News Grammar campaigners in Cambridge have been adding apostrophes to street signs after Cambridge City Council stopped using them.

The Good Grammar leader warned that now apostrophes are gone, commas could be next

Language's last taboo

'It's silly to correct mispronunciation, because the way people say things is the correct way to say them, even when it is wrong'


Martin McGuinness writes for the Independent on Sunday.

Theatre; The queen is dead! Long live Quentin Crisp!


Letter: Grammar schools

Sir: Your excellent leading article "Forget selection: diversity is the key to good education" (2 September) made the point that today the 163 grammar schools are only one of a wide range of types of secondary school that provide alternatives for parents of 11-year-olds.

Monday Books: Life is fab in the language lab


How to achieve A-grade happiness

HOW DO you earn an A grade in GCSE English? For the first time, government examination advisers have provided an official answer.

LETTER: Uses of grammar

Sir: I agree with Philip Hensher (Comment, 25 June) that pedantic grammarians are part of the problem; the trouble is that too many people today think that the solution is not to teach grammar at all.

Revealed: why aardvark isn't such a silly name after all

Do words have the same impulse as builders called A1 Construction - to come top of a list?

I'm bored of pedantic grammarians

How often does it need to be said? Language doesn't get worse or better; it just changes

Scouse is threatened by the rising tide of Estuary English

THE LIVERPOOL accent, with its distinctive nasal twang, is being supplanted by the southern tones of Estuary English.

Linguistic notes: Origins of language in the New World

HOW, WHEN, and speaking what language(s) did man first cross from the Old to the New World?

Yes, I smack my kids too - but it's an admission of my failure

Once or month or so, something so enrages me that I push them or hold them deliberately roughly

Letter: Linguistic currency

Sir: What gets me are all those sports teams that go on "tor" - presumably to Glastonbury?

Linguistic Notes: Collapse of the language nativists

A BUZZWORD of 1990s pop psychology is "language instinct". According to Steven Pinker's best-selling book of that title, mankind inherits knowledge of language structure. Just as the patterning of a peacock's tail is mapped in peacock genes, so Pinker and others claim that the fine detail of phrases, clauses and sentences is mapped in human genes. These "linguistic nativists" urge that we do not really learn our mother tongue. In a sense we are born knowing most of it.
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