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I need to run through a document and check that it contains proper English grammar. My toolset for spell-checking for words include ispell and OpenOffice, but they seem only to do spell-checking.

Even though OpenOffice was talking about grammar I didn't manage to get it to find grammar faults, only spelling errors.

I'd like to check some basic rules such as "a/an articles" etc.

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When you find one, copy and paste your title into the tool then edit the title with the results. – Russ Warren Sep 9 '09 at 14:00
@Russ Warren The comment is a bit mean, isn't it? – alex Sep 9 '09 at 14:04
Gotta give that a try when I check out the tools =) – touko Sep 9 '09 at 14:39
@Russ: Ziinnngggg! But do give some indication that such comments are lighthearted. SuperUser should be inviting, and that kind of stuff can get taken badly if you're not careful. – dmckee Sep 9 '09 at 18:23
+1 for actually doing what Russ recommended :) – alex Sep 10 '09 at 11:29
up vote 3 down vote accepted

You can use LanguageTool. From the site:

An Open Source language checker for English, German, Polish, Dutch, and other languages. This is a rule-based language checker that will find errors for which a rule is defined in its XML configuration files. Rules for more complicated errors can be written in Java. You can think of LanguageTool as a tool to detect errors that a simple spell checker cannot detect, e.g. mixing up there/their, no/now etc. It can also detect some grammar mistakes. It does not include spell checking

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I tried LanguageTool a couple of years ago where it really hauged my system's resources. I also found consistency issues in terms of what it marks and what it omits – dassouki Sep 9 '09 at 14:26
Most apps are continually updated and improved. Give it another try, maybe it will fit your needs this time around :) – alex Sep 9 '09 at 14:50
That was quite fine for my purposes. – touko Sep 10 '09 at 11:24
Glad I could be of help! – alex Sep 10 '09 at 11:28

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