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    #1

    I've made a lot of mistakes

    Hi,

    Is "I've made a lot of mistakes in my life, but thankfully I always try to learn from them" correct?

  1. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    Hello, Untaught!

    It's fine and natural for casual conversation, but there are some things you might think about to avoid being guilty of lazy English.

    First, using words like thankfully, luckily, and hopefully that way doesn't make literal sense, even though it's common in informal conversation. It's saying that you're trying thankfully, when what you mean is that you're thankful that you try.

    But is trying what you're actually thankful for? Maybe you mean that you're thankful that you're the kind of person who tries - or you're thankful that you have the time and circumstances that allow you to try.

    So to make the statement absolutely logical, you would need to rephrase it or simply remove the word thankfully altogether.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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    #3

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    I agree that thankfully doesn't work well here, but only because it looks like you are thanking yourself for your good attitude. There's absolutely nothing wrong with using hopefully as a disjunct to modify a statement that follows it. It's been used that way for several hundred years. Sadly, some grammar scolds in the 1960s discovered an apparent logical flaw in this. Thankfully, their voices are fading into the background.
    I am not a teacher.

  2. Piscean's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    IThankfully, their voices are fading into the background.
    Sadly, there are still some around.

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    #5

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    Evidently some folks hold a deathgrip on discredited ideas.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #6

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    Apparently they do.

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    #7

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    Certainly!
    I am not a teacher.

  4. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    Really? "I hope" and "hopefully" mean the same thing?

    I never got that memo! (And I really have made a lot of mistakes!)
    Last edited by Charlie Bernstein; 07-Jun-2016 at 21:47.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  5. Piscean's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    Really? "I hope" and "hopefully" mean the same thing?
    Where did anybody say that?

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    #10

    Re: I've made a lot of mistakes

    When used as a disjunct, hopefully means "it is to be hoped that...." Everybody who says it or writes it in that sense understands it as such, as does everyone who reads it. Some grammarian took a close look at it once and said "Lo! An unremarked grammar peccadillo with which to assert my superiority! 'Hopefully' is clearly an adverb -- it says so, right in my dictionary! -- yet it isn't modifying another word in the sentence in which it's used!"

    Who gave that cranky old sod (if I may borrow the expression) the right to disparage an ancient and honorable usage? Clearly not anyone with any sense.
    I am not a teacher.

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