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  1. #1
    nelson13 is offline Member
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    Default the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    a conversation:

    An American: Students there have an accent even worse than mine.

    My reply: The word EVEN is/has been/was misused; your accent is good.

    Which tense should I use?

    Thank you very much.

  2. #2
    SoothingDave is online now VIP Member
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    "Even" isn't really the word to be concerned about here.

  3. #3
    Barb_D's Avatar
    Barb_D is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    Yes, the word "worse" was misused.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    Forgetting the content, if someone has just misused a word, you would say, "You've misused the word 'even'" or perhaps "The word 'even' is misused there." If it's just been spoken, there's no need for 'was' or 'has been'.

  5. #5
    nelson13 is offline Member
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    sorry,

    could you tell me in what way this sentence is wrong?
    (for certain I remembered the wrong thing

  6. #6
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    Quote Originally Posted by nelson13 View Post
    sorry,

    could you tell me in what way this sentence is wrong?
    (for certain I remembered the wrong thing
    Which sentence? You haven't given one.

  7. #7
    nelson13 is offline Member
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    In some previous replies some of the members of this forum said the original sentence is problematic.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    Quote Originally Posted by nelson13 View Post
    In some previous replies some of the members of this forum said the original sentence is problematic.
    My guess is that accents are not usually described as good or bad: an accent, IMO, can be strong, or weak, or nice, or what have you, but usually not good or bad.
    Please be aware that I'm neither a native English speaker nor a teacher.

  9. #9
    emsr2d2's Avatar
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    Quote Originally Posted by nelson13 View Post
    In some previous replies some of the members of this forum said the original sentence is problematic.
    You seem to think that the word that has been misused is "even". It's not. The word which you want to say has been misused is "worse". If you are trying to say that the person's American accent is good, then you want to tell them that their use of the word "worse" suggests that their accent is bad. You disagree. It doesn't matter that they said "even worse". They could have said "much worse" or "a lot worse" etc. You think they should not have suggested that theirs is bad, by using the word "worse".

    American: Students there have an accent even worse than mine!
    You: I think you're misusing the word "worse" there. Your accent is great!
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  10. #10
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: the word EVEN is/has been/was misused

    The American speaker could have been joking or trying to make a criticism politely. I think the truth lies not in the bare words but what the speaker was trying to achieve.

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