German has a concept of “separable verbs”, something that often puzzles me — not conceptually, but certainly in practice. For instance, they have the verb “abfahren”, to drive off/away (as in a car). When it's used by itself, as in “Let's drive off!”, it's likely to stay that way: “Wir abfahren!” But in something more involved, it's separated: “Wir fahren in den Sonnenuntergang ab.” (We're driving off into the sunset.) It's possible for the bit in the middle to become arbitratily long and complicated, and yet one still has to remember to stick the part that got separated (the “ab”, here) on at the end of the phrase. There are lots of these verbs in German: ankommen, ausgehen, and so on.
But here's the thing: we have some in English too, only we don't think about them much. Except when we get something like this headline in yesterday's New York Times: “Abbas Swears In Emergency Cabinet”
Now, I don't know about you, and maybe it just says something about where my mind is, but I first read that to mean that Mr Abbas went to the emergency cabinet meeting and said a bunch of bad words.
Really, of course, “to swear in” is a separable verb, and when it's used in this context we should separate it. We don't say, “Mr Abbas swears in the cabinet,” but instead, “Mr Abbas swears the cabinet in.” And that is unambiguous and clear.
Of course, using another separable verb, it could have happened that he'd cursed the cabinet out. But that's a different thing entirely.