Results 1 to 6 of 6
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Persian
      • Home Country:
      • Iran
      • Current Location:
      • Iran

    • Join Date: Jan 2011
    • Posts: 10
    #1

    nailbrush or nail brush, any definite rules?

    Is there any universal rule to pick the right combination like:
    nailbrush or nail brush
    toiletbrush or toilet brush
    workbench or work bench
    screwdriver or screw driver

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Malaysia
      • Current Location:
      • Malaysia

    • Join Date: Apr 2014
    • Posts: 3,322
    #2

    Re: nailbrush or nail brush, any definite rules?

    I think the older and more commonly used words are combined, as in workbench and screwdriver.
    Nail brush and toilet brush are separate words. Toothbrush is one word though.
    I am not a teacher.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England

    • Join Date: Jun 2010
    • Posts: 24,492
    #3

    Re: nailbrush or nail brush, any definite rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by post View Post
    Is there any universal rule to pick the right combination ...?
    No.

    When in doubt, look them up here.

    Ted, 'nailbrush' is just fine.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Malaysia
      • Current Location:
      • Malaysia

    • Join Date: Apr 2014
    • Posts: 3,322
    #4

    Re: nailbrush or nail brush, any definite rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by Rover_KE View Post
    No.

    When in doubt, look them up here.

    Ted, 'nailbrush' is just fine.
    Nail brush (separate words) is more common according to Ngram viewer and Google.
    I am not a teacher.

  1. Piscean's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • Czech Republic
      • Current Location:
      • Czech Republic

    • Join Date: Jul 2015
    • Posts: 9,981
    #5

    Re: nailbrush or nail brush, any definite rules?

    Fine, but nailbrush ​is acceptable.

    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States

    • Join Date: Dec 2009
    • Posts: 6,332
    #6

    Re: nailbrush or nail brush, any definite rules?

    Quote Originally Posted by post View Post
    Is there any universal rule?



    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello, Post:

    I have found some information that may interest you.

    "The usual [my emphasis] progression is for a compound to start out spelled as two separate words (basket ball). It is later hyphenated (basket-ball), and finally it is written solid (basketball)."

    My source also tells us:

    1. Some compounds are spelled as separate words. ("We ate a HOT dog." Do not pronounce it as "We ate a hot DOG." That means we ate a dog that was hot!)

    2. Some compounds are spelled without a space: roommate, housekeeper.

    3. Some are hyphenated: mother-in-law.

    [Only my note: I used to chuckle [a gentle laugh] when I would read "to-day" and "to-morrow" and "now-a-days" in older English.]

    [Only my note: I have noticed that some people prefer "cell phone" and others prefer "cellphone."]

    -- Source for the information: Bruce L. Liles, A Basic Grammar of Modern English (1979), page 97.

Similar Threads

  1. nail
    By unpakwon in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 09-Dec-2012, 15:41
  2. brush yourself up
    By Verona_82 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 21-Sep-2011, 16:26
  3. Brush for what?
    By flytothesky in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 19-Feb-2009, 18:17
  4. Nail/Nail for exhibitions
    By Grablevskij in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 13-Oct-2008, 10:54
  5. brush up
    By sara88 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 6
    Last Post: 24-Jun-2008, 22:00

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •