inlingua Blog

03 Jan

It’s not cricket

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How often I heard this phrase, during my youth (many moons ago now). And what does that phrase mean? It means: that’s not fair: not justice; not as it should be; or, as Germans sometimes say, it’s not the English way. Today, it is seldom heard. Modern English provides countless alternatives. So what is so

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24 Nov

The Most Romantic Night of the Year

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Saint Nicholas = Santa Claus = Father Christmas. They are all one in the UK these days. The sixth of December is just another day like any other day. This wonderful Christmas character is now usually referred to as ‘Father Christmas’.Traditionally, he comes down the chimney during the night of 24th/25th and fills children’s stockings

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02 Okt

Those Wonderful Trees

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The subject of one of my previous blogs was about  the arrival of Spring. So now I feel , is the right time to think about  the arrival of Autumn. What a difference! Just now, sunset  is at 4.30 pm in the UK. (5.30 pm continental  time).  As I sit writing this, I realise that

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06 Sep

The 18th Letter

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When and how did American pronunciation change from English pronunciation? This is not a new question. There is no direct , simple answer. Although there had been earlier landings by ship by the English and others, we generally think that the landing of the ship ‘Mayflower’ was the first permanent settling of English people in

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21 Jun

Energy Yes. But Which Energy?

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My grandfather went to work in a coal mine in South Wales at the age of nine years. As children we went there from Somerset on holidays. What a difference between the two areas! Somerset, dreamy farmland – South Wales, fast moving, with coal mines whichever direction you looked. The water in the streams and rivers

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29 Mai

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall…

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Last week while visiting a friend’s house I was invited to look into bedrooms where they had new wooden floors built in. Shock! Horror! In the 2 teenage daughters’ rooms it was difficult to see the floors. The floors were almost hidden by teenage clothes. This made me realise how easy it is in today’s

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10 Mai

Genetically Modified Food

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This is a subject which seems to puzzle ‘the man in the street’. He hears so much about the dangers to health and development of the GM Food. Conversely those in favour are mainly scientists who are involved in the research, and companies which produce agriculture seeds and those producing animal feedstuffs. Some of the arguments put

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18 Apr

Left Hand Drive

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This means that all road traffic in a given country drives on the left hand side of the road. Many drivers coming from a right hand drive country often think that having to drive on the left is crazy. ‘ Why can’t they be intelligent and drive on the right like we do?’ How often

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29 Mrz

Alcohol – Friend or Enemy

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Since time immemorial alcohol has played a prominent role in countless societies. Nearly 2.000 years ago Jesus supposedly turned water into wine. Over the years wine has often been used to seal contracts, treaties and many forms of agreements. In the Middle Ages monks’ allowance of beer was measured in gallons (1 Br gallon = 4.5 liters). Charles Dickens (died

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08 Feb

Contradictions

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One aspect of November 2013, left a great impression on me. This was the unusual results of actions to collect money for various charities. For example, from the typically British, fireworks shows. A spontaneous collection outside a supermarket, for the Philippines disaster. An annual action to raise money for Children in Need. Collections across the

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