word order (was Re: Random DWJ discovery of the day)

HSchinske at aol.com HSchinske at aol.com
Fri Apr 1 15:50:31 EST 2005


In a message dated 3/31/2005 8:27:12 PM Pacific Standard Time, Colin Fine <
colin at kindness.demon.co.uk> writes:


> There are rules for the ordering of adjectives in English (for example 
> colour adjectives go
> closer to their head than almost anything else).
> Strangely, these are never taught in English schools (I don't know 
> whether they're taught to
> learners of English as a second language). Why not? Because, unlike some 
> of the rules which
> have traditionally been taught in schools, they are actually part of 
> English, and as such are acquired unthinkingly
> by *every* English-speaking child with normal language abilities.

These rules are taught to ESL students, I *think*. I heard of them first in 
my copyediting class last quarter, and I believe (but am not completely sure) 
that the instructor had found them in an ESL resource. I can look through the 
handouts if anyone actually cares. (Now someone will point out that they're in 
the Chicago manual, which I'm too lazy to go check despite it sitting not four 
feet from me, and I'll have egg on my face. Too bad!)

Helen Schinske
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