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英文写作小贴士【中】

英文写作小贴士【中】


No. 6 词首词词大小写问题


有客户最近向理文编辑咨询关于地名和地理学术语如何正确大写的问题。因为中文不牵涉大写问题,所以中文词语的作者可能会有点迷惑。其实大写问题对于英语词语的作者而言也不太容易理顺。大写问题虽然棘手,但是下面的小贴士会对您有所帮助。


一般而言定义明确的地区的首写词要大写,以下是The Economist Style Guide 的建议:

“Use upper case for definite geographical places, regions, areas and countries, and for vague but recognised political or geographical areas…lower case for east, west, north, south except when part of a name.”

(大写用于明确的地理学位置、地区、区域、国家以及模糊但是被认可的行政或地理区域east, west, north, south 等用小写,但当他们是名称一部分的时候除外。)

这条通用法则也适用于地球表面的地带,如North Temperate Zone, the Equator 等。

以下是更多法则:


- 通常而言,指南针上的方位(如north, southeast 等)和形容词(如western, central, upper, lower 等)不需要大写

- 专有名词中的一般地理学名词需要首字母大写,如Atlantic Ocean, Mt. Muztagata 等

- 首字母大写的地理学名词之后的一般术语不需要大写,如Yangtze River valley

- 名词复数要小写,如Gobi and Taklamakan deserts

- “the”只有在其为正式地名一部分的时候才大写,如The Bahamas, the Netherlands


关于某个地名如果你不清楚正确的大写方法,你可以在Google Scholar 上搜索一下(http://scholar.google.com/)。多数人的意见不见得就是正确的,但是可以给你一些关于正确大写的线索。请记住,你写作的目的是要清楚地表述你的科研成果。注意正确的大写不仅仅是为了遵守某些专断的规则,你的论文需要正确运用大写的原因是,给读者一个关于你的采集地的更精确的概念,特别是当他们还不熟悉你的研究领域的时候。

以下是一些地理学术语例子,告诉你哪些需要大写而哪些不需要:


Upper case (大写)

- East Asia

- South-East Asia

- Central Asia

- Central America

- North Korea

- South Africa

- the North Atlantic

- the Middle East

- The Arctic

- The Hague

- The Gambia

Lower case (小写)

- central Europe

- western China

- southern Beijing

- western Mongolia

- eastern Africa

- northern North Korea

- the central Gobi

- the lower Yangtze River

- the Philippines


购买The Columbia Gazetteer of the World (http://www.columbiagazetteer.org/,此链接可免费试用),或者Merriam-Webster’s Geographical Dictionary 可能会对你有所帮助。

参考书目:The Economist Style Guide, Capitalization - Places

(http://www.economist.com/research/styleGuide/index.cfm?page=805663)

Council of Science Editors, Style Manual Committee. Scientific Style and format: the CSE manual for authors, editors, and publishers, 7th ed. Reston (VA): The Council; 2006. Section 9.7.3, Pg. 120


No. 7 常见易混单词


英语中有许多对单词很容易混淆。此贴士主要讨论拼写相近而意义不同单词,或者充当不同词性的单词。

在看常用易混单词的释义之前,请先做以下小测试检验一下自己的知识。答案解答在文末。

affect = A, effect = B, capability = C, capacity = D, continually = E, continuous = F, adverse = G, aversion = H


1. The _______ conditions caused by the hurricane prevented the plane from taking off.

2. Despite the skill of its employees, the small factory did not have the ________ to produce large amounts of goods.

3. The _________ noise of the waves crashing on the beach was very relaxing.

4. Luckily, the medicine did not adversely ______ the patient.

5. Because he had not received any training, John did not have the __________ to repair the complicated machinery.

6. Many scientists believe that global warming is the ______ of greenhouse-gas emissions.

7. Because of she is a vegetarian, Susan had an ________ to the idea of going to the Korean Barbeque restaurant.

8. The website is ___________ updated.


常见易混单词列表

1. capability/capacity

capability: a certain ability, the quality of being capable, a potential aptitude.

capacity: the ability to contain; the volume or amount that fits in a certain container.

2. compliment/complement

complement: a worthy addition (n.)

(e.g., The girl’s pink cheeks were the perfect complement to her dark eyes.)

compliment: to praise (v.); a piece of praise (n.)

(e.g., The girl accepted the compliment with a shy blush.)

3. trial/trail

This is often the result of a simple typing error.

trial: a tryout or experiment to test quality, value, or usefulness of something (e.g., clinical trial). It also refers to the number of repetitions of an experiment.

trail: a marked or established path or route, or a course followed or to be followed (e.g., mountain trail).

4. intercellular/intracellular

intercellular: located between cells

intracellular: occurring or situated within a cell or cells (e.g., intracellular fluid).

5. principal/principle

principal (adjective): chief, main, leading, most important.

principal (noun): the most important person or group of people ("After much debate, the two principals reached an agreement"); the head of a school (the principal person in the administration); borrowed money (as distinct from interest).

principle (always a noun): a rule, standard, law, guideline, or doctrine.

6. adverse/averse

adverse: bad, opposed

(e.g., Benjamin ate zongzi every day for lunch and suffered no adverse effects.)

averse: feeling unwilling; experiencing distaste

(e.g., Benjamin’s mother was averse to the idea of an all-zongzi lunch.)

7. affect/effect

affect (verb): “to influence”

(e.g., Xiao Wang’s wild partying on Thursday night affected his performance on the history test.)

effect (noun): “result”

(e.g., Xiao Wang’s wild partying on Thursday night had a terrible effect on his performance on the history test.)

8. continually/continuously

continual: repeatedly (e.g., For two weeks, the travelers continually went on trips to the Great Wall.)

continuous: without interruption (e.g., The flow of water is continuous.)

9. criterion/criteria

criterion: singular form (e.g., one criterion)

criteria: plural form (e.g., some criteria)

10. ensure/insure

ensure: “to make sure or certain”

insure: “to guarantee with insurance against risk or loss of life”

*However, in American English, “insure” can be used for both of these meanings.

References:

http://cgi.sparknotes.com/

http://forum.wordreference.com/

http://www.m-w.com/

http://www.thefreedictionary.com/

参考答案: 1) G 2) D 3)F 4) A 5) C 6) B 7) H 8) E


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