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Pedants' corner

Ungrammatical label

(25 Posts)
grandtanteJE65 Fri 19-Jul-19 15:16:01

I picked up a small sample tube of toothpaste at the dentist's recently.

It is labelled
sensitive professional
repair & prevent

Reading this, I automatically want to say, "What does it repair and prevent?" as both verbs are transitive and should be followed by an object.

Next point: toothpaste is singular, so it should have stated "repairs & prevents" but I would still like to know what!

Admittedly repair could be a noun, but prevent most definitely is not!

The maker is Colgate so you would think they could afford to pay someone who could write correct English.

Any other odd labels about?

Urmstongran Fri 19-Jul-19 15:31:32

My knickers have odd labels. They state ‘size 16’ but they are so snug I think they are incorrectly labelled ...

Elegran Fri 19-Jul-19 16:31:51

"repair & prevent" could be the imperatives of verbs, exhorting the owner of the toothpaste to repair and prevent, but the transitive verbs still don't have objects. Actually, there aren't any sentences at all on that label, so maybe complaining about there not being any objects to the verbs is like complaining that your lamb chops don't have any legs.

sodapop Fri 19-Jul-19 20:11:14

Funny you should say that Urmstongran ...........grin

Witzend Sat 20-Jul-19 19:33:33

One that didn't surprise me was on a butternut squash. It told you to 'half' it before baking.

Still, that was Asda, and they used to be notorious for spelling mistakes on printed labels. I haven't seen so many recently.

They used to have a sign up saying, 'If you can't find what you want, please ask a colleague.'

I was always tempted to go and ask customer services (in a dopily bemused fashion) how my colleagues at work were supposed to help me find the pearl barley on the Asda shelves.
Oh, did they mean 'a member of staff?' Sorry, silly me!'

Gonegirl Sat 20-Jul-19 19:37:31

Urmstongran grin

Gonegirl Sat 20-Jul-19 19:38:33

This thread illustrates the point at which I gave up in English lessons.

Ngaio1 Tue 23-Jul-19 10:56:31

Why, oh why, is "for free" used? It is "free". No more no less.

LondonGranny Wed 18-Sep-19 23:19:40

I always inwardly laugh when I see a notice saying 'This door is alarmed'

Why and what happened to the poor thing?

MissAdventure Wed 18-Sep-19 23:43:59

I saw a whole fish, with big popping eyes and a sad face, all packed and sealed up ready to cook.

The label said "This fish is gutted".

Cherrytree59 Wed 18-Sep-19 23:52:36


BradfordLass72 Thu 19-Sep-19 04:08:09

As far as I know, this isn't grammatically incorrect but that little red circle it certainly doesn't make any sense to me, given what the tablets are supposed to do.

Wheniwasyourage Thu 19-Sep-19 06:24:41

LondonGranny, I would love to put a Post-it on one of these alarmed doors saying "but we're arranging counselling for it". Sadly, I never seem to be organised enough to have a spare Post-it about me. grin

Nortsat46 Thu 19-Sep-19 06:28:36

At my GP's surgery, we sign in by tapping our names on to a computer screen. The process begins with a screen that says 'Arrive me'.

Wheniwasyourage Thu 19-Sep-19 06:34:40

Aaargh! Nortsat, that is mind-bogglingly awful!!

Jane10 Thu 19-Sep-19 06:53:48

I still object to generic orange fruit being labelled 'easy peelers'. Are they mandarins, tangerines, satsumas or clementines? No. They're just easy peelers. You don't get generic meat called 'easy cookers'!
Rant over.

Anja Thu 19-Sep-19 07:09:12

Who reads toothpaste labels? I’ve been using the stuff for years now and don’t feel the need to read instructions or information on the box.

Suggest you find a good book instead.

BradfordLass72 Thu 19-Sep-19 07:43:39


I feel like that about potatoes.
In the UK I was used to potatoes being named (King Edward, Desiree etc) but in NZ, although some vegetable shops will label them 'Agria' or 'Nadine', if you buy them loose they are simply red or white, washed on unwashed.

In bags in supermarkets, they are 'roasters' 'good for baking' 'good for mash' or 'gourmet'.

I nearly always buy red because when I peel them, I can see the contrast between the red skin and the yellowish spud beneath - with white ones, I can't.

Fortunately, the red ones are good, all-purpose, firm and tasty.

sodapop Thu 19-Sep-19 08:49:48

This is Pedants corner Anja it's what we do

JackyB Thu 19-Sep-19 09:14:10

I have an advert for a dental clinic at the bottom of this thread. OK so they picked up on the "toothpaste" in the OP. But....... It's for a German dental clinic! I've noticed this a few times.

As you were.
In fact I could mention several labels while we're on the subject. I'll go and look them out.

shysal Thu 19-Sep-19 10:39:10

I get annoyed by adverts claiming that 98% of bacteria IS removed by a cleaner. Do they think there is only one of them?

Nanny27 Thu 19-Sep-19 12:26:07

jane10 I so agree about easy peelers but get even more annoyed when I see 'roasting joint'. I like to choose between topside, silverside, rib etc.

BradfordLass72 Fri 20-Sep-19 10:54:03

And those tissues impregnated with something which kills 99% of germs - so what?

Who cares about the germs once you've blown them out into your tissue?

InnocentBystander Fri 08-Nov-19 16:33:00

Words like 'Healthy gums' and those mentioned by the OP are weasel-words intended to appear to mean that if you use the product this will be the result, whilst not actually saying so. This avoids claims from users whose gums remain bad, and whose teeth are still rotten! Cynical? Moi? grin

JackyB Fri 08-Nov-19 17:16:03

We ought to be confused by things like shampoos which are for

- greasy hair
- shiny hair

(for example)

One is a remedy for the greasiness -i.e. it gets rid of it - and one will endow your hair with a beautiful shine - i.e. it gives it back. Yet the wording is identical.

The face cream I am using at the moment is for "wrinkles and radiance" - go figure!