General Writing and Grammar Help/Paired Conjunctions

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Question
QUESTION: Dear Ted,
I'd like to know the word order using NEITHER ... Nor and NOT ONLY ... BUT ALSO in case we put NEITHER and NOT ONLY at the beginning of the sentence. Which of the following pairs are correct:
1. a) Neither do you come to my home, nor do you call me.
     Neither is he very mean, nor is he very generous.

2. b) Neither do you come to my home, nor you call me.
     Neither is he very mean, nor he is very generous.

3. a) Not only is that book easy, but also it is interesting.
     Not only do we need a new office, but also we need some furniture.
4. b) Not only that book is easy, but also it is interesting.
     Not only we need a new office, but also we need some furniture.

I would be grateful if you can help me.
B. Victory

ANSWER: Dear Bob:

  Dear Ted,
I'd like to know the word order using NEITHER ... Nor and NOT ONLY ... BUT ALSO in case we put NEITHER and NOT ONLY at the beginning of the sentence. Which of the following pairs are correct:
1. a) Neither do you come to my home, nor do you call me.
    Neither is he very mean, nor is he very generous.

2. b) Neither do you come to my home, nor you call me.
    Neither is he very mean, nor he is very generous.

3. a) Not only is that book easy, but also it is interesting.
    Not only do we need a new office, but also we need some furniture.
4. b) Not only that book is easy, but also it is interesting.
    Not only we need a new office, but also we need some furniture.

*** Bob:

There is just one error, and it has nothing to do with the parallel conjunctions of "neither. . . nor" OR "not only . . . but also."  The very last sentence is missing one word:  Not only DO we need a new office, but also we need some furniture.

All of the other sentences are correct.  You have used the comparisons EXACTLY as they were meant to be used.

Congratulations to you, Bob.

I'll look forward to more questions from you.  Maybe you should volunteer as an English expert at Allexperts!

Ted



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Many thanks for your help, dear Ted.
Regarding the word order in each of the clauses, the NEITHER one and the NOR one, I'd like to know which ones are correct, especially the word order in the second clause. For example
Neither do you come to my home, nor DO YOU CALL me?
OR
Neither do you come to my home, nor YOU CALL me?
And ,more or less,the same question about structures using NOT ONLY ... BUT ALSO ...; that is,
Not only IS THAT BOOK easy, but also it is interesting?
OR
Not only THAT BOOK IS easy, but also it is interesting?

Thank you.
BV

Answer
Dear Bob:

UPDATE:

First, Bob, I hope that you will consider nominating me for "volunteer of the month" when I answer your future questions.  The nominations are important.

Second --

PROJECT FOR YOU:  Please send me a question to Allexperts with the subject line "Learning Express" and the message "Please send me the link."

I will send you a link that you POSSIBLY may be able to access.

Thank you.

Ted

******************************************************

Subject: Paired Conjunctions

Question:
Many thanks for your help, dear Ted.
Regarding the word order in each of the clauses, the NEITHER one and the NOR
one, I'd like to know which ones are correct, especially the word order in the
second clause. For example
Neither do you come to my home, nor DO YOU CALL me?
OR
Neither do you come to my home, nor YOU CALL me?

*** In almost every case, the word order of the second clause matches the word order of the first clause.  

NEITHER DO YOU COME
NOR DO YOU CALL

The preceding example is correct.  The following example, as you can see, is wrong, because the pattern is disrupted:

NEITHER DO YOU COME
NOR YOU CALL

*******

And ,more or less,the same question about structures using NOT ONLY ... BUT ALSO
...; that is,
Not only IS THAT BOOK easy, but also it is interesting?
OR
Not only THAT BOOK IS easy, but also it is interesting?

*** In these examples, the first one is correct.  The second sentence is a problem.
In that second sentence, the word order you have used places the verb [IS] AFTER the specific item [THAT BOOK].  In so doing, you have changed the entire meaning of the sentence.  You are now comparing THAT BOOK, which is "easy," to something else that is not named.  You need to have a second item for comparison, if you use this structure:

Not only THAT BOOK is easy, but also THIS BOOK is the same.  [easy]

In short, Bob, by changing the word order in your second set of sentences, you have changed the meaning.

Here is a good website that you should bookmark:

http://www.dailygrammar.com

The teacher who formed the website is no longer active.  He e-mailed and English lesson each day to the people who were on his mailing list.  Even though the daily lessons are gone, you can still access more than 200 lessons through the "ARCHIVES."

Here is the specific site for types of conjunctions:

http://www.dailygrammar.com/Lesson-204-Conjunctions.htm

1.  Read the explanation and examples.
2.  Take the quiz.
3.  Scroll down to see the correct answers.
4.  Continue to the next lesson.

If you are looking for something specific, you can use the search box or the table of contents to find your problem.

Have fun!  I think these exercises are great . . . . and YOU can test YOURSELF.

Ted

P.  S.  Do you Skype?  I will be Skyping with one [or more] of your countrymen sometime this week.  Our 7 1/2 hour time difference is always a problem.



Thank you.

General Writing and Grammar Help

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Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

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.

Experience

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

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

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