About phrasal verbs and an expression

by Francisco da Cunha e Silva Filho
(Rio de Janeir, RJ., Brazil)

Dear Diana:

First of all, I'd like to say "happy birthday" to you as the date is coming closer. You're very young and you have a long way to go in your professional life with a lot of succces as well as your family.

My question deals with phrasal verbs. This grammar item has always been troublesome for us latin American speakers of a Romance language like Portuguese.

Once an old and good didactic author -the late professor Julio Albino Ferreira, a famous Portuguese author who published several good textbooks for learners of English and gained an almost worldwide prestige of great linguists and lexicographers- said that, as far as phrasal verbs are concerned, they're a real problem for foreign students, but as time goes by, students will assimilate them very well.

To myself, this is half the truth about this important grammar question, as foreign students and tranlators like mysslf, will always be puzzled with by phrsal verbs because the linguist context is the immediate key to solving and narrowing down the correct meaning conveyed by phrsal verbs.

So much so that English native speakeers have to accoount for their exact meanings.

One more point that I'd like to ask you. A long time ago, I was reading an English textbook and I came across the expression "once again".

In my interpretation of its meaning, I think that it might mean, "on the other hand," especially if its put before a period. I'd like to have your view on this.

I believe that "once again" just means again. Like a repitition. I belive the expression you are referring to is "then again". That means " on the other hand".

Be sure that your newsletters will always be welcome and necessary for everyone wanting to master English. I'll be looking forward to them at any time.

Once again, I wish you many happy returns on your birthday.

Sincerely,
Francisco da Cunha e Silva Filho

Comments for About phrasal verbs and an expression

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Nov 18, 2010
In addition to my earlier comment
by: Franciscoda Cunha ae Silva Filho

Dear Diana:
I'm sorry for the oversight I made when asking your comments on the expression "Then again", which really was what I wanted to have printed.

Of course the expression "once again" is too obvious to be worth an explanation. Anyhow, I thank you "once again" (no pun intended) for your kind attention to my inquiry.

Sincerely,
Francisco da Cunha e Silva Filho

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