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I have read many times that "participle clauses with past participles have a passive meaning" but I came across this sentence which made me confused.Is this sentence grammatically correct?

Attached to a mother that only a son could love, Jerry, the newborn, suckling pig, felt a profound attraction to ugliness come over him.

I asked this question because the participle clause in this sentence sounds in active voice for me.If I rewrite the sentence it could be :

Jerry attached to a mother that only a son could love. Jerry, the newborn, suckling pig, felt a profound attraction to ugliness come over him.

I assume the verb attach is transitive and used in active voice here but Jerry is supposed to be the object of the participle clause in this sentence, not the subject again.

So for me right sentence could be :

Attached by a mother that only a son could love, Jerry, the newborn, suckling pig, felt a profound attraction to ugliness come over him.

  • I have no idea what the sentence is supposed to mean. The source is suspect. Moral: don't believe everything you read about grammar. – John Lawler Feb 19 '15 at 4:09
  • Jerry, the newborn, suckling pig certainly is a precocious little fellow. One wonders what was on his newborn mind before he felt the profound attraction to ugliness come over him. – Sven Yargs Feb 19 '15 at 7:37
  • @JohnLawler Presumably Jerry the suckling pig had an ugly - perhaps surrogate - mother of some sort. A mother so ugly that the author suspects nobody else but a son, i.e. Jerry, could love. Because Jerry had a love of his ugly mother he was overcome by a love of ugly things. This is a load of drivel, but it is what the author intends the sentence to mean - I think ... – Araucaria Feb 20 '15 at 0:37
  • Jerry is a newborn, but the extra comma before suckling pig persuaded me that Jerry was somebody else, especially since "that nobody could love" refers to people, not pigs. Presumably pigs love their mothers, just like every mammal. – John Lawler Feb 20 '15 at 1:22
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In this sentence, "Attached to a mother that only a son could love" means that Jerry IS ATTACHED TO the mother that only a son could love. So in fact, alas, neither of your rewrites is correct.

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