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10
votes
2answers
982 views

How do noun clauses work when they seem to leave no independent clause?

Another thing that was raised in conversation with my ESL friend is noun clauses. I was aware of Adverbial and Adjectival Clauses and thought that the things he was demonstrating to me were in fact ...
8
votes
3answers
2k views

What is a noun modifying clause?

This is actually a question that came up when I was studying Japanese. Unfortunately my grasp of the technical language of syntax is very limited, and I never fully comprehended the idea of a noun ...
8
votes
5answers
673 views

'How to' vs 'How do I'

This question is inspired by comments on a question on stackoverflow. The original poster wrote: How to correct this error? And comments say that it's an incorrect question. Better is How ...
6
votes
6answers
438 views

Is there bad grammar in Cinemark's “No Texting” warning?

The sentence in question is "Do not be the person we ask to leave the auditorium, because we will." It sounds very wrong to me, but I can't put my finger on the exact problem. Nobody on the Internet ...
6
votes
2answers
492 views

Is the use of dependent clauses undesirable? (in scientific writing)

I tend to use dependent clauses frequently in scientific writing. This is especially true when discussing a problem-solving process where the result from one step leads into the next. Here's a ...
5
votes
4answers
794 views

Where to insert comma(s)?

Compare these: She tried, and, as expected, failed. She tried, and as expected, failed. She tried and, as expected, failed. She tried and as expected, failed. She tried and (as ...
5
votes
4answers
2k views

Singular or plural verb form where subject includes a “parenthetical” element

My question arises from this one, where OP asks whether he should use the singular or plural verb form after "the title, as well as the tone," As luck would have it, when I searched Google Books for ...
4
votes
2answers
267 views

What is the meaning of the subclause of 'goes off the deep end'?

If a real-time program goes off the deep end, the system can become unresponsive.
4
votes
2answers
372 views

“It is only me that is” or “It is only I that am”

It is only me that is confused. or It is only I that am confused. The first one sounds more natural to me while the second one appears to me as grammatically correct. Which one is correct?
3
votes
1answer
849 views

Non-finite clause complementation of complex transitive verbs

This question has been bothering me for a while. It came up when I was reading Chapter 16 of "A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language." How to explain the grammatical structure of the ...
3
votes
3answers
6k views

The difference between a clause and a phrase?

This question What is the difference between a phrase and a clause? has an answer, with no embedded examples. The link it provides is not longer active, giving a 404 page not found error. Please don't ...
3
votes
2answers
268 views

Is it grammatically correct to introduce a result clause by using “then”?

Is it grammatically correct to introduce a result clause by using then as in the examples: Don’t be lazy – then you will fail. Don’t kill him – then you will regret it. If yes, then is then ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

How to punctuate an example indicated by “say”

I'm wondering how commas should be placed around the word "say" and the following clause in a sentence like this: If you have, say, a bucket, that you would like to fill with water, then ... ...
3
votes
2answers
948 views

Must conditional sentences begin with “if?”

I've been looking at conditional sentences (conditional clauses). Every example I've see is along the lines of, "if [x] then [y]." I've seen alternatives/substitutes for the if part: were I ...
3
votes
4answers
369 views

Can an independent clause have an implied (or null) subject?

I'm trying to determine whether a clause with an implied subject can be considered independent - specifically in the case of compound sentences. For example: "I was tired, but went to the party ...
3
votes
1answer
203 views

Use semicolon or period when telling a result of an action?

If you look at these sentences, the second one is result of the first: Alex shouts and feels pain in his leg, and he rubs the place with hand and looks at the leg. His leg swelled little bit. So ...
3
votes
1answer
255 views

Why is this that-clause a subordinate?

she was so tired that she couldn’t think. (Oxford) Oxford says that-clause above is a subordinate clause expressing a result. Semantically ‘she was tired’ seems to be the main clause, but there ...
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Comma after To at the beginning of a sentence

I am just writing my master thesis and I am unsure whether to place a comma in sentences starting with "To". Here are some examples: To be able to improve the performance[,] it is important to ...
3
votes
1answer
261 views

Example for “so” as a subordinating conjunction

On a webpage called Daily Writing Tips there is a list of 25 subordinating conjunctions including so. The example they're giving is this: “So sure were you of your theory about them, you ignored ...
3
votes
2answers
160 views

Is a comma in this sentence required? [closed]

In the sentence below, is the comma optional or should it (not) be there? I can hear it there when this is spoken, but I am not convinced it needs to be there in written form. In order to pass ...
3
votes
4answers
3k views

“Adverbial phrase” vs “Adverbial clause”

Please tell me what the difference is between an adverbial phrase and an adverbial clause.
3
votes
2answers
107 views

“while I am dancing” vs “while I dance”

Which are more frequently used? 1A - I will be discussing the details while you are researching the data. 1B - I will be discussing the details while you research the data. and 2A - I ...
3
votes
1answer
464 views

Lots of questions for a lot of clauses!

I am confused over the use of lots of vs lot of. I am phrasing a sentence having the following clause : [Article] [lot-of/lots-of] [noun singular/plural] [verb] ... As an example : A lot of ...
3
votes
5answers
2k views

Is a subordinate clause part of the dependent clause's predicate?

Could you please help me determine what the complete predicate is in the following sentence? I get the willies when I see closed doors. — Joseph Heller, Something Happened. At first I thought ...
2
votes
3answers
415 views

Separating Clauses in Garden-path Sentences

While Nancy was dressing the baby played in the garden. I'm not sure where the first clause ends! After baby or after dressing? Please, suggest some way I can improve that sentence.
2
votes
2answers
527 views

Position of verb for object clause

Is the general word order of this sentence correct? We investigate how strong the effect of X on Y is. Or, as an alternative, We investigate how strong the effect of X is on Y. In a ...
2
votes
4answers
317 views

Ambiguity of “We discourage X from doing Y by using Z” [closed]

Given the sentence, We discourage people from committing crimes by using law enforcement, religion and education. I see two possible interpretations: [We discourage people by using law ...
2
votes
2answers
393 views

Can all transitive verbs take to-infinitive clauses?

Yet it would be your duty to bear it, if you could not avoid it: it is weak and silly to say you cannot bear what it is your fate to be required to bear. — Jane Eyre It seems ‘your fate to be ...
2
votes
2answers
314 views

What kind of phrase/clause is “as far as I know”? [closed]

I would like to know what kind of phrase/clause "as far as I know" is, and why.
2
votes
1answer
467 views

Is a single-word sentence like “No” an independent clause? And semicolons [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Comma or semicolon after “No” when responding to a question It started because of this: "No; I found the behavior off-putting." I believe "no", as an ...
2
votes
3answers
353 views

Multiple 'as' (subordinate conjunction) in the same sentence [closed]

Performance is poor as losses have increased and are projected to remain negative going forward as the company works through problem assets and realizes related expense. Is this sentence correct? ...
2
votes
2answers
94 views

Do subordinating conjunctions subordinate clauses with verbs only?

While in Rome, John took a lot of pictures. While he was in Rome, John took a lot of pictures. Although on vacation, John calls the office often. Although he is on vacation, John calls the ...
2
votes
1answer
238 views

“Seeing the rain come on, we took shelter” — complex or simple sentence?

Seeing the rain come on, we took shelter. This sentence looks like a complex sentence with a main and an independent clause. But the book says it is a simple sentence. Which is correct?
2
votes
3answers
486 views

Noun or non-finite subordinate clause?

Consider the following sentence: The government wants to encourage understanding of science. Now, "to encourage understanding of science" is a non-finite subordinate clause functioning as an ...
2
votes
3answers
4k views

Clauses, and comma before “nor”

Does this sentence have two independent clauses? I do not like biology nor do I like chemistry. To me the last clause seems dependent, but I find sources that tell me to place a comma before ...
2
votes
5answers
257 views

Parsing possibility

What is the correct way to parse the following sentence: It is possible that one can be happy only if one can be free. Does the sentence say: It is possible that [one can be happy only if one can ...
2
votes
2answers
156 views

double negation: unless followed by a negative verb form

"We will not cancel the game if the weather gets better." Replacing "if" with "unless", you end up with either: "We will cancel the game unless the weather gets better." or "We will not cancel the ...
2
votes
1answer
640 views

Mixed tense sentence + When clause

Is it legal to write something like this: When I'm trying to post a form system alerts me with a warning message. I've seen people use this kind of writing. EDIT I don't know why (perhaps ...
2
votes
2answers
169 views

attributive clauses puzzle me a lot sometimes

Are the following two sentences interchangeable? "I keep her photo on my desk, which means I do not forget her. versus "I keep her photo on my desk, meaning I do not forget her. If ...
2
votes
3answers
562 views

Can a “because clause” be a subject clause? [duplicate]

Possible Duplicate: Sentence Construction: “Just Because … Does Not Mean” Consider the following sentence: Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean that they're not after you. The ...
2
votes
2answers
159 views

On the usage of commas with nonessential clauses near the end of a sentence

How would you punctuate the following? A decent if long novel. As is. A decent, if long, novel. A decent, if long novel. I feel uncomfortable leaving the "novel" dangling at the end of the ...
1
vote
5answers
560 views

What meaning “Chip on their shoulder” takes here?

The context is below. Bansal is the famous coaching center to clear Engineering Entrance test. Bansal students had a chip on their shoulder, even though they weren't technically even in a college ...
1
vote
3answers
367 views

Is this an independent clause?

From Nate Silver's "The signal and the noise:" The amount of information was increasing much more rapidly than our understanding of what to do with it, or our ability to differentiate the useful ...
1
vote
3answers
219 views

Comma after a long introductory phrase

Please help me with commas in the following sentence: As an example of the successful use of such a model [,] one can mention SymPy computer algebra system [,] which uses Python as a main user ...
1
vote
2answers
231 views

Comma in “more than $6 billion to settle a long-running lawsuit, in a pact that also permits”

Visa Inc., MasterCard Inc. and some large banks agreed to pay scores of retailers—from giant Publix Supermarkets Inc. to an interior-design store in Minnesota—more than $6 billion to settle a ...
1
vote
2answers
56 views

Referring pronoun in multiple clauses sentence

"I have learned that when a newborn baby holds, with its little hand, his father’s finger, it has trapped him for the rest of his life." - Gabriel Garcia Marquez (1927-2014) The word ...
1
vote
1answer
148 views

the function of small clause

She went back to her homeland, her mind free of hate. (English Syntax and Argumentation, Bas Aarts) Aarts says the highlighted part is a small clause that has the role of adjunct. By the ...
1
vote
1answer
226 views

Which are the main and subordinate clauses in this sentence?

Which are the main and subordinate clauses in the following sentence? Individual components do not directly depend on other components, which means that they can be more easily developed in ...
1
vote
2answers
935 views

How to determine what an attributive clause modifies

I was wondering how to determine what an attributive clause modifies? For example: It has been associated with neoclassical economics and with the neoclassical synthesis, which combines ...
1
vote
1answer
26 views

Is a final comma necessary when describing a description?

Sorry, the title is a bit confusing... basically, which of the following is correct? Without a comma: Cory Doctorow, author of Little Brother, the book you had me read during a camping trip which ...