The Communicative Grammar of English Workbook (2013)

UNIT SIXTEEN. Addressing

16.1. Vocatives

Sections 349–350

Vocatives such as Alice, Mr Pym, Dr Hyde are often used to get someone’s attention.

Other vocatives mark the speaker’s relation to the hearer. They can range from formal (Sir, My Lord, Your Excellency) to informal (daddy, my dear).

Some occupational vocatives (waiter, driver) may sound impolite. A good alternative in such cases is the expression Excuse me!

Task **

Add suitable vocatives to the sentences below, taking into account the addressee(s) mentioned in brackets.

1.I’m sorry it took me so long to answer your letter. (your pen friend Sarah)

2.Your European allies are fully behind you. (the elected leader of the United States)

3.Come over here! (your brother Eric)

4.Could you put me through to Mrs Alice Hawkins, please. (telephone operator)

5.I wish you a very happy birthday. (your grandmother)

6.May I have your attention, please. (a mixed audience of adults)

7.The witness has been traumatized by the events. (an American judge)

8.Shall I prepare you a candle-lit dinner tonight? (your sweetheart)

9.Report back in ten minutes! (private Harry Slocombe)

10.Can I use your car tomorrow? (your father)

11.Do you think I’ll make a complete recovery? (your GP)

12.Please accept our sincere apologies. (the ambassador of Australia)

16.2. Commands

Sections 497–498

2nd person commands involve the use of the imperative verb, often accompanied by the downtoner pleaseShut the door (please).

The only auxiliary used in commands is do, also in combination with beStay here./Do be quiet.

The implied subject you is sometimes expressed overtly, although this can sound impolite: You stay here!

1st and 3rd person commands often involve the use of the verb let:

– Let me answer your question first./Let’s go now.

– Let each nation decide its own fate./Someone help me, please.

Task one **

Complete the following extracts using one of the imperative forms below:











Teign-e-ver Bridge leads onto an island formed where the river divides. ________________ the island by the other bridge and _______________ for Scorhill Circle to the north. ____________ the meandering track that passes to the right of the stone circle. (…)

_______________ careful not to miss the deflection from the main track at the first clearing. ______________ half-right here along a lovely path that threads through bluebells and begins to descend steeply. When it reaches the river, ________ right along a shady riverside path until you reach the footbridge. _______________ here and ________________ a steep path to reach a broad drive at the top. (…)

At the top the gate through which the footpath passes bears a sign saying, ‘_______________ of the Bull’. ______________ the hedge on the left to a gate at the top of the field (the bull, one hopes, being busy elsewhere).

(adapted from Dartmoor Walks, p. 47)

Task two **

Rephrase the sentences below, using a 1st or 3rd person command.

1.I would just like to give you another example.

2.I would like the two of us to go for a drink.

3.I would like somebody to move all that stuff out of the way.

4.I think they’d better eat cake.

5.It would be better not to pretend that we support the idea.

6.I would like to warn you just one more time.

7.We had better settle the problem once and for all.

8.There should be no doubt at all about our resolve.

9.I would like us to move as fast as we can.

10.I don’t really want to detain you any longer.