Printer Friendly
The Free Library
22,719,120 articles and books

One word or two? Compose or comprise?



Since 1977, all entries in The AP Stylebook The Associated Press Stylebook and Briefing on Media Law, usually called the AP Stylebook, is the primary style and usage guide for most newspapers and newsmagazines in the United States.  are in alphabetical order. It's a feature (jargon) it's a feature - From the adage "It's not a bug, it's a feature." Used sarcastically to describe an unpleasant experience that you wish to gloss over.  I've always found very helpful and timesaving--a quick reference in the best sense of the term ... For example, is it awhile or a while?

"awhile, a while He plans to stay awhile. He plans to stay for a while.

"The first use is an adverb adverb: see part of speech; adjective. , the second a noun."

And is it everyday or every day

"every day (adv.) everyday (adj) She goes to work every day. He wears everyday shoes."

"every one, everyone Two words when it means each individual item: Every one of the clues was worthless.

"One word when used as a pronoun pronoun, in English, the part of speech used as a substitute for an antecedent noun that is clearly understood, and with which it agrees in person, number, and gender.  meaning all persons: Everyone wants his life to be happy. (Note that everyone takes singular verbs and pronouns.)"

"anybody, any body, any one, any one One word for an indefinite reference: Anyone can do that.

"Two words when the emphasis is on singling out one element of a group: Any one of them can speak up."

Compose, comprise

The AP Stylebook also has probably the most succinct suc·cinct  
adj. suc·cinct·er, suc·cinct·est
1. Characterized by clear, precise expression in few words; concise and terse: a succinct reply; a succinct style.

2.
 and understandable explanation of the troublesome comprise. The whole comprises the parts; I've known that since high school--and also that it should not be used in the passive voice, as in The United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area.  is comprised of 50 states. When editing such sentences, I'd automatically change it to is composed of or comprises.

Here's the Stylebook style·book  
n.
A book giving rules and examples of usage, punctuation, and typography, used in preparation of copy for publication.
 entry:

"compose, comprise, constitute Compose means to create or put together. It commonly is used in both active and passive voices: She composed a song The United States is composed of 50 states. The zoo is composed of many animals. "Comprise means to contain, to include all or embrace. It is best used only in the active voice, followed by a direct object: The United States comprises 50 states. The jury comprises five men and seven women. The zoo comprises many animals.

"Constitute, in the sense of form or make up, may be the best word if neither compose nor comprise seems to fit: Fifty states constitute the United States. Five men and seven women constitute the jury. A collection of animals can constitute a zoo.

"Use include when what follows is only part of the total: The price includes breakfast. The zoo includes lions and tigers."
COPYRIGHT 2003 The Newsletter on Newsletters LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2003, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

 Reader Opinion

Title:

Comment:



 

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Title Annotation:Editing
Author:Swift, Paul
Publication:The Newsletter on Newsletters
Date:Aug 16, 2003
Words:381
Previous Article:The AP Stylebook 2003 marks golden anniversary by being the fastest.
Next Article:More marketing envelope options.



Related Articles
Why L.A. Happened: Implications of the '92 Los Angeles Rebellion.
XI SOFTWARE LAUNCHES TIMEAGENT 2.0.
A Lighter Shade of Christmas: 15 Christmas Favorites for Early-Intermediate Piano Solo.
100 Words Almost Everyone Confuses & Misuses.
SOLO: Don Johnston, Inc.
Enhancing argumentative essay writing of fourth-grade students with learning disabilities.
Music in nineteenth century Sydney.
American Indian Rhetorics of Survivance.
American Indian Rhetorics of Survivance.
ILOG business rule management system for the Microsoft.Net environment.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2014 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters