What is grammar?
Grammar exists to manage the structure of text so that we understand what it means.
This includes arranging text into paragraphs, sentences and clauses within sentences.
Grammar sets out the different word types, such as nouns, verbs, adjectives and adverbs.
It also provides conditions, such as verb tenses, which tell us whether something:
- happened in the past
- is happening now
- will happen in the future, or
- might happen.
Grammar in everyday use
Some grammar rules are simple while others are complex, but don’t worry: these rules guide much of our everyday speech without us even thinking about them.
Even experts disagree on some points of grammar and there is no ‘law’ to say who is right.
Everyday usage constantly changes the way we write and speak so that, over time, words and phrases previously thought wrong become accepted.
Whether we agree with these changes or not, they drive the development of the language we use.
What exactly is the message?
We tend to notice grammar when something is wrong.
The words jar and take our attention away from the message to focus instead on grammatical errors.
These can make it difficult, and sometimes impossible, to read and understand text.
Grammar and proofreading
A proofreader will catch problems with grammar that could interfere with your message and correct them before publication.
We proofread your text so that it sounds natural by striking a balance between formal grammar and everyday usage.
This ensures that your audience easily understands what you’re saying to them.