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The following sentence is grammatically correct:

He swung his legs, and sang a song.

But I'm unsure if this is correct:

He swung his legs, singing a song.

It sounds correct to me, but I'm not sure about the present participle, unless what is meant is:

He swung his legs, [and he was] singing a song.

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  • Broadly, what is meant is indeed "He swung his legs, [and he was/while] singing a song" but where is your own research? How far did you get before what problem arose? Jan 12, 2021 at 1:01

2 Answers 2

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You ask whether the sentences are "grammatically correct" - which they are.
But, to me, they do not (necessarily) mean the same thing:

He swung his legs, and [then] sang a song.

Although both parts of the sentence are in the simple past tense, it is not clear from your wording whether the two actions were sequential or simultaneous.

He swung his legs, [while] singing a song.

Here, the first part of the sentence is in the simple past tense, but the second part is in a continuous tense and it is clear that the two actions were simultaneous.

So in summary:

  • Yes, they are both "grammatically correct".
  • But, the first sentence is ambiguous as to whether the two actions were sequential or simultaneous.
  • In the second sentence, the two actions were clearly simultaneous.
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"He swung his legs, and sang a song."

Tense-wise, this is correct. But, it does't need a comma. Your "and" sufficiently links the two clauses. If he was doing more than just swinging his legs you would insert a comma to list his actions. Such as:

"He swung his legs, waving his arms and singing a song."

"He swung his legs, singing a song."

This sentence is correct. Yes, your comma takes the place of your "and was". There is no disagreement between your participles.

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  • I suppose you were going for asonginance, but did you need to duplicate "a song"?
    – Hot Licks
    Apr 14, 2019 at 17:47
  • @HotLicks My bad. Edited. Apr 14, 2019 at 18:32

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