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General Writing and Grammar Help/Check, bounce back, return

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Question
Dear Ted:

With reference to the question "What other verbs or infinitive phrases go with the word 'check'?" -- I should have written, "What other verbs or infinitive phrases go with the NOUN 'check'?"

When a check is not paid, don't you use the infinitive phrase "to bounce back" or should I use the verb "to return"?

Again, many, many thanks for your kind help.

Answer
Dear Paolo:

With reference to the question "What other verbs or infinitive phrases go with
the word 'check'?" -- I should have written, "What other verbs or infinitive
phrases go with the NOUN 'check'?"

When a check is not paid, don't you use the infinitive phrase "to bounce back"
or should I use the verb "to return"?

*** YES.  Checks can be "bounced," which means that there are not enough funds in the checking account to pay the amount of the check.  That check is "returned to the payer."

There is a sense in which you can say that "the checked bounced back."  Usually, however, "bounced checks" are RETURNED unpaid.  "Bouncing a check" is an idiom.

Ted

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Ted Nesbitt

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I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

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B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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