The following resources have been used as reference for language use. The work is in progress.

Practical English Usage (Practical English Usage, Third Edition)


A Practical English Grammar


A Practical English Grammar: Exercises 1 (Bk. 1)


A Practical English Grammar: Exercises 2 (Bk. 2)


English Grammar in Use: A Self-study Reference and Practice Book for Intermediate Students of English – with Answers


B.D. Graver, Advanced English Practice: With Key




The Economist



Antoni Prejbisz, Gramatyka Języka Angielskiego


Marian Auerbach, Marian Golias, Gramatyka grecka


Lidia Winniczuk, Lingua Latina : Łacina Bez Pomocy Orbiliusza


Łukasz Koncewicz, Słownik łaciński


The absolutely basics about the USA

The governing body of the American democracy is the Congress. It comprises the Senate and the House of Representatives. It is located in the Capitol Hill, showed in the picture above.


Many researchers derive democracy from ancient Greece. How could we compare ancient Greece and modern America? Ancient Greeks actually developed a proto-democracy: they happened to have kings and queens, depended heavily on military leaders and bequeathed elitism. America is a democracy. There have been no kings or queens of the USA. The head of the state is the President. The President resides in the White House.



Both the Congress and the White House are in Washington D.C. that is, the city named Washington in the District of Columbia. Washington D.C. is the capital of the USA.


District Columbia is on the American East Coast.


The state of Washington is on the West Coast.


We can get maps of the USA at the National Atlas website,
We usually tell the name of our location along with the name of the state, if we give our address in America.


Washington state got its name after George Washington, the first American president. The state is the only American state named after a president.



There are many places named Washington in America. George Washington remains a very prominent figure. He fought for American freedom in the Revolutionary War against England. He was President in years 1789-1797, after the War.


The American Revolutionary War had its written formulation
in the Declaration of Independence.

Link to post on the Declaration


The Revolutionary victory brought another historic formulation,
the American Constitution.



American government was built “from scratch” by the Founding Fathers. Some, as Thomas Jefferson, described their perspectives on the State. Elective monarchy patterns as of Poland, for example, did not win ground. Poland was a chronically fallen country. The monarch was a lifetime position, and commoners hardly had civil rights. Hereditary monarchy forms as of England obviously did not offer any better security for the freedom of the people.


James Madison wrote,


The constitutional reallocation of powers created a new form of government, unprecedented under the sun. Every previous national authority either had been centralized or else had been a confederation of sovereign states. The new American system was neither one nor the other; it was a mixture of both.[38]


The “new form of government” is democracy,
only by far more advanced than Greek prototypes.

Compare the History US site,

Video: America gets a constitution


Language form

Without a piece of thought about language form, we could not learn any language. Let us think what language form is. Different languages have different ways to name objects of thought. For example, we can say a dog in English. In German, we can say ein Hund. In French, we can say un chien. In Greek, we could say σκυλος. In Russian, we could say собака.




All these words have different forms, but they refer to or indicate the same object that we name a dog in English.We may use word forms in more than one sense. In the picture above, we can see Jemma’s dog. We would not have Buddie for a hot dog (!)

Hot dog


A cat in English can be eine Katze in German. It can be un chat in French. A cat can be γάτα or γάτος in Greek. It can be кот in Russian.




A chat can be a conversation, in English. A gat can be a channel or passage. Kot can be a Yeniseian language. Language forms happen to differ. Language forms also happen to be very similar. We always need to know the language and the context, to see what the language form denotes: a picture of a cat is not a cat.


Language form is always a word form. In language psychology, we have “body language” for a figure of speech. There is no language without syntax. Our bodies could not work for syntax (!)


We can use virtual words, to work on language form. Invented or virtual words are closest to non-existent words. They have word shapes, but they have no meaning. They can help exercise syntax. Children invent words spontaneously, to practice language.


Try the virtual words and color code.

Link to the color code and virtual words

1.2. Mind practice

Exercise 4. Let us try some travel in our minds. We can use exercises 1 – 3. Let us take our short mind journey in stages. We all have own inner language, the language of our thought.


A. First, let us think how long we could stay without thinking. We may happen to hear or even say that someone is not thinking. This is yet only a saying, something nobody can mean literally. In reality, nobody can “stop” his or her mind, even for a minute.


B. Let us fix our visual focus on a single thing — a teacup, a pencil, the apple in the image above? Let us try to think about our object only and not anything else. We can use a wristwatch to see how long we cope.


C. Let us close our eyes and try not to think absolutely anything. The watch will tell us if we really can do this.


D. Let us think in what language we think and how we think. Do we think in entire words? Could our thoughts be only pictures?


E. Let us go back to exercise 1. We can say out our answers to exercise 1. Whether multilingual or monolingual, we think in English words. We visualize spellings, that is, we imagine we write the words. We do the same for exercise 2. If we have done the exercises already, we do not look up the answers.


F. We read exercises 1 and 2 again, and try to “see” and “say” our answers in our thoughts strictly. Then, we write the answers on a spare piece of paper. We do exercise 3 as well. We do not even whisper (!)


In the beginning, we might feel it is really an effort to “discipline” ourselves and consciously direct own thinking. It is essential that we try. “Saying” or “writing” in our thoughts before spoken or written activity can make our language habits much stronger.


We humans naturally have inner language. For example, silent reading is faster than reading out. This is inner language to facilitate the process. It is not entire words or even speech sounds. It has only trace aspects of written or spoken language.


Inner language is the highly advanced way for our human brains to correlate language knowledge and skills. We do not know a language really, if it does not belong with our inner ability. Importantly, we can exercise to augment our inner intellectual powers.


Feel welcome to further grammar journey.
Chapter 2, the verb form WILL.

Link -- Chapter 2. The verb form WILL
Link -- Read this in a Slavic language, Polish

9.3. Detail on Modal chemistry and economy

Modal Expression, especially the Interrogative or Negative, can give us some trouble, unless we approach the matter as science in a field: we analyze the molecules, see how they are doing, and make a model.



We can recur to chapter 5 , as well as compare appendix 4.


61. We CANNOT skip the exercises.


62. We MAY NOT skip the exercises.


63. We WILL NOT skip the exercises.


64. We SHOULD NOT skip the exercises.


65. We OUGHT NOT TO skip the exercises.


66. We SHALL NOT skip the exercises.


67. We MUST NOT skip the exercises.


The form SHALL NOT may imply a conclusion, a decision ― more often in British English than in American, however. American English has the Modal WILL for resolves. The Modal CAN attracts the particle NOT directly. They become one word, CANNOT. We may come upon the form CAN NOT in historic texts, as the Gettysburg Address.




President Abraham Lincoln gave the speech at the Soldiers’ National Cemetery in Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in 1863. The form “can not” is rarely used today. Feel welcome to read the Address as well as to do the voluntary extra practice.


In the Affirmative, MUST NOT can mean that something is forbidden or strongly discommended. NEED can take on the regular negative. The auxiliary is the verb to do.


68. We DO NOT NEED to memorize dictionaries.


We can use the short form DON’T, when our contexts are not formal.
68a. We DON’T NEED to memorize dictionaries.


NEED can take a Modal negation, too. The Modal form may be more emphatic.


68b. We NEEDN’T memorize dictionaries.
(There is definitely no need to memorize dictionaries.)


HAVE TO takes the regular negative.


69. We DO NOT HAVE TO memorize dictionaries.
69a. We DON’T HAVE TO memorize dictionaries.


Our paths can diverge for NEED in the auxiliary PAST.


70. You DIDN’T NEED to memorize this.
(Something didn’t need to be done and it was not done.)


71. You NEEDN’T HAVE memorized this.
(You did, but you COULD HAVE left it alone ― the thinking is about a hypothesis.)


Let us tackle the Interrogative. This is the Modal to move here. Chapter 5 shows Inversion, along with the Negative Interrogative.


72. We CAN work a lot.
CAN we work a lot?


73. We MAY work a lot.
MAY we work a lot?


74. We WILL work a lot.
WILL we work a lot?


75. We SHOULD work a lot.
SHOULD we work a lot?


76. We OUGHT TO work a lot.
OUGHT we TO work a lot?


77. We SHALL work a lot.
SHALL we work a lot?


78. We MUST work a lot.
MUST we work a lot?


In Negative questions, the linguistic chemistry may depend on the form we use, short or full.


79. CAN we NOT work a lot?
79a. CAN’T we work a lot?


80. MAY we NOT work a lot?
80a. MAYN’T we work a lot?


81. WILL we NOT work a lot?
81a. WON’T we work a lot?


82. SHOULD we NOT work a lot?
82a. SHOULDN’T we work a lot?


83. OUGHT we NOT TO work a lot?
83a. OUGHTN’T we TO work a lot?


84. SHALL we NOT work a lot?
84a. SHAN’T we work a lot?


In questions, MUST NOT may ask about the proper course of things.


85. MUST we NOT work a lot?
85a. MUSTN’T we work a lot?


HAVE TO takes the regular Negative Interrogative.


86. DO we NOT HAVE TO work a lot?
86a. DON’T we HAVE TO work a lot?


Let us catch on to the Modal NEED in the grammatical PAST. It behaves more and more like a regular verb, in contemporary American.


87. DID you NOT NEED to work a lot?
87a. DIDN’T you NEED to work a lot?


Please compare,
88. NEEDN’T you HAVE worked a lot?


Expression 88 would be so rare that an American might consider it incorrect. Why is this? Asking questions involves making hypotheses. Unless we ask a question for no reason or purpose and expect no answer at all, we make our questions thinking about some PROBABILITY at least. Beside inversion, we can use the question mark or intonation, to make a question.


Let us regard language economy. In a language information pool, we may not need to provide information more than once.


86a. DIDN’T you NEED / HAVE TO work a lot?


An American could consider an alternate incorrect,
86b. *MUSTN’T you HAVE worked a lot?


NEED and MUST express a high degree of CONTINGENCY or CERTAINTY. Hypotheses with them might vary from those with other Modals: so many things SHOULD BE DONE and they never are (!)


With high CONTINGENCY or CERTAINTY, we can net the hypothetical time: we have a strong hypothesis in the Modal alone. Here is our model (click to enlarge).



Please compare the absolutely correct in American,
89. SHOULDN’T you HAVE read this all?


There is a structure close to the Modal verbs MUST, NEED, OUGHT TO or SHOULD. It is TO BE (SUPPOSED) TO.


90. You WEREN’T (SUPPOSED) TO get the gizmos.


We can recur to the structure later in the grammar journey. Let us now exercise our brains in Modal relativity practice.


Link to chapter 9.4. Linguistic form relativity


10.4. More workout for real-time talk

Ten minutes can be a very short while, to think about a nap. It would be very long, to think about a break in conversation. We can try with a friend, over the phone: we agree to remain silent for 10 or 20 seconds, and our friend does not look at a watch. On another occasion, our friend does the thing for us. Though we would have looked at our watch before, the time is most likely to feel longer.


Language learners vary in strategies. Some would take a longer time to put thoughts together, and allow for breaks in conversation. Some would remain a colloquial level of language, to avoid breaks. Some learners choose to practice, to be efficient with regard to time as well as style and correctness.


Exercise 63. We do not have to comprehend the word “if” as belonging with Form Relativity only. We can change “if” for “whether”, in contexts to tell about circumstances or results rather than provisions or causes. We have the “if” underlined, in the exercise.


We can use abbreviated auxiliaries, to practice spoken comprehension. We also can reorder the phrases as well as use Inversion, for style and flexibility.


Example: She did not know if she was right.


Answer: She did not know whether she was right.


Example: If he hadn’t been extremely busy, he would’ve remembered about the coffee.


Answer: Hadn’t he been extremely busy, he would’ve remembered about the coffee.


Alternately: Had he not been extremely busy, he would have remembered about the coffee.


1. If she weren’t reading the calligraphic, she’d be sleeping.


2. If he was writing, reading, or talking, the colloquium had him busy all the time.


3. If he hadn’t heard from Bill then, he’d be writing him a letter now.


4. If it weren’t such a good quality, she’d think it a mere prank.


5. If it sustains the quality throughout, it’ll compare with the Bodleian Horace.


6. They will / can see in the library, if they get the Medici print.


7. If it weren’t so conscientious, he’d throw it in that Babbitt’s garden next door.


8. If it proves necessary, she’ll have it carbon dated.


9. If it is as good as it looks, it might be of worth even as just a calligraphic.


10. If it hadn’t been deprived of the front matter, it would be easier to find out who made it.


Further journey brings the Causative and the Passive, our “have it carbon dated”, in example 8, and “had been deprived”, in example 10.


Exercise 64. We can use the word “if” also in the sense of the word “when”. Grammatically, it is up to our choosing, if we speak the premise or the result first.


The exercise is not grammatically difficult. Let us think how we would say it, as in exercise 33 and exercise 34.


Example: IF you provision in the condition, may stipulation precede in position.


Answer: May stipulation precede in position, WHEN you provision in the condition.



1. You’ll make your adage suit, IF you toot the root in the foot.

(We can look up word stress patterns in dictionaries, to emphasize them by matching).


2. IF the comma won’t curse or ban, a dot might bid the span.


3. IF the verb does not adjust, the pronoun must never entrust.


4. IF a Modal will emend, diction can commend a robust complement.


5. IF meanings collate and debate, may syntax negotiate.


Exercise 65. It is most often up to ourselves to decide, whether to mediate our language structures with Modals at all. The arrow cues show the target time extent.


Example: If there 1. (be) other Little Tinies, the Little Tiny 2. (can be) one of many similar beings.



Answer: If there were other Little Tinies, the Little Tiny could be one of many similar beings.


Alternate: If there are other Little Tinies, the Little Tiny is /  can / could be one of many similar beings.


A. “If I 3. (be) only one of many Little Tinies, I 4. (be) actually a Little Tiny”, the Tiny hypothesized. She 5. (be) strictly an inch tall and she 6. (want) a measure for her dreams. “A cubit 7. (be) the length of your forearm right to the tip of your middle finger”, she 8. (reckon).




B. However, a cubit 9. (be) factually about 17.5 inches. “If you 10. (have to think) about an inch to think about a cubit”, she went on hypothesizing, “my cubit N 11. (can be) a cubit, as I am just an inch tall. Still, I 12. (have) my length”.



C. She 13. (visualize) a cube. “If you really 14. (need to consider) measures, you 15. (figure) on a cube of a dream”, she made another hypothesis. Nothing was positively two-dimensional. “Even if you 16. (reason) on your forearm simply, you 17. (will make) it out for three-dimensional”, she 18. (speculate).



D. “If nothing 19. (be) truly two-dimensional, dreams 20. (be) non-two-dimensional, too. You 21. (can have) a cube of a dream, if you 22. (want) to tell whether your dreams are big or small?” She 23. (start) to entertain the theory.



E. “Then, if you 24. (agree) to a measure, you 25. (can add up) cubes with dreams like with anything else. Well, but a Thumbelina 26. (can have) a cube of a dream, if cubes 27. (be) cubits big, too?” The Tiny 28. (sigh) with uncertainty.



Exercise 66. Let us be back with the grain of sand. The word “if” is not the only word to help make hypotheses. Let us try the words “as” and “when”. They can work as conjunctions. “As” would agree with the premise. “When” would allow an opposite sense. We can know the study of meaning as semantics.


Example: “If I N 1. (be) a grain of sand, I 2. (be) more prone to be of a like mind with a westerly wind”, the grain of sand thought.


Answer: “If I were not a grain of sand, I would be more prone to be of a like mind with a westerly wind”, the grain of sand thought.


A. “If wits N 3. (be) a real thing, you 4. (can evade) the matter of their shape”, the grain of sand deliberated. The grain of sand did eight hours of thinking about composite things a day. As the eight hours N 5. (be) immaterial, the faculty the grain of sand employed during the time N 6. (can be) immaterial either, it concluded.


B. Obviously, the faculty you used to ponder on composite things 7. (have to be) the reasoning faculty. Wits, whatever their quality, 8. (have to be) of a shape, the grain of sand felt.


C. Therefore, it 9. (be) uncanny for a grain of sand and a wind to be of the same mind. “A thought 10. (can be) genuinely the same, when the wits 11. (be) not?” Possibly, asking the wind its opinion N 12. (can decide) on the issue, the grain of sand 13. (analyze).


D. Alternately, the phrase “the same thought” 14. (may become) just a way to speak about potentially very dissimilar things. Still, the phrase “the same thought” truly existed and had its real shape. “What 15. (happen), if you 16. (translate) it to another language?”


E. The grain of sand (wonder) for five minutes. The phrase sure (may change) in its look. Then, the term “shape” N (will be) as easy to comprehend. “The same thought (will render) the same shape of mind if you (give) it the look of another language?” The grain of sand immersed in thought for another five minutes.


Exercise 67.
We can join Jim Colderstone in winter Alaska. Alaska has the largest population of bald eagles in the USA. We can mark Modality with the letter M. We do not have to use a Modal everywhere the letter M is. We can use more than one Modal where the letter M is, too. We are in the grammatical PRESENT. We include Expression.


The exercise is open-ended: no one can or may prescribe a natural language.


When Jim ran into the office (Chapter 6. The Present Perfect or the Past Simple), Jill was not there. She left him a letter, before going on her Paris vacation. We cannot demand insight into private correspondence. The exercise only renders the message, in a mystified way. With friends, we can try to guess what Jill might have written after a minor discord.


Example: You M N 1. (have) the ambition to be the colder stone if you M 2. (be) in the winter Alaska yourself.


Answer: You would not have the ambition to be the colder stone if you could be in the winter Alaska yourself.


A. It M 3. (be) enough that you 4. (go) EPIC terrestrial and you M 5. (see) that the temperatures 6. (favor) a Colderstone for the role.
(We can go, if we want to go EPIC terrestrial ourselves.)


B. Although you M N 6. (go) to Alaska to do STEM paperwork only, you M 7. (like) the ridges of new green and the cool breeze in a shiny spring Alaskan morning.
(We can go for STEM programs.)


C. Space and time M 8. (become) a source of perplexity if you 9. (think) about times outside the present. As for the talk, if you 10. (look) to word form alone, you M 11. (resolve) there are too many forms with too little sense.


D. Humans M N (be) logic strictly. And temperature, for the senses to come together well, M N 12. (be) the source for all feeling.


E. If they N 13. (have) a place in a human discourse, words M N 14. (tell) anything exact. The place yet 15. (be) only hypothetical. This 16. (be) the human person to make language possible.


Let us take our story generally to A PAST time extent.


Naturally, you would not have the ambition to be the colder stone, if you could be in winter Alaska yourself.


Alternate: Naturally, you would not have had the ambition to be the colder stone, if you could have been in the winter Alaska yourself.


The alternate can “anchor” our discourse in a specific time span and geographical place. The time-anchored alternate would say, “there, then, that time, that winter: THE Alaska”.




FROM THE KEY: Grammar resources vary so vastly in guidance on Modal verbs and the Conditional or Unreal Past that we may feel we need a comparison on language forms. When we work out own, independent perspectives, we become able to use our language logic consistently. We need to be consistent, to be correct.



It may / can be enough that you go EPIC terrestrial and you may / can see that the temperatures would favor a Colderstone for the role.


It could / might / would be enough that you went EPIC terrestrial and you would / could see that the temperatures might / would favor a Colderstone for the role.


If you went EPIC terrestrial, you would / could see that the temperatures might / would favor a Colderstone for the role.


It is enough that you go EPIC terrestrial and you see that the temperatures favor a Colderstone for the role.


If / When / As you go EPIC terrestrial, you see that the temperatures favor a Colderstone for the role.


1. It was enough that you went EPIC terrestrial and you could see that the temperatures favored a Colderstone for the role.


It was enough that you went EPIC terrestrial and you saw that the temperatures favored a Colderstone for the role.




Please mind, our Relativity is linguistic. Auxiliary time is relative to the main or head time. When we make hypotheses, we shift word form in a principled way: past forms tell about the present, present forms about the future, and we use anchors to tell about the past. The shift shows a relative reference because it is regular.




Feel welcome to continue with the language story in Part Three (!)


Part Three of the language voyage can bring

  • Jill’s library in plain canvas ― the speech part and the determiner manner and matter (it is not realistic to hope to memorize all uses of the articles, a, an, or the, and the generative way remains correct, as above);
  • Chantelle’s travel to the Book Cliffs ― verbal nouns and other ways of syntax to the notional time;
  • Reported speech, the Passive, and many more components of our language landscape.

10.3. Workout for real-time talk

Envisioning language study as travel in a dimension, we could think about virtual words as guarding us against steep slopes. Let us warm up.


Exercise 60. We practice targeting time extents. We can use another virtual word, thimo. We can give it the gillyflower color, as for bimo. We may abandon the invention later. Our thimo has the sound “th” (ɵ). Learners happen to substitute or mistake it for other speech sounds.


Link to the color code and virtual words


We can practice our tongues. We may pronounce bimo [bImoU], with the tip of the tongue pressed against our lower teeth. Then, we can try phimo [fImoU], with the tip of the tongue against the lower teeth, still. Keeping our tongues firm at lower teeth may take conscious control.



After, we can say thimo [ɵImoU], with the tip of the tongue at the upper teeth. We do not press the tongue against the teeth. We let a little air between.


This can help us become more aware and in control of our tongues.




Virtual words can help focus on syntax. We can do the exercise only in our thought. Even if we choose to write, we remember to conceptualize, as in the mind practice of chapter 1.2. We regard our linguistic Form Relativity.


Example: If you thimoed, you bimoed.
future-simple-arrow(The forms “thimoed” and “bimoed” show there is no form relativity.
The cue shows our target grammatical time is the FUTURE.)


Answer: If you WILL thimo, you WILL bimo.


1. If you thimo, you bimo.


2. If you WERE ABLE TO thimo, you WERE ABLE TO bimo.present-simple-arrow


3. If you thimoed, you WOULD bimo.past-simple-arrow


4. If you HAD thimoed, you WOULD have bimoed.future-simple-arrow


5. If you thimo, you WILL bimo.past-simple-arrow


6. If you thimoed, you WOULD bimo.future-simple-arrow


7. If you HAD thimoed, you WOULD have bimoed.present-simple-arrow


8. If you thimo, you WILL bimo.present-simple-arrow


Exercise 61. Let us try “jumping” time extents as in exercise 55 and regard Expression. We provide the arrow cues for the target grammatical time. Our “jumping” symbols are,


extent-forward“One time extent forward”


extent-backward“One time extent backward”.


Let us mind to say “thimo”: if we want to thank someone, we’d better not tank him or her. We may compare a few more examples: than (a comparative), tan (brown skin color to result from sunbathing), these (a demonstrative), tease (to irritate), thin (not thick, heavy, or broad), tin (a metal).


Let us try to think about language information pools more: we do not rigorously follow syntax; we try to be flexible.




In questions, we can ask about the result first.


Example: If you (PREMISE) thimoed, you (RESULT or CONSEQUENT) bimoed. {?}


Answer: DID you bimo, if you thimoed?


We are going to preserve the language information, asking about the premise first, as well.


Example: If you (PREMISE) thimoed, you (RESULT or CONSEQUENT) bimoed. {?}


Answer: DID you thimo, if you bimoed?


We can be specific about our Interrogative Expression and place the question mark. We can start using our cues and symbols.


Example: If you thimoed {?}, you bimoed.


Answer: DO you thimo, if you bimo?


Example: If you thimoed, you bimoed {?}


Answer: If you thimo, DO you bimo?


We can place the letter N for our Negative Expression specifics.


Example: If you thimoed {N}, you bimoed.


Answer: If you DON’T thimo, you bimo.


Example: If you thimoed {N}, you bimoed {N}.


Answer: If you DON’T thimo, you DON’T bimo.


Example: If you thimoed, you bimoed {N}.


Answer: If you thimo, you DON’T bimo.





1. If you thimoed, you bimoed {?}extent-backward


2. If you thimo {N}, you bimo.extent-forward


3. If you thimoed, you WOULD bimo {?}extent-forward


4. If you HAD thimoed, you WOULD HAVE bimoed {N}.extent-forward


5. If you thimo, you WILL bimo {N}.extent-backward


6. If you thimoed, you WOULD bimo.extent-backward


7. If you HAD thimoed, you WOULD HAVE bimoed {?}extent-forward


8. If you thimo, you WILL bimo {?}extent-backward


9. If you thimoed {N}, you WOULD bimo.extent-backward


10. If you HAD thimoed {N}, you WOULD HAVE bimoed {?}extent-forward


Exercise 62. We can use Form Relativity with the Progressive. Let us try real verbs and remember about our proper egoism (compare subchapter 8.1., the earthling basic variable).


We may combine language features. Unlike in real life, the exercise provides brief stretches of language and mapping aspects. Unlike in real life, we can take as long as we care and we never need to feel stressed. As in real life, we may think about the examples as a story.


We can be back with someone we met in exercise 37. Ms. Seges also appeared in Part One of our grammar course. We did not get to know her name then. We were learning about personal pronouns. If we have read the note for exercise 56 in the key (and in subchapter 9.4., Modal relativity practice), we know that “we” can be a personally neutral figure of speech (I do not presume you remember all detail).


Ms. Seges no bckgr


The same note mentions figurative thinking. We do not claim our story to be true. We can imagine Ms. Seges is home, in her study. Mr. Seges ― we never met him yet ― returns from a literary meeting.


“Honey, I’m back. What are you doing?”


I’d be reading horoscopes.” (Ms. Seges never reads horoscopes.)


“That is …?” (Mr. Seges does not believe Ms. Seges would ever read horoscopes.)


“This looks like a calligraphic copy of Vespucci’s letters. It was slipping out of our backyard hedge, no covers or front matter.”


Hadn’t it sure taken a lot to make such a book, I’d suspect that Babbitt next door. Bill once wrote me the book I was looking for was as likely to be obtained as a calligraphic of Vespucci’s originals. It was completely a legend, he checked with the Freeman’s.”


“About legends, my favorite Chicago blend is . . .”


“Honey, I would have remembered about the coffee; but I was so preoccupied…”


“I’m putting that with my records. The coffee is not completely a legend. It exists somewhere in Chicago.”__Smiley joke PNG




Let us mind our rich text interpretation, as for exercise 55, in subchapter 9.4. Babbitt is a character by Sinclair Lewis, an American writer. The Freeman’s are a famous auction house to specialize also in books. Amerigo Vespucci described his voyages in letters to Lorenzo di Pierfrancesco de Medici. Calligraphic copies were still quite a habit for most important documents, in Vespucci’s times.




Not only books and their covers could be stylish. Inversion can be a matter of style. It does not indicate a question in the pattern Hadn’t it sure taken a lot (of work)”, above.


Relative forms also allow “were” (the past plural of the verb to be) with I, he, she, and it. We can say, “If I were, If he / she / it were…” to hypothesize generally about the PRESENT and now. Forms as “If I / he / she / it was…” may sound more particular, they are yet up to personal choosing. “Were” is more widely acknowledged, especially in school contexts.


Formal American English uses full forms of verbs. Let us take it into account.


If I was Santa, I would not be (wouldn’t be) looking for a spare bag now.


If I were Santa, I would be (I ‘d be) a book Santa: I would give away kids books.


Let us mind that skimming can encourage effective learning, as we noted in chapter 10, Grammar relativity galore. Feel welcome to have a peek into exercise 63 in subchapter 10.4., before doing this one.


We have the value {IN} next to the verb to go with the Progressive. The target grammatical time is indicated. We can stay {ON} our human and logical extents for qualities, hearts and minds, and ignore Progressive cues.



Example: {PAST}, he, N 1. (be) extremely busy, 2. (remember) {IN} to bring that brand coffee.


Answer: If he had not been extremely busy, he would have remembered to bring that brand coffee.


We can ignore the marker {IN}. We remember our syntactic HAVE becomes an anchor, compare subchapter 10.1. Our arrow cues would be as follows.



For Modal patterns with the feature {IN}, we can resolve simply to remember we do not say “maying” or “musting”, and the feature {IN} has to come with syntactic expansion. Our arrow cue may remain as for real-time, non-perfect progressive patterns. The cues are ancillary, and we need to mind the head time anyway, with Modal verbs. If to make arrow cues of another color, is up to individual choosing. We also can add the letter M to structures we want mediated with Modal verbs.


Please think if to use FORM RELATIVITY in example 2. A non-relative form will show a number of activities different from the relative. We can use Modals other than WILL, too.


1. {PRESENT}, she, N read {IN} the calligraphic, she, sleep {IN}.
(She worked on her new book all night.)


2. {PAST}, he, N write {IN}, he, read or talk {IN}.
(The colloquium was very engaging.)


3. {PAST} and {PRESENT}, he, N hear {IN} from Bill then, he, write {IN} him a letter now.


4. {PRESENT}, it, N be {IN} such a good quality, she, think it a mere prank.


5. {FUTURE}, it, N sustain {IN} the quality throughout, it, compare {IN} with the Bodleian Horace and Francis Crease talent.


6. {FUTURE}, they, look in the library, they, get the Medici print.
(Someone most probably made it from the Medici print.)


7. {PRESENT}, it, N be so conscientious, he, throw it in that Babbitt’s garden next door.


8. {FUTURE}, it, prove necessary, she, have it carbon dated.


9. {PRESENT}, it, be as good as it looks it, M be of worth even as just a calligraphic.


10. {PAST} and {PRESENT}, it, N deprive of the front matter, it, be {IN} easier to find out who made it.


Feel welcome to some more exercise. We are gradually getting independent of cues. Real-time, we people speak without them.
10.4. More workout for real-time talk

Link 10.4. More workout for real-time talk

9.4. Modal relativity practice

Our experience with Modal verbs initially might be that “time is short”, especially when we speak. Only good, flexible linguistic habits can make us feel more comfortable.


Exercise 53. We can warm up with virtual words and arrow cues. Let us mind the arrow cues indicate the target time, not the verb form.
Link to the color code and virtual words


For all of this exercise, our Modal time frame remains open (chapter 9.2). We mind the Modal relativity: we can use PRESENT as well as PAST Modal forms, for the grammatical target PRESENT.

Exercise 53__Example__Illustration

Relative time open frame

Example: may


Cue__Present and Progressive


Answer: may be bimoing, or


might be bimoing




Exercise 54. Let us try real verbs. We can use exercise 53. Let us remember about classic grammar stative verb use. The use refers to existence (view in the American Heritage dictionary), and derives from the Latin word “sisto,” to place; compare Perseus word study tool. In our grammar, we use the variable {ON}, for the stative use, also if it takes ignoring other cues.


As in exercise 53, the relative time frame remains open and we mind the Modal relativity. Real-time also requires that we consider how probable something is. We have our cubes here, for guidance.


Exercise 53__Example__Illustration

Relative time open frameExample: read, may
Cue__Present and Progressive


Answer: may be reading, or
2 cubes__Present Progressive
might be reading
1 cube__Present Progressive



Exercise 55. Let us try “jumping” time extents. We mark the relative frames and target time, for underlined items. Our cues mean,


extent-forward“One time extent forward”


extent-backward“One time extent backward”.


Example: In Washington D.C., you WILL BE ABLE TO visit the Library of Congress.


Answer: In Washington D.C., you can / may visit the Library of Congress.
PRESENT SIMPLE arrowRelative time open frame


1. After a day of a hop-on and hop-off the Washington trolley, you MAY feel you should have bought a two-day ticket.


2. In Washington, we were renting right on the Potomac. The area was lovely. You just HAD TO take a walk along the river.


3. You MUST book your seats in the Lisner Auditorium. The American Air Force jazz ensemble may perform live.


4. You NEED TO give up on wading in the waterfalls of the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Memorial Park. It is not allowed.


5. You MAY enter the National Gallery of Art on first-come basis.




From the key: natural language happens to involve rich text interpretation. The “Washington trolley” will be the Washington trolley tour, for example. Kids as well as adults, students as well as teachers, use the rich interpretation quite often. It would be cumbersome to provide all details every time we speak, whatever the language.


We learn to check on facts and trivia. Here is a sample search over Google. We can just type Washington trolley in the search field.


Example 1 has the Modal phrase “MAY feel” for a nodal reference. The phrase “SHOULD have bought” is a subordinate. We can have a peek at MAY for the PRESENT and FUTURE, in chapter 10.1.


We can view HAVE TO also with a real-time closed frame and the Infinitive. A phrase as, “We had to have worked hard”, could tell about a fact, not a hypothesis or opinion.


Many grammars will tell we can use BE ABLE TO rather than MAY, when we refer to the FUTURE. However, if we resolve on example 3 as, “the ensemble will be able to perform”, we imply the ensemble might have difficulty playing. The matter here is about probability. We can think about MAY with an open relative frame, to suggest prospect: “(Tomorrow) the American Air Force jazz ensemble MAY perform live”.


In example 5, we talk about permission. We may choose to say, “We will be able to / We will be allowed to…”


Exercise 56. We can try “targeting” time extents. Our target time extent is the one in which we “land”. Let us be flexible, especially with examples 3 and 5.


A target can be a goal to achieve. Linguistics uses the term “target” for goals in language and speech. Our articulatory targets, for example, are speech sounds as we intend them.


We can refer our examples to American literature. Let these here invoke the Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain.


Telling language styles is part every language learning, and comes early in life. The story here has dialectal American English. We cannot follow this style in formal writing. The language forms yet are not erroneous, as they are consistently dialectal. Further, it does not mean the stories do not have grammar cognitive variables. We can think about them, reading.


Example: I thought I WOULD behave a while if I COULD.


Answer: I think I WILL behave a while if I CAN.


I think I WOULD behave a while if I COULD.
(We mind the Relativity.)


1. But how CAN we do it if we don’t know what it is?


2. The widow rung a bell for supper, and you HAD TO come to time.


3. And more ― they‘VE GOT TO (HAVE TO) waltz that palace around over the country wherever you want it, you understand.


4. It fetched us a dollar a day apiece, all the year round ― more than a body COULD tell what to do with.


5. Well, three or four months run along, and it was well into the winter, now. I had been to school most all the time, and COULD spell, and read, and write just a little, and COULD say the multiplication table up to six times seven is thirty-five, and I don’t reckon I COULD ever get any further than that if I was to live forever.




From the key: The phrases “you understand” (example 3), or “I don’t reckon” (example 5), tell the time of the narrator, the character to tell the story. Human lives are not just stories, but the narrator time can help comprehend the notional time, the time of the person who speaks. Naturally, there is no universal notional time. We have to learn to keep own notional times. We can have our notional time for our psychological time, too.


Narratives or stories often use the personal pronoun we. In our grammar story, the pronoun we is to help avoid judgmental comment. It is a personally neutral figure of speech. We can discuss language without assuming on me or you.


The phrase “if I was to live forever” is an example of figurative thinking. Chapter 10 has more. Part Three expands on speech parts, as in “three or four months run along”.




Exercise 57. Let us try to choose our Modals. We can stay on associations with Huckleberry for a while.


Example: He MAY / WILL be in the woods now.
(I know that he is in the woods.)


Answer: He WILL be in the woods now.


1. Let us not worry about it. There WILL / CAN be no advantage to it.
(It is certain that there is going to be no advantage.)


2. They HAD TO go / MAY HAVE gone out to the woods.
(The woods are not the only way.)


3. You SHOULD learn / SHOULD HAVE learned the way through the woods.
(Now is the time to learn.)


4. You MAY / WILL get lost in these woods.
(It is certain.)


5. They HAD TO get / MAY HAVE gotten lost in the woods.
(We are looking for them. The only way is through the woods.)


6. You SHOULDN’T/ CAN’T get lost in these woods.
(It is impossible. You know the way very well.)


7. He DIDN’T HAVE TO get / COULDN’T HAVE gotten lost in the woods.
(He knew the way.)


8. They MUST HAVE / MAY HAVE gotten lost in the woods.
(They took the way through the woods.)


9. You MAY / HAVE TO avoid the way through the woods.
(It is not safe.)


10. You WOULD HAVE / SHOULD HAVE gotten lost in the woods.
(That was certain.)




From the key: In example 4, the Modal verb WILL tells about CERTAINTY for the PRESENT and the FUTURE. The FUTURE is usually an open context, the way life on Earth has been. We use WILL when we are sure or resolved about something. We may compare example 3 in Exercise 55 and try to avoid the cumbersome, soothsayer style in our English.




Exercise 58. Our story is now about general POTENTIALITY and PROBABILITY, in the grammatical PAST. We do not require an auxiliary time extent. Our relative time frame remains open. We can be back with the dayfly from exercise 43, in subchapter 7.1.


Example: The dayfly (can think) about matter, without butterflies.


Answer: The dayfly could think about matter, without butterflies.


1. The dayfly (consider) it somewhat rude of the butterfly to make reservations on the wings. They (may differ), but there (be) no reason for the remark. Anyway, now the butterfly (have to be) far away, with its wings.


2. The dayfly (start) to think about infinity. If there (be) infinity, the word “infinite” (can) only denote it. You (need) five letters to write the word. The letters and the word (be) undeniably finite.
(NEED can be a head verb. Compare Appendix 1.)


3. There (have to be) some matter to the alphabet, the dayfly thought. Five letters (can make) an eight-letter word (!) You just (need to compose) them. The number of possible words you (can make) with the alphabet (have to be) innumerable. That (be) the closest approximation to infinity the dayfly (may envision).


4. Letters also (can express) numbers. The dayfly (think) about other alphabets. If there (will be) anything universal about all letters in the world, that (can be) the essence of writing. Nothing as universal readily (occur) to the dayfly, however.


5. Letters (may take) various shapes. Only language (may give) writing its matter. The dayfly (start musing) if there (may be) universal thoughts.




From the key: in example 1, the phrase “might differ” tells about holding to an opinion. We can give it an open frame. It is up to our choosing if and what opinions we hold. Further journey has more detail on Modal frames and nodal time.


We can be back with the westerly from exercise 44.




Exercise 59. The westerly is in the mountains. So far, our Modal time frames were ready for us: we only adapted the verb. Now, we have to decide if we open the frame or close it. Generally, we are in the grammatical PAST. On top of everything, we think about Expression: we learn to manage big, real-life language information pools.


Example: The westerly (can gambol) on the shore a little longer, but it (gather) to go see the future: the mountains.


Answer: The westerly COULD HAVE gamboled on the shore a little longer, but it gathered to go see the future: the mountains.


1. What (will happen) about the present time ? The westerly (can perceive) something indivisible and intermediate about time. Time (be) in a way continuous. It (have to consist) of parts, however.


2. The present (have to border) on the past and the future. The present (be) somehow intermediary between the past and the future. However, how long (will) the present (be)? Sometimes, you (can view) the present as lasting as long as a day. Sometimes, it (will last) a split second.


3. Well, you (can) N (exist) only in the future or only in the past. With this regard, there always (will be) a present moment that (will be) the only present. There (will be) N anything of the past or the future, in the present?


4. The wester (get) to the mountains. They (be) its present now. The wester (can) N (think) about a more beautiful present. It (need) N the ocean view to see something beautiful any more.


5. How these beautiful mountains (can emerge)? The wester (speculate) if  winds (may shape) part their structure.




From the key: With example 4, if we say the wester “COULDN’T think about a more beautiful present”, we place the matter in the mountains. Alternately, if we say the wind “COULDN’T HAVE thought about a more beautiful present”, we make the frame to the time before it came to the mountains, when it was on the shore, in exercise 44.




Grammar books will have much advice on Modal verbs with patterns named the Unreal Past or Conditional. For a comparison, let us try a grammar theory of relativity. Our use of the word “relativity” is not about physics or families. It is linguistic. See chapter 10.


Link to chapter 10. Modal__Conditional or Unreal Past

7.1. Practice for hearts and minds

Exercise 39. Let us provide synonyms for the verbs below. Deciding between our variables ON and IN, we can use the Infinitive also with the Progressive. Chapter 2.1 presents the Infinitive. Appendix 1 lays out the basics about verbs.


Example: to think


ON ― to consider, to believe
IN ― to be cerebrating, to be pondering


1. to see; 2. to expect; 3. to taste; 4. to feel; 5. to value; 6. to consider; 7. to smell; 8. to prize; 9. to look; 10. to ponder; 11. to mind; 12. to remember; 13. to denote; 14. to import; 15. to touch; 16. to mark; 17. to express; 18. to observe; 19. to figure; 20. to typify.


Exercise 40. Naturally, our answers do not have to be identical. Humans differ in stative verb use (chapter 7). Please try to paraphrase the verbs and tell where we could take the ING, and where we would mostly stay ON our cognitive extents.


1. to hold; 2. to consist; 3. to keep; 4. to appear; 5. to indicate; 6. to argue; 7. to suggest; 8. to signify; 9. to matter; 10. to concern.


Exercise 41. What impressions do you have when you think about advertising phrases as “I’m lovin’ it?”


Exercise 42. We continue comparing the variables ON and IN. Now, we have only part the arrow cues. We can check on using the cues in chapter 5.1. We are staying in the PAST.


The story has a little ambiguity: in everyday circumstances, we may hear or read words we never have come across before. We should not let unfamiliar vocabulary disorient us. We can seek or ask for clarification, on words we do not know. They need not get us lost in grammar generally. Here, we learn to keep our time reference against even unusual wording.


Our story is about the Greenshank’s closest relative, the Greater Yellowlegs, meeting the Lesser Yellowlegs.


Greater Yellowlegs


The tale is a little inspired with Aristotle (regarding criticism on Aristotle, feel welcome to the book information) and intended to be mildly humorous. A self-respecting story tells about animals or objects that think and talk, not about humans ascribed animal or thing features. Such is our story. The birds really have different songs.


Example: One late afternoon, the Greater Yellowlegs 1. (hear) the two-note ditty in the crescent near the shore. Cousin Lesser 2. (chirp) mighty out of tune (!)


Answer: heard: {ON}; was chirping: {IN}


A. The Greater 3. (fly) up to the path and 4. (think) about the reason for the ditty. Sure Nature 5. (give) it some melody. Speaking about it in detail yet 6. (can be) a huge enterprise. The Greater 7. (ponder) on some of the particulars, when he 8. (see) the Lesser Yellowlegs by the seashore.


B. The Lesser Yellowlegs 9. (can try) the three-note whistle, it N 10. (be) in violation of the laws of physics, 11. (argue) the Greater Yellowlegs. The Lesser Yellowlegs 12. (appear) very similar in size. — “Not without a memory aid”, the Lesser 13. (retort). The two-note 14. (be) the only melody he 15. (know) by heart.


C. The Greater Yellowlegs 16. (expect) the refutation. However, there always 17. (exist) Thought, for rare but possible sounds. — Rare sounds 18. (feel) heroic, the Lesser Yellowlegs (observe). Education 19. (mean) both unpopularity and wisdom, whichever 20. (import) worse individually.


D. The uncouth absurd of the situation 21. (consist) in being out of place without moving, the Greater Yellowlegs 22. (declare). The Lesser Yellowlegs 23. (deem) that impossible. One place 24. (involve) one place, however Negative the relation.


E. The two 25. (meditate) steadily when the Lesser 26. (invoke) Probability. Their songs 27. (have) a logical interconnection. Elaborating on the two-note, although not completely out of the question, 28. (chance) common sense.



Exercise 43. We compare the features ON and IN, but with all our time extents (PRESENT, PAST, and FUTURE). As there is more language logic to manage, we have all arrow cues. Our next story is about a creature from Cimmerian Bosporus, the dayfly.


Example: About the summer solstice, dayflies 1. (come) to exist in Cimmerian Bosporus. According to a legend, a dayfly 2. (begin) its life in the morning, and 3. (die) before the second day sunset.


Answer: come, begins, dies; {ON}


A. It 4. (be) early morning. The dayfly 5. (flutter) its wings in the sunrise light. “I 6. (be) a day-fly”, it 7. (think). The spontaneous circumstance 8. (give) it its name.


B. The morning 9. (be) very bright and fresh. The dayfly 10. (wonder) over the water and the air, the green and the colorfulness of vegetation, when it 11. (see) a dry leaf. It 12. (know) that water 13. (come) from the earth and the air. It 14. (cogitate) if dry leaves 15. (belong) with green leaves.



C. It 16. (fly) past a vividly red rose flower when a butterfly 17. (stop) it for a little conversation. “You 18. (seem) to be this most daily of creatures”, the butterfly 19. (say). — “Right, I 20. (name) myself a dayfly”, the dayfly 21. (respond). “Living for a day 22. (form) the essence of my existence. Nothing that 23. (become) can be eternal, anyway.




D. This 24. (be) very interesting”, the butterfly 25. (remark). “I sure also 26. (become).” — “I 27. (think) about it when I 28. (see) that dry leaf over there”, the dayfly 29. (reply). “I 30. (contemplate) if the becoming of dry leaves 31. (happen) along the becoming of the day, dayflies, and … butterflies.




E. The butterfly 32. (disapprove). “I sure N 33. (will answer) this! You 34. (can see) that we 35. (differ). Our wings 36. (be) dissimilar.” — “Nobody 37. (deny) this”, the dayfly 38. (concede). “It 39. (be) the becoming that I 40. (distrust). This morning 41. (become) broad daylight, and this day 42. (become) a night. However, the day and the night 43. (can inhere) in disparate matters, I 44. (feel). One of them 45. (may be) the light.” The butterfly 46. (shrug) its wings and 47. (fly) away.





From the key: We can perceive the verb WILL as referring to the PRESENT or the FUTURE.


“I sure will not answer this!”
We can make a close synonym, saying,
“I have no wish to answer this.”


“This morning will be becoming broad daylight,
and this day will become a night.”
We would make a close synonym, saying,
“This is what is going to happen.”


The verb to become has had a role in language history. We can make better acquaintance with it further in the travel. We can interpret the word “day” as 24 hours on Earth, daytime, a time, age, or even an epoch. I hope you do your dictionary work (!)




Exercise 44. We can look to grammatical Time and Expression (we may refer to chapter 5). When we want to deny something, we can use the Negative. In our notes, we can distinguish the Negative with the letter N. When we want to ask a question, we can use the Interrogative. We can distinguish it with the question mark, (?).


First, we can place our story mostly in the PRESENT. We name this manner to tell a story the dramatic narrative. Then, we can take the story to the PAST. This should help us see how our time capacities can work.


Our story can be about the westerly, the kind of wind to happen to rise in oceans. Westerlies can influence the weather. Some scientists have blamed splits in westerly flows for record-breaking cold or hot temperatures. Some observers even suspected extraterrestrial or supernatural influences over the weather, while it was… a westerly.


We have only part the arrow cues. We are exercising them also because the sense for target time can be very useful with Modal verbs.


Example: The westerly wind 1. (rise) in the high seas. Its resilient body of air 2. (give) its first sough.



Answer: The westerly wind rises in the high seas. Its resilient body of air gives its first sough.


A. It 3. (come) to the land and 4. (feel) a difference. Now, the high ocean 5. (be) the past and the land 6. (become) the present.



2. The shore 7. (delineate) the past and the present. It 8. (be) the limit for both. The wind 9. (play) with the matter and 10. (frolic) into eddies.



3. The wester 11. (swirl), when the thought about the future 12. (come) to it. The ocean N 13. (be) the future to it. The shoreland N 14. (be) the future to it, either. Where 15. (be) the future?



4. Mountain peaks 16. (shine) their snowy cool in the moonlight. The wester 17. (get) there before the day 18. (begin)? The wester 19. (set) its course to the mountain range.



5. The shoreland 20. (change) from the wester’s present to the wester’s past. Then, there 21. (be) something indivisible and intermediate about the present. The mountains 22. (be) the wester’s present, if the wester 23. (get) there.



We can take our story into the grammatical PAST. Please try to focus on the verb WILL.


Answer: The westerly wind rose in the high seas. Its resilient body of air gave its first sough.


1. It came to the land and felt a difference. Now, the high Ocean was the past and the land had become the present.


2. The shore delineated the past and the present. It was the limit for both. The wind was playing with the matter and frolicking into eddies.


Please mind: we can use the variable ON for an activity that gets on the map, while something else is happening: The wester was swirling, when the thought about the future came to it.




We can envision our grammatical logic as interconnected.




We can merge our variables IN and TO. What is going to be our new, merged variable? The merger might be not as simple as a wester frolicking into eddies. Feel welcome to further journey.


Link to chapter 8. The Perfect and Progressive merger2

6.5. The target time and frame

It is good to set own goals and ambitions reasonably, but high: even if we do not get where we have set our objective, we get higher when we aim high, rather than low. Linguistic targets that might compare with Rocky Mountain peaks are reasonably high.

Exercise 37. We have our time frames for our guidance. Overall, we can choose between the Simple and the Perfect, in the PAST time compass. Please put the verb in the form for the grammatical PAST extent and give the arrow cue along with the mapping value. In language, we can seek inspiration with words. Let it be a simple chair this time.


Example: His parents (surrender) his place in the kindergarten. When Ms. Duncan (suggest) playing the musical chairs, Art (throw) in three right hand gloves. One of them (belong) to Ms. Duncan.


If we feel we could be better off writing entire answers, we can do so without looking to others. Writing belongs with human fine motor behavior. It is important in integrating language skills.


Answer: His parents surrendered his place in the kindergarten. When Ms. Duncan suggested playing the musical chairs, Art threw in three right hand gloves. One of them belonged to Ms. Duncan.


1. Despite his early predilection for challenge, he (get) himself a chairborne job. His chair (have) an advantage, however. He (design) └┘ it for use by one person exactly


2. Originally, he never (expect) of a woman to fill a chair. He (change) his mind when he (perceive), at about 26, that the strategy almost (reduce) └┘ him to his local club armchair, for dialogue.


3. He (marry) Jin in summer. They (spend) their countryside honeymoon mostly bringing the chairs from the garden. His friend Jalen (persuade) him to go on a vacation, in a better weather. They (choose) Amtrak to journey. Art and Jin first (meet) in a parlor car. Face to face with their notebooks, they (realize) they were actually chatting with each other over the Unlimited (!)


4. He soon (begin) developing his son-in-law attitude. Eva, his mother-in-law, (love) to say nobody should let predecessors set the measure for the chair. Art (have) a reservation. His job (be) └┘ by principle like trying to keep someone on the edge of the seat with soft overboiled noodles. Jalen Seges (agree) that office routines (take) some time.


5. Art (know) that contending Eva’s arguments (be) suggestive of trying verbally to captivate a moving rock. Incontrovertibility (belong) with the Seges family ethos. A Yale graduate married to a Harvard grad, Ms. Seges (be) └┘ a woman of resolve, throughout her life. She (talk) table and chairs right when junior (begin) preschool. Her grandchildren would go to best schools, to fill their grandparents’ walnut bobbin chairs.




Art is thinking about a new job. Routines of predetermined beginning and end are not his nature. He realizes his responsibilities and, at the same time, he knows he deserves a career of his own. Eva’s work has been her passion. She wants to support the family, and he feels like speaking with her. With language work, we also can learn to negotiate: we contend the arguments, and not the people, for that.


Could we look up the Amtrak Unlimited, Yale, and Harvard over the Internet? Can we comprehend words like “incontrovertibility”, if our dictionary does not have them? There are sample hints down this page.


Exercise 38. Please tell the time frames and map values (ON, IN, or TO), along with the grammatical time (PRESENT, PAST, or FUTURE). We have the arrow cues with every task, if we need them.


Example: Her father 1. (be) a nibmeister. She 2. (have) a clear taste for good quality since she 3. (be) a little girl.



Answer: (1) was, {ON} PAST;
(2) └┘ has had, {TO} PRESENT;
(3) was, {ON} PAST.


A. When she was in her early teens, she 4. (make) a miniature book. It 5. (be) three inches square.



B. She 6. (keep) the book for her thinktionary. She still 7. (happen) to add words to it, though she 8. (make) many more such books.



C. A young girl, she 9. (put) her miniature book in her jacket pocket and 10. (go) to sit by the river. Whenever a word 11. (come) to her mind, she 12. (write) it in with her miniature fountain pen.



D. Her handwriting 13. (change) a little, since then. By and large, she 14. (adjust) her letters to the size of her notebook. One day, she 15. (engross) her future husband’s name in her thinktionary. His name 16. (remain) the only word to take a whole page out of the alphabetical order.



E. Chantelle 17. (have) a collection of pens. Her favored inkwells 18. (be) glass, silver, and pewter. Her first book 19. (tell) about a girl’s language of the heart.





Form (16) also might be “his name remains”: there are no universal rules to govern contexts, and we are free to decide on our own, dependent on our cognitive mapping.


Miniature books belong with arts. Their scopes may be the same as of standard volumes. They are smaller because they are miniaturized. Chantelle’s miniature book is one of the biggest sizes ― it is three inches square.


The “thinktionary” is a coined word. We can compare it with the word “dictionary”. Our exercises will have more and more words, especially if we size up Part One. Good language skills require vast mental lexicons, and these can be creative or multilingual. We can expand our lexicons with small notebooks of words and word associations. Everyone can have own thinktionaries. Have we met Chantelle already?




We do not have to use Past Perfect forms whenever anything happened earlier or preceded something else. We would need millions of past tense forms to speak about Old English, thinking only about the days and years since those times.


Amtrak Unlimited is a forum for Amtrak passengers.


Harvard and Yale are two very prominent and competitive American universities.


We can interpret incontrovertibility by the word build. The American Heritage online will show the word in·con·tro·vert·ible and explain that the verb to con·tro·vert may mean “to raise arguments against; voice opposition to”.


We look up the parts in– and –ibility. The particle in– may negate. The particle –ibility can work with a noun and connote “an ability, inclination, or suitability”.


However, the particle in– may also mean “having the function of”. We can look up words such as “inbound” or “incant”. Inflammable materials or substances can be highly flammable.


The verb “to controvert” derives from the noun controversy. The noun consists of the particles contro– and versus. Contro– or contra– can connote “against, opposite, contrasting”. The particle in– does not work in the sense “into” or “within” with the particle con–.


The American Heritage dictionary can tell that incontrovertibility relates to the adjective incontrovertible, meaning “impossible to dispute, unquestionable”. In·con·tro·vert·i·ble·ness is another, probable form. We can guess that Art Veltall’s mother-in-law may be a person difficult — but not impossible — to persuade or influence. His wife Jin is some personality, too.


Read how to use the American Heritage dictionary.


We do not need to memorize word build. Just browsing dictionaries and reading the language information about words, we might get even surprised with how much we remember and “intuitively” use.


Feel welcome to further journey.


Link to chapter 7. Love, hate, and paths with time