To have an understanding how something work

Arumbaya

Senior Member
French-France
Hi all !

I have a question:

Is the sentence "if you have an understanding how a block and tackle works(...)" correct?

I have the feeling that it's incorrect.

I would have written "if you have an understanding of how (...)" but I'm no native speaker and I'm certainly wrong.

So, in other words do you say "to have an understanding how sth works" or "to have an understanding of how sth works"?

Thanks a lot!
 
  • sdgraham

    Senior Member
    USA English
    So, in other words do you say "to have an understanding how sth works" or "to have an understanding of how sth works"?
    No ... on two points.

    1 We have an understanding of how something works. (Or we simply understand how it works)

    2. "sth" not only is unpronounceable, but is not an English word. It is a space-saving device used by dictionaries and not used in writing (or speaking, naturally) the English language.

    Learners are often deceived by the appearance of the device in dictionaries and we don't want to continue the deception here.
     

    Arumbaya

    Senior Member
    French-France
    Ok, thanks!

    So you agree that the first sentence I mentioned ("if you have an understanding how a block and tackle works(...)") is incorrect?

    And sorry for my use of the "sth" abbreviation, old student habit.
     
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