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  1. #1
    Bassim is offline VIP Member
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    Unbeknown to the old man

    I am wondering if my sentences are grammatically correct.

    Unbeknown to the old man, his children had tried to sell his house and move him to a nursing home. When he discovered that, he became furious. He changed the lock on his front door and installed the alarm. He would rather die fighting them than move out.

  2. #2
    J&K Tutoring Guest

    Re: Unbeknown to the old man

    Be careful how you ask your question! All your sentences are grammatically correct as written.

    1. In AmE, it would be 'unbeknownst'.
    2. "... his children had tried..." Simple past is better here. All the rest is simple past.
    3. He changed the lock... and installed an alarm.

  3. #3
    GoesStation is offline Moderator
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    Re: Unbeknown to the old man

    If you write he installed the alarm, you have to have mentioned an alarm in a previous sentence. Otherwise the reader wonders which specific alarm you're talking about.
    Last edited by GoesStation; 25-Sep-2017 at 03:36. Reason: Add emphasis.
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  4. #4
    emsr2d2's Avatar
    emsr2d2 is online now Moderator
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    Re: Unbeknown to the old man

    In BrE at least, it's usually "Unbeknownst to ...". It seems incredibly archaic but it's still in pretty regular use.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. #5
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    probus is offline Moderator
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    Re: Unbeknown to the old man

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    In BrE at least, it's usually "Unbeknownst to ...". It seems incredibly archaic but it's still in pretty regular use.
    Yes, it is very odd how it persists. But to my ear "unbeknownst" is far more common than "unbeknown." This in spite of the fact that you still use "whilst" while (��) we do not.

  6. #6
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Re: Unbeknown to the old man

    Merriam-Webster says that unbeknown is older than unbeknownst: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/unbeknownst

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