Me Too Or Me Too Comma Chicago Manual Of Style Well Written or Well-Written?

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Well Written or Well-Written?

Is the following sentence correct?

This book is well written.

So? You’re right. This is absolutely correct. There are no broken rules. Now check the following sentence. Is that right too?

This is a well written book.

No, that’s not right. But why? This is essentially the same sentence as the first, except that the phrase “well written” comes before the word “book” instead of after it. But that’s what makes the difference. Here is the rule:

  • Move the elements of a compound modifier only if that modifier comes before a noun.

I don’t know about you, but every time I read a grammar rule like this, I’m taken back to my public school days when well-meaning English teachers stuffed our minds with rules that were impossible to decipher. “What is a complex modifier?” I had to ask. But of course I didn’t, because the dazzling Priscilla Price was sitting next to me. It’s not that I didn’t want her to think I didn’t know what a complex modifier was. Nobody knew. I just didn’t want her to think I was took care what is a complex modifier. That wouldn’t be cool.

But I’m assuming you don’t care because you’re reading this and you’re not ashamed to care. So let me explain. AND modifier is a word or phrase that describes another word. Modifiers can be adjectives or adverbs, but for our purposes it doesn’t matter. So if you say, “It’s an adjective” or “It’s an adverb,” ​​I’m happy for you, but I don’t really care.

AND connection modifier is a multi-word modifier. Therefore, it is called a “compound” modifier.

So the rule says so if a compound modifier is preceded by a hyphen before the noun it modifies. But if it comes after a noun, don’t hyphenate it. Based on this, the sentences we encountered earlier should be written like this:

This book is well written. (The compound modifier comes after the noun, so without a hyphen.)

This is a well written book. (A compound modifier comes before a noun, so it gets a hyphen.)

Who invented these rules and why? No one knows for sure, but I have a personal theory that a group of Nazi war criminals escaped capture, went underground, and decided that making rules like this would be the cruelest thing they could do to the guys who beat them up in WWII .

It gets worse. Look at the following sentence. It is right?

This is a beautifully written book.

I hate to say it, but it’s wrong. “But why?” you say “The phrase ‘well written’ is a complex modifier, isn’t it?” right. “And it comes before the noun it modifies in the sentence, doesn’t it?” right. “So it must be hyphenated, right?”

wrong. It should be No be hyphenated because of another rule perpetrated by an underground military criminal group that claims…

  • Don’t put a hyphen after a word that ends in “ly,” even if that word is part of a compound modifier that precedes the noun it modifies. The exception is when the “ly” that ends the word is part of the main word itself, as in “family” (family business).

At this point, you’ve probably either stopped reading in despair, or you’re hopelessly frustrated and confused. At such moments it is useful to remember the words of the Buddha: “Life is suffering.” It would also be helpful to remember the three sentences we discussed and use them as guides or templates when you have questions about transposing complex modifiers. This will keep you out of trouble 98.7 percent of the time. When memorizing correctly written sentences, pay special attention to the presence or absence of dashes:

  1. This book is well written.
  2. This is a well written book.
  3. This is a beautifully written book.

Finally, here are some examples of these rules in action. All of these sentences are correct and hopefully now you know why.

He is a famous actor.

He is a well-known actor.

She received a bonus of $5,000 a year.

She received a bonus of $5,000 a year.

It was food with a natural taste.

The food had a natural taste.

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