I'm reading The Great Gatsby and there's one part when Tom Buchanan is arguing by phone with George Wilson about a car, and Tom says the next:

Very well, then, I won't sell you the car at all ... I'm under no obligations to you at all ... and as for your bothering me about it at lunch time, I won't stand that at all!

the part:

[...] and as for your bothering me [...]

has a structure like:

possessive adjective + gerund + object pronoun

I had never seen such a construction, so my question is:
Is there something elided in the sentence, and what's the meaning of the sentence?

Thank you in advance.

  • 3
    The analagous his/him achieving a Cambridge degree is covered at Analysing clause elements and their function – Edwin Ashworth Dec 29 '14 at 0:45
  • It's a possessive adjective, not pronoun. – Centaurus Dec 29 '14 at 0:58
  • 4
    It's a subject noun phrase and it's marked as a possessive. I don't think that makes it an adjective. Subjects don't modify their verbs. – John Lawler Dec 29 '14 at 1:20
  • You should read the chapter gerund in a grammar. – rogermue Dec 29 '14 at 4:23
  • @rogermue I don't get you, I had never seen such construction – Victor Castillo Torres Dec 29 '14 at 4:29

In school I was taught that gerunds take a possessive pronoun and that's that. But it kind of makes sense if you consider that by definition a gerund is a present participle masquerading as a noun. If we substitute an actual noun, we might get something like, "your disturbance [of] me at lunchtime." The subjective "you" would never fit in this construct, and thinking of "bothering" as a noun should help make this rule clear.

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  • I've been reading The Cambridge Grammar Of The English Language and I have the concept clearer, and your answer makes it even more. – Victor Castillo Torres Dec 29 '14 at 8:18

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