Improve Your English – 221 [Archives:2004/708/Education]

February 2 2004

I. What to Say
Situations and expressions (62):
Birthday wishes (I)

A birthday is a great occasion for rejoicing. It is the day on which the new arrival in the family spread waves of joy all around. On this day friends and well wishers wish the person concerned many happy returns of the day. Some of the expressions used on this very special occasion are the following:

– It's your birthday. Enjoy all the good wishes, warm thoughts, and the pleasure of knowing just how special you are. Happy Birthday.
– May your Birthday be full of sunshine and a soft, caressing breeze. May the butterflies delight you and the birds sing in the trees. May your friends be true and many. May your health be sure and strong, and may you have love and joy enough to last a lifetime long. Have a lovely Birthday.
– May your Birthday be filled with special memories and wonderful moments and may you always find joy and happiness in the days ahead.
– A HAPPY BIRTHDAY is just the start of all that's wished from the heart. Love, contentment, joy and cheer are wished for you all through the year, for very special persons like you are very dear and very few.
– With warm thoughts of you on your Birthday. Beautiful days, wonderful memories, and heart full of joy.
– What a wonderful occasion your Birthday is because it's always a joy having the chance to express warm thoughts and happy wishes to someone as special as you.
– Day by day and year by year you're loved a lot, and it's so nice on your Birthday to pause and tell you so. It's nice to wish you the things you hold most dear and joys that keep on growing, day by day and year by year!
– Life is a song of melody with tunes that are soft and happy. May the songs of your life have a tone of cheer and fun. All the very best wishes.
– As you celebrate another Birthday with wishes for happiness, it's important to remember that you are in charge of your life.
– May your Birthday be one, that's wonderful in every way – warm memories of which stay in your heart, for always. Here's a hoping, that on your Birthday, you explore and enjoy every joy that life has to offer.
– The peak of happiness lies in the skies of peace. The warmest wishes, sincerely meant for a day and a year of sweet content. Happy Birthday.
– To a wonderful husband, here is a Birthday wish that's warm and sincere. Best of luck and happiness to you throughout the coming year.
– A special Birthday wish for you. It's yours. You hold the power to mould each golden moment, each shining hour into new designs, INFINITE POSSIBILITIES. Wishing you all the excitement, all the challenges, all the happiness life can hold on your Birthday and always. Have a memorable Birthday.
– If wishes come true, I would give them as a Birthday gift for you! Happy Birthday.
– For my good mother on your Birthday. May you enjoy a long life filled with peace, happiness and cheer because to me you are very dear.

II. How to say it correctly
Correct errors, if any, in the following sentences.
1. The doctor told the patient that prevention was better than cure.
2. Immediately the boy saw the snake, he started crying.
3. His desire was great, his prayers sincere.
4. One must do his duty honestly.
5. He being dishonest, he is disliked by the boss

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. I saw the tigress was weak and was badly wounded, but still she was running fast.
2. Unless you work hard, you will not pass.
3. She is more beautiful than but not so intelligent as her sister.
4. Not to speak of English, he cannot read even Arabic.
5. She is so proud that she will not admit her mistake.

III. Increase Your Word Power
(A) How to express it in one word
1. A hospital for the mentally challenged.
2. The art of the beautiful hand writing.
3. A person who is hundred years old.
4. An empty pretender to knowledge or skill.
5. A round about way of expression.

Suggested answers to last week's question
1. A great lover of books: bibliophile (n.)
2. A man with narrow, prejudiced views, specially about politics and religion: bigot (n.)
3. The act of speaking disrespectfully about sacred things: blasphemy (n.)
4. A man of free and easy habits, one who is socially unconventional: bohemian (n.)
5. Something that denotes a fall from the sublime to the ridiculous: bathos (n.)

(B) Foreign words and phrases.
Give the sources of origin and the meaning of the following
1) prima facie 2) R.S.V.P. 3)sine die 4) status quo 5) terra incognita

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. modus operandi (Lat.): mode or manner of working.
2. mon ami (Fr.): my friend.
3. Ominia vinist labor (Lat.): Labour overcomes all things.
4. par excellence (Fr.): without equal, as the best and most typical of its kind.
5. par example (Lat.): for example.

(C) Words commonly confused
Bring out differences in meaning of the following pairs of words,

1. does, dose
2. spilt, split
3. precise, concise
4. sometime, sometimes
5. asperity, aspersion

Suggested answers to last week's questions

1. silent (adj.) (making no or little sound): The workers took out a silent procession to press their demands.
silenced (Vt.) (pp. Of ' silence'; make silent): The mother silenced the baby's crying.
2. small (adj.) (opp. Of ' large'): Mahaweet is a small town.
short (adj.) (opp. Of ' long'): I went home on a short holiday
3. inability (n.) (being unable): He expressed his inability to offer any help.
disability (n.) ( lack of ability to do something): As he is physically handicapped, he is getting disability pension from the government.
4. like (prep.) Don't talk like a fool.
likes (n.) He is a man of strong likes and dislikes.
5. ward (n.) (division of a prison or hospital): The boy has been admitted in the children's ward.
word (n.) (a unit of language): I have no words to express my gratitude to you.

(D) Idioms and phrases
Illustrate the meaning of the following in sentences
1. to see eye to eye with
2. to play ducks and drakes
3. to put the cart before the horse
4. to have too many irons in the fire
5. to kill two birds with one stone

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. to live from hand to mouth (to have a poor standard of living): He has a low income and, consequently, has to live from hand to mouth.
2. to lose heart ( to be disheartened): Do not lose heart although you have poor marks. Make efforts for a better result next time.
3. to make up one's mind (decide): You need to make up your mind about which career you want to pursue.
4. to make both ends meet (to live within one's means): He struggles very hard to make both ends meet with his meagre income.
5. to move heaven and earth (to go up to the extreme): I shall move heaven and earth to prove the innocence of my friend.

IV. Grammar and Composition
A) Grammar
Complete each sentence with a word connected with the idea of 'giving' or 'receiving'
1. The bank has agreed to give the company a —- of $20,000 which must be repaid by the end of next year.
2. There were a lot of —- for him on the Eid day.
3. I don't suppose you could —- me your bike for a couple of hours, could you?
4. You can bring the music system back if there's anything wrong with it, but you must bring the —- with you to prove that you bought it here.
5. I'm playing badminton this afternoon, but my racket's broken. Could I —- yours?

Suggested answers to last week's questions
1. The passenger asked the taxi driver not to drive so fast.
2. Aisha asked Eiman if she could bring a friend along to the party.
3. He stopped smoking obeying the advice of the doctor.
4. There aren't many people in Yemen who use English in general social contexts.
5. Neither of my sisters speaks English.

(B) Composition
Expand the central idea contained in the proverb

52. Cut your coat according to your cloth

Last week's topic

51. Courtesy costs nothing
Courtesy is the other name of polite behavior, good manners and a kind action or expression. It's not difficult to be considerate and gentle in one's approach. Its actually a question of cultivating a positive and friendly attitude. A kind, courteous and mild-mannered person has the natural attributes of a winsome personality. He makes friends more easily than a rude person with rough and gruff manners. With a touch of unalloyed affection and pleasing manners to one and all, he wins people's hearts. An unpleasant message seems less bitter by his soft and soothing words. The hearer's heart is filled with hope, and happiness. Thus the magic of good behavior casts a spell on every one and spreads the sunshine of hope and cheer all around.
Courtesy truly costs nothing but pays rich dividends.

V. Pearls from the Holy Quran
” Allah is never unjust
In the least degree:
If there is any good (done),
He doubleth it,
A great reward.”
S4: A40

VI. Words of wisdom
“We make war that we may live in peace”