Muphry\’s Law disproved

Muphry\’s Law is that in any piece correcting spelling or grammar there will be mistakes more heinous than the ones being complained of. A corrollary would be that any piece about the importance of spelling and or grammar should be full of howlers.

Sadly, this piece (at an initial glance at least) seems to contain no mistakes.

Does that mean that Muphry\’s Law is now disproved?

9 comments on “Muphry\’s Law disproved

  1. “He learnt to spell relatively late” – I learned early, but years of reading pore spelling and hearing bad grammer is taking it’s tole, like, innit.

    Come to think of it, “learnt” is kosher in that quotation, is it?

  2. On mature reflection: “learnt” is fine in Scots English, probably unusual in formal American English, and in standard English English, insofar as there is such a beastie, it’s … I dunno, I’ll let the Portugeezer decide.

  3. It is a poorly written piece, the repetition of “Dr Lamb said” grates.

    If it was put before me for editing I’d be suggesting a few changes. Arguable errors do seem in short supply, but possibilities are:

    “If they go and get jobs their employer will not hesitate to correct them.” I suggest “employers”.

    “There are reports every year of patients being killed because doctors confuse the drug names.” I suggest the “names of drug.”

  4. I don’t think my tongue could say learned in that context, I’d always say learnt. I’d only say learned as in “learned scholar” which is, of course, pronounced differently. My background is working class, grammar school educated from Surrey.

  5. I agree, DocBud, that prepositionphobia uglifies English.

    But “It is a poorly written piece, the repetition of “Dr Lamb said” grates” might be improved by relacing the comma by a semi-colon, don’t you think?

  6. I did a double-take: the piece is so poorly written I almost thought it had been deliberately made so.
    DocBud mentions some but there are others; the whole thing could probably have been said in half the words without loss of any meaning.

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