Questions about modifiers.

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11
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5answers
8k views

Origin of the “-y” or “-ie” diminutive suffix to denote intimacy/tenderness? (E.g. Bob→Bobby, dad→daddy, Doug→Dougie)

Many names seem to get a "-y" or "-ie" at the end when the speaker wishes to denote a hint of familiarity, intimacy, or tenderness. Examples can be seen not just in names, but in terms like puppy, ...
2
votes
1answer
46 views

Which clause does the adverb modify in this sentence? [on hold]

I have the following sentence: "The KKK was a secret organization; apart from a few top leaders the members never revealed their membership and wore masks in public." Does the adverb "never" ...
0
votes
2answers
67 views

“This is an interesting-looking book.”

"This is an interesting-looking book." The point of the hyphen is to make 'looking' relate to 'interesting' and not directly to 'book'. 'Looking' modifies 'interesting'…or is it the other way around? ...
0
votes
0answers
12 views

In the case of a compound modifier that is followed by parenthetical information, where should the noun be placed?

Where should the noun be placed in the following phrase: ... a tedious and resource-intensive (time and human effort) job. OR ... a tedious and resource-intensive job (time and human effort.)
48
votes
13answers
8k views

Does “so called” have a negative connotation in English?

In some languages the word-by-word translation of "so called" usually has a neutral connotation. E.g. in the Czech language you may very often find a sentence like this (word-by-word translated from a ...
8
votes
3answers
104 views

What's large about the Large Hadron Collider?

In Connolly's "The Gates", the narrator says, rather superciliously, "The Large Hadron Collider is, as the name suggests, large." I realised that I had always thought of it as the (Large Hadron) ...
1
vote
2answers
52 views

Reliable test for whether PP is an adverb PP or adjective PP

"We should tie the rope to the tree." The McGraw Hill Handbook of English Grammar and Usage gives two tests for determining if a PP is adjectival or adverbial, neither of which stands up to much ...
3
votes
2answers
42k views

Are “way better” and “way more” correct?

"Way better" and "way more" are popular expressions, but they both seem incorrect to me. "Far better", "far more", "much better", and "much more" all seem correct. Is this true? If so, why?
2
votes
3answers
173 views

How should a multiple-word noun be punctuated within a compound adjective?

I would like to use a noun made of multiple words (like particle board, Mount Everest, or windscreen wiper) in a compound adjective with a hyphen. But I don't know how to hyphenate such a composition....
1
vote
3answers
48 views

Postmodification using participle: Is it grammatical?

I am a Japanese teacher of English who is making a teaching material for my students. I would like to know whether the following usage would be totally accepted in school grammar. To put my question ...
0
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3answers
64 views

Ambiguous modifier at the end of this sentence? [closed]

We review recurrent neural networks in computer science, a simple class of learning algorithms that permit feedback between the different nodes in the network. I have two questions: Is the ...
-2
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3answers
50 views

Is that “the most” or just “most” to be used for a superlative of an adverb?

I wonder whether to use the determinant "the" when it is to be used for superlative of an adverb as follows: (A) These neurons innervate most densely to layer 1. (B) These neurons innervate ...
0
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0answers
32 views

Modifier placement/ Dangling modifier

Is there any misplacement in the use of the modifier in any sentence? which one looks better & why? Manifesting their delight, People of our neighbouring countries, after the hard-fought ...
-1
votes
1answer
27 views

they interrogated Harry, nervous…/ dangling/misplaced clause

a. They interrogated Harry, exhausted. b. They interrogated Harry, nervous. c. They interrogated Harry, nervous because he thought they had found his gun. d. They interrogated Harry, nervous and ...
0
votes
0answers
44 views

In what way do these adverbial prepositional phrases modify the verb?

Adverbial prepositional phrases usually answer one of these questions: when, how, where, and why. Furthermore, if the phrase is movable it’s a good sign that the phrase is adverbial. I am also aware ...
2
votes
1answer
276 views

Plural modifying noun [duplicate]

Where can I learn about the English rules for noun phrases in which a modifying noun is semantically plural? We say "Horse trainer," not "horses trainer", even though there is usually more than one ...
0
votes
1answer
18 views

Some Sentence and Comma [closed]

Whatever the degree of integration, teaching autistic children effectively will require more funding, to train both specialist and mainstream teachers. Why do we need comma after "funding" and ...
0
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2answers
41 views

Funny modifiers

How would you rewrite this funny modifier: Freshly painted, Jim left the room to dry. Does this sentence mean that he left the room for something else, and he left the room to dry? How would you ...
0
votes
1answer
38 views

“Science committee” vs “Scientific committee”

Is Science Committee correct and/or more accurate than Scientific Committee? I'm in a committee at a science lab where we organize events to promote the research done in-house. The committee is a ...
0
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2answers
130 views

“high-quality” vs. “quality”

This appeared in the NYT the other day: "...creating a quality product is challenging." I've always been under the impression that one should say "high-quality" or "low-quality" or have some modifier(...
0
votes
1answer
108 views

'Well' after: How to use 'well after' in a sentence? [closed]

She waited till well after midnight. What does well after signify here? There are 51 definitions of well at the Merriam Webster Dictionary. It is not immediately obvious which one applies here. ...
4
votes
6answers
278 views

In structures such as 'football manager', is 'football' a modifier or a complement of the head noun?

I thought I'd post this as it illustrates a problem often encountered on ELU. In structures such as 'football manager', is 'football' a modifier or a complement of the head noun? I've seen ...
2
votes
1answer
42 views

Does the “rule of the last antecedent” apply to casual conversation?

The Supreme Court recently decided Lockhart v United States using the rule that a limiting clause or phrase . . . should ordinarily be read as modifying only the noun or phrase that it ...
2
votes
2answers
72 views

“0/the lazy/clever Peter”: definite article with modified proper names

In some grammar book I read: The use of articles with names of persons modified by adjectives is varied. In most cases no article is used with names of persons modified by the adjectives old, young, ...
0
votes
0answers
40 views

In “thin green candle”, can these adjectives be considered cumulative?

I have read that coordinate adjectives can be separated by commas, since both modify the noun, and cumulative adjectives cannot, since the first noun modifies the combination of the last adjective and ...
0
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1answer
133 views

Putting descriptive words in reverse order

There are sentences like this. He was a calm and nice person. He talked with vaguely old and British expression. I always thought that since "calm and nice" is not a phrase, it came ...
1
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1answer
896 views

Degrees of comparison for words ending in “-ly”

Would you make a word ending in -ly positive, comparative, or superlative? I'm sort of leaning towards positive at the moment, and if the answer is positive, would you put more and most for ...
1
vote
2answers
2k views

How do you modify an adverb with another adverb?

This is the case I have in mind. I wish to express that impact acted in a way that was severely adverse. It impacted her severely adversely. The proposed text above doesn't feel right at all, ...
0
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0answers
88 views

Nowhere near and nowhere close to

I am so confused about which is modifying which. In the sentence below: It was nowhere close to being done. Nowhere: An adverb modifying close It's the farthest I could get. I don't know if ...
5
votes
3answers
36k views

Should “two weeks vacation” be “two weeks' vacation” (possessive)?

I've always understood that the phrase "two weeks" usually turns to "two weeks'" when used as a modifier -- as in "I'm giving my two weeks' notice" or "I get two weeks' vacation" ("two weeks' holiday" ...
1
vote
1answer
103 views

I have difficulty using long subject

It is hard to use long noun phrase subject. I hope to make it easy to read. For example, The relation between luminance and pupil area under dynamic condition will be computed. In this case, ...
4
votes
4answers
228 views

Can “Christmas” be used as an adjective?

I was just wondering whether I can write Christmas-colored stockings Christmas can be a modifier like Christmas gift, but can it be used as an adjective?
5
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5answers
83 views

Dangling or Misplaced Modifiers: the use of adverbs

When you say: I earn fifty dollars a week scarcely. I know this is not correct. It doesn't sound right and you can't apply an adverb to "a week" because it doesn't make sense and that's not the ...
1
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1answer
40 views

Is there a dangling modifier in this sentence?

"The expression constantly changes while watching it". We are talking about a picture here and this sentence is supposed to mean "while smb. is watching it", "it" refers to the expression. Is it a ...
0
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1answer
22 views

What does the term “scheduled” modify in the following sentence:

For the purpose of this article, a pre-approved absence is defined as a scheduled vacation day, personal day, compensatory day or an excused sick day.
5
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3answers
8k views

Hyphen or no hyphen when modifying an adjective with a quantity?

I have a sentence which has an object that is described with an adjective: We need to inform our interested patrons of this change. If I modify "interested" with "more" or "less", do I connect ...
0
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1answer
25 views

Is there a rule for what we can turn into a compound modifier/adj?

Consider the following: The music was perfect for a windows-down, summer's-day car ride. Is this sentence grammatically correct? The hyphen usage looks particularly odd, but since they are being ...
0
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2answers
53 views

ambiguity of antecedent of participle modifier in a GMAT question

Below is a GMAT sentence correction question, regarding the proper usage of "include". \begin{question} As an actress and, more importantly, as a teacher of acting, [Stella Adler was one of the ...
6
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1answer
82 views

Term for words that are modified by prefixing the word with “a” (e.g. anew, aplenty)

It occurred to me that there are quite a large number of words - many of them archaic - that are existing words prefixed with the letter 'a' to create a new word. For example: anew, aplenty, atwitter, ...
1
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0answers
199 views

Is “away” an adverb in “He ran away”. Also, is it an Object?

Is 'away' the object of the verb 'ran' in: I ran away ... or is it an adverb modifying the verb 'ran'? It seems to be obligatory, which may indicate that it's a phrasal verb as ODO has a ...
0
votes
1answer
219 views

Is “responsible” a gradable or a non-gradable adjective?

Is responsible a gradable adjective that can be modified with too? E.g., "He is too responsible".
1
vote
3answers
302 views

Are absolute phrases adverbials?

Can we say all absolute phrases function as "adverbials" modifying the subject+verb of the sentence that they are attached to? For example: Her determination stronger than ever, Nexisa resolved ...
1
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2answers
47 views

to phrase… where is the noun it modifies?

She is not a person to fear. She is not a person to be feared. It is fine to use both forms, but I cannot catch the definite difference between them in meaning. Also, why is it OK to use both ...
0
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2answers
49 views

What does an adjunct modify?

Does an adjunct always modify the noun or can it modify the verb, too? For example: He talked about me [in a hateful way]. I don't think that saying "in a hateful way" modifies him would be ...
1
vote
1answer
49 views

What does C modify in “A of B that C”? “A” or “B” or “A of B”? Are there some rules?

I have sentences as follow, I want to know what the "that", "while", and the second "that" subordinate clause modify? The goal is to find short descriptions of the members of a collection that enable ...
0
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0answers
69 views

Participle phrase at the end of the sentence

When participle phrase comes at the end of the sentence, it usually modifies the subject. 1 He smiled nervously with a chocolate in his hands, thinking that the end has come. Here, participle ...
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2answers
53 views

Modifiers of pronouns

Someone new Anybody else Something good I've never thought about it, but why does the adjective follow the noun it modifies? Is there a technical term for this?
0
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1answer
53 views

Which clauses with phrases

Can which clause modify participle phrases? Which clause is usually used for summarizing or explaining the clause before it. 1 His wife was stunning, which was always his pride. 2 I left ...
0
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0answers
65 views

Noun (date) as modifier - comma after year needed?

I know that we should always add a comma after the year if the date format is like September 15, 2015. But I've also read that if the date is used as an adjective, there should be no comma. In these ...
3
votes
2answers
1k views

“The peasants were the least free of all people, bound by tradition and fettered by superstitions.”

Does this sentence need to be broken up by a semi colon, conjuction, or a period? Is there a modifier error here as well? The peasants were the least free of all people, bound by tradition and ...