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It's Been Said Before

By Orin Hargraves

It's Been Said Before "examines why certain phrases become clichés and why they should be avoided -- or why they still have life left in them."

New from Cambridge University Press!


Sounds Fascinating

By J. C. Wells

How do you pronounce biopic, synod, and Breughel? - and why? Do our cake and archaic sound the same? Where does the stress go in stalagmite? What's odd about the word epergne? As a finale, the author writes a letter to his 16-year-old self.

Academic Paper

Title: What is modal about I thought that…?
Author: Susan Reed
Institution: Université Catholique de Louvain
Linguistic Field: Semantics
Abstract: Some nonmodal tense forms (e.g. thought) can trigger one or two kinds of modal interpretation, viz. suspended factuality (implicating present counterfactuality) of the complement clause (I thought you weren't married) or discourse tentativeness (I thought you might lend me your camera). The authors explain how this nonmodal use of the past tense – the thinking is represented as a past fact – can lead to one of these modal interpretations of the complement clause. In doing so they discuss various observations in connection with these and other I thought that…constructions and similar uses of other past-tense and past-perfect forms.


This article appears IN English Language and Linguistics Vol. 9, Issue 2.

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