Friday, April 20, 2012

A Light in the Darkness I

I have decided that it is not right in me merely to curse the darkness. I must light a candle.

You'll get sick of seeing this picture as the weeks go on.


Every Friday, or as many Fridays as we don't have guests or interviews, I intend to post up a grammar point. Not only do I edit for Evernight, but I also possess a Master's degree in Humanities (which means I did literature). I was an English teacher for years. Grammar is my dear friend. He is not at all frightening once you get to know him, and I would like to contribute to his being better known.

Today's point is "hopefully". "Hopefully" is a word that is in the midst of undergoing a shift. In common usage, that is, in daily speech, it is used as a synonym for "I hope". This is not, however, what it means. Here is an example.

"Hopefully, Billy will survive the zombie onslaught."

But he probably won't.

This sentence does not mean that I hope Billy will survive. This sentence means that Billy, with his heart full of hope, will survive the zombie onslaught.

"I hope that Billy will survive the zombie onslaught."

"Billy will, I hope, survive the zombie onslaught."

Another example: "We will, hopefully, not be discovered hiding in this coffin."



Rise and shine, beautiful!

This does not mean that I hope we can hide successfully. This means that as we hide and are not discovered, our hearts will be full of hope.

"We will, I hope, not be discovered hiding in this coffin."

"I hope we will not be discovered hiding in this coffin."
If "I hope" can be placed into the sentence replacing the "hopefully", then "hopefully" has not been used correctly.

If anyone has a particular request for a grammar blog, by all means let me know! In the meantime, keep the candle burning.

2 comments:

  1. Great post, Adonis. Interesting and noted. I'll be emailing you about something.

    ReplyDelete

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