            (a) But words ending in -dge, -le drop the final e, e.g.
            Judge               — judgment (in American language)
                                    — judgement (e retained in British English)
            Acknowledge    — acknowledgment (American)
                                    — acknowledgement (British)
            Whole               — wholly
            (b) Also,
                        true                  —         truth
                        wise                 —         wisdom
3.         Monosyllabic words ending in –ll– drop the final / before suffixes beginning with a consonant, e.g.
                        well                              —         welcome,
                        welfare all                    —         altogether,
                        already full                   —         fulfill
Note:    Final / is not dropped before the suffix –ness, e.g.
                        ill                    —         illness
                        dull                              —         dullness
                        still                               —         stillness
4.         Monosyllabic words ending in –ll — drop the final/when preceded by a prefix,
                        roll                   —         enrol
                        fill       —         fulfil
5.         Monosyllabic words ending in a single consonant preceded by a single vowel double the final consonant before a suffix beginning with a vowel.
            bid                   —      bidding                           get                   —         getting
         dig                   —      digging                           sit        —         sitting
         run       —      running, runner  swim                —         swimming, swimmer
         spin                  —      spinning                         cut       —         cutting, cutter
            win      —     winning                           put      —         putting
            hit        —      hitting                             split        —     splitting
            shut                  —     shutting                           god                  —         goddess
            spit                   —      spitting                           quit                  —         quitting
         wed     —     wedding
6.         Polysyllabic words accented on the last syllable and ending in a single consonant preceded by a single vowel—double the final consonant before a suffix beginning with a vowel.
            compel             —         compelled, compelling
       control              —         controlled, controlling, controller
       omit                              —         omitting, omitted
       rebel                             —         rebelled, rebelling, rebellious
       refer                 —         referred, referring
       begin                —         beginning
Note:    Many words ending in –l though not accented on the last syllable, double the final l e.g.
            Travel    —     Traveller               Jewel    —    Jeweller
7.         Words ending in -y preceded by a consonant—change the v into / before all suffixes except – ous and ing.
                   baby                 —         babies
                   beauty    —       beautify, beautiful but beauteous
                   bury                 —         burial, buried but burying
                   deny                 —         denial, denied but denying
                   dry                   —         dried hut drying
                   marry     —       marriage, married but marrying
                   merry     —       merrier, merrily, merriment
Note:  (a) But y preceded by a vowel remains unchanged. e.g.
                   toy       —     toys          key                   —      keys
                   volley    —     volleys    prey                 —      preys
                   play                  —     plays
(b) Some words ending in -y preceded by a vowel change the y into I before a suffix beginning with a vowel. e.g.
gay       —         gaiety               pay       —         paid but paying
say       —         said but saying
8.         When e and I combine, sound as eeI precedes e except after e.
(a)        Achieve, brief, believe, chief, field, fierce, grief, niece, relieve, siege, sieve, wield, yield.
(b)        ceiling, conceit, deceive, perceive, receive, receipt
Note:    seize, counterfeit, weird, either, plebeian, vicereine, neither, protein, deity. deify, heifer, heinous.
9.         Mark the change from c to v, as the word changes from noun to verb in the following words:
Noun               Verb                             Noun               Verb
Advice              advise                          device              devise
Licence             license                          practice                        practice
List of words usually misspelt
1.         Words ending in –ar
beggar, calendar, grammar, war, lunar, scholar, solar, sugar
2.         Words ending in –er
                        adviser, carpenter, character, commissioner, employer, hunger, juggler, lawyer, mariner, signatter, teacher, weaver
3.         Words ending in –or
                        author, bachelor, creditor, debtor, doctor, horror, inspector, instructor, jailor, mirror. monitor, professor, spectator, tutor
4.         Words ending in –ary,
                        boundary, customary, dictionary, exemplary, honorary, library, military, necessary, salary, secretary, solitary, stationary, summary, temporary
5.         Words ending in –ery
                    battery, bravery, fiery, gallery, lottery, machinery, mystery, recovery, scenery, silvery, stationery
6.         Words ending in –ory
                        advisory, compulsory, exclamatory, factory, history, memory, preparatory, satisfactory, victory.
7.         Words ending in –ent
                        absent, ascent, accident, amusement, content, continent, Convenient, evident, impertinent, impotent, impudent, obedient, opponent, permanent, president, efficient. superintendent, violent, ancient, sufficient, beneficent, magnificent, patient
8.         Words ending in –ant
                        attendant, brilliant, distant, elegant, extravagant, fragrant, giant, gallant, inhabitant ignorant, lieutenant, merchant, peasant, pheasant, pleasant, pregnant, sergeant, tenant.
9.         Words ending in –ence
                        absence, audience, commence, confidence, defence, difference, evidence, offence. presence, science
10.        Words ending in –ense
                        condense, expense, immense, intense, nonsense, suspense
11.        Words ending in –ance
                        admittance, acquaintance, appearance, assistance, attendance, balance, distance, entrance, guidance, maintenance, repentance, substance
12.        Words ending in –tion
                        ambition, definition, destination, function, intention, mention, operation, reception, station
13.        Words ending in –sion
                  collision, compulsion, confusion, expulsion, excursion, mension, occasion, provision. Persuasion
14.        Words ending in –ssion
                        admission, discussion, omission, permission, possession, procession, succession
Note: Now read these words:
(i)         Ocean, magician, suspicion
(ii)        Anywhere, anyone, anything, something, someone, somebody, cannot, into. nobody, nothing, everybody, already
            But — every one, all right.
(iii)       These words fall under none of the rules mentioned above:
            Almighty, accommodate, amateur, auspices, annual, aeroplane, altogether, apology, autumn, awe. bazaar, balloon, benefited, brethren, betel, conscience. cushion, coolie, colonel, colleague, develop, decent, diarrhea, dysentery, eclipse. etiquette, furniture, guarantee, heroine, inflammation, island, jaundice, luster, lorry, measles, metallic, museum, nineteen, ninth, nuisance, opaque, opportunity. partridge, perilous, persuade, picturesque, privilege, quarrelled, scythe, scissors, sovereign, surgeon, tobacco, tuberculosis, turmeric, truly, tuition, tyranny, umpire. valley, volunteer, vulture, welcome, woolen, wrist, zero.

Seven Principles of English Communication by NEO

Communication is the life and blood of conducting our day to day needs. You may be a subject matter expert (SME) but that’s of no use if you are not able to communicate your ideas and innovations to some who has the power to implement them. Nowadays, most communication is done in English so NeoEnglish System is the only way to learn not only spoken English but also effective communication skills. Communication is broken down into two types: Oral Communication and Written Communication.  Oral Communication involves extempore, reading aloud and presentations. Oral presentations can be formal as in presenting before a committee and informal when speaking before a group of friends. There are two types of speaking: informative speaking and persuasive speaking.

Types of Speaking
Informative Speaking has audience learning as its primary goal. An informative speech may explain a concept, instruct an audience, demonstrate a process, or describe an event. In an professional setting, the informative speech may take many different forms: Individual or Group Report, Oral Briefing, Panel Discussion and Oral Critique. Persuasive Speaking is used to influence what an audience thinks or does. Some of the goals of persuasive speaking include: to reinforce the attitudes, beliefs, and values an audience already holds, to inoculate an audience against counter persuasion, to change attitudes and to motivate an audience to act.
The Method of Speaking
You must know your audience. Do not patronize your audience, Neither speak down nor speak up to your audience. Know the age level of the audience as well as its members’ level of educational sophistication and special interests so tailor your presentation accordingly. The material of your presentation should be concise, to the point and tell an interesting story.
In addition to the obvious things like content and visual aids, the following are just as important as the audience will be subconsciously taking them in: Your voice – how you say it is as important as what you say. Approach your audience with a greeting and smile and tell them who you are. Good presentations then follow this formula: tell the audience what you are going to tell them, then tell them, at the end tell them what you have told them. Speak clearly. Don’t shout or whisper –judge the acoustics of the room. Don’t rush, or talk deliberately slowly. Be natural – although not conversational. Deliberately pause at key points – this has the effect of emphasizing the importance of a particular point you are making.
Visual aids significantly improve the interest of a presentation. However, they must be relevant to what you want to say. A careless design or use of a slide can simply get in the way of the presentation. What you use depends on the type of talk you are giving.
Written Communication
The first activity of writing, defining objectives, is especially important whether you are writing a letter or a job application letter. When defining your objectives, you tell what you want your communication to do. Thus your objectives form the basis of all your other work at writing. In writing, always take the Reader-Centered Approach. You need to look at three things. The final result you desire, The people who will read your communication and the specific way you want your communication to affect the people as they read your communication.
Target your Audience
Target your audience by identifying audience type, characteristics and level of expertise. Determine your audience’s needs by assessing their expertise and their purpose in reading the document. Determine Document Density. People read technical documents for different reasons, and readers have varying levels of technical expertise. To be effective, technical writing must target its audience or audiences. Target your audience by identifying your: audience type and level of expertise, your audience purpose in using the document, and your audience attitude towards both you and the content of your document. Experts read technical and scientific documents for a variety of purposes: to maintain and expand their own, general expertise, To obtain specific answers to their own research and writing and to evaluate a document’s technical or scientific content.
Seven Cs of Communication
To compose a written or oral message you must apply certain communication principles. These are called the seven C’s of effective communication.
  1. Completeness
  2. Conciseness
  3. Consideration
  4. Concreteness
  5. Clarity
  6. Courtesy
  7. Correctness
The seven C’s apply to both written and oral communications. Although we deal here with these principles on a sentence level, they are applicable to all forms of communications. To some extent the principles overlap because they are based on a common concern for the audience, whether the audience consists of listeners or readers.
Your message is complete when it contains all the facts, readers or listeners need for the reaction you desire. Communication senders need to assess their message from eyes of the receivers to be sure they have included all the relevant information.
Benefits of Completeness
Complete messages are more likely to bring the desired results. They do a better job at building goodwill. Communication that seems inconsequential can become very important if information they contain is complete and effective. Provide all necessary information and answer all questions asked. Give something extra, when desired and to make information complete. Answer all the FIVE Ws. Who, What, When, Where and Why.
Conciseness is saying what you want to say in the fewest possible words without sacrificing the other C qualities. A concise message saves time and expense for both the sender and the receiver. It increases emphasis in the message. It shows respect for the recipient, by not cluttering them unnecessary information. To achieve conciseness, observe the following suggestions.
  1. Eliminate wordy expressions
  2. Include only relevant material
  3. Avoid unnecessary repetition
  4. Eliminate wordy expressions
Use single-word substitutes instead of phrases whenever possible without changing meaning.
Wordy : At this time                          Concise : Now
Wordy : Due to the fact that             Concise : because
Consideration means preparing every message with the message receiver in mind. So, don’t loose your temper, don’t accuse and don’t charge them without facts. Focus on ‘you’ Instead of ‘I’ or ‘we’.  To create considerate, audience-oriented messages, focus on how message receivers will benefit, what they will receive, and what they want or need to know. In some cases this can be accomplished by emphasis; you may downplay your own feelings to make a point.
We-attitude :
I am delighted to announce that we have extended our office hours to make shopping more convenient.
You-attitude :
You will be able to shop evenings with the extended office hours.
The use of ‘you’ in negative situations can be avoided by employing passive voice, making the receiver part of the group. Show audience Benefit or Interest in the receiver, readers may react positively when benefits are shown to them. Whenever possible and true, show your receivers will benefit from whatever the message asks or announces. Benefits must meet recipient’s needs, address their concerns, or offer them rewards. Emphasize Positive and Pleasant Facts for consideration.  Another way to show consideration is to emphasize pleasant and positive facts. This means stressing what can be done instead of what cannot be done. Also you must focus on words your recipient considers favorable.
We regret that, since you closed your account, your name is missing from our long list of satisfied customers. We sincerely hope that inspire the best efforts of our fine staff, there were no occasions on which you felt we failed to serve you properly.
Communicating concretely means being specific, definite, and vivid rather than vague and general. Often it means using denotative (direct, explicit, often dictionary-based) rather than connotative words. The benefits to business professionals of using concrete facts and figures are your receivers know exactly what is desired. When you supply specifics for the reader you increase the likelihood of that you message will be interpreted the way you intended. When you want to avoid personal blunt accusations ‘The October check was not included’ is more tactful than ‘you failed to include….’ ‘Attendance at the meeting id required’ is less hard than ‘You must attend….’.
Getting the meaning from your head accurately to the reader is the purpose if clarity. Remember that you must choose precise, concrete and familiar words, construct effective sentences and paragraphs and choose Precise, Concrete and Familiar words.
Clarity is achieved through a balance between precise language and familiar language. When you have the choice between a long word and a short word, choose the short familiar word. So the golden rule is that when in doubt, use the more familiar words; audience will understand them better.
For example
You must use PAY instead of RENUMERATION and INVOICE instead of STATEMENT of PAYMENT.
After our perusal of pertinent data, the conclusion is that a lucrative market exists for subject property.
The data we studied show that your property is profitable and in high demand.
Although it is appropriate to use technical terms and business jargon in some professional situations, avoid their use when the reader is not acquainted with the terminology.
assessed valuation
property value for tax purpose
Choose precise, concrete and familiar words:
With the increased use of e-mail there is the tendency to be concise. The danger is that you must know the meaning of e-mail acronyms which aid conciseness.
For instance IMO means In my opinion, FAQ means frequently asked questions etc.
Construct Effective Sentences and Paragraphs
At the core of clarity is the sentence. Important characteristics to consider are:
Try for an average sentence length of 17 to 20 words. When the sentence length increases try to chop it down to two sentences. Also if the sentences are too short then the resulting language becomes overly simple and choppy.
In a sentence, unity means that you must have one main idea. In case of other ideas they must be closely related. For example ‘I like Sohail and Eiffel Tower is in Paris’ is obviously not a unified sentence.
In a coherent sentence the words are arranged so that the ideas clearly express the
intended meaning. Place the correct modifier as close as possible to word it is supposed to modify. In the examples which follow, notice that ‘unclear’ sentence conveys the wrong meaning.
Being an excellent lawyer, I am sure that you can help us.
Being an excellent lawyer, you can surely help us.
His report was about managers, broken down by age and gender.
His report focused on age and gender of managers.
After planning 10,000 berry plants, the deer came into out botanist’s farm and crushed them.
After our botanists had planted 10,000 berry plants, the deer came into the farm and crushed them.
The quality that gives force to important parts of sentences and paragraphs is emphasis. Most often, put main ideas up front within a sentence. Writers must decide what needs emphasis, and then decide the correct sentence structure.
Little emphasis
The airplane finally approached the speed of sound, and it became very difficult to control.
Better emphasis
As it approached the speed of sound, the airplane became very difficult to control.
Little emphasis
Candidates should be motivated and should have interest in dynamic and static testing of material, and have those prerequisites and others.
Better emphasis
Prerequisites in candidates should include expertise in dynamic and static testing of material.
Courtesy stems from a sincere you-attitude. It is not merely politeness with mechanical insertion of ‘please’ and ‘thank you’, although applying socially accepted manners is a form of courtesy. Rather it is politeness that grows out of respect and concern for others. Be sincerely tactful, thoughtful and appreciative. Use expressions that show respect. Chose nondiscriminatory expressions. Be sincerely tactful, thoughtful and appreciative:
Though very few people are intentionally abrupt or blunt, these negative traits are a common cause of discourtesy. Sometimes they stem from a mistaken idea of conciseness, sometimes from negative personal attitudes etc.
Tactless, blunt
Stupid letter; I did not understand any of it.
More tactful
It’s my understanding…..
Tactless, Blunt
Clearly you did not read my latest fax.
More Tactful
Sometimes my wording is not precise, let me try again.
Tactless, Blunt
I rewrote that letter three times; the point was clear.
More Tactful
I am sorry the point was not clear; here is another version.
At the core of correctness is proper Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling. The term correctness applied to business messages also means the following characteristics. Use the right level of language, Check accuracy of figures, facts and words and maintain acceptable writing mechanics. The term correctness applied to business messages also means the following characteristics. Use the right level of language, check accuracy of figures, facts and words and maintain acceptable writing mechanics.
There are two types of writing: Formal and Informal. Formal writing is often associated with scholarly writing. Examples: doctoral dissertations, scholarly articles, top-level government agreements etc. The style unconventional, usually impersonal, and contains long and involved sentences. Informal writing is more characteristic in business writing. An example is the communications via E-mail, memos etc. For correctness, avoid substandard language because using incorrect words, incorrect grammar, faulty pronunciation all suggest inability to use good English. It is not language only, you must also check accuracy of figures, facts and words.
In communication, there are several writing problems. I will note down here a few of them and conclude my article. The first problem is the writer’s block. Writer’s block is what we call the experience of getting stuck while writing. Although the results are the same, there are many sources of writer’s block: lack of information, lack of a well-defined purpose, poor knowledge of the audience, lack of confidence. You must work against all these to stop the writer’s block. Further, there are organizational problems. Organizational problems are discovered during the editing phase. Finding and fixing these problems is what makes editing important. If they are not fixed, readers experience organization problems as complete breakdowns in communication. If you wish to sell an idea or a product, then the style must be persuasive. If you wish to convey information only, such as in a report to superiors, then the style should appear to be passively objective.