The Bank Of England has been accused of "dumbing down" the English language after choosing to remove punctuation from a quote by Sir Winston Churchill on its new polymer £5 notes.
In its original image for the new design, the Bank included double quotation marks around the saying: "I have nothing to offer but blood, toil, tears and sweat," reports The Daily Telegraph. (The gramatically correct way to do it).
However, literary campaigners and members of the public have issued complaints following the release of the new note, which was printed without the punctuation. Uh oh. A spokeswoman for the National Literacy Trust explained: "If you are referencing a quotation word-for-word, use double quotation marks at the start and end of the quoted section. Place full stops and commas inside the quotation marks for a complete quoted sentence."
According to one language expert, the lack of quotation marks is both "condescending" and "irritating". Wow, some people are reeeeeally upset about this.
"It is a bit peculiar because it looks like it is the Five Pounds that's speaking and not Winston Churchill," Dr Tara Stubbs, an English lecturer at the University of Oxford, told the newspaper. "There should be quotation marks and full stop, definitely. It also doesn't have the Oxford comma after 'tears'. To take that stuff out is condescending and I find efforts to dumb down like this just irritating."
However, Lisa Appignanesi, chair of the Royal Society of Literature, said the mistake probably wouldn't have bothered Winston himself. "I don't know, orator that he was, whether he would have noticed the missing punctuation," she commented.
Still, soon everyone will have to embrace the new notes - grammatical error or not. As of the 5th May, the paper version will no longer be legal tender. But not to worry if you still have a few in your pocket, here's what you should do with them.