In some circles the distinction between the adjective good and the adverb well is not as clear as it used to be; UK readers will be familiar with the sports reporters' jokey cliche "the boy done good".
But last night a TV documentary on the roots of the credit crunch featured an interview with a venture capitalist who has been making investments in run-down urban areas. He explained: “It’s possible to do good and to do well.” A well turned phrase which is a timely reminder, perhaps, of why it’s worth holding the line on English usage.
I recently came across a phrase (in a very old motor cycle magazine) which baffled me. A rider who had been beset by mechanical problems concluded his tale of woe: "Train home; too tired to mote." The only use I can track down for mote as a verb has to do with giving permission. Does anyone out there have any idea of what it might have meant in Edwardian England?
4 days ago