Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 7 December 2014





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Possessive forms with apostrophe

We make possessive forms by adding “‘s” to singular nouns.
The ferocious dog bit the poor man’s leg.
Her mother’s nose is straight.

The ferocious dog bit the poor man’s leg.

My sister’s son attends an international school.
John’s house is close by.
The artist’s creations were exhibited at the National Art Gallery.
His dog’s ears are very big.
That’s my grandson’s bicycle.
My aunt’s house is to be auctioned.
Did you see Patrick’s pen?
Sometimes, a photographer’s job can be risky.
I can hear the postman’s bell.
Joyce’s daughter has passed the Law College Entrance examination.
The thief’s mobile phone was found under a tree.
That woman’s brother is a soldier.
Did you see grandmother’s spectacles?
His son’s car met with an accident.
The tiger’s cage remains locked.

We make possessive forms by adding “ s’ “ to plural nouns.
His sisters’ friends are leaving for Australia.
The boys’ passports are ready.
The ladies’ restroom is under repairs.
The artists’ houses were renovated.
Those dogs’ ears are long.
The thieves’ masks were found in the room.
The cows’ milk was collected in a barrel.
The ants’ nests are found underground.
The Editors’ Guild is a recognised body.

We can use more than one possessive noun in a sentence.
Rex’s mother’s dog is missing.

She danced to the beat of the tabla.

Diana’s brother’s car is under repairs.
Lal’s father’s job demands a lot of concentration.
The principal’s daughter’s child attends a National School.
The lorry driver’s son’s marriage has been postponed.

We do not use “ ‘s “ for inanimate objects except in children’s stories. Instead we use ‘of” to show possession.

The leaves of the tree are falling.
Some pages of the book are torn.
The legs of the table are broken.
The wheels of the car have to be replaced.
The roof of the house has to be repaired.
The principal of the school is on leave.
The lock of the door is broken.
The paint of the wall is peeling off.
The bark of the tree is thick.
She danced to the beat of the tabla.
The main actor of the film won an award.
He is painting the door of the refrigerator.
He replaced the antennae of the television.
The hands of the clock are moving slowly.

Match words and meanings

Here’s an exciting way to enrich your vocabulary. Match the words in Column”A” with their meanings in Column “B” and check your answers with the key. The first has been done for you.

[Column A]

S 1. detour
... 2. detriment
... 3. devastate
... 4. deviate
... 5. device
... 6. devil
... 7. devilish
... 8. devilishly
... 9. devil-may-care
... 10. devious
... 11. devise
... 12. devoid
... 13. devolution
... 14. devote
... 15. devoted
... 16. devotee
... 17. devotion
... 18. devotional
... 19. devour
... 20. devout
... 21. dew
... 22. dewdrop
... 23. dewy-eyed
... 24. dexterity
... 25. diabolical

[Column B]

A. harm or damage
B. a machine invented for a particular purpose
C. not direct
D. believing strongly in a religion
E. having eyes wet with tears
F. the ability to perform a difficult action quickly
G. extremely bad or shocking
H. a drop of dew
I. drops of water on the ground during the night
J. to eat something eagerly
K. loyalty and love for someone
L. extremely
M. to destroy a place or thing completely
N. someone who strongly admires a particular person
O. extremely loving and loyal
P. the moving of power from a main organisation to a lower level
Q. to invent a plan
R. evil or morally bad
S. a different route to a place
T. to do something different from the usual way of behaving
U. not worrying about the results of your actions
V. be without something that is necessary
W. to give all of your time
X. connected with the act of religious worship
Y. an evil being


2. A 3. M 4. T 5. B 6. Y 7. R 8. L 9. U 10. C 11. Q 12. V 13. P 14. W 15. O 16. N 17. K 18. X 19. J 20. D 21. I 22. H 23. E 24. F 25. G


Adjectives ending in ‘ing’ and ‘ed’

Many adjectives end in ‘ing.’ Here are some of them.
The film was full of adventure. It was very interesting.
Grandfather tells us an amusing story every day.
Travelling in private buses can sometimes be annoying.
Some students left the classroom because the lecture was boring.

We were shocked to see our grandfather dancing at the party.

The instructions in the manual are confusing.
Many people find the wet weather prevailing now rather depressing.
We found that it was very disappointing not to get the jobs even after passing the test.
We were introduced to a new game in Korea. We found it very exciting.
Doing two jobs every day can be exhausting.
For one frightening moment I thought I was going to fall off the bus.
Sometimes we do not know what to do in a terrifying moment.
On my first day in the mathematics class I found everything puzzling.
He was drunk and his behaviour was quite shocking.
Watching television in the evening is relaxing.
The election results were surprising.
I heard the thrilling news. Congratulations!
We found that walking for 10 kilometres tiring.

Some adjectives end in ‘ed.’
I was amused at grandfather's folk tales.
The passengers on the private bus were annoyed about the long delay.
I feel bored about everything happening here. Let's go home.
We got so confused when several people gave us different directions to the museum.
The persistent warm weather can make you depressed.
Many of the job aspirants were disappointed when they did not get their appointment letters.
The fans were excited when they saw their favourite actor.
If you feel exhausted after exercises, relax for some time.
I was absolutely fascinated when I saw the baby elephants at the zoo.
When I was pillion riding on a motorcycle I felt frightened.
While cycling in the busy street I got terrified.
If you are puzzled, get a clarification from the instructor.
You will feel relaxed when you sit here.
We were shocked to see our grandfather dancing at the party.
He was surprised at the examination results.
I was thrilled to hear that you have got a job.
I was tired after working the whole day.


Underline the correct adjective in the following sentences and check your answers with the key.

1. Winning a lottery can be surprising / surprised.
2. Everybody felt tiring / tired after the long journey.
3. Lying by the lake should be relaxed / relaxing.
4. When I came home late, mother looked annoying / annoyed.
5. I was so amused / amusing that I couldn't stop laughing.
6. Are you interested / interesting in these books?
7. It is quite fascinated / fascinating to see elders playing with children.
8. What's the most thrilling / thrilled moment in your life?
9. Scrubbing the floor for many hours is pretty exhausting / exhausted.
10. French is a fascinating / fascinated language.


surprising 2. tired 3. relaxing 4. annoyed 5. amused 6. interested 7. fascinating 8. thrilling 9. exhausting 10. fascinating

Quiz on idioms

An idiom is a special kind of phrase. It is a group of words which have a different meaning when used together from the one it would have if the meaning of each word were taken individually. Tick the meaning of each idiom and check your answers with the key.

1. It's just not cricket.
(a) someone's behaviour is unfair
(b) someone's behaviour is reasonable
(c) someone's behaviour is exemplary

2. If something is burned to a crisp ...
(a) it is not burned
(b) it is partially burned
(c) it is badly burned

3. If an organisation goes critical ...
(a) it is beginning to fail
(b) it reaches a stage of development
(c) it is doubtful whether it will survive a critical period

4. If someone is shedding crocodile tears ...
(a) they are pretending to sympathise
(b) they genuinely sympathise
(c) they are crying bitterly

5. If someone has come a cropper ...
(a) they have won a windfall
(b) they have suffered a sudden failure
(c) they are surprised

6. If you have a cross to bear ...
(a) you have enmity towards somebody
(b) you have a big burden to carry
(c) you find yourself in an unpleasant situation which you must tolerate

7. If you get your wires crossed ...
(a) you are mistaken about what someone else means
(b) you get a wrong connection
(c) you are in a relaxed mood

8. If someone is caught in the crossfire ...
(a) they find themselves in the battlefield
(b) they suffer the unpleasant effects of a disagreement between other people
(c) they do not know what to do

9. When the crunch comes ...
(a) when a situation reaches a critical point
(b) when you face a dangerous situation
(c) when nothing exciting happens

10. If you earn a crust ...
(a) you get a promotion
(b) you earn enough money to live on
(c) you are in a happy situation


1. (a) 2. (c) 3. (b) 4. (a) 5. (b) 6. (c) 7. (a) 8. (b) 9. (a) 10. (b)

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