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Author Topic: English grammar, please help  (Read 2044 times)

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« on: October 13, 2007, 11:01 »
0
I have a question about English grammar.  I possibly learnt it some time in the past, but I really don't know which form is correct:

South Africa - Namibia border
    or
South African - Namibian border  ?

Regards,
Adelaide


w7lwi

  • Those that don't stand up to evil enable evil.
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2007, 11:34 »
0
Both versions are correct depending on the context in which they're used.

"It's the border between South Africa and Namibia."

"The South African - Namibian border."

« Reply #2 on: October 13, 2007, 13:26 »
0
Thanks, w7lwi.

The first usage (border before) was clear to me, however in the second (border in the end) it was not and I've seen both forms (the ones I wrote) in the Internet, and in fact "Namibia South Africa border" gets more results in Google than "Namibian South African border".

I would say "Namibian - South African border" was correct because "Namibian" and "South African" are adjectives to "border", but maybe I'm using Portuguese logics to explain my reasoning, and in fact in Portuguese, although we would say "Namibian border", we would also say "Namibia - South Africa border" - I just don't know why.

Regards,
Adelaide

« Reply #3 on: October 13, 2007, 18:45 »
0
The more correct form of the two would be the "South African-Namibian border". The 'n' on the countries' names transforms them into possessive adjectives that modify border. Why is it more correct? Don't know, but it is the more common form in American English (you never know with those silly Brits though).  In fact, if I read a sentence like "I crossed the America-Mexico border", I would flag it as incorrect because America-Mexico should be modifying border.


 

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