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-4
votes
1answer
57 views

Antedecent of “naked” in “I would like to paint a picture of you naked”

You’re such a pretty person, I would like to paint a picture of you naked. Does this mean "you’ll undress while I get my brushes", or does it mean "strike a pose while I take my clothes off"?
2
votes
4answers
113 views

Antedecent of “it” in “it fared with him as with the storm-tossed ship” in context

When on that shivering winter's night, the Pequod thrust her vindictive bows into the cold malicious waves, who should I see standing at her helm but Bulkington! I looked with sympathetic awe and ...
-1
votes
1answer
28 views

Antedecent of “clear” in “lower ball onto wood blocks with the plates clear”

This sentence is taken from valve instructions: Lower ball onto wood blocks with the plates clear, and remove the plates from the ball. What does the word clear refer to? Plates? Can someone ...
1
vote
1answer
47 views

On the target of “not”

I would like to know the target of the word "not" in the following sentence. The problem is that Britons were never given a chance to vote on whether they wanted the CCTV cameras set up or not. ...
0
votes
1answer
66 views

Inexplicable 'it'

I have myself used and been OK with it in sentences like: What is it that you're doing? What is it that it means? But now I can't quite understand why it is necessary here. Also a ...
0
votes
2answers
118 views

Ambiguity in use of relative pronouns

The animal ate the father of Jay, who was an engineer. So who is the engineer here? Father or Jay? How can I use which, that, who to refer to the whole object or only to parts of the object?
1
vote
1answer
194 views

Can the antecedent ever be in a prepositional phrase?

It seems like a basic concept, but I want to make sure. Can the antecedent ever be in a prepositional phrase? For example: Jill likes running with Julie. She is a good person. Does she refer to ...
0
votes
1answer
110 views

Meaning of “it” in “it [. . .] settled into its unbreakable parts”

Please help me understand the meaning of “settled into its unbreakable parts” as used in this excerpt below from Flannery O’Connor’s The Violent Bear It Away: He was sitting forward on the seat, ...
1
vote
2answers
124 views

Antedecent of “its” in “the dog attacked the cat and its friends” [duplicate]

The dog attacked the cat and its friends. Does the sentence imply that the dog attacked the cat and the cat's friends or that it attacked the cat and the dog's friends? How would one properly ...
6
votes
2answers
239 views

Antedecent of “which” in “A man coming out of the backdoor of his house which is facing east”

In a recent quiz there was a question: A man coming out of the backdoor of his house which is facing east... Now in this scenario whether Should I consider 'the house is facing east,' or 'the ...
0
votes
2answers
96 views

Who does “who” apply to in this example?

His governors, some of them incompetent and tactless, quarrelled bitterly with the people, who were constantly demanding greater political control. In this sentence, who are demanding greater ...