Gram­mat­i­cal Er­rors

NZ Today - - LETTERS -

Dear Sarah In your ed­i­to­rial you re­fer to a place called “the” Hawke’s Bay, but don’t abuse Taranaki or Marl­bor­ough in the same way. All three were prov­inces prior to 1876 and, as such, are de­fined ge­o­graph­i­cal ar­eas.

I sub­mit that “the” should be ap­plied only to gen­eral ar­eas, such as the Waikato, the King Coun­try, the Manawatu, the West Coast, etc.

This abom­i­na­tion was once un­known, but has be­come in­creas­ingly preva­lent in re­cent years.

It should also be noted that apos­tro­phes are not used in ge­o­graph­i­cal names.

Hav­ing said that, if that is all one can com­plain about then it can’t all be bad! Re­gards Keith James Napier ED. Dear Keith, this let­ter has thrown me. I will now have to re­think how we write place names, be­cause in­deed you are right, ac­cord­ing to the New Zealand Ge­o­graphic Board which I quote be­low: New Zealand Ge­o­graphic Board fol­lows the stan­dards from the His­tory Group of the Min­istry for Cul­ture and Her­itage by re­mov­ing apos­tro­phes from place names (e.g. ‘Arthurs Pass’). I should also note that Steve Hale did not use an apos­tro­phe, it was only af­ter my in­sis­tence that we put one in. I did so, be­cause so many pub­li­ca­tions use an apos­tro­phe in­clud­ing the lo­cal news­pa­per Hawke’s Bay To­day. I am hop­ing your let­ter might start a dis­cus­sion. In terms of your re­ac­tion to the word “the”, you are also prob­a­bly right, and your lan­guage call­ing it an “abom­i­na­tion” and my use of it an “abuse” was so colour­ful and pas­sion­ate as to make me smile.

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