Common Errors in English Usage: If Not

Here is a worksheet on the use of “if not” as a means linking a weaker word with a stronger one, as in “He was smart, if not exactly brilliant.” This is a full-page reading with a five sentence reading, ten modified cloze exercises, and a word bank to assist students with word choice if they want or need that support.

To give credit where credit is due, I like to always mention, when posting these English usage documents, that they are based upon Paul Brians’ book (hence the header of each post) Common Errors in English Usage. If you’re interested, Professor Brians allows unfettered access at no charge to the book at the Washington State University website.

If you find typos in this document, I would appreciate a notification. And, as always, if you find this material useful in your practice, I would be grateful to hear what you think of it. I seek your peer review.

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