HALP...explain the grammar

I am (trying to) explain on another board why the following is incorrect…

To set the situation though, I received an SMS from a bank…

“LOAN up to 4x you monthly salary” (as take a loan / borrow)

I posted it on a board as an example of bad grammar, but now people are trying to say it is correct.

Unfortunately, I don’t have the theoretical knowledge of english to explain clearly exactly why it is wrong.

Can someone please help me out with the appropriate explanation?

This is for people that are fluent in english, but speak it as a second langauge.

The “you” should be “your,” which is possessive. Very technically, there is no subject (You) and no verb (can get.)

“To loan” in English is to be the giver of a loan; “to borrow” would be the parallel action by the recipient. A bank or lending company might “LOAN up to 4x you[r] monthly salary” – you the borrower would not.

Think of it as a oarallel to “A teacher should learn his/her students their lessons”: he or she would teach; the students would (it is to be hoped) learn from the teaching.

Huh? There is no you or your in the message…
I know it would be correct if they said

  1. Take a loan…
  2. We can lend you…
  3. Your loan can be up to…

But the test just says …

“Loan up to”… to me this means that they want me to lend to them…but in reality they want to lend to me.

Can do I explain this to those that are telling me I am wrong?

Sory I know little about verbs, prepositions, possessives and what have you…

Thanks Sir,

This makes it as clear as can possibly be hoped!

The dope is once again the saviour of all that is good and right.

If they are trying to get you to take a loan, the message would read:

“You can get a loan up to 4 times your salary.” Or, possibly, “We will loan you up to 4 times your salary.”

But Polycarp’s point is good. The bank loans. You borrow. Thus, the message could read “You can borrow up to 4 times your salary.”

Yep…as the SMS is max 160 characters, I am trying to argue that if they simply replaced “loan” with “borrow” the entire message would be acceptable (at least within the confines of the character limit).

But with simply “loan up to”…although its a bit inconclusive, the grammar is “off” - unless of course the bank really does want you to lend them your monthly salary…

The message is: “LOAN up to 4x you monthly salary”

Do you not see the “you” in there? That should be “your.”

If I were composing the SMS message, it would say:

“LOANS - up to 4x your monthly salary”

It’s not a complete sentence, which is OK for texting. It’s just announcing a service/product. And that product is a noun, not a verb: LOANS.

If “loan” is a noun, it’s not too bad a phrase. It wouldn’t be a sentence, but I don’t get the impression it’s supposed to be anyway. (Advertisements regularly use sentence fragments.) In any case, I read it as saying either:

[We will] loan up to 4x your monthly salary, or
[Get a] loan [valued at] up to 4x your monthly salary

I don’t read it as an imperative sentence at all. If you do impose an imperative interpretation, then “loan” is the wrong word, but why do that? That’s presumably why I didn’t read it as an imperative in the first place.

Yeah, my read on that sentence is loan is being used as a noun, not an imperative, but I prefer CurtC’s version with a plural to the singular. The only definite error I see is the “you” which should be “your” in the message. I suspect this may be a typo by the OP, though.

I’ve never seen bengangmo’s name on the boards before, but I like his or her attitude!

I mean, I can loan up to four times my monthly salary, but that would be very bad for my savings and I’d have to, like, know you very well.

Hee…I has bin around…

Or rather, I have been here for some time, and I am a he.


I like the
“Loans. Up to 4 x…”

I have always taken loan as to mean “lend to” unless it is modified in some (eg: I will take a loan)

It is common here to see a sentence like “can you fetch me to the airport”

But sorry I don’t quite get all this noun, verb, imperative stuff - I am not “grammar literate” :frowning: … yet I work in PR and Publishing (as a writer at times also) :smack:

All I know is that I want the sentence to read BORROW up to 4x…Loan up to 4x just feels “icky” - and I am not beyond modifying the rules of grammar to makes me a point either.

I have this petty urge to make sure: Does the OP now see that the word “you” does appear in the message s/he transcribed? Is that word in the original, or did the original say “your”?

I’m cringing here- when I was in school, “loan” was a noun, and “lend” was a verb, and the teachers let no one forget it.

That’s not a bad point, actually, though the second definition for “loan” is as a transitive verb–probably reflecting usage in a descriptive linguistic sense.

Lots of people have commented to me on their disdain for the practice of verbing nouns, but it’s probably unavoidable. The most popular one right now is the verb “to google.”

They used to teach nouns and verbs at your school? At mine, we right-clicked if something was squiggly red and hit “ignore” if something was squiggly green.

Seriously, though, Dictionary.com (for what it’s worth) says:

He says, she says. Your teacher (or the dictionary, for that matter) does not have authority over the English language :slight_smile: Something is only grammatically flawed until enough people start doing it.

I figured it was like the Hillbilly verb learn, as in, “I’m gonna learn you how to do this right.” Perhaps loan can have this opposite meaning.

** taps BigT on shoulder, quietly points to post #3**