The world’s worst written sentence

Style can be a tricky subject. Find out more about “bad” sentences and how they can be avoided.

Bridging the Unbridgeable

Consider the following sentence:

“Yet the nightmare cast its shroud in the guise of a contagion of  a deer-in-the-headlights paralysis.”  

According to columnist at The Economist, the above sentence would qualify to be nominated as “the world’s worst written sentence”, yet, believe it or not, there are worse. (Read the Economist column to find out more.) So what is wrong with the above sentence?

From a grammatical perspective the sentence is perfectly fine. What seems to bother people such as the columnist are stylistic issues. Without doubt, style can be a tricky subject. That is why, newspapers, TV networks and several magazines developed their own style guides. Nevertheless, one would still think that writing is, above all, a creative process. Conforming to rules regulating and restricting this creativity, thus, sounds a little odd.

What plays a crucial role in this matter is the genre. Certain expectations are…

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