12/20 TPS Spot the Error Contest-Answer and Explanation 你是挑錯的高手嗎? 正確解答

Answer: “effect” should be “affect.”

To determine how much the writings of Niccolo Machiavelli still affect political discussions, one need only count the number of citations of The Prince.
欲得知馬基維利(Niccolo Machiavelli)的評論是如何影響當代的君主政治,只需細數他的名作君王論(The Prince)一書中受到後代傳頌的次數便可知曉其重要性。

Error: The writer of this sentence has confused similar sounding words, affect and effect. The correct choice—affect—is a verb, whereas effect usually is a noun. This writing mistake is No. 9 of 10 Common Writing Errors That Can Spell “Rejection” for Your Manuscript, which are posted elsewhere on The Published Scholar site.
錯誤之處:這句話的作者在affect 與effect類似發音字詞的使用上產生混淆。
正確的解答affect是動詞,而effect則多以名詞呈現。這樣的寫作錯誤可參照本專頁所張貼之「10 個導致退稿的常見寫作錯誤之九:“Affect” Is Not the Same as “Effect”」。

Some respondents suggested "one needs only" as a correction. The confusion lies partly in the word "need." When a negative or restrictive, such as "only," is paired with it, the "s" is dropped. So it is tricky. One can find a sentence like this (substitute "he" for "one" if it helps clarity): "Once one finds the road, one need only stay on it." If the infinitive "to" is added, the complexion of the sentence changes to this: "Once one finds the road, one only needs to stay on it."
昨日的題目中,粉絲們挑出的其中一個錯誤為"one needs only"。其實,主要的關鍵在於"need"這個字。當句子呈現否定句型或是限制型句型,如本題目中的 "only"與"need"搭配在一起,就不加"s"。這是個相當細微的用法。請看下列的例句(可試試用"he"代替句中的"one"):"Once one finds the road, one need only stay on it."(當找到未來方向之後,唯一要做的就是堅持下去。) 假如加入了不定詞"to",這個句型的結構則改為:"Once one finds the road, one only needs to stay on it."

I'll share a trick for comparing how common different usages are among professional writers.
This is not 100% accurate in determining which usage is "correct," since even professional writers and editors make mistakes, but it is a useful guide.

First, go to Google and type in the phrase you want to check on, e.g. "one need only".
Next, type in the name of the site you'd like to check. The New York Times is a carefully edited publication, and so I often scan their website archives by typing site:nytimes.com
首先,上Google搜尋,並將想查詢的字串鍵入,如:"one need only"。
再者,將你想查詢的網址鍵入。在此建議的是New York Times (nytimes.com),它的文章編輯技巧堪稱非常嚴謹,所以我們推薦參閱他們的網站。

Here are the Google results for four different variations:

"one need only" site:nytimes.com
47,700 results

"one needs only" site:nytimes.com
3,910 results

"one need only to" site.nytimes.com
4,580 results

"one needs only to" site:nytimes.com
2,360 results

Thus, the editorial consensus at the NYT seems support the grammatically correct choice.
因此,在New York Times的編輯共識中,的確提出實際的證明,支持此次題目中文法使用的正確性。

The winners of this week's prize are Yifan Lee, Welson Xiong, and Jocelyn Tsai.
A bonus prize goes to Pin-Jen Chen for her explanation of how "effect" could also be interpreted as a correct answer, if used in its relatively rare use as a verb meaning "to bring about."
這次獲獎的的粉絲為Yifan Lee, Welson Xiong, and Jocelyn Tsai。
而特別獎頒發給Pin-Jen Chen,在effect亦可作為正確答案方面,感謝她提供了詳細的說明。effect作動詞使用較為罕見,指"帶來某些效益、實現某事"的意思。

Thanks for everyone's participation in this week's Spot the Error Contest, it's been fun!

TPS Editorial Team

Posted at 2012-04-06 10:33:57

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