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Is It Correct to Say Taken Aback: Grammar, Meaning, and Proper Usage

“Taken aback” is a well-known phrase you will hear quite often in the English language. But have you ever stopped to ask yourself, “Is it correct to say, ‘taken aback’?” Also, have you ever considered what it actually means and where it originally came from? It is correct to say “taken aback.” We use the …

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Past Due or Passed Due: Which Is Correct?

Getting the mail can be exciting — until you receive a bill with a glaring red stamp marked, “past due.” But should it read “past due” or “passed due”?  “Past due” is grammatically correct in the case of an overdue bill, deadline, or if someone arrives after the time you expect. “Past” can be an …

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Is “Pro” Positive or Negative?

There are several ways you can express your positive feelings or share your favor for something. In English, you might hear someone say that a person is “pro” something when weighing opposing sides of an argument. When torn between two options, you might also weigh the “pros and cons” of the situation, so is “pro” …

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Has Just Began or Has Just Begun: Past Tense vs. Past Participle

Choosing the correct phrase can be tricky, especially when words are very similar or expressed in different forms. The terms “began” and “begun” are two such words that can be challenging to master, especially when deciding whether you should say “has just begun” or “has just began.” The correct phrase is “has just begun.” When …

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What’s the Difference Between Countries and Country’s?

A noun can change form to indicate whether it’s possessive, plural, or both, so how does this apply to the noun “country”?  For example, what’s the difference between “countries” and “country’s”? The difference is that “countries” is the plural form of the singular noun “country,” and we use it to refer to many different countries …

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Which is Correct “Passed Away” or “Passed On”?

In English, we often use a euphemism to cushion the blow when mentioning something harsh, unpleasant, or embarrassing. One of the most common applications for euphemisms is when discussing death, particularly when talking to children. But is it better to say “passed away” or “passed on” when talking about death? Both the phrases “passed away” …

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