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Proiect cofinanat din Fondul Social European prin Programul Operaional Sectorial Dezvoltarea Resurselor Umane 2007-2013

Investete n oameni!

Formarea profesional a cadrelor didactice


din nvmntul preuniversitar
pentru noi oportuniti de dezvoltare n carier

ENGLISH LANGUAGE
SYNTAX
Ecaterina POPA

Program de conversie profesional la nivel postuniversitar


pentru cadrele didactice din nvmntul preuniversitar

Specializarea ENGLEZ
Forma de nvmnt ID - semestrul II

2011
Table of Contents

TABLE OF CONTENTS

Page
INTRODUCTION 1
Unit 1 THE SENTENCE
Unit Objectives 5
1.1. The Sentence What Is a Sentence 5
1.2. Sentence Classification 6
SAQ 1 7
1.3. The Simple Sentence 7
1.3.1. Structural and Functional Classification 8
1.4. Syntactic Elements of the Simple Sentence 10
1.4.1. Classes of Sentence Patterns 10
1.4.2. Adverbial Modifiers 12
SAQ 2 12
1.5. The Declarative Sentence 13
1.5.1. Negative Declarative Sentences 13
1.5.2. Realization of Negation 13
SAQ 3 15
Summary 16
Key Concepts 16
Selected Bibliography 17
PA No. 1 18
Answers to SAQs 19

UNIT 2 INTERROGATIVE, IMPERATIVE AND EXCLAMATORY SENTENCES


Unit Objectives 21
2.1. Interrogative Sentences or Questions 21
2.1.1. Definition 21
2.1.2. Main Question Types 22
SAQ 1 24
SAQ 2 29
SAQ 3 33
2.1.3. Other Types of Questions 33
SAQ 4 37
2.2. Imperative Sentences 37
SAQ 5 39
2.3. The Exclamatory Sentence 40
SAQ 6 41
Summary 42
Key Concepts 43
Selected Bibliography 43
SAA No. 1 43
Answers to SAQs 44

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Table of Contents

UNIT 3 THE CONSTITUENTS OF THE SIMPLE SENTENCE


Unit Objectives 48
3.1. The Subject 48
3.1.1. Means of Expressing the Subject 50
3.1.2. It as Subject 51
SAQ 1 54
3.1.3. Introductory There 55
SAQ 2 57
3.2. The Predicate 57
3.2.1. The Verbal Predicate 58
3.2.2. The Nominal Predicate 59
3.2.2.1. Linking Verbs 59
3.2.2.2. The Subject Complement 60
SAQ 3 63
Summary 64
Key Concepts 65
Selected Bibliography 65
PA No. 2 66
Answers to SAQs 67

UNIT 4 SUBJECT-PREDICATE CONCORD


Unit Objectives 71
4.1. Subject Predicate Concord 71

4.2. Concord of Person 71


4.3. Concord of Number 72
4.3.1. Concord of Collective Nouns 72
4.3.2. Uncountable Nouns Followed by the Verb in the Singular 72
SAQ 1 73
4.3.3. Uncountable Nouns Followed by the Verb in the Plural 74
SAQ 2 75
4.3.4. Concord between Subject and Predicate when the Subject is 76
Expressed by Other Means than a Noun
SAQ 3 77
4.3.5. Concord of Coordinated Subjects 78
Summary 79
Key Concepts 80
Selected Bibliography 80
PA No. 3 81
Answers to SAQs 82

UNIT 5 COMPLEMENTATION OF THE VERB (I)


Unit Objectives 84
5.1. What is Complementation 84
5.2. Transitivity and Complementation 85
5.2.1. Classification of Transitive Verbs 86
5.2.2. Passivization 87
SAQ 1 89
5.3. The Direct Object 90
5.3.1. Monotransitive Verbs and the Direct Object 90
5.3.2. Phrasal Verbs and Transitivity 93
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Table of Contents

SAQ 2 94
5.3.3. Means of Expressing the Direct Object 95
5.4. The Object Complement 96
SAQ 3 98
Summary 99
Key Concepts 100
Selected Bibliography 100
PA No. 4 101
Answers to SAQs 102

UNIT 6 COMPLEMENTATION OF THE VERB (II)


Unit Objectives 105
6.1. Ditransitive Verbs Requiring Two Objects 105
6.1.1. The Direct and the Indirect Object in the Sentence 105
6.1.2. Features of Direct and Indirect Object 108
6.1.2.1. Ordering the Direct and Indirect Object 108
6.1.2.2. Means of Expressing the Indirect Object 109
6.1.2.3. Passivization of Ditransitive Verb Sentences 110
SAQ 1 111
6.1.3. Other Ditransitive Verbs with Two Objects 112
6.2. The Prepositional Object 113
SAQ 2 114
6.3. Complex Constructions 114
SAQ 3 118
Summary 120
Key Concepts 120
Selected Bibliography 120
SAA No. 2 121
Answers to SAQs 122

UNIT 7 ADVERBIAL MODIFIERS (I)


Unit Objectives 125
7.1. What Are Adverbial Modifiers 125
7.1.1. Classification of Adverbial Modifiers 126
7.2. The Adverbial Modifier of Time 127
7.2.1. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Time 127
7.2.2. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Duration 129
7.2.3. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Frequency 130
7.2.4. Placing Adverbial Modifiers of Time in the Sentence 130
SAQ 1 134
7.3. The Adverbial Modifier of Place 135
7.3.1. Adverbs Expressing Place and/or Direction 135
7.3.2. Prepositional Phrases Expressing Place, Direction or Destination 136
7.3.3. Placing the Adverbials of Place 137
SAQ 2 138
Summary 139
Key Concepts 140
Selected Bibliography 140
PA No. 5 141
Answers to SAQs 141

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Table of Contents

UNIT 8 ADVERBIAL MODIFIERS (II)


Unit Objectives 144
8.1. The Adverbial Modifier of Manner 144
8.1.1. Means of Expressing the Adverbial Modifier of Manner, Means 145
and Instrument
8.1.1.1. Adverbs as Adverbial Modifiers of Manner 145
8.1.1.2. Adverbial Modifiers Expressed by Prepositional 147
Phrases
8.1.1.3. Placing Adverbial Modifiers of Manner, Means and 148
Instrument
SAQ 1 149
8.2. Adverbial Modifiers of Reason/Cause, Purpose, Concession, 150
Condition and Result
SAQ 2 152
8.3. Placing Adverbial Modifiers in a Simple Sentence 153
8.3.1. Ordering Adverbials of the Same Kind 153
8.3.2. Ordering Adverbials of Different Kinds 154
8.3.3. Emphasizing Adverbial Modifiers 154
SAQ 3 156
Summary 157
Key Concepts 157
Selected Bibliography 158
PA No. 6 158
Answers to SAQs 159

UNIT 9 COORDINATION
Unit Objectives 162
9.1. What is Coordination 162
9.1.1. Coordinating Sentence Constituents 164
SAQ 1 165
9.2. Coordinating Simple Sentences 165
9.2.1. Coordinating Two Sentences with the Same Subject 167
SAQ 2 168
9.2.2. Coordinating Simple Sentences with Different Subjects 169
9.2.2.1. Coordinating Sentences with Different Subjects, the 169
Same Action Performed
9.2.2.2. Coordinating Sentences with Different Subjects, 172
Different Actions Performed
SAQ 3 173
Summary 175
Key Concepts 175
Selected Bibliography 175
PA No. 7 176
Answers to SAQs 178

UNIT 10 SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (I). RELATIVE CLAUSES


Unit Objectives 181
10.1. What are Relative Clauses 181
10.1.1. Classification of Relative Clauses 182
10.2. Defining Relative Clauses 183
10.2.1. Introductory Markers of Defining Relative Clauses 183

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Table of Contents

SAQ 1 185
10.2.2. Deleting the Relative Pronoun 186
SAQ 2 187
10.3. Non-Defining Relative Clauses 188
10.3.1. Introductory Markers of Non-Defining Relative Clauses 189
SAQ 3 190
10.4. Independent Relative Clauses 191
10.5. Reduced Relative Clauses 191
SAQ 4 193
Summary 194
Key Concepts 195
Selected Bibliography 195
SAA No. 3 196
Answers to SAQs 198

UNIT 11 SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (II). NOMINAL CLAUSES


Unit Objectives 201
11.1. What are Nominal Clauses 201
11.2. Classification of Nominal Clauses 202
11.3. That- Nominal Clauses 203
SAQ 1 206
11.4. Nominal Relative Clauses 207
11.5. Wh- Nominal Clauses 208
SAQ 2 209
11.6. Non-Finite Nominal Clauses 210
SAQ 3 213
Summary 214
Key Concepts 215
Selected Bibliography 215
PA No. 8 216
Answers to SAQs 217

UNIT 12 SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (III). ADVERBIAL CLAUSES (I)


Unit Objectives 219
12.1 What are Adverbial Clauses 219
12.2. Classification of Adverbial Clauses 220
12.3. Adverbial Clauses of Time 221
12.3.1. Finite Time Clauses 221
SAQ 1 224
12.3.2. Non-Finite Clauses 225
SAQ 2 226
12.4. Adverbial Clauses of Place 226
12.5 Adverbial Clauses of Manner 227
SAQ 3 228
12.6. Adverbial Clauses of Purpose 229
12.6.1. Non-Finite Clauses 229
12.6.2. Finite Clauses 230
SAQ 4 232
Summary 232
Key Concepts 234
Selected Bibliography 234
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Table of Contents

PA No. 9 235
Answers to SAQs 236

UNIT 13 SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (III). ADVERBIAL CLAUSES (II)


Unit Objectives 238
13.1. What are Conditional Clauses 238
13.1.1. Classification of Conditional Clauses 239
13.1.1.1. Factual Conditionals or Type 0 241
SAQ 1 242
13.1.1.2. Open Conditionals Type 1 242
SAQ 2 244
13.1.1.3. Hypothetical Conditionals Type 2 245
SAQ 3 246
13.1.1.4. Unreal Past Conditionals Type 3 247
SAQ 4 249
13.2. Adverbial Clauses of Concession 250
SAQ 5 253
13.3. Adverbial Clauses of Reason 253
13.4 Adverbial Clauses of Result 255
SAQ 6 257
Summary 258
Key Concepts 259
Selected Bibliography 259
SAA No. 4 260
Answers to SAQs 261

UNIT 14 REPORTED SPEECH AND SEQUENCE OF TENSES


Unit Objectives 265
14.1. Reported Speech 265
14.2. Reported Speech from a Present Viewpoint 267
14.2.1. Reporting Statements 267
14.2.2. Reporting Questions 267
14.2.3. Reporting Imperatives 268
SAQ 1 269
14.3. Reported Speech from a Past Viewpoint 271
14.3.1. Tense Changes with a Reporting Verbs in the Past 272
SAQ 2 274
14.3.2. Exceptions to Tense or Verb Form Changes 275
SAQ 3 277
14.3.3. Reporting Imperatives and Exclamations 277
14.3.4. Reporting More Complex Messages 278
SAQ 4 279

Summary 280
Key Concepts 281
Selected Bibliography 282
PA No. 10 283
Answers to SAQs 284

BIBLIOGRAPHY 286

vi
Introduction

INTRODUCTION

Module Structure

The syntax module plays an important role in developing


linguistic and communicative competences. Its main aim is to enable
you to convey messages in the English language, which should
observe three main requirements: grammatical correctness,
meaning, and communicative appropriateness.
Having in view that you are now both students and teachers, the
methodological aim of the module is to help you analyse syntactic
structures and draw adequate rules, apply the rules when
exemplifying or using different structures in classroom situations or in
everyday life.
The module is structured in 14 units, starting with the sentence
as the basic unit of analysis in syntax, and with the four basic types
of simple sentences and their communicative functions.
A second part is made up of six units in which the constituents of
the simple sentence are discussed with emphasis on syntactic
relationships and structures use and usage.
The next five units deal with the realization of more complex
syntactic structures achieved by means of coordination and
subordinate clauses (relative, nominal and adverbial clauses). These
structures expand the message by providing additional information,
but at the same time they perform syntactic functions. Mechanisms
and rules of making up correct complex sentences are closely
observed, analysed and exemplified.
The last unit Reported Speech draws attention to the
complexity of rendering someone elses words, or stories expressed
in terms of various types of sentences.

Performance Objectives and Linguistic Competence

One of the main objectives in the study of syntax is to identify


the sentence as the basic unit of analysis in terms of its constituents
and the relationship between/among them. According to the type of
sentences simple, compound or complex the message encoded
in the sentence can be expanded by using adverbial modifiers,
subordinate clauses or by coordinating two or more constituents of a
sentence.
Sentences as message carriers convey meaning and have
communicative functions.
Having in view that in the study of syntax there are three basic
variables that are to be taken into consideration: the sentence
constituents, the relationships between them, and the meaning that

1
Introduction

is conveyed, the following specific objectives are to be pursued in


order to develop linguistic competence:

to identify the constituents of a simple sentence in terms of


compulsory constituents (subject and predicate) and optional
constituents (adverbial modifiers);
to identify changes in types of sentences (interrogative,
negative, imperative) as compared to declaratives;
to explain structure of various types of simple sentences;
to use types of sentences according to their communicative
functions;
to exemplify use of types of sentences in communicative
contexts:
to identify types of predication realized by the verb and
subsequently make use of the appropriate objects and
complements;
to expand messages providing information about time, place,
manner of the action;
to identify complex syntactic structures expressed by
relativization or nominalization;
to explain the mechanisms of relativization and exemplify
types of relatives;
to explain and exemplify types of nominal clauses and their
syntactic functions;
to identify structure and function of adverbial clauses;
to explain time/verb form relationship in adverbial clauses;
to make up sentences of your own to exemplify use of
adverbial clauses in everyday communication;
to render simple or complex messages according to the
transformations necessary in reporting someone elses words;
to explain transformations in terms of these transformations
(word order, pronouns, etc.) and sequence of tenses.

In order to attain the course objectives, the SAQs enable you to


solve a great variety of tasks and exercises which help you not only
to apply rules but also to analyse, compare and apply in guided or
free contexts the knowledge and skills that you have acquired and
developed. The underlying objective of the module is to raise
awareness of how the language functions when a speaker makes up
messages in different communicative contexts.
The Stop and think! tasks (40 all along the module) are inserted
in the text in order to enable you to link or transfer previous and
background knowledge to the new information or to introduce the
new item discussed in the subchapter by means of comparing,
analysing, exemplifying, or drawing conclusions about a certain
structure and its use. It is advisable to solve the tasks as you come
upon them. The answers to most of them are to be found
immediately after the tasks, but in order to make sure that your
reasoning is correct, we suggest that you prepare a portfolio with
your answers so that you can discuss them with your tutor. If you
cannot solve the tasks or provide examples, you are advised to go
back after having read the subchapters they refer to.

2
Introduction

Assessment and evaluation

The three types of tests SAQs (self-assessed questions), PAs


(portfolio assignments), and SAAs (send-away assignments) are
based on the subject matter dealt with in the unit. But as language is
not made up of isolated items and new knowledge is always based
on previous knowledge, you need both theoretical background and
practice in order to develop your linguistic competence.
The SAQs, an average of 3 per unit (50 SAQs in the module),
are meant to help learning in small steps as they are to be found at
the end of subchapters that are considered key items for the subject
matter dealt with. The tasks range from identifying syntactic items or
structures to transformation or replacement exercises to open tasks
(e.g. make up your own examples according to a model, or expand
messages). The answers to all SAQs are to be found at the end of
each unit.
The PAs 10 in the whole module and the SAAs 4 in the
whole module are centred upon the regularities of the syntactic
mechanisms and structures. The basic requirement is to apply the
rules and exemplify the structures that have been dealt with in the
unit. There are also a few tasks in which theoretical issues are to be
solved in terms of true or false statements with reference to
definitions or features of syntactic structures (e.g. relative clauses).
The PAs are meant to sum up the most important problems
dealt with in the unit. You are asked to solve the assignment, keep
your answers in a portfolio and take them to the next tutorial to
discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.
The SAAs refer to the most important problems in the whole
module, and we suggest that they be solved after a thorough revision
of the unit and of the answers to the SAQs, as well as after resorting
to the specified bibliography in the unit.
The completed SAAs must be sent to your tutor. The tutor and
you, by mutual agreement, will decide upon the means by which the
answers and the feedback will be sent (by post or e-mail).
The final grade will reflect the evaluation of your progress and
competence as follows:
40% - continuous assessment (SAAs)
60% - final written examination

3
The Sentence

UNIT 1

THE SENTENCE

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 5
1.1. The Sentence What Is a Sentence 5
1.2. Sentence Classification 6
SAQ 1 7
1.3. The Simple Sentence 7
1.3.1. Structural and Functional Classification 8
1.4. Syntactic Elements of the Simple Sentence 10
1.4.1. Classes of Sentence Patterns 10
1.4.2. Adverbial Modifiers 12
SAQ 2 12
1.5. The Declarative Sentence 13
1.5.1. Negative Declarative Sentences 13
1.5.2. Realization of Negation 13
SAQ 3 15
Summary 16
Key Concepts 16
Selected Bibliography 17
PA No. 1 18
Answers to SAQs 19

4
The Sentence

A simple definition of syntax tells us that it studies the ways in


which words combine together to form sentences. As such, the
basic unit of analysis in syntax will be the sentence. But there are
one word sentences and there are long-many-word and very
complicated sentences. This makes it necessary to establish rules
according to which words combine and identify the constituents of a
sentence and recognize its structure. At the same time, sentences
have to convey some kind of message. They are used in our social
life, so they will also perform communicative functions.

After having read this introductory unit you will be able to:

unit identify sentences according to their structure


objectives identify sentences according to their function
make the distinction between a simple sentence and the
other types of sentences
identify simple sentence patterns depending on the verb
identify simple declarative sentences and their structure

1.1. The Sentence What Is a Sentence

Traditionally, the unit of language which is analyzed from a


syntactic point of view is the sentence. According to tradition, a
sentence must fulfill two conditions: a) it has to have a subject and
a predicate; b) it has to have meaning. So the sentences:

He left.
He left yesterday.
He left by train yesterday.
Did he leave all by himself?
He didnt leave yesterday.

all fulfill the two conditions.


But in English, by a sentence, we do not mean only such simple
statements or questions but also longer stretches of language as in:

a) Mary finished reading, and she wanted to start writing her


essay but just then a friend of hers rang her up.

As we can observe in this longer stretch, there are two subjects


Mary and her friend and three predicates finished, wanted and
rang up. This means that we have three independent sentences:

Mary finished reading.


Mary wanted to start writing her essay.
Her friend rang her up.

5
The Sentence

We can construct a different type of stretch of language with almost


the same meaning by saying:

b) Mary finished reading and wanted to start writing her essay


when a friend of hers rang her up.

By analyzing the two examples, we can notice that the number


of subjects and predicates remains the same, the meaning almost
the same, but what has changed is the relationship between the
independent sentences.
In the first example (a) the relationship between the first two
sentences and the last one is that of contrast (established by but)
while in example b) there is a temporal relation (simultaneity)
established between the second action and the third one established
by when.

1.2. Sentence Classification


The above-mentioned examples show that the sentence is a
longer unit, which means that we have to distinguish between them
according to the basic unit. The basic unit of a sentence is the
clause.
Clauses classify into:

a) independent or main
b) dependent or subordinate clauses (or subclauses)

According to the number of clauses and the relationship


between them we distinguish three types of sentences:

The Simple Sentence or one clause, which has two


constituents, subject and predicate (a verb in a finite form):

She was reading.

The Compound Sentence is made up of two or more


independent clauses which are equally important and are joined by
coordinating conjunctions (and, but, or).

She sat down and she wanted to start reading.

The Complex Sentence is made up by one main/independent


clause and one or more subordinate/dependent clauses.

Mary wanted to start reading when the phone rang.

The subordinate clauses are in most cases introduced by


subordinating conjunctions (when, if, because, although, etc.).

6
The Sentence

SAQ 1
Identify the kinds of sentences: a. simple; b. compound; or c.
complex in the following text. All sentences start with a capital letter
and end with a full stop.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

It was late, and everyone left the caf except an old man who
sat in the shadow of the tree leaves. In the daytime the street was
dusty, but at night the dew settled and the old man liked to stay late.
He liked it because it was quiet. The old man was a little drunk. Two
waiters were looking at him from inside the caf. The old man was a
good client, but he could have left without paying.
(adapted after E. Hemingway, A Clean, Well-Lighted Place)
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1.3. The Simple Sentence


As we have already mentioned, the simple sentence is made
up of a finite verb clause which stands by itself and conveys
complete meaning in itself.

Mr. Smith got up very early that morning.


Is he a student?
What a man!

7
The Sentence

1.3.1. Structural and Functional Classification


A. From a structural point of view, simple sentences fall into the
following groups:

a) One-member Simple Sentence, which has only a nominal


element (a noun or noun phrase):

London. Implacable November weather.


(Ch. Dickens, Bleak House)
What a story!

b) Unextended Two-member Sentence, which is made up


only by subject and predicate:

Im coming!
He disappeared.
Shes a nurse.

c) Extended Two-member Sentence, which has more


constituents some of which are obligatory, others optional:

My friend was building a house.


She gave him a nod of encouragement.
Nobody agreed with him.
He returned to his flat at three in the morning with no thought of
sleep.

Stop and think!

Which constituents of the four sentences above are obligatory


and which are optional in order for the sentences to be meaningful
and grammatically correct?
Try to justify your choice. In the space below, write down your
answers and then check them as you read on. Keep your answers in
a portfolio and take them to the next tutorial to discuss them with
your classmates and your tutor.

8
The Sentence

B. From a functional point of view we can distinguish four types


of simple sentences. Each type of the sentence has a recognizable
structure

a) Declarative sentences, traditionally called statements, in


which the subject predicate order is observed:

Id like to sing a song.


It is early.
She never showed any interest in music.

b) Interrogative sentences, also called questions, require


some answer or response. In interrogative sentences the subject
follows the auxiliary or modal verb. Placing the subject after the
verb is called inversion.

Is she a teacher?
What do you mean?
Couldnt he come by car?

c) Imperative sentences, in which the verb is in the


imperative mood and which are generally considered to be used for
commands and orders.

Tell her, tell her!


Just please dont break it!
Let us go back now!

d) Exclamatory sentences, which are introduced by What


and How having a specific structure and which are used to express
feelings or emotions.

What an egoist he must be!


How grand and pompous he sounds!
How many toys you have!

For each type of sentence there are specific functions. Actually


a wide range of communicative functions can be expressed by each
type. For example, request can be expressed in the following ways:

I would like some water. (declarative)


May I have some water? (interrogative)
Get me some water, please! (imperative)

When discussing each type of simple sentence separately, we


will also mention their communicative functions.

9
The Sentence

1.4. Syntactic Elements of the Simple Sentence


The component elements of a sentence perform certain
syntactic functions. So if from a morphological point of view we
identify a finite verb form in a sentence, we interpret it as having the
syntactic function of a predicate. But the clause elements do not
match one to one the words in a sentence as parts of speech. A
noun can perform different syntactic functions, so in order to identify
the constituents of a clause one has to take into consideration the
clause structure in English and its main component, the verb.
The basic sentence constituents are:

the Subject
the Verb

The verb determines obligatory elements. For instance, linking


verbs require a complement to form the predicate. Transitive
verbs need an object to form a grammatical and meaningful
sentence.

1.4.1. Classes of Sentence Patterns


According to the type of the verb there are six main classes
of simple sentence structures with their accompanying syntactic
constituents.

S1 = Subject + Intransitive verb


A dog barks.

S2 = Subject + Linking verb + Subject Complement


The man is nervous.

S3 = Subject + Transitive Verb + Direct Object


They did their homework.

S4 = Subject + Ditransitive Verb + Direct Object + Indirect


Object
She gave some money to the beggar.

S5 = Subject + Transitive Verb + Direct Object + Complement


They considered him a criminal.

S6 = Subject + Verb + Obligatory Preposition + Object


She depends on her parents.

The matching symbols we will use for these patterns will be:

S1 S+V SV
S2 S+V+C SVC
S3 S+V+O SVO
S4 S+V+O+O SVOO
S5 S+V+O+C SVOC
S6 S + V + PrepO SV + PrepO
10
The Sentence

As we can notice, the movement from subject verb is directed


to the right including the other constituents dictated by the verb.
The other constituents of the sentence are the so-called
adverbial modifiers. These are optional and provide the additional
information the speaker/writer wants to add about the action. They
can be added to any of the above mentioned patterns according to
the verb type.

1. S + V + A:
She sings beautifully.

2. S + V + C + A:
The weather is fine today.

3. S + V + O + A:
She knows the lesson well.

4. S + V + O + O + A:
She gave me the book yesterday.

5. S + V + O + C + A:
They appointed John manager last year.

6. S + V + PrepO + A:
She agreed with me right away.

Stop and think!

Can you provide examples for the six main sentence patterns
and add some other constituents to provide information about time
and/or place? (You can use adverbs for instance.)
In the space below, write your sentences. Take them to the
next tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

11
The Sentence

1.4.2. Adverbial Modifiers


Adverbial modifiers provide information about time, place,
manner, a.s.o. or make the situation more accurate or precise.

They left in a hurry for Bucharest yesterday.

in a hurry adverbial modifier of manner


for Bucharest adverbial modifier of place
yesterday adverbial modifier of time

She cut her finger with a knife.

with a knife expresses instrument and makes the statement


more accurate

All the syntactic elements of a simple sentence will be dealt with


separately in Units 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8.

SAQ 2
Try to identify the basic constituents of the following sentences
according to the verb type and use the symbols to write down the
structure. The first is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. She became nervous.


linking verb
S+ V+ C

2. Mary wrote many letters.


___________________
___________________

3. The little boy gave flowers to his teacher.


___________________
___________________

4. He likes sweets.
___________________
___________________

5. The girl was singing.


___________________
___________________

6. I dont agree with you.


___________________
___________________

12
The Sentence
7. The children were getting tired.
___________________
___________________

8. He was accused of theft.


___________________
___________________

9. Nobody knew anything.


___________________
___________________

10. She bought a present for her mother.


___________________
___________________

1.5. The Declarative Sentence


The declarative sentence is defined as providing information,
stating something or expressing opinion.
From a structural point of view, the declarative sentence follows
the Subject Predicate order, and it can be affirmative or negative.

Mary likes sweets.


Mary doesnt like sweets.

1.5.1. Negative Declarative Sentences


A negative declarative sentence is used when something is not
true to reality, is not the case or doesnt take place.

The sky was not clear.


He didnt dare look up at us.
The guests did not come last night.

1.5.2. Realization of Negation


a) Negative declaratives are made up by using the verb in
the negative form.

The particle not is attached to auxiliary and modal verbs.

They cannot (cant) speak French.


They will not (wont) come.
The teacher has not (hasnt) seen my paper yet.

The particle not is contracted in fluent or colloquial speech. In


written, formal style, the full form not is more appropriate.

13
The Sentence

Lexical verbs in the Simple Present or Past Tense take the


auxiliary do, does, did + negation not.

They dont know me.


He didnt remember the title of the book.

b) Negation is realized by using the affirmative form of the


verb and a negative pronoun or adverb (no, no one, none, nobody,
nothing, nowhere, never, neither, etc). Standard English does not
allow for two negatives in the same sentence, although they can
occur in some registers.

They had no case against the man.


Nobody mentioned his name to us.
They found nobody at home.
Neither of them did the job.

When the verb in the negative is preferred, all these negative


words are replaced by: any, anyone, anything, anywhere.

They did not have any case against the man.


They didnt find anybody at home.
They didnt go anywhere.

NOTE!
Nobody / Nothing as subjects cannot be replaced by any or
anything.
*Anybody didnt mention his name to us.
(incorrect)

Neither of / None of used partitively negate all those involved


(neither two; none of more than two).

She liked neither of the dresses.


None of them did the job properly.

Neither can also negate the verb as in:

Mary neither draws nor sings.

c) Negation can be also realized by using semi-negative


adverbs as: scarcely, barely, hardly, rarely. In this case, the verb is
always used in its affirmative form:

She can hardly walk.


John could barely believe the story.
They rarely meet nowadays.

14
The Sentence

NOTE!
Such adverbs can be used in initial position in the
sentence. When they are used like that for emphasis then
inversion is necessary.
I have never seen such a man.
Never have I seen such a man.
They meet rarely nowadays.
Rarely do they meet nowadays.

d) Negative declaratives can also be formed by using


negative lexical words.

She disliked the man. [She didnt like him.]


This sentence is meaningless. [It doesnt have meaning.]
The story made her unhappy. [The story didnt make her happy
at all.]

SAQ 3
Negate the following affirmative sentences by using the negative
verbs or words in the brackets. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. They bought some flowers for their mother. (not buy)


They didnt buy any flowers for their mother.

2. He always tells lies. (never)


_________________________

3. Everybody was present. (nobody)


_________________________

4. Both of them knew the answer. (nobody)


_________________________

5. They often go to the theatre. (rarely)


_________________________

6. All of the pupils came to the party. (none of)


_________________________

7. She can speak English quite well. (barely)


_________________________

8. She said something to him. (not say)


_________________________

9. They will go somewhere during the summer holidays. (not go)


_________________________

10. All men are perfect. (no)


_________________________
15
The Sentence

Summary

Sentence the basic unit of syntactic analysis


Sentences and Simple Sentence one clause
clauses Compound Sentence two or more
independent clauses coordinated
Complex Sentence one main clause and
at least one subordinate clause
Simple sentences one-member: subject
two-member: subject + predicate
extended two-member: subject + predicate
+ other constituents
Sentence subject
syntactic predicate/verb
constituents complement
object
adverbial modifier
Sentence patterns 1. SV
according to the 2. SVC
verb 3. SVO
4. SVOO
5. SVOC
6. SVOprep
Types of simple declarative
sentences interrogative
imperative
exclamatory
Declarative affirmative
sentences negative

Key Concepts
emphasis
inversion
negation
verb
o auxiliary
o modal
o lexical transitive/intransitive
o linking
clause
o main
o subordinate
sentence
o simple
o compound
o complex
simple sentence
o one-member

16
The Sentence
o unextended two-member
o extended two-member
o declarative
o interrogative
o imperative
o exclamatory
o negative
simple sentence constituents
o subject
o predicate
o complement
o object
o adverbial modifier

Selected Bibliography
1. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z,
Penguin Books, 1990, pp. 278 - 282

2. Leech, G., Svartvik, J. A Communicative Grammar of English,


Longman, 1975, pp. 110-116, 145 - 148

3. Quirk, R., Greenbaum, S. A University Grammar of English,


Longman, 1973, pp. 10 - 18

17
The Sentence

PA No. 1
I. Identify the types of sentences in the following text (simple,
compound or complex):
In the fall the war was there, but we did not go to it any more.
It was cold in Milan, and the dark came early.
We were all at the hospital that afternoon. The hospital was
very old and very beautiful. Beyond the hospital were new
pavilions where we met every afternoon We all had medals
and were very proud of them. The other boys asked me what
I had done to have so many medals.

II. Identify the kinds of simple sentences according to their structural


classification (one-member, unextended two-member, extended
two-member).
1. Snowy day.
2. They left.
3. She put the book on the desk.
4. Nobody came to see you yesterday.
5. What a brilliant idea!
6. She must be dreaming.
7. The doctor must come soon.
8. Nobody knows the truth.
9. They didnt do their homework.
10. Who?

III. Insert the appropriate form of one of the given verbs in each of
the following sentences and identify the pattern of the sentence
according to the verb. You are given ten verbs and ten sentences,
one verb for each sentence.
to write, to be, to break, to go, to seem, to give, to think of, to
become, to buy, to depend on
1. She _____ me a cup of tea.
2. Children _____ their parents.
3. He _____ rather tired, doesnt he?
4. She _____ two cups yesterday.
5. They _____ a new car last year.
6. Days _____ longer and longer in spring.
7. Shakespeare _____ novels.
8. They _____ to school on Sundays.
9. Will he _____ his friend?
10. _____ she a nurse?

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

18
The Sentence

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
Sentence 1 It was late of the tree leaves. complex sentence.
Sentence 2 - In the daytime to stay late. compound sentence
Sentence 3 He quiet. complex sentence
Sentence 4 The old man drunk. simple sentence
Sentence 5 Two waiters inside the caf. simple sentence
Sentence 6 The old man without paying. compound sentence

SAQ 2
2. S + V + O
3. S + V + O + O
4. S + V + O
5. S + V
6. S + V + Prep.O
7. S + V + C
8. S + V + Prep.O
9. S + V + O
10. S + V + O + O

SAQ 3
2. He never tells lies.
3. Nobody was present.
4. Nobody knew the answer.
5. They rarely go to the theatre.
6. None of the pupils came to the party.
7. She can barely speak English.
8. She didnt say anything to him.
9. They wont go anywhere during the summer holiday.
10. No man is perfect.

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

1.2 for SAQ 1


1.4 for SAQ 2
1.5.2 for SAQ 3

19
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

UNIT 2

INTERROGATIVE, IMPERATIVE AND EXCLAMATORY SENTENCES

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 21
2.1. Interrogative Sentences or Questions 21
2.1.1. Definition 21
2.1.2. Main Question Types 22
SAQ 1 24
SAQ 2 28
SAQ 3 32
2.1.3. Other Types of Questions 32
SAQ 4 36
2.2. Imperative Sentences 36
SAQ 5 38
2.3. The Exclamatory Sentence 39
SAQ 6 40
Summary 41
Key Concepts 42
Selected Bibliography 42
SAA No. 1 42
Answers to SAQs 43

20
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Interrogative, imperative and exclamatory sentences are


different from the declarative sentences in two ways: they have a
specific structure which is recognizable, and they convey various
meanings in the process of communication. Subsequently it is
important that one should be aware of these two components of the
sentences under discussion.

After you have completed the study of this unit and have solved
the tasks (SAQs) you should be able to:

identify the structure of each sentence type


unit identify the basic communicative functions of each
objectives sentence type
explain the mechanisms of forming such sentences
provide your own examples for various types of
sentences

2.1. Interrogative Sentences or Questions

2.1.1. Definition
An interrogative sentence is defined by:
a) a specific structure;
b) a communicative purpose

a) From the point of view of structure, interrogative sentences


are characterized by inversion. This means that the SVO order is re-
grouped and the S (subject) takes the second position following the
auxiliary or the modal verb as in:

Is John a student?
Where did he learn English?
Can he speak English?

When the VP (verb phrase) is constituted of more than one


auxiliary or a modal and auxiliaries + main verb, the subject always
follows the modal verb or the first auxiliary.

Have you been working hard lately?


Could Mary have lied to us?
Will he be coming soon?

b) From the point of view of communication, questions are


defined as basically seeking information from the interlocutor.

Are you a student?


Do you go to school?
Where do you live?

21
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Stop and think!

Questions are part of our everyday verbal behaviour. Why do


we ask questions? Think of the type of questions you ask and try to
establish for what purposes you ask the questions.
In the space below, write down your answers. The answers
to the tasks are to be found in the text below.

Questions are also used for other social meanings in


establishing interpersonal relationships between the interlocutor, or
expressing attitudes towards a certain situation.

Wont you come in? (invitation)


Will you help me? (request)
Wasnt he lucky? (surprise)

2.1.2. Main Question Types


From the point of view of their structure and their function
questions are classified into four main groups:

a) general or yes/no questions Do you go to school?


b) special or wh- questions Where do you live?
c) disjunctive or tag/tail questions You are listening, arent you?
d) alternative questions Are you listening or playing?

a) General questions start with an auxiliary or a modal verb


followed by the subject, and the other constituents of the VP and of
the sentence:

Do all children study English at school?


Can they speak English fluently?
Will they be able to speak?

22
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

These questions are also called yes/no questions because they ask
for general or short information expressed by a short answer:

Do all children study English at school? Yes (, they do).


No (, they dont).

However, the answer cannot always be a definite Yes / No one


and in such cases adverbs like always, never, often, seldom, quite,
surely, certainly, etc can provide the information.

A: Do you go skiing in the winter?


B: Never.

A: Are you alright?


B: Not quite.

Answers to general questions may represent the opinion or


attitude of the interlocutor about the content of the question and in
such situations the answer may be: I think so, I hope so, I think not, I
hope not, I dont know, I am afraid not, I expect so.

Have you failed your exam?


I hope not.

Will John come tonight?


I expect so.

Will you be here next year?


I dont know.

Any and Some in Questions

Such questions are defined as being non-assertive, namely that


the speaker does not know what answer he will get so the question is
built up with any (anybody, anything, anywhere).

Have you got any matches?


Has anyone called?
Did they go anywhere during the summer?

NOTE!
There are instances when the speaker expects an affirmative
answer and subsequently the question has a positive
orientation expressed by some (somebody, something).
Have you got some money?
Yes, I have.
Has somebody called?
Of course.
Did they go somewhere for the winter holidays?
Surely.

23
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

The questions which are used with the purpose of offering or


requesting are generally built up with some.

Will you have some more cake? (offer)


May I have some more ice-cream? (request)

The answers for offer can be:


Yes, please. (accepting)
No, thank you. (refusal)

The answers for request can be:


Of course. Do help yourself. (affirmative)
Im afraid not. (negative)
I dont think so.

SAQ 1
I. Give short affirmative and negative answers to the following
questions. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

Question Answers
1. Can you speak English? Yes, I can.
No, I cant.
2. Do they play chess? ________
________
3. Did she meet her friends yesterday? ________
________
4. Have you been busy lately? ________
________
5. Do you enjoy teaching? ________
________
6. Will he be here tomorrow? ________
________
7. Were they at the cinema last night? ________
________
8. Should he see his doctor? ________
________
9. Could they have been wrong? ________
________
10. Is it true? ________
________

II. Give short answers to the following questions expressing your


opinion or attitude towards the content of the question. The first one is
done for you.

1. Will the weather warm up this afternoon?


I dont know. / I dont think so. / I hope so. / etc.

2. Did he ever live here?

24
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

3. Does your friend ever tell lies?


_____________________________________

4. Will you have enough time to study?


_____________________________________

5. Can you help me with my work?


_____________________________________

6. Shall we go back?
_____________________________________

7. Have we lost our way?


_____________________________________

8. Is there any thing wrong?


_____________________________________

9. Will they be here tomorrow?


_____________________________________

10. Will you always live there?


_____________________________________

III. Turn the following sentences into general questions; pay


attention to the use of any/some in the questions you make up. The
first one is done for you.

1. She has some nice dresses.


Does she have any nice dresses?

2. My friends bought some English books.


_____________________________________

3. She was told the news.


_____________________________________

4. We went to the cinema last night.


_____________________________________

5. Mary has been busy this week.


_____________________________________

6. I have some good news for you.


_____________________________________

7. Everybody will be present at the celebration.


_____________________________________

25
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

8. She can speak three foreign languages.


_____________________________________

9. Somebody was at the door.


_____________________________________

10. Ill have some coffee.


_____________________________________

b) Special questions are introduced by an interrogative


pronoun (who, what, which) or an interrogative adverb (why, when,
where, how) and require specific or detailed information.

A: What are you doing?


B: Im reading.

A: Where have you been?


B: I have been to school.

A: Why did they leave the town?


B: Because they got another job elsewhere.

The structure of the question follows the same pattern as in the


case of general questions, namely that the subject follows the
auxiliary or the modal.

Where have you been?


How are you?
Why cant you help me?

Who, What, Which in interrogative sentences

who is used with reference to persons

Who is your father? John Smith.


Whom did you see in Bucharest? I saw my friend.

what is used with reference to objects and things or situations

What is this? This is a book.


What did they talk about? They talked about music.
What happened? The performance was a failure.

which is used both for persons and objects partitively (one of two
or more)
Which of them is your friend? The tall man in the grey suit.
Which do you like best? (ice-creams) Chocolate.

26
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

NOTE!
When the pronouns who, what and which perform the
function of the subject in the interrogative sentence, the
structure is identical with that of a declarative sentence,
namely SVO.
What happened?
Who left?
Which of you wants to read the story?

Who, What, Which + prepositions

These interrogative pronouns can be accompanied by


prepositions and in such cases the preposition is placed at the end of
the question.

Whom are you looking for?


What do you cut it with?
Which of them are you going to speak to?

NOTE!
In everyday speech the form who is used instead of whom.
Who are you looking at?
Who have you been talking to?

When, Where, Why, How in interrogative sentences require


information about the time and place of the action, reason or purpose
and manner.

When did he come? At 3 oclock.


Where did they go? To Bucharest.
Why did he do it? Because he was hungry.
In order to find food.
How did you manage it? Easily.

How can be associated with far, long, often, many/much


referring to:

distance how far


duration how long
frequency how often
quantity how many/much

How far is the nearest bus stop? 1 mile.


How long did you stay here? 3 months.
How often do you visit your parents? Twice a month.
How much money do you have? Not much.
27
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

NOTE!
Special questions may occur in fluent conversation as being
represented only by the question word:
He managed to do it.
Who?
John.
How?
He did it himself.
Where?
At home.

SAQ 2
I. Add the wh-question word to the following questions. The first one
is done for you. Can you provide two question words for some of the
sentences? Which of the sentences? You will find the answers at the
end of the unit, as mentioned in the contents.

1. Who came in just now?


2. ___ has taken my copy-book?
3. ___ language is easiest to learn?
4. ___ painted this picture?
5. ___ is the matter?
6. ___ did you learn English?
7. ___ have you been away from home?
8. ___ did they go?
9. ___ money did you spend?
10. ___ did he tell the lie?

II. Turn the following sentences into questions by asking about the
words underlined. The first two are done for you.

1. He is looking at me.
Who is he looking at?
2. They bought a house in the countryside.
Where did they buy the house?
3. The dog bit the little boy.
__________________________________

4. My brother has just called me.


__________________________________

5. The Intercontinental is one of the best hotels in Bucharest.


__________________________________

6. They played in the park.


__________________________________

7. Mary went to the cinema with her friend.


__________________________________
28
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

8. She has got the flu because of the cold weather.


__________________________________

9. They have been talking for hours all afternoon.


__________________________________

10. They bought a new car in December.


__________________________________

11. She could speak English when she was five.


__________________________________

12. Nobody knew the truth.


__________________________________

When general and special questions are used in order to ask


for information they can be preceded for reasons of politeness by: do
you know, can you tell me, could you tell me.
So, instead of asking:

What is the time?


Where is the post office?
Is the schoolmaster in?
When will he come?

We will say:

Can you tell me what the time is?


Could you tell me where the post office is?
Do you know if the schoolmaster is in?
Could you tell me when he will come?

In such instances the general or special question is part of a


bigger sentence and it acquires the structure in word order of a
declarative sentence.

Compare:

Where is the post office? (verb subject sequence)

Do you know
Can/Could you tell me where the post office is?
(subject verb sequence)
When we have a general question in such a position the
introductory word will be if or whether:

Is the schoolmaster in?


Do you know if/whether the schoolmaster is in?

Will he be late?
Do you know if/whether he will be late?
29
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

c) Disjunctive Questions or Tag / Tail Questions

From a structural point of view, disjunctive questions are made


up of two parts one which has the structure of a declarative
sentence and a second one which comes at the end /as a tag or tail/
which is a general question formed by an auxiliary or modal verb and
the subject.

Mary is your age, isnt she?

declarative question tag

They havent left yet, have they?

declarative question tag

The main structural features of the disjunctive question are:

the form of the verb (affirmative/negative) in the


declarative sentence becomes negative/affirmative in the
tag

the subject of the tag is always a pronoun which refers


back to the subject of the declarative sentence

John is a student, isnt he?


All the pupils are present, arent they?

Disjunctive questions are used in order to obtain confirmation of


what the speaker assumes is the case or to obtain the correct
information if he is not quite sure. This difference is made by the
pattern of intonation. Disjunctive questions which are pronounced
with falling intonation ask for confirmation, while questions
pronounced with rising intonation ask for correct information:

falling intonation

You are a teacher, arent you?


[of course you are]

rising intonation

You are a teacher, arent you?


[I am not sure, or are you something else?]

30
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

In everyday English, speakers will use a variation of the tag in


order to express their mood, attitude, usually anger, doubt or irony
towards the given situation. In such cases the form of the tag is not
changed from affirmative to negative or negative to affirmative.

You have broken the plate, have you? (anger)


You lost the money, did you? (is it really true?)
Hes a bright boy, is he? (irony)

d) Alternative questions are asked in order to offer the interlocutor


the chance of choosing from two or more options.

A: Would you like tea or coffee?


B: Coffee, please.

Structurally, alternative questions can have the structure of a


general question.

A: Are you going to stay on or leave now?


B: Im going to leave.

Stop and think!

After having read this part of the unit, make up a list of the
purposes these four types of questions are asking and compare
them to your own list, drawn at the beginning of the unit.
In the space below, write those communicative purposes
that were missing from your initial list and provide your own
examples. Take them to the next tutorial to discuss them with your
classmates and your tutor.

31
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

SAQ 3
Add a tag to each of the following sentences so that you obtain
disjunctive questions. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Ann will go on a holiday soon.


Ann will go on a holiday, wont she?

2. You werent listening, _____?

3. Youve got a camera, _____?

4. John can help us, _____?

5. You wont tell anyone, _____?

6. They went home, _____?

7. We have to answer this question, _____?

8. They are learning English, _____?

9. This winter has been very cold, _____?

10. He is not lazy, _____?

2.1.3. Other Types of Questions


Besides the main four groups of questions discussed in 2.1.2,
there are other types of questions which are basically variations of
the four basic types:

a) negative questions

b) statement-like questions

c) echo-questions

d) rhetorical questions

32
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Stop and think!

Negative declarative sentences are built with the verb in the


negative or using some negative words. Provide five examples of
negative declaratives, turn them into questions and explain their
structure in the space below.
Take your examples to the next tutorial to discuss them with
your classmates and your tutor.

a) Negative questions

From a structural and functional point of view negative


questions are of the same structure as the four basic types in 2.1.1,
namely:

a) general questions: Isnt it beautiful?


b) special questions: Why dont you ring him up?
c) disjunctive questions: He doesnt speak English, does he ?
d) alternative questions: Is he in love with her or not?
(or isnt he?)

In general and special questions there is a slight difference in


ordering the auxiliary and the subject depending on the contracted/
short form isnt, dont, didnt or the long form of the same verb in the
negative (is not, do not, did not).

Why dont you ring him up? aux. + subject + verb


Why do you not ring him up? aux. + subject + not + verb

The full form of not in questions is used for special emphasis


that the speaker would like to convey or in formal writing.

Why isnt he here?


Why is he not here?

33
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Some, any in negative questions

As in the affirmative questions, some and any are used in


negative ones, too, depending on the expected reply.

Didnt you do any work yesterday?


(I thought you did, but I found out that you didnt)

Didnt you do some work yesterday?


(I am sure you did and I found out that you did.)

In questions used for offer, some is preferred for the sake of


politeness.

Wont you have some more coffee?


Dont you need some money?

From a functional/communicative point of view, negative


questions may have various communicative functions depending on
the attitude of the speaker towards what is being asked.

Negative general questions, except requiring a yes/no answer


may imply surprise or annoyance.

Arent you going to watch the football game? (surprise)


Havent you finished homework yet? (annoyance)

Negative general questions are used as emphasized or polite


invitations or offer.

Wont you have a seat?


Wouldnt you like a cup of coffee?
Cant I help you?
Dont you need some help?

Negative general questions can also be used as exclamations.

Doesnt she look pretty!


Arent they lucky!
Wasnt he polite!

Negative special questions may express suggestions.

Why dont you see a doctor?

Negative disjunctive questions, with the first part of the question


in the negative have a negative orientation, the expected answer is
No.

You dont know the truth, do you?

34
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Negative alternative questions, with the second part in the


negative suggest impatience and require a definite answer.

Are you Mr. X or not? (are you not?)


Can you help me or cant you do it?

b) Statement-like questions
In everyday talk speakers tend to use questions which
structurally look like a declarative sentence, only that they are uttered
with a rising tone. From a communicative point of view they express
confirmation of what is being said, with a slight touch of surprise or
uncertainty.
When the verb is in the affirmative the expected answer is yes.

A: Youre going to stay here all day?


B: Yes.

When the verb is in the negative the expected answer is no.

A: You are not going to show him the letter?


B: No.

c) Echo-questions
These are a minor class of questions which occur during a
longer stretch of conversation. They repeat in question form the
whole or part of a message in order to confirm something or to make
it clearer.

A: My friends are going to Canada.


B: Going to Canada? (confirmation)

A: When did you speak to John?


B: When did I speak to John? (question asked to clarify the first
question)

b) Rhetorical questions
These questions are questions from a structural point of view,
but they do not necessarily require an answer. They take the function
of a strong statement as in Who knows? (meaning that nobody
knows) or of an exclamatory sentence expressing surprise,
uncertainty, admiration or an ironical remark.

Isnt he lucky? (surprise)


How should I know? (uncertainty)
Isnt she wonderful? (admiration)
Arent you bright? (irony)

35
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

SAQ 4
State the kind of questions (negative, statement-like, echo or
rhetorical) and suggest their communicative functions. The first one is
done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Why didnt you do it?


Negative question seeking information

2. Isnt this interesting?


...............................................
3. You dont really mean it?
...............................................
4. I dont know and who cares?
...............................................
5. He broke his leg. Broke his leg?
..............................................
6. Dont you know anyone here?
...............................................
7. Where on earth can he be?
...............................................
8. Would you believe it?
..............................................
9. Wouldnt you like to meet them?
...............................................
10. They havent got the letter?
...............................................

2.2. Imperative Sentences

From a structural point of view, imperative sentences are


defined as being constructed with the verb in the imperative mood
and they can have affirmative or negative forms.

Stand up! Dont stand up!


Lets go! Let us not go there!
Let them talk! Dont let them talk!

As we can notice in the above examples, the imperative


sentences have different structures depending on the person. For the
second person singular and plural the sentences usually start with
the verb (short form of the infinitive) followed by the constituents of
the sentence.

Go there!
Do your homework now!

36
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

For the first person and the third person the imperative
sentences are constructed with the auxiliary let followed by the
accusative form of the noun or pronoun, which functions as the
subject (the person/persons who is/are supposed to do something).

Let me tell you!


Let us go there!
Let him/John sing the song!
Let her/Mary play the game!
Let it be!
Let them/the pupils go home!

The negative form can be realized either by using the negative


particle not or the negative do not / dont as introducing the
sentence.

Let me not tell you what I did!


Lets not go home yet!
Dont let me go!
Dont let us quarrel now!
Let them not stay here in the rain!
Let him not do it!
Dont let them stay here in the rain.
Dont let him do it.

Stop and think!

Both in everyday and classroom language we use


imperatives. Consider the imperatives that you make use of and the
purpose you use them.
In the space below, provide your examples and the
associated purpose. Take your examples to the next tutorial to
discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

37
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Imperative sentences are used in order to express commands,


orders, instructions, requests, suggestions, offers, pieces of advice
or invitations. They are also known as directives (they direct us, as
listeners or speakers to do something).

Sit down! (the listener is supposed to perform the action)


Let me go! (the speaker is supposed to perform the action)

Having in view the variety of communicative functions they


perform, there are grammatical means which strengthen or soften a
certain imperative. These means are:

a) the subject you expressed in the second person or the


proper name makes a command or a piece of advice more emphatic:

You sit down! (order)


You both take care of yourselves! (piece of advice)
John, stand up!

b) the auxiliary do in front of the verb makes an invitation or an


offer more convincing:

Do come in!
Do have some more coffee!

c) the tag will you or wont you, can you in its interrogative can
accompany the imperative sentence in order to make it more direct:

Tell me what happened, will you?


Take a seat, wont you?
Stop talking, can you?

d) imperative sentences that include the speaker (first person


plural) starting with lets can be followed by can we? shall we? tags
in order to soften the imperative:

Lets start work, can we?


Lets do it now, shall we?

SAQ 5
I. Turn into negative the following imperative sentences. The first
one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Go away!
Dont go away!

2. Let them quarrel!


_________________________

3. Tell everything to everybody!


_________________________
38
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

4. Finish your exercises now!


_________________________

5. Let me read it now!


_________________________

6. Sit down by the roadside!


_________________________

7. Get out of there!


_________________________

8. Switch on the TV set!


_________________________

9. Lets watch TV!


_________________________

10. Let him take the medicine now!


_________________________

II. Add the appropriate tags to finish the following imperative


sentences. The first one is done for you.

1. Lets have dinner, shall we?


2. Listen to me, _____?
3. Lets buy some cakes, _____?
4. Dont drop it, _____?
5. Help me with my homework, _____?
6. Stop making noise, _____?
7. Dont go out to play now, _____?
8. Lets tell them the news, _____?
9. Do sit down, _____?
10. Lets not talk about it, _____?

2.3. The Exclamatory Sentence


Exclamatory sentences are used in order to express the
speakers feelings or attitude towards something. Although there are
many other ways of expressing feelings and attitudes (intonation,
modal verbs, questions, interjections) from a structural point of view
we can distinguish a sentence type which we identify as exclamatory.

What a beautiful day it is!


How beautifully he sang!

39
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

The exclamatory sentences are introduced by What or How


following a pattern of ordering the subject and the verb similar to a
declarative sentence, but with changes as far as the other
constituents are concerned.
1a. What a lot of money he won! (exclamatory)
1b. He has won a lot of money. (declarative)

2a. What a good pupil he is! (exclamatory)


2b. He is a good pupil. (declarative)

3a. How many of you knew the answer! (exclamatory)


3b. Many of you knew the answer. (declarative)

4a. How beautifully he sang! (exclamatory)


4b. He sang beautifully. (declarative)

As compared to the declarative sentences, the exclamatory


ones display the following pattern:

What + Obj. (a lot of money) + Subj. + V


Subj. Compl. (a good pupil) + Subj. + V

How + Subj. quantifier (many) + Subj. + V


Adv. mod. (beautifully) + Subj. + V

Certain exclamatory sentences can be reduced to their first part


(what, how followed by Obj., Subj. Compl.) the rest being implicitly
understood from a larger context.

What awful weather!


What a good pupil!
How foolish!
How nice!

SAQ 6
I. Insert what or how as introductory words in the following
exclamatory sentences. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. What awful weather we are having!


2. _____ well she speaks English!
3. _____ a lovely dress you are wearing!
4. _____ much work they do!
5. _____ a good player he is!
6. _____ a good friend you are!
7. _____ nice people they are!
8. _____ a good movie it was!
9. _____ kindly she spoke to us!
10. _____ patiently he explained everything!

40
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

II. Rewrite the following declarative sentences as exclamatory ones


so that you express emotion/feelings towards what is being said. Pay
attention to the exclamatory sentence structure. The first one is done
for you.
1. She is a nice girl.
What a nice girl she is!
2. The young man ran very fast.
________________________
3. The old woman is very poor.
________________________
4. You have improved your English rapidly.
________________________
5. They are very suspicious.
________________________
6. He is an old man.
________________________
7. They love each other dearly.
________________________
8. They won the game easily.
________________________
9. You have fine tastes.
________________________
10. The patient is very quiet.
________________________

Summary

Sentences Types of question Communicative


function
Interrogative general question asking for information
sentences special question asking for confirmation
disjunctive question asking for clarification
negative question exclamation
statement-like request
question offer
echo question suggestion
rhetorical question invitation
Imperative Types according to person and command
sentences structure: order
nd st rd
2 person; 1 and 3 person instructions
affirmative and negative requests
advice
warning
good wishes
suggestions
Exclamatory Types according to structure: emotion
sentences What ! feelings
How ! attitude

41
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Key Concepts
communicative function
clarification
confirmation
emphasis
information
intonation
inversion
sentence constituents
syntactic structure
Selected Bibliography
1. Beaumont, D., Granger, C. The Heinemann ELT English
Grammar, MacMillan Heinemann, 1989, 1992, pp. 220-233
2. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin
Books, 1990, pp. 259-269
3. Quirk, R., Greenbaum, S. A University Grammar of English,
Longman, 1973, pp. 191-202

SAA No. 1
III. Identify the types of sentences (interrogative, imperative
and exclamatory) and suggest their communicative
functions in the following texts:
1. Cant you believe me, mother?
Please, believe me.
2. Now, you pray, Harold.
I cant.
Try, Harold.
I cant.
Do you want me to pray for you?
3. Why dont you tell him? What do you think its all about?
Let me alone.
4. What stupid people they are!
Who said so?

II. Make up your own examples (four for each type) of general
questions, special questions, disjunctive questions (affirmative and
negative). Explain their structure. Youll have 12 sentences.

III. Make up a list of 10 instructions that you give to pupils in the


classroom by using imperative sentences.

Make use of the selected bibliography in order to solve the test.

Send your answers to your tutor.

42
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
I. 1. Yes, I can.
No, I cant.
2. Yes, I do.
No, I dont.
3. Yes, she did.
No, she didnt.
4. Yes, I have.
No, I havent.
5. Yes, I do.
No, I dont.
6. Yes, he will.
No, he wont.
7. Yes, they were.
No, they werent.
8. Yes, she should.
No, she shouldnt.
9. Yes, they could.
No, they couldnt.
10. Yes, it is.
No, it isnt.

II.
2. I dont know
3. I hope not
4. I hope so/ I think so
5. I think so/ Im afraid not
6. I think so
7. I hope not
8. I think not
9. I expect so
10. I dont know/ I hope so

III.
2. Did my friend buy any English books?
3. Was she told the news?
4. Did they go to the cinema last night?
5. Has Mary been busy this week?
6. Do you have any/some good news for me?
7. Will everybody be present at the celebration?
8. Can she speak three foreign languages?
9. Was there anybody/somebody at the door?
10. Will you have some coffee?

43
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences

SAQ 2
I.
2. who
3. which
4. who
5. what
6. where/when
7. how long
8. where/when
9. how much
10. whom

II.
3. Whom did the dog bite?
4. Who has just called me?
5. Which is one of the best hotels in Bucharest?
6. Where did they play?
7. With whom did Mary go to the cinema?
8. Why has she got the flu?
9. How long have they been talking?
10. What did they buy in December?
11. What could she speak when she was five?
12. Who knew the truth?

SAQ 3
2. were you?
3. havent you?
4. cant he?
5. will you?
6. didnt they?
7. dont we?
8. arent they?
9. hasnt it?
10. is he?

SAQ 4
2. negative exclamation
3. statement-like disbelief
4. rhetorical
5. echo-question
6. negative seeking information
7. rhetorical anger
8. rhetorical exclamation/surprise
9. negative offer
10. statement-like disbelief
SAQ 5
I.
2. Dont let them quarrel. / Let them not
3. Dont tell
4. Dont finish
5. Let me not read it.
6. Dont sit down!
44
Interrogative, Imperative and Exclamatory Sentences
7. Dont get out of here.
8. Dont switch on the TV set.
9. Lets not watch TV.
10. Let him not take the medicine now.
II.
2. will you?
3. can you?
4. shall we?
5. can you?
6. will you/can you?
7. will you?
8. can/shall we?
9. wont you/will you?
10. shall we?

SAQ 6
I.
2. How
3. What
4. How
5. What
6. What
7. How
8. What
9. How
10. How

II.
2. How fast the young man ran!
3. How poor the woman is!
4. How rapidly youve improved your English!
5. How suspicious they are!
6. What an old man he is!
7. How dearly they love each other!
8. How easily they won the game!
9. What fine tastes you have!
10. How quiet the patient is!

NOTE:
In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

2.1.2 for SAQ 1


2.1.2 for SAQ 2 (I, II)
2.1.2 for SAQ 3
2.1.3 for SAQ 4
2.2 for SAQ 5 (I, II)
2.3 for SAQ 6 (I, II)

45
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

UNIT 3

THE CONSTITUENTS OF THE SIMPLE SENTENCE

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 47
3.1. The Subject 47
3.1.1. Means of Expressing the Subject 49
3.1.2. It as Subject 50
SAQ 1 53
3.1.3. Introductory there 54
SAQ 2 56
3.2. The Predicate 56
3.2.1. The Verbal Predicate 57
3.2.2. The Nominal Predicate 58
3.2.2.1. Linking Verbs 58
3.2.2.2. The Subject Complement 59
SAQ 3 62
Summary 63
Key Concepts 64
Selected Bibliography 64
PA No. 2 65
Answers to SAQs 66

46
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

The subject and the predicate are the two basic constituents of
the simple sentence. It is very important to bear in mind that as in
English, the verb does not change according to number and person
(except in Present Tense Simple, 3rd person, singular and the verb to
be), the subject must always be expressed. Actually what follows
after the subject refers back to it. The predicate will always tell
something about the subject: the action performed or suffered by it;
the process undergone; a state of being; a quality or status.
Both the subject and the predicate can be identified according
to their position in the sentence.

After having read and studied this unit you will be able to:

unit identify the position and function of the subject and


objectives predicate in a sentence
identify means of expressing the subject
identify the introductory it and there
distinguish between the different roles of it as the subject
distinguish between verbal and nominal predicates

3.1. The Subject

From a grammatical point of view, the subject is compulsory in


a sentence, and it always takes initial position as being that about
which something is said.

a) The children are happy.

Subj. Pred.

b) The children are playing in the courtyard.

Subj. Pred.

In sentence a) we are told about the state of being of the


children and in sentence b) we are told about the action they
perform.

47
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

Stop and think!

Having already discussed various types of sentences


(declaratives, imperatives, etc.), can you provide examples of the
subject taking 2nd position in a sentence or not being expressed at
all?
In the space below, write five examples and explain why the
subject does not take initial position or is not expressed. Take your
answers to the next tutorial to discuss them with your classmates
and your tutor.

According to the types of sentences, the subject must be


present in declarative and interrogative sentences (all types of
interrogatives) and repeated in the tag of a disjunctive question.
In the case of 2nd person imperatives, the subject you is
implied, while in the 1st and 3rd person it is expressed either by a
personal pronoun or a noun.

48
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

3.1.1. Means of Expressing the Subject


The Subject can be expressed by:

a) a noun concrete or abstract; common or proper

Books are expensive.


Love is blind.
Boys like girls.
John plays tennis.

b) a noun phrase

The pretty young girl in blue jeans speaks very good English.
My teacher of English is a nice person.
Athens, which is the capital of Greece, is a famous city.

NOTE!
In English we refer to the parts of speech or clauses that
accompany a noun as being part of the Noun Phrase (NP).
As such:
articles
pronominal adjectives
o possessive
o demonstrative
o indefinite
o negative
function as determiners. Adjectives function as premodifiers,
while prepositional phrases (preposition + noun) as well as
relative clauses and appositions function as postmodifiers. We
will consider as the subject in each of the examples above the
whole string of words (in bold).
For example, in The pretty young girl in blue jeans we
can notice that pretty, young as well as in blue jeans describe
the noun girl, which is defined as the head noun.

c) a pronoun as a noun substitute

She speaks good English.


Anybody can do it.
I have lost my ticket. Where is yours?
This book is very good. It also reads easily.

d) a substantivized adjective

The old should be helped.


The rich dont believe the poor.

49
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

e) a numeral

Five is not a good mark.

f) a non-finite form of the verb (infinitive or gerund):

To learn means to try.


Lying is a sin.

g) the pronouns one, you, they and the noun people used in a
general sense:

One can never tell.


You can never know.
They say its better late than never.
People do such things.

h) a subclause* which functions as subject for the main clause:

That he is a liar is a fact.


Whatever he does is well done.

*Such clauses, which perform the function of subject, fall in the


group of Nominal Clauses and will be dealt with in Unit 11.

3.1.2. It as Subject
The 3rd person personal pronoun it is very often used as subject
and not always as a substitute for a noun as in case (c).

Stop and think!

There are phenomena, concepts or situations when it is


difficult to identify the doer of the action or the doer is not known.
What subject do we use in such instances? Can you provide some
examples?
In the space below, write your answers. Take your answers
to the next tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your
tutor.

50
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

A. Impersonal it or empty it
The pronoun it is used as the grammatical subject for
impersonal constructions expressing natural phenomena, time and
distance. It is also called empty it because it has only a
grammatical role but no meaning.

It is still raining.
Its five oclock.
Its about 300 km from Cluj to Timioara.

B. Introductory it
Introductory it introduces or anticipates the actual subject of
a sentence when the subject is expressed by:
a) a verb in the infinitive
b) an infinitive construction for to
c) a verb in the gerund
d) or a subject clause introduced by that, how or what

a) To do something like that is mean.


It is mean to so something like that.

b) For him to do that is essential.


It is necessary for him to do that.

c) Going there is useless.


It is useless going there.

d) How he manages all these problems is a mystery.


It is a mystery how he manages all these problems.

The use of introductory it is also linked to the type of


predication. When the predicate is a nominal one (linking verb +
adjective / noun) as in: to be mean, to be necessary, to be useless,
to be a mystery, the adjective or the noun associated with
introductory it makes up the introductory it construction:

It is mean
It is necessary
Its useless
Its a mystery

51
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

There are adjectives which are frequently used in introductory it


constructions: amazing, appropriate, awful, clear, difficult, easy,
funny, important, likely, unlikely, natural, obvious, possible,
impossible, strange, unusual, true, worth (followed by gerund).

It is important for them to be there in time.


Its clear that nobody knew the truth.
Its amazing how well the children behave.
Its worth going there now.
Its unusual to go for a walk in such weather.

Similarly there are nouns which are more frequently associated


with introductory it: fun, pity, shame, surprise, use (followed by
gerund).

It was fun to be with them.


Its a pity that they missed the performance.
Its a shame to waste that much time.
Its no use crying over spilt milk.

Introductory it is used as a grammatical subject in introducing


verbs that express feelings or strong emotions as: to please, to
disgust, to upset, to grieve, to distress, to shock:

It pleased us to hear about her success.


It upset us all to hear of her misfortune.
It grieved her that her friends couldnt be there.

Introductory it is also used with the following verbs: to occur, to


seem, to matter, to suit, to happen

It occurred to me that he could be guilty.


It so happened that nobody was there.
It suits me best to get there in the morning.
It seems that you are right.

Introductory it is also used as the subject of a passive


construction when the sentence is a statement or opinion of a
generic value about a certain situation. There are verbs which are
frequently used in such constructions: to acknowledge, to agree,
to assume, to believe, to claim, to find out, to expect, to fear, to
predict, to recommend, to suggest, etc.

It has been agreed that everybody will participate in the team


work.
It was believed that the Earth was the center of the Universe.
It was predicted that wars would break out at the turn of the
century.
It has been suggested that we all attend the conference.

52
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

SAQ 1
I. Identify the subject in each of the following sentences. State what
it is expressed by. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. It was not cold that day.


impersonal it

2. They could have a perfect party.


___________________

3. The gardener has already cut the roses.


___________________

4. Its so nice to have a party.


___________________

5. Laura was really happy.


___________________

6. One should know how to behave at parties.


___________________

7. Everybody enjoyed themselves.


___________________

8. That Laura was happy was a fact.


___________________

9. It started to rain soon after midnight.


___________________

10. Silence fell on the daytime noisy garden.


___________________

II. Rewrite the following sentences using introductory it. Pay


attention to the logical subject which is underlined for you. The first
one is done for you.

1. To be a liar is not funny.


It is not funny to be a liar.

2. That he cheated is impossible.


___________________

3. For him to be sent to London is a surprise.


___________________

4. Going there now is worth it.


___________________

53
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

5. Whether they come or not doesnt matter.


___________________

6. That he could be away did not occur to us.


___________________

7. That we should help them was understood.


___________________

8. To lose a game in the last minute is a pity.


___________________

9. To hear such news shocked us.


___________________

10. For her to do her duty is natural.


___________________

3.1.3. Introductory there


Sentences introduced by there is and there are are known as
existential sentences. They show both in the affirmative and
negative the existence or non-existence of something which may be
a person, an object or a situation.

There are many people in the street.


There is a book on the desk.
There was no discussion after the conference.

Stop and think!

There can also be met in sentences like: I didnt see anybody


there. What do you think is the meaning of there in this sentence?
What is the difference between these two sentences?
There was nobody in the room.
Nobody was there.
In the space below, write your answers. Check them as you
read on.

54
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

Introductory there must be distinguished from there as an


adverb. The introductory there introduces the actual subject,
implies existence and it is in an unstressed position.
The adverb there indicates place, and it is in a stressed
position. That is why we can come across it in sentences like:

There (1) wasnt anybody there (2).


(1) existence introduces the actual subject: anybody
(2) indicates place the place where I was and didnt find
anyone

The there is / there are constructions are used according to the


singular or plural of the actual subject.

There is a man at the door.


There are lots of books in a library.

In questions, asking about existence the forms is there? are


there? are used.

Was there any newspaperman at the conference?


Is there any more coffee in the pot?

Introductory there can be associated with verbs that express


existentiality as to live, to exist.

Once upon a time there lived a king and a queen.


There existed many instances of serious diseases.

Introductory there is used in negative phrases like: theres no


use, theres no need, theres no point; the verb that follows is in
the gerund.

Theres no point talking to them now.


Theres no need going there.
Theres no use being shy.

55
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

SAQ 2
Insert there is, there are in the appropriate forms (affirmative,
negative or interrogative) in the following sentences. The first one is
done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. _____ any more milk?


Is there

2. _____ two dogs in the yard.


___________________

3. _____ enough bread for all of us.


___________________

4. _____ no mistakes in your exercises.


___________________

5. _____ anybody in the classroom?


___________________

6. _____ any men in the picture?


___________________

7. _____ an accident yesterday.


___________________

8. _____ any more cakes left.


___________________

9. _____ a party tomorrow?


___________________

10. _____ the bus coming just now.


___________________

3.2. The Predicate


The predicate is the verbal constituent of a sentence. It
expresses an action, a process, an event or a state.

The engine is running. (action)


John took the book. (event)
I am not feeling well today. (state of being)
Some people grow old unnoticeably. (process)

56
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

The predicate can be expressed by a lexical/notional verb of


complete predication or by a verb of incomplete predication
accompanied by a complement. According to these two kinds of
verbs: of complete predication and of incomplete predication,
there are two kinds of predicates:

verbal predicate
nominal predicate

3.2.1. The Verbal Predicate


The verbal predicate is expressed by a notional verb in a finite
mood, simple or compound tenses:

The man came out from the building.


She will have finished reading the book by next Friday.
She hasnt been asked anything.

The notional verb can be accompanied by a modal verb:

She can speak four foreign languages.


She should have called up her friends.

The first auxiliary or the modal is called the operator. In the


interrogative form, it takes first position and the subject the second
position. In the negative, the particle not is similarly attached to these
operators:

Will she have finished reading the book?


She wont finish reading the book.
Can she speak all these languages?
She cant speak foreign languages.

Stop and think!

You can come across sentences like the following:


Mary is reading.
She is a good girl.
Is the verb to be used here with the same function? Does the
verb be have meaning in both sentences?
In the space below, write down your answers and justify
them. Then check them as you read on.

57
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

3.2.2. The Nominal Predicate


The nominal predicate is made up of a verb of incomplete
predication, called the linking verb and a complement which
completes the verb grammatically and describes, identifies or tells us
something about the subject. This complement is called Subject
Complement.

The children are happy. (describes the children)


Mary is a teacher. (identifies Mary)
To know is to learn. (tells us what to learn means)

3.2.2.1. Linking Verbs

a) The verb most frequently used as a linking verb is the verb to be.

They are hungry.


She was aware of the danger.
b) Another group of linking verbs are those which denote seeming:
to seem, to appear, to look

She seems angry.


You look tired.
These roads appear dangerous.

c) There are verbs that denote a process and have a resulting


effect. These are verbs of becoming: to become, to get, to
grow, to turn, to fall

Leaves turn yellow in autumn.


The child fell ill.
It is getting dark.
58
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

d) Verbs that express continuity as: to stay, to stand, to keep, to


remain

The dog kept quiet.


He was frightened and stood still.

e) Verbs of perception used intransitively as: to taste, to feel, to


smell, to sound

The coffee tastes excellent.


Your suggestion sounds fine.
Roses smell sweet.

NOTE!
As in the case of the verb to be, which can be used as a
notional verb with the meaning of to exist, there are other
verbs in the above mentioned groups which can be used as
notional verbs, having another meaning.
to appear All of a sudden something appeared in the sky.
to get He got a letter. [He received a letter.]
to grow He grows vegetables. [He cultivates
vegetables.]
to turn Dont turn the page.
to fall He fell.
to stay We stayed at a hotel.
to keep He kept his money in the bank.
to remain He remained at home.
The verbs of perception used transitively are verbs of full
predication.
to taste The cook tasted the soup.
to smell She smelt the roses.
to feel You can feel the taste of honey.

3.2.2.2. The Subject Complement

The Subject Complement, together with the linking verb, forms


the Nominal Predicate.

a) The Subject Complement is most frequently expressed by an


adjective which describes the subject or the subjects state of
being.

Mary is pretty.
Mary is happy.

59
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

Stop and think!

Which part of speech is the adjective associated with? In


such an instance, what does the adjective do?
Provide your answer and a few examples in the space
below. Take them to the next tutorial to discuss them with your
classmates and your tutor.

The adjective is most commonly associated with a noun


qualifying or classifying it. From this point of view the adjective is
interpreted as noun modifier.

The nice girl


The English girl

Most adjectives can be used both as noun modifiers and


subject complement.

It was a cold day. [noun premodifier]


It was cold. [subject complement]
English books are expensive. [noun modifier]
Mrs. Smith is English. [subject complement]

There is a group of adjectives which can be used only


predicatively as subject complement:

ablaze, aghast, afraid, alive, alone, ajar, ashamed, asleep, aware,


content, fond, glad, ill, ready, sorry:
Many people are afraid of dogs.
The child fell asleep.
This disease is due to malnutrition.
Children are fond of sweets.
Dont forget to say Im sorry.

60
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

NOTE!
Some of these adjectives are obligatorily followed by a
preposition:
afraid of; ashamed of; content with; aware of; due to; fond of

b) The Subject Complement is also frequently expressed by a


Noun Phrase, which identifies the noun.

Marys mother is a widow.


Laura is a school-girl.
Lincoln was the President of the United States.

Less frequently, the subject complement can also be expressed


by:

c) a pronoun

This book is mine.

d) a verb in a non-finite form (Infinitive, Gerund or Past Participle)

Seeing is believing. [Gerund]


The town seemed uninhabited. [Past Participle]

e) a subordinate clause

Truth is what we believe to be true.

A particular situation in expressing the subject complement


occurs when we want to express time, place or a state of being
related to the verb to be. In such instances, the Subject
Complement can be expressed by a prepositional phrase or even
an adverb.

The exam is next Monday.


Mary is well.
You are in good shape.

61
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

SAQ 3
I. Complete the following sentences with linking verbs. In some of
the sentences you can choose from two or more linking verbs. Mention
all the linking verbs which you consider appropriate. The first is done
for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Days _____ longer in spring.


are /get / become / grow

2. This coffee _____ bitter.


___________________

3. You _____ a hard working pupil.


___________________

4. The child _____ asleep.


___________________

5. Are you ill? You _____ feverish.


___________________

6. Take care of yourself and stay _____.


___________________

7. She _____ white when hearing the news.


___________________

8. The children _____ quiet during the performance.


___________________

9. Why dont you like it? It _____ nice to me.


___________________

10. John _____ a good doctor.


___________________

II. Complete the sentences with an appropriate predicative adjective.


The first is done for you.

1. The teacher was _______ with the pupils homework.


content

2. The old woman was _______ of dark.

3. Most children are _______ of sweets.

4. He was _______ when he heard the good news.

62
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

5. The house was _______ when the firemen came.

6. Doesnt she have any relatives? No, she is _______.

7. He should be _______. One doesnt talk like that to an


older person.

8. Are you _______ of your mistakes?

9. Lets go! Are you _______?

10. Is he dead or is he still _______?

Summary
The Subject and the Predicate are the basic constituents of a
sentence.

The Subject of a sentence can be expressed by:

a noun
a noun phrase (NP)
a pronoun as noun substitute
a substantivized adjective
a numeral
a non-finite form of the verb
a clause

Impersonal it

Introductory it

Introductory there

The Predicate
verbal
nominal

Nominal Predicate

linking verb
+
subject complement

63
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

Key Concepts
existential sentences
subject
subject complement
verbal predicate
impersonal it
introductory it
introductory there
linking verb
nominal predicate
operator

Selected Bibliography
Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin
Books, 1990, pp. 149-153; pp. 285 296

64
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence
PA No. 2
I. Add the correct form of it is or there is to the following
sentences:
1. _____ a good movie on tonight.
2. _____ fine tomorrow, I hope.
3. _____ a long time since we met.
4. _____ a man standing on the wall a few minutes ago.
5. _____ difficult to find a cheap place to live these days.
6. _____ snowing for three days now.
7. _____ a beautiful park right in the middle of the town.
8. _____ time to get started.
9. _____ many people outside the concert hall.
10. _____ many sports grounds in your town ?
11. _____ not far to walk there.
12. _____ enough food for everybody.
13. _____ anyone willing to help?
14. _____ pity you missed the show.
15. _____ fun talking to you.

II. Identify the pronoun as personal, impersonal or introductory it


and there as an adverb or the introductory there in the following
text:
In the fall the war was still there, but we did not go to it any
more. It was cold in the fall in Milan and the dark came on,
and it was pleasant along the streets looking in the windows.
There was much game hanging outside the shop. It was a
cold fall and the wind came down from the mountains.
(E. Hemingway, Another Country)

III. Identify the predicates in the following text. Say whether they are
verbal or nominal.
I was lying on my back on the rocks. I opened my eyes and
saw a star. I had been having a familiar dream and yet I had
never had that dream before. I dreamt that my cousin James
was here. I was aware of the stars, and I was breathing. I felt
happy, and I was relaxed. I closed my eyes and breathed
deeply again.

IV. Make up ten sentences of your own by using the following linking
verbs one in each sentence:
to seem, to be, to smell, to grow, to become, to turn, to fall, to
sound, to keep, to look

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

65
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
I.
1. impersonal it
2. personal pronoun
3. common noun
4. introductory it
5. proper noun
6. pronoun one used in a general sense
7. indefinite pronoun
8. subclause
9. impersonal it
10. abstract noun

II.
2. It is impossible that he cheated.
3. It is a surprise for him to be sent to London.
4. It is worth going there.
5. It doesnt matter whether they come or not.
6. It did not occur to us that he could be away.
7. It was understood that we should help them.
8. Its a pity to lose a game in the last minute.
9. It is natural for her to do her duty.
10. It shocked us to hear such news.

SAQ 2
2. There are
3. There is
4. There are
5. Is there
6. Are there
7. There was
8. There arent
9. Will there be
10. There is

SAQ 3
I.
2. tastes, is
3. are
4. is, fell
5. feel
6. fine, well
7. turned
8. were, kept
9. looks
10. is, become

66
The Constituents of the Simple Sentence

II.
2. afraid
3. fond
4. glad
5. ablaze
6. alone
7. ashamed
8. aware
9. ready
10. alive

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

3.1.1 and 3.1.2 for SAQ 1 (I, II)


3.1.3 for SAQ 2
3.2.2 for SAQ 3 (I)
3.2.3 for SAQ 3 (II)

67
Subject Predicate Concord

UNIT 4

SUBJECT PREDICATE CONCORD

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 69
4.1. Subject Predicate Concord 70
4.2. Concord of Person 70
4.3. Concord of Number 71
4.3.1. Concord of Collective Nouns 71
4.3.2. Uncountable Nouns Followed by the Verb in the Singular 71
SAQ 1 72
4.3.3. Uncountable Nouns Followed by the Verb in the Plural 73
SAQ 2 74
4.3.4. Concord between Subject and Predicate when the Subject is Expressed by
Other Means than a Noun 75
SAQ 3 76
4.3.5. Concord of Coordinated Subjects 77
Summary 78
Key Concepts 79
Selected Bibliography 79
PA No. 3 80
Answers to SAQs 81

68
Subject Predicate Concord

Between the subject and the predicate we establish a


grammatical relationship which is called the concord or agreement.
In English, this relationship is established only depending on the
categories of person and number. As there are several means of
expressing the subject and there are classes of nouns which deviate
from the simple singular/plural distinction in forms, the problem of
concord is centred mostly upon concord of number.

After having read and studied this unit you should be able to:

unit identify general rules of concord


objectives identify the specific concord of person
distinguish between countable and uncountable nouns
used as subjects in their concord in number with the
verb
identify coordinated subjects and type of concord

Stop and think!

Which of the two constituents, subject or predicate,


determines agreement in number and person between the two?
Why?
In the space below, write your answers and provide a few
sentences to show person and number agreement. Take your
answers to the next tutorial to discuss them with your classmates
and your tutor.

69
Subject Predicate Concord

4.1. Subject Predicate Concord


Having in view that the ordering of the sentence constituents
moves from subject to verb, it is the subject that determines the
concord of person and number with the verb.

4.2. Concord of Person


In English, the verb does not display many inflectional forms,
so there are only a few general rules.

In the case of the verb to be, where there are distinct forms for
each person in the Present Tense singular, the person can be
specifically marked by the verb form.

I am a student.
You are right.
He/She is wrong.

For the Past Tense, this distinction is also marked by was 1st
and 3rd person and were 2nd person singular and all plural
persons

In the case of notional verbs, including to have and to do, there


is a specific form only for the Present Tense Simple, 3rd person
singular, all the other person forms being identical

He/She drives carefully.


I/You/They drive carefully.

Modal verbs do not change according to number and person so


they will have the same form irrespective of the number or person
of the subject.

I/He/She/You/We/They can speak English.

The auxiliaries shall / will indicating futurity and should / would


the Conditional Mood are distinct for the 1st person shall and
should, and will / would for the 2nd and 3rd persons. Still, in
informal speech and with the contracted forms, there is no
distinction between should / would.

Ill go.
Id go.

70
Subject Predicate Concord

4.3. Concord of Number


Concord of number depends on the countability of the noun.

The general rule is that a noun in the singular will be followed by


a verb in the singular and a noun in the plural by a verb in the
plural.

The child is crying.


The children are playing.

But according to countability and the idea of number implied in


the noun, there are classes of nouns which display some particular
features, and concord depends on these features.

4.3.1. Concord of Collective Nouns


Collective nouns as family, team, crew, band, committee, etc.
are countables as they take the plural families, teams, crews,
bands, committees, etc. But these nouns in the singular imply the
idea of plurality (members of the group). So if we consider the
collective noun as a singular entity, it is followed by a verb in the
singular.

My family is made up of four people.


The team has played exceptionally.

When we take into consideration the members of the group


expressed by the noun, the verb will be in the plural.

My family are hardworking people.


The crew are to leave the ship.

4.3.2. Uncountable Nouns Followed by the Verb in the Singular


The following classes of uncountable nouns are followed by a
verb in the singular:

a) names of materials and substances

Butter is made from milk.


Water is liquid.

b) abstract nouns

Honesty is a rare virtue.


The evil that man does is harmful.

71
Subject Predicate Concord

c) nouns which have a singular form but a plural meaning as:


- knowledge, progress, homework
- advice, information, luggage, furniture
- money

Your homework is correct.


Little knowledge is a dangerous thing.
The luggage is heavy.
This furniture is expensive.
Where is my money?

d) nouns which have a plural form an s ending but are


perceived as single units. Names of sciences, games and
diseases as: mathematics, physics, billiards or measles
will be followed by a verb in the singular

Mathematics is a difficult subject-matter.


Billiards is in fashion today.
Measles is a catching disease.

e) nouns expressing time, distance or prices are also


perceived as single units:

Two weeks seems a long time to me.


Forty kilometres is not a long distance.
Five dollars is not too much money.

f) titles of books or names of newspapers that contain a noun


in the plural

Hard Times is a novel by Ch. Dickens.


The New York Times is a newspaper.

SAQ 1
Complete the following sentences with the appropriate form of the
verb to be. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. The children are playing in the garden.

2. He _____ ill last week.

3. The good news _____ applauded by everybody.

4. Great Expectations _____ a novel by Dickens.

5. A famous band _____ going to come to our town .

6. Sugar _____ made from sugarcane.

7. The good a friend does _____ never forgotten.


72
Subject Predicate Concord

8. Progress _____ being made by our students.

9. Three months _____ a long summer vacation.

10. His advice _____ always valuable.

4.3.3. Uncountable Nouns Followed by the Verb in the Plural


a) Nouns which end in s and denote instruments, tools consisting
of two parts: compasses, spectacles, glasses, scissors, tongs,
binoculars.

Compasses are useful on trips.


Where are my glasses?

b) The noun clothes and other nouns which denote clothing and
are perceived as being made of two parts: jeans, pyjamas, overalls,
slacks, tights, pants, etc.

Where are your clothes?


The black slacks are not very expensive.

c) Other frequently used nouns ending in s: valuables,


belongings, surroundings, congratulations, earnings, holidays,
goods, wages, savings, etc.

Valuables are supposed to be kept in safes.


The holidays are coming.
These goods have just come in from Egypt.

d) Nouns derived from adjectives the rich, the poor, the blind

The poor are always disadvantaged.

e) The nouns cattle, poultry, police, people, clergy.

The police were looking for the thief.

f) Proper nouns denoting ranges of mountains or groups of


islands: the Alps, the Carpathians, the West Indies, the Hebrides

The Alps are covered with snow all year round.

73
Subject Predicate Concord

Stop and think!

Very often we would like to refer to one object or to one


person when using some of the above mentioned nouns. How
would you refer in the singular to the following?
glasses, scissors, trousers, police, clergy, the blind
In the space below write down your answers. Check them as
you read on.

NOTE!
In order to refer to one person belonging to the police, the
clergy or the blind we can use the noun man / woman: a
policeman, a clergyman, a blind man. When we want to refer
to one piece of clothing, we use a pair of trousers, jeans,
scissors, glasses.

SAQ 2
Complete the following sentences with one of the following nouns
according to the context. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

belongings, people, police, cattle, the blind, the Carpathians, trousers,


surroundings, clothes, scissors

1. These scissors are not sharp.

2. __________ need help when crossing the street.

3. __________ were looking for the robber.

4. __________ are mountains in Romania.

5. __________ of the town are beautiful.

6. __________ need ironing.


74
Subject Predicate Concord

7. Many __________ can speak English nowadays.

8. __________ were grazing in the field.

9. Where are your __________?

10. These are my __________.

4.3.4. Concord between Subject and Predicate when the Subject


is Expressed by Other Means than a Noun

a) The subject expressed by an indefinite or a negative pronoun


is followed by the verb in the singular.

Somebody was at the door.


Nothing is known about his way of living.

NOTE!
The pronouns all and some can be followed either by a
singular or a plural depending on the meaning attached to
them.
All is well that ends well.
(meaning everything)
All were there except Mary.
(meaning all the people)
Some is enough.
(some bread, money)
Some are staying on, others will be leaving.
(some people)

b) Subjects expressed by the quantifiers much and little are


followed by the verb in the singular, while many, a few and few by
the verb in the plural.

Little is the value of his words.


Much has been spent on this project.
Many were present there.
Few were aware of the danger.

A lot of and plenty of can be followed either by the verb in the


singular or in the plural, depending on the noun they quantify.

A lot of bread was wasted. (uncountable)


A lot of books have been bought. (countable)
Plenty of food was there on the table. (uncountable)
Plenty of flowers were brought to decorate the hall.
(countable)

75
Subject Predicate Concord

Quantity expressed by the number of is followed generally by


singular, while a number of by plural.

The number of people was huge.


A number of people were asking for help.

c) The subject expressed by the interrogative pronouns who,


what and which can be followed both by the singular or plural form of
the verb, depending on how many persons or objects the speaker
has in mind

Who is he? Who are they?


What is this? What are these?
Which is yours? Which are yours?

d) The subject expressed by a verb in a non-finite form or a


subordinate clause is always followed by the singular.

To say something like that is a gross mistake.


What he said is a lie.

SAQ 3
Complete the following sentences with the appropriate form of the
verb to be. The first is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Much is to be said about his behaviour.

2. Each of them _____ going to play the game.

3. Which of these boys _____ your friend?

4. What _____ your name?

5. Some _____ going to spend their holidays in the


mountains.

6. All _____ going to be rewarded according to their


performance.

7. There _____ a lot of homework to be done.

8. A number of books _____ on display for the teachers.

9. What he means _____ that you have cheated.

10. There _____ plenty of time to get there.

76
Subject Predicate Concord

4.3.5. Concord of Coordinated Subjects


Two or more subjects can be coordinated with the following
simple or correlative conjunctions: and, or, either or, neither
nor, both and, not only but also.

a) In the case of coordinated subjects with and, both and the


plural form of the verb is required.

Mary and Tom are at school.


Both the pupils and the teacher are at school.

b) Subjects coordinated by or, either or, follow the rule of


proximity in agreement. Namely, the closest subject dictates the
number of the verb.

His friends or he has to help the teacher.


Either the teacher or the students have to take a decision.

c) Subjects coordinated with neither nor may follow the rule of


proximity (as above) but in everyday use, the plural is preferred.

Neither the students nor the teacher is to be blamed.


or
Neither the students nor the teacher are to be blamed.

NOTE!
The subject may be linked to another noun by: as well as,
except, but, with. In such cases only the first noun dictates
the agreement with the predicate.
Mary as well as all her colleagues is expected to come.
All the pupils, but John, are here.
A lady with a dog was coming on the road.

77
Subject Predicate Concord

Summary

Subject Predicate Concord

Concord of Number General Rules

o any noun in the singular is followed by a verb in the


singular
o any noun in the plural is followed by a verb in the plural

Particular rules dependent on classes of nouns

Uncountables

o groups of nouns asking for singular (material, abstract


subject matter, sports, games, titles + knowledge, advice,
information, luggage, money, news)
o groups of nouns asking for plural (nouns ending in s,
made of two parts, nouns denoting clothing, ranges of
mountains in the plural, substantivized adjectives +
valuables, surroundings + people, clergy, police, cattle)

Collective Nouns

o perceived as a single unit followed by singular


o perceived as members of the group followed by plural

Coordinated Subjects

o grammatical concord two or more followed by plural


when the coordinators are and; both and
o concord by proximity in cases of or; either or; neither
nor; not only but also

Subject expressed by other means than nouns

o non-finite verbs and subordinate clauses require a


singular
o pronouns indefinite and negative singular
exception: all, some according to what they
refer to can be followed by singular or plural.

Concord of Person

o with all lexical verbs, only the 3rd person Simple Present is
different from the other forms. With the verb to be there
are different forms for 1st, 2nd and 3rd person singular in the
Present Tense.

78
Subject Predicate Concord

Key Concepts
concord or agreement
countable nouns
collective nouns
coordinated subject
correlative conjunctions
notional verbs
proximity rule
uncountable nouns

Selected Bibliography
Leech, G., Svartvik, J. A Communicative Grammar of English,
Longman, 1975, pp. 220 - 222

79
Subject Predicate Concord

PA No. 3
I. Choose the correct form of the verb, singular or plural, according
to the subject.
1. Physics was / were his best subject at school.
2. Three days isnt / arent long enough for a holiday.
3. Does / Do the police know who robbed the old man?
4. The news wasnt / werent too bad.
5. The information they gave was / were inaccurate.
6. Is / Are the audience seated?
7. Where does / do your family live?
8. The money is / are not enough for shopping.
9. The rich has / have money.
10. Some people is / are waiting outside.

II. Complete the following sentences with the appropriate form of the
verb in brackets. Use the Present Tense Simple or Continuous or
the Present Perfect to make sure whether you use the singular or
plural form. The first one is done for you.
1. Both Mary and her friend (to read) have read the book.
2. Either he or you (to have) __________ to do it now.
3. The little boy with his friends (to save) __________ the
trapped animal.
4. Neither the witness nor the victim (to tell) __________
the truth.
5. Football as well as volleyball (to play) __________
outside.
6. Not only the students but also the teacher (to participate)
__________ in the competition.
7. Many people with umbrellas (to walk) __________ in the
street.
8. All the books, except one dictionary (to arrive)
__________ in good condition.
9. Food and drinks (to be served) __________ now.
10. Not only the policeman, but the passers by too (to run)
__________ after the thief.

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

80
Subject Predicate Concord

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
1. are
2. was
3. was
4. is
5. is
6. is
7. is
8. is
9. is
10. has been

SAQ 2
1. scissors
2. The blind
3. The police
4. The Carpathians
5. The surroundings
6. These trousers
7. people
8. The cattle
9. Clothes
10. belongings

SAQ 3
1. is
2. is
3. are
4. is
5. are
6. are
7. is
8. are
9. is
10. is

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

4.3 for SAQ 1


4.3.3 for SAQ 2
4.3.4 for SAQ 3

81
Complementation of the Verb (I)

UNIT 5

COMPLEMENTATION OF THE VERB (I)

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 83
5.1. What is Complementation 83
5.2. Transitivity and Complementation 84
5.2.1. Classification of Transitive Verbs 85
5.2.2. Passivization 86
SAQ 1 88
5.3. The Direct Object 89
5.3.1. Monotransitive Verbs and the Direct Object 89
5.3.2. Phrasal Verbs and Transitivity 92
SAQ 2 93
5.3.3. Means of Expressing the Direct Object 94
5.4. The Object Complement 95
SAQ 3 97
Summary 98
Key Concepts 99
Selected Bibliography 99
PA No. 4 100
Answers to SAQs 101

82
Complementation of the Verb (I)

The term complementation refers to the presence of certain


sentence constituents without which meaning is incomplete.
Complements are first and foremost related to the verb, as in the
case of the linking verbs which cannot form a full predicate and
subsequently need a subject complement (SC). But within the
domain of complementation we will discuss the objects, namely the
direct object and the indirect object as well as the objects which
follow a preposition associated with the verb. Subsequently there is a
tight relationship between the verb type and complementation.

After having read this unit, you will be able to:

unit differentiate between transitive and intransitive verbs


objectives identify the relationship between transitive verbs and
passivization
identify the classes of verbs which require a direct object
(DO)
identify means of expressing the DO
realize the relationship between the DO and its object
complement
form and explain sentences with direct objects and object
complements

5.1. What is Complementation


The nature of the verb and its behaviour in a sentence make it
necessary to use certain constituents which complete the predication
or establish relationships between the subject (the doer of the action)
and the other participants in it. Within an English sentence,
depending on the verb, we distinguish two complements: the subject
complement (SC), and the object complement (OC); and three
objects: the direct object (DO), the indirect object (IO), and the
prepositional object (Prep.O). If we take the following sentences,
we realize that only the subject and the verb do not make a fully
meaningful sentence:

1. Mary is a student. (subject complement)


*Mary is ?

2. The Senate elected Mr. X president.


(object complement)
*The Senate elected Mr. X ?

3. I want a cup of tea. (direct object)


*I want ?

4. Mary gave the book to the teacher. (indirect object)


*Mary gave the book ?

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Complementation of the Verb (I)

5. They approved of the plan. (prepositional object)


*They approved of ?

In order to identify these constituents of the sentence and to


make use of them in grammatically correct sentences we have to
thoroughly examine the classification of the verb and its dependent
constituents.

5.2. Transitivity and Complementation


The term transitivity refers to those verbs which need an
object, traditionally a direct object, to form a fully meaningful
sentence. They are found in dictionaries followed by the abbreviation
tr. for example: to cut, cut, cut, tr.

He cut his finger.

Notional verbs of full predication, those which form the verbal


predicate, fall into two large basic categories: transitive verbs and
intransitive verbs. Intransitive verbs are also marked in the
dictionary with the abbreviation intr. to sleep, slept, slept, intr.
These verbs do not ask for an object, as in the sentence The little
boy was sleeping.
But the distinction between transitive verbs and intransitive
ones is not clear-cut, since many verbs can be used both transitively
and intransitively with change of meaning or type of predication.

Stop and think!

Among the groups of verbs that ask for a subject complement


to form a nominal predicate, there are some which can be used both
as linking verbs and verbs of full predication. Which of them?
Identify them and try to use them in sentences of your own
transitively and intransitively as verbs of full predication.
In the space below, write down your answers. Check them as
you read on.

84
Complementation of the Verb (I)

As we have already seen in Unit 3, there are linking verbs like


to grow which can be used also as verbs of full predication both
transitively and intransitively.

Many people grew vegetables in their gardens.


(transitively used)
The little boy grew in one day like others in a year.
(intransitively used)

Similarly, there are verbs which can be used transitively or


intransitively with a change in the type of predication as in the case
of the verbs of perception as to taste, to smell, when the intransitive
form is a linking verb and the transitive a verb of full predication.

Roses smell sweet. (linking verb, intransitive)


The girl smelt the flowers. (verb of full predication, transitive)

Some verbs may be used transitively and intransitively without


any change in meaning as the verb to stop, for instance,

The driver stopped the bus. (transitive)


The bus stopped. (intransitive)

while with others, a change of meaning occurs as with the verb to


run:

An athlete runs very fast. (run, intr., verb of motion)


A housekeeper runs a house. (run, tr., to take care of the
household)

Having in view the complexity of the verb behaviour as


predicator and its potentiality to require objects and/or a complement
it is helpful to look at the classification of the verb from the point of
view of transitivity and the type of complementation that they require.

5.2.1. Classification of Transitive Verbs


Transitive verbs fall into three main groups:

a) monotransitive verbs which ask for a direct object; they can be


simple, prepositional or phrasal verbs, as to admire, to decide
on, to put off:

The tourists admired the landscape.


They decided on a plan of action.
They put off the meeting.

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Complementation of the Verb (I)

b) ditransitive verbs which ask for two objects: a direct object and
an indirect object, as the verbs to give something to somebody or to
do something for somebody:

The pupils gave flowers to the teacher.


Go there and help him. Do it for me, please.

c) ditransitive verbs which ask for two objects, one with a


compulsory preposition as the verbs: to accuse somebody of
something or to congratulate someone on something.

They accused the young man of cheating.


My friends congratulated me on my success.

d) complex transitive verbs which ask for a direct object and


another complement which tells us something about the direct
object.

They found the job tiring.


(the job = direct object; tiring refers back to the job which
is described as tiring)
They proclaimed the 1st of May a holiday.
(the direct object 1st of May is identified as a holiday)

Except requiring an object or more, transitive verbs also display


the capacity of being changed into passive constructions.

5.2.2. Passivization
Transitivity is directly linked to passivization and generally a
sentence which is constructed with a transitive verb can be
transformed into a passive one by moving the direct object in subject
position.

The tourists admired the landscape.


The landscape was admired by the tourists.

Within the same transformation the subject of the active


construction becomes a by-object denoting the doer of the action or
the agent.
This transformation from active sentences into passive ones
can be exemplified with all groups of transitive verbs:

a) Monotransitive verbs

Patients trust doctors.


Doctors are trusted by patients.

They decided upon a plan of action.


A plan of action was decided upon (by them).
They put off the meeting.

86
Complementation of the Verb (I)
The meeting was put off (by them).

b) Ditransitive verbs (direct object + indirect object)

The pupils gave flowers to the teacher.


Flowers were given to the teacher by the pupils.

He did it for me.


It was done for me (by him).

c) Ditransitive verbs (direct object / indirect object + prepositional


object)

They accused the young man of cheating.


The young man was accused of cheating (by them).

They reminded me of my duties.


I was reminded of my duties (by them).

d) Complex transitive verbs

They found the job tiring.


The job was found tiring (by them).

They proclaimed the 1st of May a holiday.


The 1st of May was proclaimed a holiday (by them).

Stop and think!

Some of the agent by-objects are in brackets. It is not always


necessary to express the doer of the action. Can you think of a
reason why?
Write your answer in the space below and then check it as
you read on.

87
Complementation of the Verb (I)

The agent object is not always expressed, so it is not a


compulsory constituent of a passive sentence.
The agent is not expressed when:

a) the subject in the active clause is vague or not known

They have made a gross mistake.


A gross mistake has been made.

Someone stole my watch.


My watch was stolen.

b) when it is obvious who performs the action

English and French are spoken here. (only people speak)

This means that the vague subject expressed by the personal


pronouns we, you, they, or indefinite or negative pronouns as
somebody, nobody, one, or nouns used in a general meaning, like
people, a man, etc. should not be expressed as agents in the
passive sentence.

c) when the interest of the speaker or writer lies in the activity or the
event expressed by the predicate and not in the doer of the action

The guests were kindly treated.

SAQ 1
Turn the following active sentences into passive sentences paying
attention to the agent (by-object). Mention the number of the
sentence in which you do not think that the agent should be
expressed and why. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the uni.

1. Somebody built this little bridge many years ago.


This little bridge was built many years ago.

2. People must not steal books.


...........................................................
3. The fire destroyed valuable paintings.
...........................................................
4. One uses a pencil to write with.
............................................................
5. Beethoven composed this beautiful piece.
.............................................................
6. They will take mother to the hospital tomorrow.
.............................................................
7. The police are looking for a suspect.
.............................................................

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Complementation of the Verb (I)

8. You must clean the room.


.......................................................
9. Huge waves killed many people.
........................................................
10. Teachers should make lessons interesting for pupils.
.........................................................

5.3. The Direct Object


The Direct Object is the obligatory constituent of a sentence
which expresses the person or thing that is involved in, affected by
or related to the action of the verb.

The two young men greeted each other.


The boy hit the dog.
They discussed the play.

5.3.1. Monotransitive Verbs and the Direct Object


Although as a rule we link the direct object to transitivity, there
are several groups of verbs which require a direct object but not all of
them display features of transitive verbs proper.

a) Monotransitives proper
Monotransitive verbs, those which ask only for a direct object
form a very large class and are widely used in everyday language.
Here are some of them: to achieve, to admire, to build, to carry, to
catch, to complete, to correct, to cut, to destroy, to discover, to enjoy,
to express, to fill, to find, to hate, to hear, to hit, to keep, to kill, to
know, to love, to need, to own, to plan, to please, to produce, to
protect, to raise, to release, to receive, to remember, to rent, to
reveal, to risk, to sell, to test, to trust, to use, to waste, to welcome.
All sentences built with these verbs can be changed into
passive ones.

They are building new houses.


New houses are being built.

They have released the hostages.


The hostages have been released.

She wasted all her money.


All her money was wasted.

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Complementation of the Verb (I)

b) There are a limited number of verbs which are defined as


transitives as they require a direct object but which are not generally
used in passive sentences.

1) the verbs to have, to possess

We have / possess a house in the countryside.


*A house in the countryside is had / possessed.

2) the verbs to contain, to lack, to suit, to resemble

The box contains 20 books.


*20 books are contained.

Some people lack will power.


*Will power is lacked.

Blue suits me.


*I am suited

Mary resembles her mother.


*Her mother is resembled

3) verbs that express measurements, weights or cost as to


measure, to weigh, to cost

This piece of cloth measures two yards.


This box weighs one ton.
These books cost fifty pounds.

NOTE!
When to measure and to weigh refer to the action expressed
by the verbs, they become regular transitive verbs which can
be used in the passive.
The saleswoman measured the material.
The material was measured.
They weighed the crates.
The crates were weighed.

4) the verbs to want and to wish

I want a cup of tea.


*A cup of tea is wanted.

I wish you Many Happy Returns of the Day!


*Many Happy Returns of the Day is wished.

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Complementation of the Verb (I)

NOTE!
In the case of the verb to want we may come across a
sentence like:

X was wanted for murder. (looked for

Similarly, the verb to wish in a passive form can be used in


impersonal constructions as
It is wished that everybody participate in the
ceremony.

c) There are transitive verbs proper which can be used without a


direct object, their usage and meaning implying the object they act
upon. Such verbs are: to climb, to eat, to read, to write, to smoke, to
sing, to drive.

She has read lots of books lately.


What are you doing? I am reading.

This young boy drives an expensive car.


Do you drive?

Many people do not drink enough water.


He ate and drank all day long.

d) There are a small number of verbs but quite frequently used,


which can be used both transitively and intransitively with the same
meaning. With these verbs, the same noun can be the direct object
when used transitively and the subject when used intransitively.

Mary opened the door.


The door opened.

Some of these verbs refer to movement as: to move, to open, to


close, to break, to stop, to start, while others refer to cooking as to
bake, to boil, to fry, to simmer. They are known as ergative verbs.

Mary broke the window.


The window broke.

Mother is frying the fish.


The fish is frying.

e) A few verbs, which are commonly defined as intransitive, can


be used transitively having an object which doubles the meaning of
the verb. The noun associated with the verb is called a cognate
object as it is of the same root as the verb. Instances of the cognate
object occur in:

91
Complementation of the Verb (I)

to smile a smile
to live a life
to dream a dream
to sigh a sigh
to dance a dance

Usually, in such instances, the noun is preceded by a modifier.

They were dreaming a beautiful dream.


Many people live a hard life.

5.3.2. Phrasal Verbs and Transitivity


The potentiality of a phrasal/prepositional verb to be transitive
depends on the verb. If the verb, as a simple one, takes a direct
object, then the phrasal verb will generally take an object. For
instance, the verb to carry is a transitive verb and so is to carry out.

She carried the baby in her arm.


They carried out their project.

Stop and think!

How can we test whether a verb is transitive or intransitive?


Try to apply the test to the following verbs in sentences of your own.
In the space below, write your answers.

to bring in, to give up, to put down, to take away, to think over
to go up, to get off, to stop by, to fall off, to drink to
Check your answers as you read on.

92
Complementation of the Verb (I)

As the problem of phrasal/prepositional verbs is a complex one,


first the dictionary needs to be consulted, but likewise the test of
passivization could be applied. To do this is necessary, as there are
prepositional/phrasal verbs which are made up by a simple transitive
verb and a particle (preposition or adverbial particle), and the
combination may result in an intransitive verb, or both transitive and
intransitive with different meanings. Lets take the verbs to take and to
get.

Take it, its yours!


The boy took the present and opened it.

to take off transitive He took off his coat.


intransitive The plane took off.

to get transitive I got a letter yesterday.

to get up intransitive I got up at 10 oclock.

Still, there are phrasal verbs which are transitively used as the
simple verb which is transitive: to beat up, to bring about, to bring in,
to carry out, to cut down, to fill in, to find out, to give away, to hand
out, to knock down, to leave behind, to pay back, to point out, to
push down, to put away, to put off, to see off, to set aside, to take
away, to take on/up, to try on/out, to turn on, etc.

They carried out their tasks.


Nobody found out the truth.
He took up tennis as a sport.

SAQ 2
Fill in the following sentences with an appropriate noun as the
direct object so that they become meaningful. The first one is done
for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Parents protect their children.

2. They are playing __________.

3. Mother was baking a __________.

4. Turn off the __________, please.

5. Johns sons resemble their __________.

6. They lived a happy __________.

7. A new car costs __________.

8. Mary closed __________.

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Complementation of the Verb (I)

9. You should give up __________.

10. Have you used my __________?

11. She filled the __________.

12. She has a nice __________.

13. I dont want any __________.

14. Find out the correct __________.

15. They enjoyed the __________.

5.3.3. Means of Expressing the Direct Object


As the definition of the direct object shows, it is most commonly
expressed by:

a) a noun phrase:

They saw Mary in the street.


He was carrying a heavy bag.
The lion killed the zebra.
Dont put out the light!

b) a noun-phrase substitute

personal pronoun in the accusative

We met them yesterday.


I dont like it.

indefinite pronouns

I would like some.


Many people want something for nothing.

negative pronouns

I saw nothing in the darkness.


Mary knew nobody in the room.

demonstrative pronouns

Take this there!


Pick that up!

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Complementation of the Verb (I)

possessive pronouns

I want mine not yours.

interrogative pronouns

Whom did you see?


What did you hear?
reflexive pronouns

They expressed themselves in clear terms.


She cut herself.

Some verbs are always followed by the reflexive pronoun


to busy oneself, to pride oneself, to introduce oneself.

He introduced himself to all of us.


Dont busy yourself!

reciprocal pronouns: each other, one another

They looked at each other in amazement.


They helped one another as they were good friends.

c) a non-finite verb form (infinitive or gerund)

She wanted to spend her summer holidays with friends.


They threatened to kill the hostages.
She avoided meeting me.
The suspect denied having been there.

As seen in all the examples, the direct object with


monotransitive verbs always follows the verb. This word order is
compulsory as a change of order, as it may occur in Romanian or
Hungarian brings about a complete change of meaning.

5.4. The Object Complement


The object complement is that constituent of the simple
sentence which identifies or describes the expressed direct object.

They appointed him captain.


They found the job difficult.

In both cases, the two underlined words refer back to the direct
objects, him respectively the job.
The object complement can be expressed by an adjective or a
noun.
The object complement is required by some groups of verbs:

95
Complementation of the Verb (I)

a) verbs of causation having a resulting object complement


expressed by an adjective. The following verbs are used with
a causative effect: to get, to make, to drive, to sweep, to
paint, to wipe.

Get your homework ready.


Make yourself comfortable.
They drove the man crazy.
The girl swept the floor clean.

b) verbs like to want, to like, to prefer, to leave, to keep which


ask for a direct object that is described with a temporary
quality (current) by an adjective.

I want my coffee sweet.


John left the door open.
Keep my dinner hot, please.

c) verbs that denote a quality or position which is attributed to


the direct object. Such verbs are: to declare, to call, to
appoint, to elect, to proclaim, to pronounce. After such verbs,
the object complement can be expressed either by a noun or
an adjective.

They called the girl Maggie.


Dont call him dull.
The committee elected Mr. Johnson chairperson of the
board.
The jury declared the suspect guilty.

d) verbs of opinion as: to consider, to think, to believe, to


reckon, to hold, to find

They thought John stupid.


They held it true.
He believed the story funny.
Did you find the show amusing?

After these verbs, the object complement is most often


expressed by an adjective.

96
Complementation of the Verb (I)

Stop and think!

What do you think are the differences between the subject


complement and the object complement? Look once again at the
examples for both complements (see 3.2.2.2 and 5.4) and try to
answer in the space below.
Take your answer to the next tutorial to discuss it with your
classmates and your tutor.

So far we have discussed the two types of complements as


constituents of the sentence. The subject complement helps in
forming the predicate accompanying a linking verb and refers back to
the subject, while the object complement is related to the direct
object required by a transitive verb.

SAQ 3
Choose one of the given adjectives or nouns as appropriate
complements in the context. State whether the function is subject (SC)
or object complement (OC). The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

a joke; man and wife; Carolyn; alive; red; salty; tired; sick; still; open

1. The girl painted her nails red. (OC)

2. People grow _____ of lies.

3. She likes her soup _____.

4. She couldnt stand _____.

5. They baptized the baby _____.

6. The doctors kept the old man _____

7. The official pronounced John and Mary _____.

97
Complementation of the Verb (I)

8. Keep the door _____, please.

9. Alice considered the trial _____.

10. The woman felt _____.

Summary

Transitivity and Complementation

Classification of transitive verbs

o monotransitive

o ditransitive

o complex transitive

Transitive verbs Passivization

The active sentence The passive sentence

The boy hit the dog. The dog was hit by the boy.

Transitive verbs and Direct Object [SVO] sentence

Transitive verbs and Direct Object + Object Complement [the


SVOCO sentence]

Means of expressing the DO

o Noun Phrase

o Noun Phrase Substitute (pronouns)

o Non-Finite forms of the verb

Means of expressing the Object Complement

o Noun Phrase

o Adjective

98
Complementation of the Verb (I)

Key Concepts
complementation
transitivity
passivization
cognate object
causative verbs
agent
complement
object
transitive verbs
intransitive verbs
ergative verbs

Selected Bibliography
1. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin
Books, 1990, pp. 257 - 259

2. Leech, G., Svartvik, J. A Communicative Grammar of English,


Longman, 1975, pp. 199 210

99
Complementation of the Verb (I)
PA No. 4
I. State whether the statements below are true or false. Justify your
choice.
1. Verbs in English are either transitive or intransitive.
2. Transitive verbs are followed by a direct object.
3. Phrasal verbs are always intransitive.
4. All transitive verbs can be used in the passive.
5. In a passive sentence, the by-object denoting the agent is
always expressed.
6. The object complement follows a linking verb.
7. The direct object is expressed only by nouns and
pronouns.
8. The order of the subject, verb, direct object is flexible.
9. In passive sentences, the direct object becomes subject.
10. The object complement identifies or describes the direct
object.

II. Identify the direct object in the following sentences. State what it
is expressed by.
1. Save our souls.
2. She found a large sum of money in the street.
3. I couldnt see anybody in the room.
4. She saw herself in the mirror.
5. They wanted to leave.
6. What did you buy?
7. They denied having seen the accident.
8. This colour doesnt suit you.
9. They own a large property.
10. Nobody knew the whole truth.

III. In the following sentences identify the kind of verbs (transitive or


intransitive) and mention if there is change of meaning when used
transitively/intransitively.
1. a) He is running.
b) He is running a race.
2. a) The show has started.
b) She started the engine.
3. a) The girl got a prize.
b) They got there early in the morning.
4. a) She was dreaming.
b) They dreamt a nightmarish dream.
5. a) The train was moving slowly.
b) She moved the furniture in the room.

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

100
Complementation of the Verb (I)

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
2. Books must not be stolen.
3. Valuable paintings were destroyed by the fire.
4. A pencil is used to write with.
5. This beautiful piece of music was composed by Beethoven.
6. Mother will be taken to the hospital tomorrow.
7. A suspect is being looked for by the police.
8. The room must be cleaned.
9. Many people were killed by the huge waves.
10. Lessons should be made interesting for pupils.

Sentences 2, 4, 6, 8 do not need the agent expressed. In sentences


2 and 4, it is obvious that only humans steal or write. In sentence 6
the focus is on the action referring to mother. In sentence 8 the
subject is you so the addressee is obvious.

SAQ 2
2. football (any game)
3. a cake
4. the light, the TV, the gas
5. mother
6. life
7. a lot of money/ or sum
8. the door/window
9. smoking
10. pen
11. the glass/cup
12. dress
13. tea/coffee/cake
14. answer
15. trip/performance

SAQ 3
2. tired (SC)
3. salty (OC)
4. still (SC)
5. Carolyn (OC)
6. alive (OC)
7. man and wife (OC)
8. open (OC)
9. a joke (OC)
10. sick (SC)

101
Complementation of the Verb (I)

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

5.2.2 for SAQ 1


5.3.1 for SAQ 2
3.2.2.2 and 5.4 for SAQ 3

102
Complementation of the Verb (II)

UNIT 6

COMPLEMENTATION OF THE VERB (II)

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 104


6.1. Ditransitive Verbs Requiring Two Objects 104
6.1.1. The Direct and the Indirect Object in the Sentence 106
6.1.2. Features of Direct and Indirect Object 107
6.1.2.1. Ordering the Direct and Indirect Object 107
6.1.2.2. Means of Expressing the Indirect Object 108
6.1.2.3. Passivization of Ditransitive Verb Sentences 109
SAQ 1 110
6.1.3. Other Ditransitive Verbs with Two Objects 111
6.2. The Prepositional Object 112
SAQ 2 113
6.3. Complex Constructions 113
SAQ 3 118
Summary 120
Key Concepts 120
Selected Bibliography 120
SAA No. 2 121
Answers to SAQs 122

103
Complementation of the Verb (II)

In this unit we will deal with the types of sentences which fall
into the S + V + DO + IO; S + V + DO + Prep.O and S + V + Prep.O
patterns as well as with complex constructions that follow certain
transitive verbs.
The two units with reference to complementation cover the
obligatory constituents of the sentence which are in close
relationship to the verb as predicator.

After having read this unit, you will be able to:

unit identify the relationship between the DO and IO


objectives explain the compulsory presence of two objects with
ditransitive verbs
form passive sentences with verbs that have two objects
identify and explain the features of complex constructions

6.1. Ditransitive Verbs Requiring Two Objects

There are some verbs which ask for two objects in order to
form a complete sentence. One group of these verbs are those which
ask for a direct and indirect object. Generally the direct object
expresses the object or person affected by or related to the action,
whereas the indirect object expresses the person to whom the action
is directed to or who benefits from it. In the sentence:

Pass me the sugar, please!

the DO is the sugar and the action of passing is directed towards


me which is the IO.
In the sentence

Mother bought a doll for Mary.

a doll is the DO, whereas Mary benefited from the action of buying,
so Mary is IO.
According to the role of the Indirect Object as receiver/recipient
of the action or beneficiary, the ditransitive verbs fall into two groups:

a) verbs like to give, to offer, to hand, to lend, to promise, to grant,


to pass, to rent, to fetch, to forward, to show, to send, to tell, to owe
require an IO as recipient:

Bring the book to me!


Forward the letter to the manager!
Show the place to the visitors!
Give some money to the beggar!

104
Complementation of the Verb (II)

b) verbs like: to buy, to find, to make, to order, to cook, to keep, to


prepare require an IO as beneficiary

They found my purse for me.


Mother cooked dinner for the family.
She kept the oranges for the children.

Stop and think!

Read once again the examples and identify the preposition


which indicates the IO as the recipient and that which indicates the
IO as the beneficiary.
In the space below, write your own examples with two verbs
of each group. Take your examples to the next tutorial to discuss
them with your classmates and your tutor.

As you have noticed, the IO can take the prepositions to and


for depending on the verb it is associated with and the kind of IO the
speaker refers to, recipient or beneficiary.

c) But there are some verbs which can be followed either by to or


for depending on the meaning the speaker wants to convey. Verbs
like: to read, to write, to sing, to play, to leave, to do may occur in
sentences like:

1. a) The pupils read the lesson to the teacher.


b) Read the letter for me.

In example a) the action is directed towards the person, while in


example b) the action of reading is performed by someone else
instead of me, so the person does a favour to the indirect object.
Similarly, in the case of:

2. a) Write a postcard to your friends.


b) Write your phone number for me.

105
Complementation of the Verb (II)

In the case of to leave, the meanings differ:

3. a) Leave the cleaning to me.


b) Leave some cake for your brother.

In example a) the indirect object is the recipient, while in b) the


indirect object is the beneficiary.

d) A group of verbs are always followed by only the to-indirect


object: to ascribe to, to prescribe to, to dictate to, to explain to, to
describe to, to mention to, to introduce to, to suggest to:

The doctor prescribed medicine to the patient.


Dont mention my name to him.
She suggested to me to leave the room.
Introduce yourself to your colleagues.

6.1.1. The Direct and the Indirect Object in the Sentence

In most cases of ditransitive verbs both the direct and the


indirect objects should be expressed.
A sentence like:

They offered flowers to their teachers.

should always be explicit, by answering the questions What did they


offer? and To whom did they offer flowers?

But there are verbs which can make meaningful sentences with
either object expressed. Such verbs as: to write, to read, to play, to
cook, to sing can be used to make up meaningful sentences with
either of the objects.

1. a) Mary wrote to her friends. (IO)


b) Mary is writing a letter. (DO)

2. a) Sing to them. (IO)


b) He sang a beautiful song. (DO)

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Complementation of the Verb (II)

Stop and think!

Why do you think that these verbs can be used with either of
the objects? What is the relationship between their meaning and the
direct object?
Write your answers in the space below and then check them
as you read on.

The above mentioned verbs imply the DO object, that which is


related to the action and also there is a limited range of direct objects
that they can take. For example, one can read only what is written
book, story, article, letter, etc.

6.1.2. Features of Direct and Indirect Object


6.1.2.1. Ordering the Direct and Indirect Object
The sentences which contain both a DO and an IO can follow
two patterns of word order.

I. S + V + DO + IO (preposition to/for)

The pupils offered flowers to the teachers.

II. S + V + IO (without preposition to/for) + DO

The pupils offered the teachers flowers.

When the IO follows the verb, it is always used without the


preposition, thus being a simple noun phrase.

NOTE!
The exception to the rule are the verbs in group d) (to ascribe,
to prescribe, etc.) which always require a to-prepositional DO.

She described the landscape to the pupils.


She described to the pupils the landscape.

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Complementation of the Verb (II)

The placement of the objects depends on the intention of the


speaker. In English, the most important part of the sentence, that
which provides the information, comes last.
According to this, when the focus is on the DO, it will come last.
When the focus is on the IO, this will come last.
But there are some commonly used verbs which ask for the IO
to be placed immediately after the verb, so the pattern used will
always be:

S + V + IO + DO

The pupil asked the teacher a question.

Such verbs are: to allow, to ask, to answer, to deny, to promise, to


refuse, to teach.

They denied the victims the right to defend themselves.


Teach him a lesson.
Dont tell them lies.

6.1.2.2. Means of Expressing the Indirect Object

The Indirect Object, as it was stated before, refers to the person


who is the recipient or beneficiary of the action. Subsequently the IO
can be expressed by:

a) a noun phrase associated or not with the prepositions to/for

Write a postcard to Mary.


Write your friend a postcard.

b) a noun-phrase substitute (pronouns)

He didnt tell the news to anybody.


He didnt tell them the news.

c) a reflexive pronoun

She bought a dress for herself.


She bought herself a new dress.

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Complementation of the Verb (II)

6.1.2.3. Passivization of Ditransitive Verb Sentences

Stop and think!

Monotransitive verbs can be changed from active into


passive. What changes occur in the passive sentence as compared
to the active sentence?
In the space below, write your answer and provide your own
examples. Check your answer as you read on. Take your examples
answer and examples to the next tutorial to discuss them with your
classmates and your tutor.

In the case of monotransitive verbs, the direct object becomes


the subject of the passive sentence.
With ditransitive verbs either the DO or the IO can be the
subject of the passive sentence.
For example:

He showed his friends all his presents.


IO DO

a) the direct object can be the subject of the passive sentence:

All his presents were shown to his friends (by him).

b) the indirect object can also be the subject of the passive


sentence:

His friends were shown all his presents (by him).

The presence of the DO is obligatory in the passive sentence


with the IO as the subject.

They told me (IO) a lie (DO).


I was told a lie (DO).

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Complementation of the Verb (II)

SAQ 1
I. Identify the direct and indirect objects in the following sentences.
The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit..

1. They found good seats for themselves.


(DO) (IO)
2. Mary asked the teacher several questions.

3. The postman gave the letter to Mother.

4. Lend me your rubber, please.

5. Mother made a birthday cake for John.

6. Dont promise me a rose garden.

7. Do it for them.

8. Introduce yourself to the newcomers.

9. Explain to them their mistakes.

10. They played a game of tennis for the onlookers.

II. a) Turn the following sentences into passive ones using the IO
as subject. The first one is done for you.

1. She promised me a good book to read.


I was promised a good book to read.

2. She showed the visitors her new house.


_______________________________

3. I will send you the necessary information.


_______________________________

4. They did not tell me the whole story.


_______________________________

5. They gave him a new watch.


_______________________________

110
Complementation of the Verb (II)

b) Turn the following sentences into passive ones using the DO as


subject. The first one is done for you.

1. The author read new poems to the audience.


New poems were read to the audience by the author.

2. The receptionist explained the rules to the guests.


_______________________________

3. They did harm to me.


_______________________________

4. John left some milk for the cat.


_______________________________

5. Mother has cooked dinner for the family.


_______________________________

6.1.3. Other Ditransitive Verbs with Two Objects


Within double complementation, there are verbs which require
an object (direct or indirect) and another one which is
prepositional. Such verbs do not admit variations as they are given
in the dictionary with their full constituents:

to accuse somebody of something, to assure somebody of


something, to blame somebody for something, to congratulate
somebody on something, to prevent somebody from something, to
punish somebody for something, to rob somebody of something, to
warn somebody of something

a) They accused the man of murder.


b) They punished the driver for his negligence.
c) Parents warn their children of their duties.

In these cases, the first object is considered to be a DO.


The passive transformation allows only this object to become
the subject of the passive sentence:

a) The man was accused of murder.


b) The driver was punished for his negligence.
c) Children are warned by parents of their duties.

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Complementation of the Verb (II)

Another small category of the same type: to assure somebody


of something, to convince somebody of something, to inform
somebody of something, to remind somebody of something are
considered to have a IO which is compulsory and a prepositional
object.

a) They assured me of their help.


b) They convinced me of their good will.
c) He reminded me of his plans.

In these cases, the IO becomes subject of the passive sentence:

a) I was assured of their help.


b) I was convinced of their good will.
c) I was reminded of his plans.

In both cases, be it an active sentence or a passive sentence, the


prepositional object must be expressed.

6.2. The Prepositional Object


There are verbs which require a compulsory preposition. These
verbs are always followed by a complement (object) which forms
together with the preposition the Prepositional Object. Some of these
verbs can be used in the passive, the object becoming the subject of
the passive sentence.
Verbs like: to add to, to approve of, to agree to, to believe in, to
complain of, to consent to, to depend on, to hint at, to hope for, to
insist on, to object to, to rely on, to refer to, to think of, to succeed in,
to worry about require that the object be expressed:

a) No one will approve of his plan.


b) They hoped for the better.
c) She insisted on going there.
d) You can rely on your friends.
e) Everything depends on the weather.

Passive sentences are possible only in case a, b, and d the


preposition being placed at the end of the sentence.

a) His plan will not be approved of.


b) The better is hoped for.
c) *Going there was insisted on.
d) Your friends can be relied on.
e) *The weather is depended on.

The Prepositional Object can be expressed by:


a) preposition + a noun phrase

They objected to their friends behaviour.


Dont worry about the luggage.

112
Complementation of the Verb (II)

b) preposition + noun phrase substitute (pronoun)

You cannot rely on everybody.


Friends, Ill think of you!

c) preposition + a verb in the Gerund

She complained of being punished.


They approved of joining us.

SAQ 2
Complete the following sentences with the appropriate
prepositions and underline the prepositional object. The first one is
done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. He added his name to the list.

2. The weather prevented us _____ going on the trip.

3. The police accused him _____ theft.

4. The committee has agreed _____ your proposal.

5. They succeeded _____ winning the game.

6. Their success depends _____ their skill.

7. Dont hint _____ his misbehaviour!

8. They assured the patient _____ good treatment.

9. They did not convince the judge _____ their honesty.

10. Parents should not insist _____ obedience.

6.3. Complex Constructions


There are cases with monotransitive verbs when their object is
associated with a non-finite form of the verb, infinitive or participle. If
we take the verb to see, we can make up the following sentences:

a) I saw John. (DO)


b) I saw John leave the house.
c) I saw John leaving the house.

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Complementation of the Verb (II)

In examples b) and c) John, the DO of the verb to see,


functions as the logical subject of the verb to leave. The two
sentences can be re-written as:

b) I saw that John left the house.


c) I saw John was leaving the house.

Such constructions belong to complex complementation as the


verb in the non-finite form expresses an action or a state of the DO
as compared to the simple object complement which describes or
identifies the direct object. Compare:

a) I want you to go now.


b) I want my tea hot.

In example a), you, the direct object, is supposed to perform


an action while in example b) the direct object, my tea, is described.
Such complex constructions are also known as the Accusative
+ Infinitive or the Accusative + Participle.

A) The Accusative + Infinitive occurs after certain groups of


verbs:

a) verbs of perception always followed by a short


infinitive: to see, to hear, to feel, to watch, to notice,
to observe

She heard him slam the door.


We watched them play.

b) the verb to let also followed by the short infinitive

He let us enter the building.

c) verbs that have a causative function: to make, to get,


to have also followed by short infinitive

I made them change their mind.


We had them help us.
Ill get him to do it for me.

d) verbs of wishing, liking or disliking as: to wish, to want,


to like, to hate, to prefer, to fancy, followed by to-
infinitive

He wishes us to be there on time.


Fancy him to have arrived.
He meant it for me to do the job.

e) verbs of mental activity and opinion as: to think, to


believe, to consider, to understand, to know, to
suppose, to imagine

114
Complementation of the Verb (II)

Nobody imagined it to have happened.


They thought the problem to be a puzzle.
We know him to be a wise man.

f) verbs of order, request and compelling as: to ask, to


beg, to tell, to order, to compel, to request, to advise,
to recommend, to persuade, to force

They advised us not to take a taxi.


The doctor recommended me to spend a day
outdoors.
They told the man to leave right then.

g) verbs of permitting and interdicting as: to allow, to


permit, to forbid, followed by to-infinitive

The parents allowed the children to play outside.


Nobody forbids you to work.

h) the verbs: to expect, to teach, to instruct, to warn, to


urge

They expected Mary to do the job.


They urged us to leave the town.

Having in view that these are monotransitive verbs,


passivization of these complex constructions is possible.

Stop and think!

Which were the monotransitive verbs that require a direct


object and do not passivize? Are all of them used with the same
function and meaning in complex constructions?
In the space below, write your answers. Take them to the
next tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

115
Complementation of the Verb (II)

The Accusative + Infinitive construction can be transformed


into a passive sentence with the DO as the subject of the new
sentence, thus obtaining the Nominative + Infinitive construction.
With the groups of verbs a, b, and c the infinitive in the
Nominative + Infinitive is always the to-infinitive:

group a): He was heard to slam the door.

group b): We were let to enter the building.

group c): They were made to change their minds.

NOTE!
The verbs to get and to have are not used in the passive.

Commonly used as passive sentences will be those which have


as predicate one of the groups e), f), g), and h).

group e): He was known to be a wise man.

group f): I was recommended to spend a day outdoors.

group g): The children were allowed to play outside.

group h): Mary is expected to do the job.

B) Accusative + Participle (ing-participle)

This complex construction can be used with verbs of perception.


The difference between the infinitive and participle lies in the
way the speaker considers the action. If the action performed by the
direct object is considered complete, the infinitive construction is
used.

I heard Mary lock the door.

meaning she locked the door, whereas in

I heard Mary locking the door.

the speaker is not sure whether she managed to lock it or not. The
action is seen as in progress.

They watched the children playing in the yard.


(the children were playing)

116
Complementation of the Verb (II)

As the Accusative + Infinitive, these constructions can also be


changed into passive ones:

Mary was heard locking the door.

Other verbs that can be used in the Accusative + Participle are the
verbs to catch, to find, to leave:

They caught him stealing.


I left them singing.
C) Accusative + Past Participle

This construction is restricted to a limited number of verbs which


have also been used in the other constructions.

a) verbs of perception: to see, to hear, to feel

They saw the villages deserted.


He heard the name called.
Alice felt herself become smaller.

b) the verbs to want, to wish, to like, to prefer, to find

She wanted the work done.


They liked their house freshly painted.
They found the horse shot.

c) causative verbs as: to make, to get, to have, to get

She made her presence felt.


Have this done by 3 oclock, please.
She got her hair done.

The meaning implied in this construction is rather resultative as


rendered by the past participle, than in progress as rendered by the
Present Participle.

117
Complementation of the Verb (II)

SAQ 3
I. Choose from the 3 verbs in brackets the appropriate form of the
verb for the complex construction. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. John wants his friend (going, to go, gone).

2. They thought us (to be, being, been) late.

3. They saw the ship (to move, move, moving).

4. The teacher knew his pupils (to be, being, been)


hardworking.

5. The old man did not notice the window (to open, open,
opened).

6. He let the fish (to swim, swim, swum).

7. They made him (to pay, paying, pay) for the damage.

8. They caught him (to pen, open, opening).

9. He begged the rose (to help, helping, help) him.

10. They will try to get him (do, done, doing) it.

II. Turn the following sentences into passive. The first one is done
for you.

1. Mother made the child swallow the pill.


The child was made to swallow the pill.

2. They requested him to leave the place.


____________________________

3. The officer ordered his soldiers to shoot.


____________________________

4. The child persuaded his mother to take him home.


____________________________

5. They wont allow dogs to be taken in the shop.


____________________________

6. He encouraged the young man to speak English.


____________________________

7. Everybody expected the singer to come back on stage.


118
Complementation of the Verb (II)
____________________________

8. They meant me to do the job.


____________________________

9. Nobody considered the matter to be over.


____________________________

10. They warned the tourists to take care of their valuables.


____________________________

119
Complementation of the Verb (II)

Summary

Ditransitive verbs + two objects


of the to give group DO + to IO
of the to buy group DO + for IO

Ordering DO and IO
I. S + V + DO + IO
II. S + V + IO + DO

Passivization of ditransitive verb sentences


I. DO S + V + IO + (by object)
II. IO S + V + DO + (by object)

Means of expressing IO
NP
NP substitute
reflexive pronoun

Ditransitive verbs + two objects


S + V + O + Prep.O

Transitive verbs + Prep.Object


S + V + Prep.O

Complex Complementation
S + V + DO + Inf.
S + V + DO + Present Participle
S + V + DO + Past Participle

Passivization
DO S + V + Inf./Participle

Key Concepts
Object
Direct Object
Indirect Object
Prepositional Object
Complex construction
Complex Complementation
recipient
beneficiary

Selected Bibliography
Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin
Books, 1990, pp. 296 - 301

120
Complementation of the Verb (II)

SAA No. 2
I. a) Complete the following sentences with the direct object and the
appropriate indirect object or prepositional object given in brackets.
1. She explained (the pupils, the new lesson).
2. They assured (we, their support).
3. Mary reminded (his name, I).
4. They offered (no explanation, the patient).
5. The officials congratulated (the success, young man).
6. The students handed (the teacher, the papers).
7. They blamed (the lie, John).
8. The students asked (questions, the teacher).
9. Introduce (John, your parents).
10. He promised (I, a present) on my birthday.

b) Turn the sentences into passive ones. 1, 3, 4, 6, 8, 10 two


possibilities are correct.

II. Make up sentences of your own according to the following


patterns using one of the following verbs:

to become, to convince of, to buy, to want, to watch, to


advise, to rely on, to elect, to teach, to get

1. S + V + IO + DO
2. S + V + DO + IO
3. S + V + DO + Prep.O
4. S + V + Prep.O
5. S + V + DO + Inf.
6. S + V + DO + Present Part.
7. S + V + DO + Past Part
8. S + V + DO + short Inf.
9. S + V + DO + OC
10. S + V + SC

Send your answers to your tutor.

121
Complementation of the Verb (II)

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
I.
2. the teacher IO; several questions DO
3. the letter DO; to Mother IO
4. we IO; your rubber DO
5. a birthday cake DO; for John IO
6. me IO; a rose garden DO
7. it DO; for them IO
8. yourself DO; to the newcomers IO
9. to them IO; their mistakes DO
10. a game of tennis DO; for the onlookers IO

II.
a)
2. The visitors were shown the new house.
3. You will be sent the necessary information.
4. I wasnt told the whole story.
5. She was given a new watch.
b)
2. The rules were explained to the guests.
3. Harm was done to me.
4. Some milk was left for the cat.
5. Dinner has been cooked for the family.

SAQ 2
2. from
3. of
4. to
5. in
6. on
7. at
8. of
9. of
10. on

SAQ 3
I.
2. to be
3. move/moving
4. to be
5. open
6. swim
7. pay
8. opening
9. to help
10. do

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Complementation of the Verb (II)

II.
2. He was requested to leave the place.
3. The soldiers were ordered to shoot.
4. Mother was persuaded by the child to take him home.
5. Dogs wont be allowed in the shop.
6. The young man was encouraged to speak English.
7. The singer was expected to come back on stage.
8. I was meant to do the job.
9. The matter was not considered to be over.
10. The tourists were warned to take care of their valuables.

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

5.2.2 and 6.1 for SAQ 1 (I, II)


6.2 for SAQ 2
6.3 for SAQ 3 (I, II)

123
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

UNIT 7

ADVERBIAL MODIFIERS (I)

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 125


7.1. What Are Adverbial Modifiers 125
7.1.1. Classification of Adverbial Modifiers 126
7.2. The Adverbial Modifier of Time 127
7.2.1. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Time 127
7.2.2. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Duration 129
7.2.3. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Frequency 130
7.2.4. Placing Adverbial Modifiers of Time in the Sentence 132
SAQ 1 134
7.3. The Adverbial Modifier of Place 135
7.3.1. Adverbs Expressing Place and/or Direction 135
7.3.2. Prepositional Phrases Expressing Place, Direction or Destination 136
7.3.3. Placing the Adverbials of Place 137
SAQ 2 138
Summary 139
Key Concepts 140
Selected Bibliography 140
PA No. 5 141
Answers to SAQs 141

124
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

When making up messages, we as speakers or writers usually


give information about an event or a situation with reference to the
circumstances, time or place of the event. Similarly, we can express
concepts as contrast, purpose, condition with reference to the action
performed by the subject.
In a simple sentence, all these circumstances and concepts are
expressed by the adverbial modifiers. Unlike the basic constituents of
the sentence subject, predicate, complements and objects which
are structurally obligatory, adverbial modifiers are optional
informational constituents.

After having completed the study of this unit and solved the
SAQs, you should be able to:

unit identify the adverbial modifiers of time and place


objectives expand sentences by using adverbial modifiers of time
and place
relate the various types of adverbial modifiers of time to
the tense of the verb
identify the means of expressing the adverbial modifiers
of time and place
place these adverbials in sentences so that
grammatically correct sentences will be obtained

7.1. What Are Adverbial Modifiers


When we as speakers or writers make up messages we also
provide extra information about the action, event or situation we are
talking about. These pieces of information may refer to the place of
the action, time or duration of an event, manner in which the action
takes place or the reason why a situation occurs. These pieces of
information are not obligatory constituents of the sentence as the
subject, predicate, complements and objects. In a sentence like:

They saw a movie at the cinema yesterday.

the obligatory constituents are

S + V + DO

while at the cinema and yesterday are optional constituents


expressing place and time of the action. They are the Adverbial
Modifiers [Adv.M], and the sentence will be patterned as

S + V + DO + A + A

125
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

Stop and think!

What words or phrases would you use to express time or


place? Provide some examples of your own.
In the space below write your answers. Then check them
as you read on.

As the term adverbial shows, the part of speech which is


commonly used to express time, for example, is the adverb (now,
then, yesterday, etc.) but similarly there are Prepositional Phrases
which express time as well (at 3 oclock, in a month, etc.). This
means that the adverbial modifiers are linked to the meaning of the
adverb on one hand and on the other to the relationship between the
preposition and the noun phrase it is associated with. Thus here will
always indicate place, while at 3 oclock and at home express time
and place due to the noun the preposition at is associated with.
Subsequently, adverbial modifiers in a sentence are most commonly
expressed by an adverb or a prepositional phrase, although there are
also noun phrases used as adverbials, mostly in the case of
expressing time (e.g. last month, every year).

7.1.1. Classification of Adverbial Modifiers


According to the concepts they express, adverbial modifiers are
classified into the following groups:

a) Adv. M of Time
b) Adv. M of Place
c) Adv. M of Manner
d) Adv. M of Reason/Cause
e) Adv. M of Purpose
f) Adv. M of Condition
g) Adv. M of Concession
h) Adv. M of Result

126
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

NOTE!
In these two units we will discuss the adverbial modifiers
which occur in a simple sentence. These concepts are also
expressed by clauses. The adverbial clauses will be dealt with
in units 12 and 13.

7.2. The Adverbial Modifier of Time


Adverbial modifiers of time can denote time of action, duration
and frequency. Within these major classes of time adverbials we
can distinguish other subcategories as: approximate time, beginning
or end of the action, all expressed by particular identifiable means.

7.2.1. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Time


Exact time refers to mentioning the hour, the day, month, year,
date of the action.

She came home at 5 oclock.


It happened on a Monday.
Summer vacation starts in June.
The war broke out in 1939.

These adverbial modifiers are expressed by prepositional phrases.


The prepositions used are: at for the hour; on for date or day; in for
month, year, season or century, as in the examples above.
Prepositional phrases are also used to mention exact time by
mentioning the various parts of the day:

in the morning; in the afternoon; in the evening; at dawn;


at noon; at night; at midnight; at daybreak; at sunrise; at dusk;
at sunset

Similarly, holidays as time adverbials are expressed by


prepositional phrases:

on Christmas Day; on Easter Sunday; on New Years Day; at


Christmas, etc.

Many people get up early in the morning.


They will be at home on Easter Sunday.

Approximate time with reference to these time divisions (day,


month, year, parts of the day) can be expressed by using
prepositions or words like: about, almost, before, nearly, soon
after, around.

127
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

The postman comes about 9 oclock.


It happened before the 20th of May.
It was nearly midnight when they got home.

The exact period of time can also be expressed by adverbs as:


today, yesterday, tomorrow, now, just now, nowadays, then.

She is away today.


We went on a trip yesterday.
They lived in London then.
She left just now.

A longer period of exact time can be expressed by noun phrases


as: this week / month / year. last week / month / year; next day /
week / month / year or the following week / month / year, etc.:

The following day the sky cleared.


Prices went up last month.
Shell be seeing her doctor next week.

Past exact time can be expressed by using the adverb ago in


association with time divisions (minutes, hours, days, months, etc.)

The new law was introduced three months ago.


They came here an hour ago.

A shorter period of time is expressed by the preposition during


which accompanies the time division noun (week, year, season, etc.)

They travelled around the world during the summer of 1976.


During weekdays everybody works from 9 to 5.

The preposition by associated with time division nouns expresses


the time before which the action took place or will take place.

They will be back by 10 p.m.


They all left the square by noon.

Within the exact time adverbials we will also include adverbs or noun
phrases as: soon, early, late, recently, suddenly, previously,
formerly, once, before long, last night, next year.

She will be back soon.


They started out early.
Suddenly the wind started to blow.

128
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

NOTE!
In all these instances of expressing time, the question used is
when?
When do they leave?
When will she get home?
When did the wind start to blow?

7.2.2. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Duration


Duration refers to the length of time an action takes place or the
point of beginning or ending of an action.

a) The most common way of expressing duration is the prepositional


phrase made of the preposition for to which a time division noun
is added: for a week/a month/a year, for ages, for the summer
/ winter:

The strike went on for a week.


They were away for the summer.
I havent seen you for ages.

Approximate duration can be expressed by accompanying the for-


phrase with almost, about, more than, nearly, less than:

They quarrelled for about two hours.


They havent been here for more than a month.

Indefinite duration is expressed by: for a long time, for a time,


for a while:

She sat quietly for a while.


They were away for a long time.

NOTE!
In all these instances, the question asked to the adverbial
modifier is how long?

How long did she sit there?


How long havent you seen them?

b) An action can last for some time, and we can point out the
beginning of the action, the end of the action or both time points.
The beginning of the action is expressed by using since or from
and the time division (year, part of day, etc.)

129
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

We have been living here since 1976.


The young man has been playing the piano from early
childhood.

The end of an action, which lasts for some time, is expressed by till,
until associated with the time division word.

She will be here till 5 oclock.


They wont leave until the end of September.

Both the beginning and end of an action can be expressed by using


the prepositions from to / till and the time division word.

They work from morning till night.

NOTE!
The questions for these time adverbials are since when? till
when?

Since when has he been playing the piano?


Till when will she be here?

Shops are open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

7.2.3. Adverbial Modifiers Expressing Frequency


An action can take place in time on a regular basis, thus the
speaker can express definite frequency, or the action can take
place frequently or not, and thus the speaker expresses indefinite
frequency.
Definite frequency can be expressed by:

a) adverbs: daily, weekly, yearly, monthly


b) a noun phrase made of every/each and time division noun:
every day, week, month, year; each day, year, etc.
c) or the phrases: once a week, twice a month, three times a
year

She plays tennis daily/every day.


They meet twice a month.

d) prepositional phrases as: in the mornings, in the


afternoons, on Tuesdays, on week-ends:

Many people go to the countryside on weekends.


She likes to work in the mornings

130
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

Indefinite frequency is expressed by indefinite adverbs of time


as: ever, never, often, always, sometimes, again and again,
seldom, usually, scarcely ever, hardly ever, etc. These adverbs
range from very frequent as always or again and again to less
frequent as seldom or hardly ever.

She repeated the words again and again.


They seldom go to the countryside nowadays.

NOTE!
The questions with reference to frequency is how often? or a
variant of it, how many times?
How often do you go to the cinema?
How many times have you made this mistake?

References to the time of the action without specifying it can be


expressed by: already, still and yet.

Already expresses the relationship between expected time and


real time.

He is already here.
Have you already eaten?

Still refers to continuity of an action.

Mary is still in Bucharest.


Is she still here?

Yet refers to a non-accomplishment of action at the time


expected.

He hasnt finished yet.


Have you finished yet?

NOTE!
The sentences with already and still can be affirmative and
interrogative, while the sentences with yet are negative and
interrogative.

If we want to express discontinuity of an action (opposite to still)


we will use: no longer, any longer, any more.

Mary is no longer here.


Alice doesnt live here any longer.

131
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

Stop and think!

The concept of time is related to the grammatical category of


tense. Can you point out time adverbs or time phrases which are
used with certain tenses?
Write your answers in the space below. Check your answers
as you read on.

With reference to the time adverbials there is a direct link


between a time adverbial and the tense of the verb. So time
adverbials as yesterday, phrases with last and ago always ask for a
past tense, while time adverbials as tomorrow, phrases with next
are used with a future tense. The adverbials already, yet are used
with the Present Perfect tense.
At the same time we have to take into consideration the time of
speaking and its relation to the adverbial of time. Lets take the time
adverbial today. We can say:

a) Ill be very busy today.


b) I have been very busy today

depending whether I say that in the morning as in a) or at the end of


the day as in b).

7.2.4. Placing Adverbial Modifiers of Time in the Sentence


Adverbial modifiers of time can take initial position, mid
position or end position.

a) Adverbial modifiers of exact time usually take end position


mostly when they are longer prepositional phrases.

They left the country immediately after the Second


World War.

132
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

Still it is common to use adverbials of exact time at the


beginning of the sentence when the speaker wants to focus on
the time of action.

Last Christmas they went to Spain.

b) The adverbial modifier of time of duration is usually placed


at the end of the sentence.

They have been living here for more than ten years.
Most people work from 6 a.m. to 2 p.m.

c) The adverbial modifier of frequency has 1) end position in


the case of definite frequency adverbials and 2) mid position in
the case of indefinite frequency adverbials

1) He visits his parents every month.


2) She never drinks tea.
She has always been kind to us.

d) There are adverbials that can take any of the three


positions: now, once, presently, suddenly.

Once they lived here.


They once lived here.
They lived here once.

e) Still and already always take mid position while yet


always takes the end position.

She is still ill.


They have already left.
She hasnt come yet.

NOTE!
Adverbial modifiers of these three groups do not exclude one
another in the same sentence. We can make up sentences
using two of them observing the rules of placing them in the
sentence.
They get up early every Monday.
Every Monday they get up early.
He always goes fishing in the summer.
She has already been to school today.

133
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

SAQ 1
I. Complete the following sentences with one of the time adverbials
given below. Pay attention to time tense relationship.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

in the morning, always, for a week, yet, about noon, two months
ago, since 2001, from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., hardly ever, twice a year

1. Mary is an honest person. She __________ lies.

2. Tom works hard. He has __________been a good


student.

3. My friends take a short vacation __________.

4. Mother hasnt cooked dinner __________.

5. Students learn at school __________.

6. Most people like to work __________.

7. We went on a trip __________.

8. She has been ill __________.

9. Paul hasnt visited his hometown __________.

10. Most children are hungry __________.

II. Ask questions to the time adverbials in bold. Pay attention to the
kind of adverbial (exact time, duration or frequency). The first one is
done for you.

1. She drinks coffee in the morning.


When does she drink coffee?

2. They have been in the mountains for a week.


___________________________________

3. Well go to the cinema tomorrow.


___________________________________

4. I havent had time to read a novel since last July.


___________________________________

5. He worked in his office last night.


___________________________________

6. Mary often reads in the garden.


___________________________________

134
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

7. He has been here for two hours now.


___________________________________

8. The lesson began 10 minutes ago.


___________________________________

9. Peter worked till midnight.


___________________________________

10. He seldom goes to the theatre these days.


___________________________________

7.3. The Adverbial Modifier of Place


The adverbial modifier of place may express the place of the
action or event and its direction or movement.

They live over there. (place)


They are going to school. (direction)

In order to express place or direction we have to take into


consideration the nature of the verb whether static or
dynamic/motion. For example, one and the same adverb of place as
upstairs can express place or direction depending on the verb.

There are two rooms upstairs. (place static verb be)


The little girl ran upstairs. (direction motion verb run)

Adverbial modifiers of place can be expressed by adverbs and


adverbial particles, prepositional phrases and noun phrases.

7.3.1. Adverbs Expressing Place and/or Direction


Depending on the verb, the following adverbs are widely used
as adverbial modifiers: here, there, everywhere, anywhere,
somewhere, elsewhere, nowhere, abroad, downtown, upstairs,
downstairs, outside, inside.

They live here. (place)


They came here. (direction)
You can find good people everywhere. (place)
They went everywhere they liked. (direction)
They have been living abroad for 20 years. (place)
She went abroad after her sons accident. (direction)
The children are playing outside. (place)
The boy went outside. (direction)

135
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

Adverbs expressing only direction: forwards, backwards, upwards,


eastwards, westwards, sideways.

The wind pushed the boat westwards.


She stepped backwards in a shock.

Adverbials phrases of the type: to and fro, up and down, round


and round, in and out are used to denote repeated movements.

The dancers moved round and round on the polished floor.


She walked up and down as she was listening to the voice on
the tape.

Adverbial particles associated with the verb can denote direction or


movement such particles are: up, around, about, back, away,
along, over, under, below.

She looked up hearing her name called.


Come along, we are in a hurry.
People were running about in search of shelter.

There are a few adverbs which express distance: deep, down, far
away, low/down, high/up.

They moved far away from the noisy city.


Birds fly high up in the sky.

NOTE!
The question that is used with reference to adverbials of place
starts with where?
Where do they live?
Where did she run?
Where did she look?

7.3.2. Prepositional Phrases Expressing Place, Direction or


Destination

He was sitting at the back of the room. (place)


The old man was walking towards the bridge. (direction)
Mary left for Scotland. (destination)

As the prepositional phrases expressing place, positioning in


space depends also on the great number of nouns involved we will
distinguish between three types of prepositions which generally
denote a) place, b) positioning in space, c) direction/movement.

136
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

a) Prepositions most commonly used to denote place in, at,


on.

They stayed at a hotel.


The teacher found the children in the classroom.
The child was playing on the floor.

b) Prepositions that indicate positioning, depending on the


verb, can express either place or movement. Such
prepositions are: above, against, behind, below, beside,
between, beyond, in front of, near, near to, on top of,
round, under, underneath.

He leaned the ladder against the tree. (movement)


They were sitting round the table. (place)
She hung the portrait above the clock.
Put the pillow underneath your head.

c) Prepositions which commonly express movement and are


used with verbs of motion: away from, along, across, for,
to, into, over.

They walked along the river bank.


The boy threw the ball over the fence.
They came from Australia.
He jumped into the swimming pool.

Noun phrases usually express distance.

He threw the ball ten yards.


She has to go a long way.

NOTE!
The question referring to distance starts with How far?
How far did he throw the ball?
How far does she have to go?

7.3.3. Placing the Adverbials of Place


As a rule, adverbials of place, take end position

They went home.


She left for Bucharest.
They drove five miles.
She met her friends in front of the Opera.

137
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

NOTE!
Adverbial modifiers of place, expressed by prepositional
phrases which refer to the position of objects, can be placed in
initial position.
On the top shelf there was a china bowl.
At the far end of the street youll see the park.

Like time adverbials, place adverbials do not exclude each


other from a sentence. We can express both a) place and direction
or b) distance and destination.

a) The path followed up to a cave at the top of the hill.


direction place

In such instances, direction precedes place which comes at the


very end of the sentence.

b) They drove five miles to the nearest motel.

When we express both distance and destination, distance


precedes destination which comes at the end of the sentence.

NOTE!
In sentences that contain both an adverbial of place and one
of time, the adverbial modifier of place follows the
intransitive verb or the direct object of a transitive verb.
They went on a trip yesterday.
I didnt see you at the party last night.

SAQ 2
I. a) Identify the adverbial modifiers of place in the following text.
Say what they are expressed by.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

An old man with steel rimmed spectacles sat by the side of the
road. There was a bridge across the river, and soldiers were crossing
it. Carts were moving up the steep bank, and peasants were walking
along it. But the old man did not move, he only sat there.

b) Ask questions to the adverbial modifiers you have identified.

138
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

II. Complete the following sentences with appropriate prepositions


to make up appropriate adverbial modifiers of place, direction or
destination. The first one is done for you.

1. There are many classrooms in a school.

2. John spends his spare time working ____ the garden.

3. My school is not far ____ my house.

4. Walk ____ the street when the street light is greeen.

5. The bookshelf was placed ____ the window and the


door.

6. He got ____ the tram just as it was moving.

7. The dog was running ____ the tree.

8. Hang those pictures ____ the wall.

9. The cat caught a mouse ____ the bed.

10. The truck ran ____ the wall of the building.

Summary

A. Adverbial modifiers of time expressing


time of action
duration of action
frequency of action

Means of expressing adverbial modifiers of time


adverbs of time: now
prepositional phrases: in the winter
noun phrases: last week

Placing adverbial modifiers of time


initial position Yesterday was my birthday.
mid position She has never been here.
end position They graduated last year.

B. Adverbial modifiers of place expressing


place of action
direction
destination

Means of expressing adverbial modifiers of place


adverbs of place: here
prepositional phrases: on the table
139
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

Placing adverbial modifiers of place


end position They walked along the street to the
museum.
initial position Round the corner you will see the museum.

Key Concepts
Adverbial modifier

o time
exact time
duration
frequency
o place
place
direction
destination

Adverbs of time
Adverbs of place
Adverbial particles
Prepositional phrase

Selected Bibliography
1. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin
Books, 1990, pp. 24 - 29

2. Beaumont, D., Granger, C. The Heinemann ELT English


Grammar, MacMillan Heinemann, 1989, 1992, pp. 209 - 212

140
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

PA No. 5
I. Answer the following questions, referring to yourself (if possible)
using the appropriate adverbial modifiers of time.
1. When were you born?
2. How long have you been studying English?
3. When did you graduate from high school?
4. Since when have you been living in this place?
5. What time did you start teaching yesterday?
6. How often do you go to the cinema?
7. Havent you finished your task yet?
8. Are you still at school?
9. How long have you been teaching English?
10. When will you go on a holiday?

II. Complete the following sentences with the adverbial modifiers of


place and time given in brackets according to the appropriate order:
1. They are going (next month, to the seaside).
2. They drive (every weekend, to the countryside)
3. They have left (already, for Bucharest)
4. Is he (in his office, still)
5. They stayed (all day long, at home).
6. Children play (often, in the classroom).
7. We discussed the matter (for two hours, in my office).
8. Mary hasnt been (since Monday, here).
9. Lets go (tomorrow, to the supermarket).
10. Hes been walking (all morning, around the city).

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

Answers to SAQs
SAQ 1
I.
2. always
3. twice a year
4. yet
5. from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m.
6. in the morning
7. two months ago
8. for a week
9. since 2001
10. about noon

141
Adverbial Modifiers (I)

II.
2. How long have they been in the mountains?
3. When will we go to the cinema?
4. Since when havent I had time to read a novel?
5. When did he work in his office?
6. How often does Mary read in the garden?
7. How long has he been here now?
8. When did the lesson begin?
9. Till when did Peter work?
10. How often does he go to the theatre?

SAQ 2
I. a)
o by the side of the road expressed by prepositional phrase
o across the river expressed by prepositional phrase
o up and down the steep bank expressed by prepositional
phrase
o along it expressed by prepositional phrase
o there expressed by adverb

b)
Where did the old man sit?
Where was the bridge?
Where were the carts moving?
Where were the peasants walking?
Where did the old man sit?

II.
2. in
3. from
4. across
5. between
6. on
7. round
8. on
9. under
10. into

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

7.2 for SAQ 1 (I)


2.1.2 and 7.2 for SAQ 1 (II)
2.1.2 and 7.3 for SAQ 2 (I, II)

142
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

UNIT 8

ADVERBIAL MODIFIERS (II)

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 144


8.1. The Adverbial Modifier of Manner 144
8.1.1. Means of Expressing the Adverbial Modifier of Manner, Means and Instrument
145
8.1.1.1. Adverbs as Adverbial Modifiers of Manner 145
8.1.1.2. Adverbial Modifiers Expressed by Prepositional Phrases 147
8.1.1.3. Placing Adverbial Modifiers of Manner, Means and Instrument 148
SAQ 1 149
8.2. Adverbial Modifiers of Reason/Cause, Purpose, Concession, Condition and
Result 150
SAQ 2 152
8.3. Placing Adverbial Modifiers in a Simple Sentence 153
8.3.1. Ordering Adverbials of the Same Kind 153
8.3.2. Ordering Adverbials of Different Kinds 154
8.3.3. Emphasizing Adverbial Modifiers 154
SAQ 3 156
Summary 157
Key Concepts 157
Selected Bibliography 158
PA No. 6 158
Answers to SAQs 159

143
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

The adverbial modifier of manner is as well represented in a


simple sentence as those of time and place. It may refer to the way
and circumstances the action takes place in, also to the means or
instruments that explain how an action is performed.
The adverbial modifiers of reason/cause, concession or
purpose and condition are less represented in the simple sentence,
these concepts being expressed mostly by subordinate clauses
(Units 12 and 13).
What is important to bear in mind is the way in which two or
more adverbial modifiers are ordered in simple sentences.

After having completed this second unit on adverbial modifiers,


you should be able to:

unit identify the means adverbial modifiers are expressed by


objectives identify the concepts expressed by a prepositional phrase
or an adverb in a simple sentence
expand simple sentences by adding extra information by
means of adverbial modifiers
arrange two or more adverbial modifiers of different types
in a correct way

8.1. The Adverbial Modifier of Manner


We can refer to the action or event not only mentioning time
and place of the action but also by pointing out the manner in which
an action is performed, the circumstance an event takes place in as
well as the means or instrument that shows how an action was
performed.

Many people drive carefully. (manner)


He acknowledged his guilt publicly. (circumstance)
They came by train. (means)
He cut up the meat with a penknife. (instrument)

In order to find out manner, circumstance, instrument or means we


ask questions introduced by How?

How do people drive?


How did he acknowledge his guilt?
How did they come?
How did he cut up the meat?

144
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

8.1.1. Means of Expressing the Adverbial Modifier of Manner,


Means and Instrument
These concepts are expressed in two ways: a) either by
adverbs, which form a very large class or b) by prepositional
phrases.

He talked convincingly about his project. (adverb)


He behaved in a foolish manner. (prepositional phrase)

8.1.1.1. Adverbs as Adverbial Modifiers of Manner


As adverbs of manner derive from adjectives, their class is very
large, and they may also denote the degree in which something is
done.

She knows well what she has to do. (manner)


She knows best what she has to do. (degree)

Stop and think!

How do we express the degree of a quality expressed by an


adjective? Can you relate the behaviour of the adjective to the
adverb?
Write down your answer and provide examples in the space
below. Take your answers to the next tutorial to discuss them with
your classmates and your tutor.

As both the adjective and the adverb share the grammatical


category of comparison we can use the adverbial modifier of
manner by using degrees of comparison or other modifiers as: too,
very, quite, extremely, fairly.

He talked to us more convincingly than we expected.


The paper is fairly well written.
The man talked too fast.
She laughed quite happily.

145
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

NOTE!
These degree pointers as well as the comparatives can be
used also with some adverbs of time. Early, for instance, can
be earlier, too early, very early, quite early, etc.

a) The adverbials of manner indicate the way the action takes place.
Lots of adverbs can be used with this function among which:
accurately, badly, beautifully, carefully, dangerously, easily,
fiercely, freely, honestly, peacefully, pleasantly, roughly, silently,
strangely, vaguely, warmly, willingly, etc.

He just behaved badly, thats all.


They sat silently by the fire.
The guests were greeted warmly.

b) Some adverbs also denote not only the way an action is


performed but also the feelings of the doer of the action:
anxiously, bitterly, cheerfully, gratefully, nervously, sadly, shyly

She tried desperately to find an answer.


The child was crying bitterly.
The little girl smiled shyly.

c) Other adverbs also imply the opinion of the speaker about the
action. This opinion may be
o positive as with: nicely, perfectly, favourably, well,
marvellously, wonderfully

The band played marvellously.


You have worked this out nicely.

o negative as with adverbs like: awfully, badly, horribly,


poorly, terribly

She suffered terribly of homesickness.


The business was badly damaged.

d) Other adverbs of manner point to the movements of the doer of


the action while performing it.

He clumsily opened the door.


She lazily looked for a free seat.

There are adverbs of manner that refer to the circumstances in


which something is done. Among these adverbs we will mention
some: accidentally, deliberately, individually, legally, politically,
privately, secretly.

They deliberately avoided speaking to the manager.


All these tasks must be done individually.

146
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

The adverbials of manner can also denote the degree or extent


to which an action is performed. Such adverbs are: absolutely, fully,
greatly, strongly, hardly, tremendously, partly, slightly, vaguely.

We fully understand your guilt.


She strongly recommended the student for the grant.
I vaguely remember you.
He could hardly walk.

8.1.1.2. Adverbial Modifiers Expressed by Prepositional Phrases

a) The way in which an action takes place or its circumstance can


be expressed by prepositional phrases introduced by the
prepositions in, with, without, by:

in a low voice with love


in high spirits with care
in good faith with kindness
in fear/terror with pleasure
in a hurry by accident
without comment by chance
without surprise

They left in a hurry.


Handle the baby with care.
They met by accident.
She listened to the accusations without any comment.

NOTE!
Very often the prepositional phrase can be replaced by an
adverb of the same meaning.
Handle the baby with care / carefully.
They met by accident / accidentally.

b) Adverbial modifiers which denote means or instrument are


always expressed by prepositional phrases. In order to express
the means by which an action is performed a by-prepositional
phrase is used as for:

means of transport: by bus, by train, by plane


means of communication: by post, by e-mail, by radio

She prefers travelling by plane to travelling by car.


The message was sent by E-mail.

147
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

In order to express the instrument an action is performed with, the


prepositional phrase is always formed with the preposition with + a
noun denoting an object.

One can write with pencils and pens.


Children draw with coloured chalk.

8.1.1.3. Placing Adverbial Modifiers of Manner, Means and Instrument

Adverbials of manner proper, expressed by adverbs or


prepositional phrases, usually follow the intransitive verb.

She cried bitterly.


They argued in a low voice.

When the verb is transitive and is followed by a direct object, usually


the adverbial modifier follows the object.

She speaks English fluently.

Adverbials which refer to the circumstances in which the


action takes place or the feelings of the doer of the action take either
end or mid position, namely between the subject and the verb or
between the auxiliary and the main verb.

He blamed them publicly.


They openly discussed the matter.
She has patiently been waiting for us.

Adverbials of degree always take mid position

We fully sympathise with you.


The performance was tremendously successful.

All adverbials (manner, means, instrument) expressed by a


prepositional phrase take end position.

You could have done it without any complaint.


They fell trees with axes.
She sent the letter by post.

NOTE!
Adverbial modifiers of manner, circumstance or degree
exclude one another from a sentence, unlike the adverbials of
time or place.

148
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

SAQ 1
a) Replace the prepositional phrases (in bold) which are used as
adverbials of manner with an adverb having the same meaning. The
first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit..

1. He uttered the words in a slow way.


He uttered the words slowly.

2. She left the room in a hurry.


______________________

3. The teacher explained the lesson in a clear way.


______________________

4. You should not behave in such a foolish way.


______________________
5. They attended the ceremony in silence.
______________________

6. He looked at her with love.


______________________

7. The patients are treated here with kindness.


______________________

8. The young man greeted with politeness.


______________________

9. They seem to work in an efficient way.


______________________

10. The young man was driving in a dangerous manner.


______________________

b) Rewrite the sentences by placing the resulted adverb in the end


position and mid position. Which are the sentences that are
acceptable only with the adverbial modifier in end position? The first
one is done for you.

He uttered the words slowly.


He slowly uttered the words.

1. _______________________

2. _______________________

3. _______________________

4. _______________________
149
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

5. _____________________

6. _____________________

7. ______________________

8. ______________________

9. ______________________

10. ______________________

8.2. Adverbial Modifiers of Reason/Cause, Purpose, Concession,


Condition and Result
a) The adverbial modifier of reason or cause expresses why
an action occurred or what caused a certain event or situation.
Adverbial modifiers of cause are expressed by prepositional phrases
as: for, out of, for need of, from lack of, due to.

The child was weak from lack of nourishment.


She started crying out of jealousy.
The child was punished due to his misbehaviour.
He jumped up for joy.

Adverbial modifiers of reason, those which emphasize the


reason of something taking place, are introduced by because of:

They couldnt leave because of the strike.


Because of the weather, the trip was postponed.

b) The concept of purpose is expressed mostly by a verb in the


long infinitive preceded or not by in order or so as:
To know, one must learn.
He saved money in order to buy a house.
He spoke in a low voice so as not to disturb the other readers.

In such instances, the action performed by the subject has as its


purpose, the realization of another action by the same subject.

He saved money.
He wanted to buy a house.
He saved money with the purpose of buying a house.
He saved money to buy a house.

c) The concept of contrast or concession is expressed most


commonly by the prepositional phrases: despite, in spite of and
less frequently by for all, with all:

150
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

In spite of his accent, we could understand him.


They all came to the party despite the bad weather.
For all his good intentions nobody took him seriously.
With all his skill he couldnt repair the TV set.

d) The concept of condition in a simple sentence can be expressed


by the prepositional phrases in case of and but for.

In case of fire, use the emergency door.


Take your umbrella, in case of rain.

The but for is used when the action is prevented from taking place
due to the but for prepositional phrase.

But for his help, we would have been in trouble.

This sentence means that we were not in trouble because he helped


us.

e) The concept of result can be expressed by the prepositional


phrases: as a result of, in consequence of.

As a result of poor management, the business collapsed.


He had to retire as a result of his illness.

In both cases the prepositional phrase introduced by as a result of


can be replaced by in consequence of without any change of
meaning.

The adverbial modifiers of reason, purpose, concession,


condition and result can take initial or end position; the end position
is more frequent unless there is particular focus on the adverbial.

Come back, in case of rain!


In case of rain, come back!
They continued to play in spite of the rain.
In spite of the rain, they continued to play.

151
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

Stop and think!

Can you associate the action of the sentences given as


examples (for adverbial modifiers of concession, cause or result) with
an adverbial of place, manner or time? If yes, why?
In the space below, write down your answer and your new
sentences. Take your answers to the next tutorial to discuss them
with your classmates and your tutor.

With this group of adverbial modifiers, we can use one or two of


the basic three modifiers time, place and manner, because they
relate directly to the action of the verb.

For instance:

(1) She started crying bitterly out of jealousy.


(2) He had to retire as a result of his illness.

can be expanded with an adverbial modifier of time and one of place.


He had to retire early from his good position as a result of his illness.

SAQ 2
a) Complete the following sentences with appropriate given
adverbial modifiers and mention the concept they express.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

in consequence of the war, because of the fog, in case of an


emergency, despite poor health, in order to win

You have an example here for exercise a) and b).

He couldnt move because of the pain.


Because of the pain he couldnt move.

1. The mountaineers could not climb to the top __________________

152
Adverbial Modifiers (II)
2. Many people left the country __________________
3. The young sportsman did his best __________________
4. Call the police __________________
5. The man continued to work __________________

b) Rewrite the sentences placing the adverbial modifiers in initial


position. Are they all correct?

1. __________________

2. __________________

3. __________________

4. __________________

5. __________________

8.3. Placing Adverbial Modifiers in a Simple Sentence


While discussing different adverbial modifiers, in Unit 7 and in
this unit, we have noticed that except for some adverbial modifiers of
time (frequency) and of manner, all the other types take end position
or initial position. But there are instances when more than one
adverbial modifier is to be found in a sentence. These adverbial
modifiers can be of the same kind or of different kinds.

8.3.1. Ordering Adverbials of the Same Kind


a) Two or more adverbial modifiers of precise time:

Shakespeare was born on the 23rd of April 1564.

The ordering of these adverbials moves from the most specific to


the more general one:

They met on a snowy day last winter.


John will be leaving at 5 p.m. tomorrow afternoon.

b) Two adverbs of place:

They met in a restaurant in Paris.

The ordering of these adverbials also moves from the most


specific to the more general one:

Lets wait here, in the street!

153
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

8.3.2. Ordering Adverbials of Different Kinds


Very often there are sentences in which we find the three basic
types of adverbials: time, place and manner. The normal ordering of
these adverbial modifiers is Manner, Place and Time.

They spoke openly at the conference yesterday.

A variation of this order can be:

Yesterday they spoke openly at the conference.


(with focus on yesterday)
They played beautifully at the concert last night.
The baby was sleeping peacefully in his cot all afternoon.

When adverbial modifiers of manner, place or time occur in a


sentence which contains an adverbial modifier of reason, purpose,
concession, condition or result, the ordering will be:

Manner / Place or Time and one of the above-mentioned ones.

S + V + M + Reason They played well due to the excellent


conditions.
S + V + PL + Purpose He went to school in order to study law.
S + V + T + Condition Ill leave earlier in case of rain.
S + V + M + Concession He worked hard despite his illness.
S + V + PL + Result He left his country as a result of bankruptcy.

NOTE!
Word order in English concerns not only the subject, predicate
and object relationship but also the ordering of adverbials. The
normal word order moves from the subject towards the
predicate and its compulsory constituents ending with
adverbial modifiers according to the patterns mentioned
above.

8.3.3. Emphasizing Adverbial Modifiers


In the process of making up messages, we sometimes want to
draw the attention on a particular situation or express stronger
feelings. In such cases, some adverbial modifiers are placed
differently from their normal order.

a) Adverbial modifiers of time and manner, having a


negative value as: never, seldom, rarely, little, scarcely, hardly,
instead of taking mid-position, can take initial position, thus making
an emphatic statement.

154
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

So, these sentences in normal word-order:

I have never seen such a man.


He seldom visits his family.
We knew little about his deeds.
He could hardly believe his ears the reports on the event.

will become emphatic if we place the adverbs in initial position and


operate the inversion between the subject and the auxiliary or modal.

Never have I seen such a man.


Seldom does he visit his family.
Little did we know about his deeds.
Hardly could he believe his ears the reports on the event.

NOTE!
If there is no auxiliary, do / does / did is used as in the case of
questions.

b) Adverbial modifiers of time preceded by only can also


take initial position. In this instance, inversion will also occur:

He found out the truth only after a long time.


You will get the result only in a few days.

Only after a long time did he find out the truth.


Only in a few days will you get the result.

c) Adverbial modifiers, expressed by a prepositional phrase


containing the negative word no, as: under no circumstance, at no
time, in no way, are usually fronted and associated with inversion.

Under no circumstance are children allowed to smoke.


At no time will they be permitted to leave the country.
In no way can you cheat on me.
d) Adverbial modifiers of place can also be placed in initial
position:

adverbial modifiers expressed by the adverbs here and


there to express surprise, joy, anger, etc.

Here came the King himself!


There goes my bus!

adverbial modifiers of place, expressed by prepositional


phrases indicating place or positioning of a person or object

Right between the shelves a box was hidden.


On the table seven plates were neatly set.

155
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

In both these cases simple inversion between the subject and


the whole predicate is needed (without do / does / did).

SAQ 3
Complete the following sentences with the adverbial modifiers given
in brackets according to the appropriate order. The first one is done for
you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. My mother worked (hard, all day, in the kitchen,


yesterday).
My mother worked hard in the kitchen all day yesterday.

2. The train arrived (very late, this morning, in Bucharest).


_________________________________________

3. That child spoke (in the classroom, rudely).


_________________________________________

4. He was born (in the spring of 1976, on a lovely day).


_________________________________________

5. Come (at 7 oclock, to my office, tomorrow morning).


_________________________________________

6. They learned English (in England, very well, last


summer).
_________________________________________

7. Lets wait (for another half an hour, patiently, here).


_________________________________________

8. He went (during the war, to school, in this town).


_________________________________________

9. He must be (about noon, at home).


_________________________________________

10. This patient must take his medicine (before dinner,


always).
_________________________________________

156
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

Summary

Adverbial modifiers of manner


way of action takes place
circumstance
means and instrument

Means of expressing adverbial modifiers of manner


adverbs of manner: clearly, publicly
prepositional phrases: in a low voice

Placing adverbial modifiers of manner


end position She spoke English fluently.
mid position He clearly made his point.

Adverbial modifiers of
Reason/cause: because of
Purpose: in order to
Concession: in spite of
Condition: in case of
Result: as a result

Placing Adverbial Modifiers in a Sentence

Principles
of the same kind from particular to more general
of different kinds Manner, Place, Time, etc.

Emphasizing Adverbial Modifier


negative adverbs or prepositional phrases
only + time prepositional phrases
adverbs of place
prepositional adverbials of place or positioning
Principle initial position + inversion

Key Concepts

Adverbial modifiers
o manner
o circumstance
o instrument
o means
o degree
o reason
o cause
o concession
o condition
o purpose
o result
Emphasis
Inversion
157
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

Selected Bibliography
1. Leech, G., Svartvik, J. A Communicative Grammar of English,
Longman, 1975, pp. 197 - 201

2. Murphy, R. English Grammar in Use, Cambridge University


Press, 1985, pp. 210 - 213

PA No. 6
I. Identify the adverbial modifiers in the texts below. State what kind
of adverbial modifiers they are (time, manner, etc) and what they
are expressed by.
a)
It was raining hard, and the rain splashed mud on the
sidewalks. In San Pier dArena there is a wide street, and we
drove down to the centre of the town. On our left was the
Mediterranean.
b)
We got in early in the afternoon from the shooting-trip. We
had been up that morning since five oclock. The day before
we had good shooting, but that morning it was bad Across
the plain we could see the mountains. The summer was
ending, but the new snow had not yet come on the high
mountains. Only the old sun-melted snow was shining
brightly in the distance.
(Adapted after E. Hemingway, Short Stories)

II. Rewrite the following sentences so that you emphasize the words
in bold. Make the necessary changes of inversion.
1. He scarcely ever goes to bed before midnight.
2. He never caught a fish in his life.
3. You will miss the class under no circumstance.
4. Their father rarely punished them.
5. A magic box was talking there on a shelf.
6. The dancers are here.
7. He helped us very little.
8. He realized his mistake only much later.
9. The rain came pouring down.
10. Their life was endangered at no other time.

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

158
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1

a)
2. hurriedly
3. clearly
4. foolishly
5. silently
6. lovingly
7. kindly
8. politely
9. efficiently
10. dangerously

b)
2. She left the room hurriedly.
She hurriedly left the room.
3. The teacher explained the lesson clearly.
The teacher clearly explained the lesson.
4. You should not behave so foolishly.
*You should not so foolishly behave.
5. They attended the ceremony silently.
They silently attended the ceremony.
6. He looked at her lovingly.
He lovingly looked at her.
7. The patients are treated kindly here.
The patients are kindly treated here.
8. The young man greeted politely.
The young man politely greeted.
9. They seem to work efficiently.
*They efficiently seem to work.
10. The young man was driving dangerously.
The young man was dangerously driving.

Sentences 4 and 9

SAQ 2
a)
1. because of the fog
2. in consequence of the war
3. in order to win
4. in case of an emergency
5. despite poor health

b)
1. Because of the fog, the mountaineers could not climb to the top.
2. In consequence of the war, many people left the country.
3. In order to win, the young man did his best.
4. In case of an emergency, call the police.
5. Despite poor health, the man continued to work.

All sentences are correct.


159
Adverbial Modifiers (II)

SAQ 3
2. The train arrived in Bucharest very late this morning.
3. The child spoke rudely in the classroom.
4. He was born on a lovely day in the spring of 1976.
5. Come to my office at 7 oclock tomorrow morning.
6. They learned English very well in England last summer.
7. Lets wait patiently here for another half an hour.
8. He went to school in this town during the war.
9. He must be at home about noon.
10. This patient must always take his medicine before dinner.

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

8.1 for SAQ 1 (a, b)


8.2 for SAQ 2 (a, b)
8.3.2 for SAQ 3

160
Coordination

UNIT 9

COORDINATION

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 162


9.1. What is Coordination 162
9.1.1. Coordinating Sentence Constituents 164
SAQ 1 165
9.2. Coordinating Simple Sentences 166
9.2.1. Coordinating Two Sentences with the Same Subject 167
SAQ 2 168
9.2.2. Coordinating Simple Sentences with Different Subjects 169
9.2.2.1. Coordinating Sentences with Different Subjects, the Same Action
Performed 169
9.2.2.2. Coordinating Sentences with Different Subjects, Different Actions
Performed 172
SAQ 3 173
Summary 175
Key Concepts 175
Selected Bibliography 175
PA No. 7 176
Answers to SAQs 178

161
Coordination

Coordination refers to the ways and means by which the


constituents of a simple sentence or simple sentences can combine
in order to establish certain relationships between them which can
convey various meanings addition, sequencing of actions, contrast,
etc.
Coordination is generally realized by means of coordinating
conjunctions which signal the fact that the elements linked together
are of the same kind and of equal importance. By coordination we
avoid some elements and construct correct and appropriate
messages in speaking and writing.
What is important to bear in mind is the way in which two or
more adverbial modifiers are ordered in simple sentences.

After you have studied this unit and completed the tasks you
should be able to:

unit identify the sentence constituents that can be


objectives coordinated
identify the changes that occur in the coordinated simple
sentences
use the conjunctions in order to express the relationships
between coordinated constituents or simple sentences

9.1. What is Coordination


When we want to refer to two or more things of the same kind
or two or more qualities of an object or person, we usually link them
with and.

The plates and the glasses are on the table.


Mary is young and pretty.

This means that we coordinated two noun phrases: the plates and
the glasses, and two adjectives: young and pretty.

Stop and think!

From a morphological point of view which do you think are the


parts of speech that can usually be linked by and?
Write down your answers in the space below. Then check
them as you read on.

162
Coordination

If we take into consideration the parts of speech, we can link together


two or more nouns, two or more adjectives, two or more pronouns
and numerals, two or more verbs and two or more adverbs or
adverbial particles.

1. John has a dog and a cat.


2. Mary is clever and hardworking.
3. You and I know the truth.
4. Five and six makes eleven.
5. Mary reads and writes in English.
6. He opened the door slowly and carefully.
7. The children were running in and out.

At the sentence level we will interpret these joined elements as


sentence constituents: 1) direct object; 2) subject complement; 3)
subject; 5) predicate; 6, 7) adverbial modifier.
Coordination refers to linking together the constituents of a
sentence which have the same syntactic function, as in the examples
above, or clauses of the same function. When we link together two or
more clauses of the same importance, we form a compound
sentence.

John graduated from high school.


He wanted to go to the University.

The two simple sentences/clauses can be linked together as:

John graduated from high school, and (he) wanted to go to the


University.

Coordination is realized by using coordinating conjunctions.


These conjunctions are simple: and, but, or, yet, nor and
correlative: both and, either or, neither nor, not only but
also. These conjunctions can also be classified according to the
relationship they establish and the meaning they convey into the
following groups:

a) copulative: and, bothand, not onlybut also, nor,


neithernor
b) adversative: but, yet
c) disjunctive: or, eitheror

NOTE!
Within a simple sentence adversative conjunctions are limited
in usage to sentence constituents expressed by adjectives
and adverbs and clauses set in contrast.

163
Coordination

9.1.1. Coordinating Sentence Constituents


The sentence constituents which can be coordinated are:

a) Subjects

Mary and her friends visited me yesterday.


Mary or her friends will visit me tomorrow.
Neither Mary nor her friends will visit me.
Both Mary and her friends have come to see me.
Either Mary or her mother will come to see me.

b) Subject Complements

Mary is young and pretty.


John is clever but lazy.
This dictionary is cheap yet quite useful.
Joan is both intelligent and hardworking.
His joke was neither funny nor smart.

c) Objects

She bought flowers and presents for her friends.


She remembered both the place and the time of the
event.
She didnt bring any presents either for her parents or
her friends.
Everything depends on you and your good will.

NOTE!
Both simple conjunctions and correlatives can be used to
coordinate subjects, subject complements and objects.
1) Mary and her sister
Both Mary and her sister
2) Joan is intelligent and hardworking.
Joan is not only intelligent but also hardworking.
3) You can buy flowers and a present.
You can buy either flowers or a present.
The correlatives have the function of emphasizing the
coordinated elements.

164
Coordination

d) Adverbial Modifiers

They will arrive tomorrow or the day after tomorrow.


You can play in the courtyard but not in the street.
He spoke clearly but slowly.
Despite the cold and the fog they climbed to the top of
the mountain.
He behaved strangely yet politely.
They drove up the hill and down a narrow road.

When more than two identical constituents of the simple


sentence are coordinated with the conjunctions and and or we will
omit the conjunction before each constituent except the last one. The
omitted conjunction is replaced by a comma.

Mary, John and their friends will come to the party.


You can study English, French or German at the
university.
This child is kind, polite and eager to help.

SAQ 1
a) Complete the following sentences with the conjunctions and, or
or but in order to coordinate the constituents of the sentences given
in brackets. The first one is done for you. Pay attention to the
relationship between the coordinated constituents.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. The young man was (tall, lean).


The young man was tall and lean.

2. (My friend, I) got the first prize.


______________________

3. They bought (bread, butter, cheese).


______________________

4. John must be (English, American).


______________________

5. The day was (sunny, cold).


______________________

6. You may have (a cake, an ice-cream), not both.


______________________

7. They walked (slowly, silently).


______________________
8. The thief ran (down the street, round the corner).
______________________

165
Coordination

9. The library will open at (9 oclock, 10 oclock) on


Saturday.
______________________

10. (Mother, Father) is going to be present at the school


festival.
______________________

b) Rewrite sentences 2, 4, 6, 9, 10 by using the correlatives both


and or either or.

2. _______________________

4. _______________________

6. _______________________

9. _______________________

10. _______________________

9.2. Coordinating Simple Sentences

Stop and think!

When we coordinated sentence constituents we did not


mention the coordination of verbs in finite forms; why? What do we
coordinate when we link together two such verbs? In the space
below, write down your answer and give an example of a sentence
with two finite verbs as verbal predicates.
Take your answers to the next tutorial to discuss them with
your classmates and your tutor.

166
Coordination

When we coordinate two verbs in finite forms we usually coordinate


two actions.

Mary reads and writes in English.


John speaks French and Mary speaks English.
He locked the door and left the house.
John didnt do his homework but Mary did.

In all these instances, we have linked together two independent


simple sentences, as for instance in:

1. Mary reads in English.


Mary writes in English.
Mary reads and writes in English.

2. John didnt do his homework.


Mary did her homework.
John didnt do his homework but Mary did.

In combining clauses we distinguish three situations:

the two different actions refer to the same subject


the two same actions refer to two different subjects
two different actions, two different subjects

9.2.1. Coordinating Two Sentences with the Same Subject


When we combine two simple sentences with the same
subject, we actually link together the two predicates:

1. They sat and talked.


[They sat. They talked.]

2. Are you staying or going?


[Are you staying? Are you going?]

3. They played well but didnt win.


[They played well. They didnt win.]

4. You should be able either to write or read in English.


[You should be able to write in English. You should be
able to read in English.]

5. He cannot and will not help us.


[He cannot help us. He will not help us.]

The difference between the individual set of sentences and the


newly obtained one is that we can express sequencing of actions (1),
alternative situations (2) or contrast (3) only by using the appropriate
conjunctions, and thus we obtain a compound sentence.

167
Coordination

When we coordinate two actions, namely two verbal predicates


which refer to the same subject, there are some changes that we
have to observe as compared to the two independent sentences.

a) the subject should not be repeated the second time

Mary sings and (Mary) dances.


John travelled much and (John) saw many countries.

b) when the verb phrases are made up of an auxiliary and a main


verb, the auxiliary should not be repeated the second time

Are you studying or (are you) playing?


Have they eaten or (have they) drunk anything?

c) when the verb phrases are made up of a modal verb and a main
verb, we can coordinate two different modals (1) with the same
main verb or (2) two main verbs with the same modal

(1) You shouldnt and must not hurt animals.


[different modals]
(2) He can study and work here. [same modal]

In such instances, we should place the main verb after the second
modal (1) and use the modal verb only with the first main verb (2).

When more than two verbal predicates are coordinated, the


same rule applies as with the other sentence constituents. We omit
the conjunction except before the last verb, using the comma to mark
the other coordinated verbs.

The children played, sang and danced.


You can study, work and even stay here.

SAQ 2
Link together the following simple sentences to obtain a compound
sentence by means of and, but or or. Make the necessary changes.
The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the uni.

1. Mary wrote the letter. She took it to the post office.


Mary wrote the letter and took it to the post office.

2. John read the novel. John liked it.


___________________________________

3. He opened the book. He didnt start reading.


___________________________________

4. He is looking at me. He is listening to me.


___________________________________
168
Coordination

5. Are you coming? Are you leaving?


___________________________________

6. I looked everywhere. I couldnt see anybody.


___________________________________

7. Is it raining? Is it snowing?
___________________________________

8. You should tell them the truth. You must tell them the truth.
___________________________________

9. He should go to see them. He should call them up.


___________________________________

10. Mary goes to school regularly. Mary does her homework. Mary
gets good marks.
___________________________________

9.2.2. Coordinating Simple Sentences with Different Subjects


When we link two simple sentences we may refer to two
subjects performing the same action, or two different actions.
Having in view that coordination is not similar in the two cases,
we will distinguish between:

A) Two different subjects, same action performed


B) Two different subjects, two contrasted actions performed

9.2.2.1. Coordinating Sentences with Different Subjects, the Same Action


Performed

We can link together sentences with different subjects that


perform the same action with the conjunctions and, but, or.
Within this group, we distinguish the following situations:

A) Different subjects that perform the same action associated with


different objects or adverbial modifiers:

John studies English.


Mary studies French.
John studies English and Mary French.

I will come today.


My friend will come tomorrow.
I will come today and my friend tomorrow.

169
Coordination

As we can notice, the predicate is mentioned only in the first part of


the coordinated sentences, and the second part contains the subject
and the object or the modifier.

NOTE!
In case of using the conjunction but or or, the whole
simple sentence is mentioned once again.
John studies English, but Mary studies French.
I will come tomorrow, but my friend will come next
week.
I will come tomorrow or my friend will come the day
after tomorrow.

When the same state or action with the same subject


complement, objects or adverbials refers to the two subjects the
following compound sentences are obtained:

o with affirmative sentences linked by and:

Dogs are friendly.


Cats are friendly
Dogs are friendly and cats are, too.
Dog are friendly and so are cats.

John can ski.


Mary can ski.
John can ski and Mary can, too.
John can ski and so can Mary.

Mary speaks English.


John speaks English.
Mary speaks English and John does, too.
Mary speaks English and so does John.

By coordinating the two identical states or actions by means of and


we can replace the second simple sentence by:

a) John does, too; Mary can, too; cats are, too. The order of this
second part of the compound sentence follows the subject verb
order, but instead of repeating the whole predicate, we repeat the
auxiliary, modal or the verb be, adding too at the end. In the case
of a simple lexical verb, we replace it by the substitute verb do.

Another way the second simple sentence is by replacing it with

b) so does John; so can Mary; so are cats, in which the order is


subject and verb (inversion) as compared to the structures in (a),
also the introductory word of the structure is so.

170
Coordination

o when we consider two negative sentences, the following


changes are made in the second sentence:

Mary doesnt speak English.


John doesnt speak English
Mary doesnt speak English and John doesnt either.
Mary doesnt speak English and neither does John.

John cannot ski.


Mary cannot ski.
John cannot ski and Mary cannot either.
John cannot ski and neither can Mary.

Dogs are not friendly.


Cats are not friendly.
Dogs are not friendly and cats are not either.
Dogs are not friendly and neither are cats.

In coordinating negative simple sentences, again two structures


can be used instead of the second sentence: a) and John doesnt
speak either; Mary cannot either; and cats are not either, and b) and
neither does John; neither can Mary; neither are cats.
In the a) examples, the word order of the second clause is
subject + verb in the negative adding either at the end, while in
examples b) the new clause starts with neither, and the word order
is verb (in the affirmative) + subject.

B) In case of two actions of the same kind which are contrasted,


the two simple sentences are linked by but. If the first sentence is in
the affirmative and the second, the coordinated one, is in the
negative, this will be reduced to the subject and the verb do in the
negative or the auxiliary, modal or verb be in the negative:

John speaks English.


Mary doesnt speak English.
John speaks English but Mary doesnt.

John can ski.


Mary cannot ski.
John can ski but Mary cant.

Dogs are friendly.


Cats are not friendly.
Dogs are friendly but cats arent.

If the first sentence is in the negative and the second, the


coordinated one, is in the affirmative, this will be reduced to the
subject and the verb do in the affirmative or the auxiliary, modal or
verb be in the affirmative.

John doesnt speak English.


Mary speaks English.
John doesnt speak English but Mary does.

171
Coordination

John cannot ski.


Mary can ski.
John cannot ski but Mary can.

Dogs are not friendly.


Cats are friendly.
Dogs are not friendly but cats are.

9.2.2.2. Coordinating Sentences with Different Subjects, Different Actions


Performed

We can link together two simple sentences of equal importance


which refer to different subjects and different states of being or
different actions performed.
The following sets of simple sentences are combined into one
compound sentence:

a) John is a pupil.
Mary is a student.
John is a pupil, and Mary is a student.

b) Ill lend you the money.


You will buy the book.
Ill lend you the money, and you will buy the book.

c) John will clean his room (by himself).


Mary will help him.
John will clean his room (by himself), and Mary will help him.

Such simple sentences can be linked by the conjunctions and, but,


or, according to the relationship the speaker wants to express with
reference to the two actions sequencing, an alternative or contrast.
Both simple sentences are completely expressed in the newly
formed compound sentence (with a comma before the conjunction).

Coordination with correlatives

The correlative conjunctions both and, not only but also,


either or, neither nor are used to emphasize the actions that
are performed.

They danced at the party.


They sang at the party.
They both danced and sang at the party.
They not only danced but also sang at the party.
They neither danced nor sang at the party.
They either danced or sang at the party.

172
Coordination

SAQ 3
I. Join the following simple sentences by using and too / and
so for the affirmative ones and and either / and neither for the
negative ones. The first two are done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Joan plays the guitar. Mary plays the guitar.


Joan plays the guitar and Mary does, too.
Joan plays the guitar and so does Mary.

2. I havent forgotten your name. Mary hasnt forgotten your


name.
I havent forgotten your name and Mary hasnt either.
I havent forgotten your name and neither has Mary.

3. John went to the concert. Tom went to the concert.


_________________________________________

_________________________________________

4. I like the Beatles. Tom likes the Beatles.


_________________________________________

_________________________________________

5. Jane didnt go to the seaside last year. Her daughter


didnt go to the seaside last year.
_________________________________________

_________________________________________

6. John doesnt work hard enough. You dont work hard


enough.
_________________________________________

_________________________________________

7. My friends will come tomorrow. Her parents will come


tomorrow.
_________________________________________

_________________________________________

8. Your eyes are blue. Your dress is blue.


_________________________________________

_________________________________________

173
Coordination

9. Mary wont go to school tomorrow. John wont go to


school tomorrow.
_________________________________________

_________________________________________

10. I appreciate his work. Everybody appreciates his work.


_________________________________________

_________________________________________

11. I cannot speak Japanese. My students cannot speak


Japanese.
_________________________________________

_________________________________________

II. a) Join the following simple sentences by using the correlative


conjunctions bothand, not only but also, either... or , neither
nor in order to emphasize the actions performed. The first one is done
for you.

1. He told the truth. He lied


He either lied or told the truth.

2. They swam in the lake. They sailed on the lake.


_________________________________________

3. They did not look for help. They did not ask for help.
_________________________________________

4. These pupils like their teacher. These pupils appreciate


their teacher.
_________________________________________

5. They cannot read. They cannot write.


_________________________________________

6. He stays here. He goes away.


_________________________________________

b) There are two sentences for which two solutions are possible.
Which of them? Provide the alternative solutions, too.

_______________________________________

_______________________________________

174
Coordination

Summary

Coordination

coordinators what do we coordinate?


conjunctions a) sentence constituents
o simple: and, but, or, yet o subjects
o subject complements
o correlatives o objects
both and o adverbial modifiers
not only but also
either or b) simple sentences
neither nor same or different subjects
same or different actions

Changes that occur in the compound sentence as a result of


coordination
omission of subject
omission of the same verb
shortened constructions to avoid repetition

Key Concepts
Coordination
Coordinator
Conjunctions: simple and correlative
o copulative
o adversative
o disjunctive

Selected Bibliography
Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin
Books, 1990, pp. 92-94

175
Coordination

PA No. 7
I. Identify the coordinating conjunctions in the following texts and state
whether simple or correlative and type: copulative, adversative or
disjunctive.
a)
He was a well-built boy. He had curly hair and good teeth and a
skin envied by girls. He was fast on his feet and did his work
well and he loved his sisters.
b)
The man shot, but the animal kept going. He either did not hear
the shot or he didnt feel the pain yet. Both the driver and the
hunter got out of the car and started running after the wounded
buffalo.
c)
He despised those people, but he kept living with them. They
neither quarrelled nor argued, yet each of them knew that truth
of his feelings.

II. Complete the following sentences with the appropriate coordinating


conjunctions, simple or correlatives.
1. You can take it _____ leave it.
2. He has _____ skied _____ skated lately.
3. He was very rich _____ she was very beautiful.
4. He tried hard _____ couldnt win.
5. In case of rain, take a taxi _____ wait until it stops.
6. _____ the teachers _____ the pupils enjoyed the trip.
7. _____ I _____ anybody else wants to hurt you.
8. We can go tonight _____ to a restaurant _____ to a movie.
9. She wanted to cry _____ she couldnt.
10. In the summer vacation we will go _____ in the mountains
_____to the seaside.

III. Join the following sets of sentences in order to obtain one


compound sentence. Make the necessary changes. Opt for one
solution only.
1. I wasnt in London last year. He wasnt in London last year.
_______________________________________

2. Mother cleans the house. Mother cooks. Mother takes care


of the children.
_______________________________________

3. Elisabeth was not rich. Elisabeth was very smart. Elisabeth


was very pretty.
_______________________________________

176
Coordination
4. We are going to a party on Saturday. They are going to a
party on Saturday.
_______________________________________

5. I would like a cup of tea. He would like a cup of coffee.


_______________________________________

6. I didnt enjoy the movie. My friend didnt enjoy the movie.


_______________________________________

7. You are not a doctor. I am not a doctor.


_______________________________________

8. I shall speak to the manager. You will speak to the


manager.
_______________________________________

9. Youll have to observe the rules. You will lose the game.
_______________________________________

10. John graduated last year. His colleagues graduated last


year.
_______________________________________

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

177
Coordination

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
2. My friend and I; Both my friend and I
3. bread, butter and cheese
4. English or American
5. sunny but cold
6. either a cake or an ice-cream
7. slowly and silently
8. down the street and round the corner
9. at 9 oclock or 10 oclock
10. Either Mother or Father

SAQ 2
2. John read the novel and liked it.
3. He opened the book but didnt start reading.
4. He is looking at me and listening to me.
5. Are you coming or leaving?
6. I looked everywhere but couldnt see anybody.
7. Is it raining or snowing?
8. You should and must tell them the truth.
9. You should either go to see them or call them up.
10. Mary goes to school regularly, does her homework and gets good
marks.

SAQ 3
I.
3. John went to the concert and Tom did, too / and so did Tom.
4. I like the Beatles and Tom does, too / and so does Tom.
5. Jane didnt go to the seaside last year and her daughter didnt
either / and neither did her daughter.
6. John doesnt work hard and you dont either / and neither do you.
7. My friends will come tomorrow and her parents will, too / and so
will her parents.
8. Your eyes are blue and your dress is blue, too / and so is your
dress.
9. Mary wont go to school tomorrow and John wont either / and
neither will John.
10. I appreciate his work and everybody does, too / and so does
everybody.
11. I cannot speak Japanese and my students cant either / and
neither can my students.
12. Everybody should see his/her doctor twice a year and I should,
too / and so should I.

II.
a)
2. They both swam in the lake and sailed on it. / They not only
swam in the lake, but also sailed on it.
3. They neither looked for help nor asked for it.
4. These pupils both like and appreciate their teacher. / These
pupils not only like their teacher but also appreciate him.

178
Coordination
5. He can neither read nor write.
6. He either stays here or goes away.

b)
Sentences 2 and 4 because in both cases not only the meaning but
also the structure of the sentences make it possible for both
copulative correlatives both and and not only but also.

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

9.1 for SAQ 1


9.2.1 for SAQ 2
9.2.2.1 for SAQ 3 (I)
9.2.2.2 for SAQ 3 (II)

179
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

UNIT 10

SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (I). RELATIVE CLAUSES

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 181


10.1. What are Relative Clauses 181
10.1.1. Classification of Relative Clauses 182
10.2. Defining Relative Clauses 183
10.2.1. Introductory Markers of Defining Relative Clauses 183
SAQ 1 185
10.2.2. Deleting the Relative Pronouns 186
SAQ 2 187
10.3. Non-Defining Relative Clauses 188
10.3.1. Introductory Markers of Non-Defining Relative Clauses 189
SAQ 3 190
10.4. Independent Relative Clauses 191
10.5. Reduced Relative Clauses 191
SAQ 4 193
Summary 194
Key Concepts 195
Selected Bibliography 195
SAA No. 3 196
Answers to SAQs 198

180
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

With relative clauses we introduce a new chapter of four units


that will deal with subordinate clauses.
Subordination as compared to coordination refers to connecting
only clauses. The term clause will be used to denote the two types
of clauses: main clause and subordinate clause. Any sentence
that contains at least one main clause and one subordinate clause
is a complex sentence.
In the case of subordination, one clause, the subordinate one,
is dependent on the main clause as far as its structure and meaning
are concerned. Subordinate clauses are generally marked by
introductory words, called subordinators.
There are three groups of subordinate clauses according to the
function they perform: relative clauses, nominal clauses and
adverbial clauses. Each of these groups display particular
characteristics and are distinguishable as far as form, structure and
function are concerned.
The first group of the subordinate clause relative clauses
have three basic features: they refer to a noun in the main clause,
they provide information about the noun and they are introduced by
relative markers (pronouns and adverbs).

After you have studied the unit and completed the tasks, you
should be able to:

unit identify the introductory markers of relative clauses


objectives identify cases when the introductory marker can be
omitted
distinguish between defining and non-defining relative
clauses
distinguish between the informational content of each
type of relative clause
identify the reduced relative clauses and the means they
are expressed by

10.1. What are Relative Clauses


Relative clauses are finite or non-finite verb clauses which
describe, identify or provide information about a noun in the main
clause. They function as postmodifiers of a noun or a noun phrase.

(1) The girl who is standing at the door is Mary.


(2) Toms father, who is seventy, is still working.
(3) The people injured in the accident were taken to the
nearest hospital.

181
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

In all these three examples the words in bold, form the relative
clause which refers to the girl (1), to Toms father (2) and to the
people (3). The first two clauses contain finite-verb forms, while the
third clause contains a non-finite verb form. In all these cases we are
provided with information with reference to the girl, Toms father
and the people.
Relative clauses are introduced as subordinators by relative
pronouns: who, which, that or by relative adverbs: when, where,
why.

The girl who is standing at the door is Mary.


The book which is lying on the desk is mine.
The most beautiful actress that I can think of is Julia Roberts.
There will be a time when people will understand what peace
means.
This is the place where I live.
That was the reason why they left.

10.1.1. Classification of Relative Clauses

Relative clauses are classified in two groups according to the way


in which they modify the noun:

a) defining
b) non-defining

Defining relative clauses define or identify the noun, while non-


defining ones provide additional information about the noun.

NOTE!
Defining and non-defining relative clauses are also called
restrictive and non-restrictive. As the terminology does not
make any difference, we will opt for the defining and non-
defining terms.

From the point of view of their structure, relative clauses are


classified into:

a) relative clauses proper (finite verb form)


b) reduced relative clauses (non-finite verb forms)

A group apart of relative clauses are the so-called independent


relative clauses, those which do not refer back to a noun but to the
whole situation expressed in the main clause.

They are always quarrelling, which is very annoying.

The clause in bold refers back to the fact that they are always
quarrelling.

182
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

10.2. Defining Relative Clauses


The defining relative clause is very much part of and important
to the ideas that we want to express. It specifies, identifies, delimits
the noun it refers to, that is why it is used only with common nouns.
The relative clause can specify the following sentence
constituents which contain a noun:

a) subject
The man who lives next door is an actor.

b) subject complement
He is the man who bought our car.

c) direct object
I saw the man who was here yesterday.

d) indirect object
I gave the money to the woman who does my shopping.

e) prepositional object
He approved of the proposal which best suits us.

Irrespective of which constituent it refers to, the relative clause must


immediately follow the noun which it defines. Accordingly, the relative
clause can take mid position as in example (a) or end position as in
the other examples.

10.2.1. Introductory Markers of Defining Relative Clauses

A. Defining relative clauses can be introduced by the relative


pronouns who, which and that.

a) who, whose, whom are used when the clause refers back to
nouns denoting people:

The man who knocked at the door is our new neighbour.


The boy whose name is Smith is missing today.
The people whom you met are my new friends.

b) which, of which (whose), about which, etc. are used when the
clause refers back to nouns denoting objects:

The dress which I bought yesterday was dirty.


The book about which we talked yesterday can be found in the
bookstore.
The book whose covers (or the covers of which) are torn was
very expensive

183
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

c) that can replace both who and which in all cases except for the
possessive whose:

The man that (who) is talking to Mary seems to be Jim.


The book that (which) is lying on the desk is mine.
The man that (whom) I saw is Marys husband.
The dress what (which) I bought was expensive.

When that is associated with a preposition, the preposition is


placed at the end of the relative clause.

The book that we were talking about

d) the relative pronoun that is preferred instead of who or which in


the following cases:

o when the noun is preceded by only

This is the only example that I can think of.


He is the only child that I know who can solve this
exercise.

o when the noun is premodified by a superlative

It was the most interesting event that I can remember.


She was the best friend that one can have.

o when the relative clause refers back to a noun substitute


expressed by all or other indefinite pronouns (anything,
everything, everyone, etc.)

All that glitters is not gold.


Youll have everything that you want.
Everyone that I know will enjoy this performance.

o when the relative clause follows after the quantifiers little


and much

There is little / much that can be said about him.

B. Defining relative clauses can also be introduced by the relative


adverbs where, when, why.
In this case the nouns preceding these relative clauses must
define place, time or reason.

Summer is the time when people go on holiday.


It happened on a day when everybody was away.
This is the village where I would like to stay.
He gave no reason why he behaved like that.

184
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

These relative adverbs are limited in usage and except reason why
they can be replaced by the relative pronoun which.

Summer is the time in which


It was the village in which

SAQ 1
a) Complete the following sentences with the appropriate
introductory marker, relative pronoun or adverb (who, which, that,
where, when, why). Pay attention to the noun or noun substitute
which is defined by the relative clause. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. The ring which he gave her was very expensive.

2. The music _____ the orchestra is playing is by


Beethoven.

3. The man _____ name I cant remember helped me with


my luggage.

4. Women _____ work in the fields are farmers.

5. Where is the child _____ broke the window?

6. How far is the village _____ your parents live?

7. Where is the copybook about _____ I asked you?

8. What is the time _____ you have to leave?

9. Any person _____ I know of will help you.

10. Bring me the keys _____ I left on the desk.

b) Point out the sentences in which you can replace who / which by
that as introductory marker.

185
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

10.2.2. Deleting the Relative Pronouns

Stop and think!

The relative clause is structured as a simple sentence. It has a


subject a predicate, objects a.s.o. Which of these constituents are
compulsory in a sentence? Try and omit the relative pronouns (who,
whose, whom) in the examples from A (a). Which of the sentences is
meaningful after the omission?
In the space below write your answers and then check them
as you read on.

The relative pronouns can be omitted in certain instances and by


omission we obtain a clause which does not have an introductory
marker as subordinator. This clause is called contact clause. If we
take the example from A (a).

The people whom you met are my new friends.

and omit the relative pronoun, the new clause will be a contact
clause and the whole sentence is meaningful.

The people you met are my new friends.

When can the relative pronoun be omitted or deleted?

The relative pronoun can be deleted when it performs certain


syntactic functions in the relative clause.
Relative pronouns can perform the following syntactic functions
in the relative clause:

a) subject: He is the man who bought our car.


b) possessive: The man whose name is Smith was here.
c) indirect object: The man to whom I sold the car is Smith.
d) direct object: The man whom you just met is Smith.
e) prepositional object: The film about which you are talking hasnt
been on yet.
f) adverbial: That is the little village to which/where I
am going.

186
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

The relative pronoun can be deleted when it performs the


syntactic function of an object, any object or an adverbial modifier.
It is impossible to delete the subject position or possessive
position because the clauses remain without a subject.

*He is the man bought our car.


*The man name Smith was here.

Deletion of the pronoun in object or adverbial modifier position


is associated with a change in the structure of the clause. If the
pronoun is preceded by a preposition, the preposition is placed at the
end of the relative clause.

The man I sold the car to is Smith.


The film you are talking about hasnt been on yet.
That is the little village I am going to.

No change occurs when the function of the pronoun is that of a direct


object:

The man you just met is Smith.

NOTE!
As the defining relative clause is perceived as an important
part of the complex sentence, necessary in specifying the
noun, it is not separated by commas from the main clause,
irrespective of its position.

SAQ 2
Delete the relative pronouns or adverbs where possible in the given
sentences. Change the place of the preposition in case of deletion.
The first two are done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Where is the shop that sells postcards?


Where is the shop that sells postcards?

2. Where is the shop about which your friend talked?


Where is the shop your friend talked about?

3. The flowers which I got yesterday have already died.


___________________________________

4. Can you remember the shop where you bought it?


___________________________________

5. The house which they are admiring belongs to a friend of mine.


___________________________________

187
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

6. All the papers that you read carry the same story.
___________________________________

7. I saw the girl with whom you were in the street yesterday.
___________________________________

8. The actor whose name is everywhere got the prize.


___________________________________

9. The hotel in which they stayed was expensive.


___________________________________

10. A person who works in a hospital is a doctor or a nurse.


___________________________________

11. Give me the knife with which you cut the meat.
___________________________________

12. Everything that happened was our fault.


___________________________________

10.3. Non-Defining Relative Clauses


Non-defining relative clauses are those which provide
additional, supplementary information about the nouns they refer
to. The non-defining relative clause can refer back both to common
nouns and proper nouns:

The tourists, who spent the night at the motel, were saved by
the mountaineers.
My friend John, who is a writer, has just published a volume of
short stories.

The non-defining relative clauses are most commonly used in


written language. The reason lies in the fact that in speech, shorter
sentences are preferred and the non-defining clauses provide
additional information which in face-to-face conversation can be
missing without harming the full meaning of the sentence. On the
other hand, in written language the writer should provide all the
necessary information to make his message explicit.

People all over the world are still mourning the Pope, who died
two weeks ago.

The non-defining relative clause refers mostly to the following


constituents of the sentence:

a) subject

The Parliament, which has been in session for two


weeks, is not meeting today.
188
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

b) subject complement

The Da Vinci Code is a good book, which you might


like to read.

c) direct object

They study geometry, which is quite a difficult object for


them.

d) adverbial modifier

They were coming from Ploieti, which is not very far


from Bucharest.

Non-defining relative clauses can take mid position or end


position depending on the noun they refer to and are always
separated by commas from the main clause.

10.3.1. Introductory Markers of Non-Defining Relative Clauses


A. Non-defining relative clauses are introduced by the relative
pronouns who and which:

a) who, whose, whom are used only for nouns denoting


people

NOTE!
The preposition which is associated with whom or which
always precedes the relative pronoun.

George Enescu, who is a famous musician, lived in France.


My new neighbour, whose name I dont remember, has just
left for London.
Mary, with whom I came to the party, will be a student next
year.

b) which is used only for objects

Physics, which is a difficult object, has many practical


applications.
The students are working on Romeo and Juliet, which they
havent studied in high school.

B. Non-defining relative clauses can also be introduced by the


relative adverbs where, when, but as in the case of defining clauses,
their usage is limited to the nouns that express place or time.

189
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

My daughter was born in 1969, when the first men set foot on
the Moon.
Many people moved to villages, where they will set up farms.

Unlike in the case of defining relative clauses, the relative pronoun is


not deleted in the non-defining relative clauses.

SAQ 3
Complete the following sentences with appropriate relative
pronouns or relative adverbs and underline the non-defining relative
clauses. The first is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. The heavy rains, which fell yesterday, flooded many


villages.

2. London, _____ is the capital of the UK, is visited by


thousands of tourists every year.

3. Mihai Eminescu, _____ is the best known Romanian


poet, has had his works translated into many languages.

4. The house, _____ was sold two years ago, is being


repaired now.

5. The postman, _____ always comes in the morning,


yesterday came in the afternoon.

6. A very good friend of mine, _____ father is a teacher,


helped me with my work.

7. The pupils, _____ have been in school for more than two
months, are eager to go on a three day trip.

8. During the summer, _____ days are longer, people get


up earlier in the morning.

9. Cold Mountain, _____ I was talking to my students, is a


very good film about the Civil War.

10. Many people visit the village Museum in Bucharest,


_____ they can learn about folk traditions.

190
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

10.4. Independent Relative Clauses


Independent relative clauses refer to a whole situation which is
expressed in the main clause. They function as a comment made by
the speaker.
As they refer back to something that happened, they are always
introduced by which and take end position.

John won a lot of money on the lottery, which was great.


The man whom we met in the street, gave us lots of
information, which was quite useful.
My friends visited London, but couldnt get to the Tower, which
was a pity.

NOTE!
The independent relative clause is always separated by
comma from the rest of the sentence.

10.5. Reduced Relative Clauses


In modern grammar we come across the term reduced
clauses, which contain a non-finite form of the verb. They perform
certain syntactic functions in the complex sentence.
In the case of relative clauses, a reduced clause can be
expressed by a present participle ing, a past participle or a long
infinitive, and functions as the post-modifier of the noun it refers to.

1. The girl standing at the door is Mary.


2. The note written by John is mysterious.
3. The time to do it is now.

Stop and think!

Can you rewrite the sentences using a finite form of the verb
and adding a relative pronoun or adverb? What is the function of the
relative introductory word?
Write down your answers in the space below. Check your
answers as you read on.

191
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

If we rewrite the above sentences with full relative clauses, we will


have the following resulting sentences:

1. The girl who is standing at the door is Mary.


2. The note which was written by John is mysterious.
3. The time when we should do it is now.

By reduction, in all three examples the relative word was


deleted and the predicate was reduced to the main verb. When we
reduce a relative clause to a participle, present or past, one condition
that has to be observed is that the relative word should be the
subject of the relative clause.
As for predication, in example (1) the participle is part of the
continuous present, while in example (2) it is part of a passive
construction.
We can infer from these examples that a relative clause can be
reduced to a non-finite participle when:

the relative word is the subject of the relative clause


the verb is either in the continuous aspect (be + -ing) or in the
passive (be + past participle)

The relative clauses, reduced to a participle, can be defining or non-


defining.

The man singing to himself must be a singer. [defining]


This dress, bought yesterday, was very expensive.
[non-defining]
Books published today are of good quality. [defining]
This book, published a few days ago, is already sold out.
[non-defining]

In example (3) the clause expressed by a long infinitive, refers to an


action which has a related modal connotation and not to an action
which is or was performed.

The person to ask is John.


The person whom we should ask is John.

The papers to be read are on the teachers desk.


The papers that have to be read are on the teachers desk.

The best place to spend a few days is in the mountains.


The best place where you can spend a few days is in the
mountains.

The infinitive as a non-finite relative has also a more


generalising value and subsequently it is not restricted to the subject
position of the relative word as in:

The person whom you should ask is John.

192
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

It is possible to reduce the relative clause to an infinitive when


the relative pronoun is either the subject or direct object in the
relative clause.

SAQ 4
I. Replace the finite relative clauses by a non-finite clause using the
present or past participle. Dont change the punctuation. The first two
are done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. The person who is waiting for you is called Johnson.


The person waiting for you is called Johnson.

The money which was stolen from the bank has never
been found.
The money stolen from the bank has never been found.

2. Money which is given for charity is never lost.


________________________________________

3. The man who is carrying the bag is not a beggar.


________________________________________

4. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, which was published a


century ago, is still popular.
________________________________________

5. The money which is spent on books is well-spent money.


________________________________________

6. The rain, which has been falling night and day, will
damage the crop.
________________________________________

7. The flowers which were given to me by my students are


very beautiful.
________________________________________

8. The letter which was posted a month ago came only


yesterday.
________________________________________

9. Children who are playing in the street might get hit by a


car.
________________________________________

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Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

II. Replace the finite relative clauses by a non-finite one using the
long infinitive. The first one is done for you.

1. The person whom you should consult is a lawyer.


The person to consult is a lawyer.

2. The house which you should buy is a country house.


________________________________________

3. The book which you should read is a novel by Dickens.


________________________________________

4. Sunday is the day when we should rest.


________________________________________

5. London is the place which you should visit.


________________________________________

Summary
Relative Clauses
o describe, identify, provide information about a Noun

Classification
o defining
o non-defining
o independent
o reduced

Defining Relative Clauses


identify, specify, provide necessary information

o introductory markers who, which, that


where, when, why
o the relative markers can be deleted
o not separated by commas from the main clause
o take mid position or end position

Non-Defining Relative Clauses


provide additional supplementary information

o introductory markers who, which


where, when
o the relative markers cannot be deleted
o separated by commas from the main clause
o take mid position or end position

194
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

Independent Relative Clauses


comment upon a whole situation

o introductory markers which


o the relative pronoun cannot be deleted
o separated by commas from the main clause
o take only end position

Reduced Relative Clauses


non-finite clauses, defining or non-defining

o present participle
o past participle
o long infinitive

Key Concepts
relative clause
o defining
o non-defining
o independent
o reduced
relative pronouns
relative adverbs
deletion
contact clause
subordination
subordinators
main clause
subordinate clause

Selected Bibliography

1. Beaumont, D., Granger, C. The Heinemann ELT English


Grammar, MacMillan Heinemann, 1989, 1992, pp. 236 - 243

2. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin


Books, 1990, pp. 272 - 276

3. Murphy, R. English Grammar in Use, Cambridge University


Press, 1985 pp. 176 187

195
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

SAA No. 3
I. State whether the following statements are true or false. Explain
why you consider them true or false.
1. Defining and non-defining relative clauses always refer to a
noun in the main clause.
2. Relative clauses always start with a relative pronoun.
3. Relative pronouns which introduce the relative clause perform
syntactic functions.
4. Relative pronouns or adverbs can always be deleted.
5. A non-defining relative clause provides necessary information
and specifies the noun.
6. Non-defining relative clauses are separated by commas from
the main clause.
7. Relative clauses can take initial position, mid position and end
position.
8. Independent relative clauses can be introduced by relative
adverbs.
9. Reduced relative clauses have a finite verb form as predicate.
10. Participial reduced relative clauses can be defining or non-
defining.

II. Underline the relative clauses in the following sentences. State in


brackets whether defining, non-defining, independent or reduced.
1. Motorists who intend to sell their old cars should see an
auto dealer.
2. The exhibition, which was opened yesterday, displays rare
objects.
3. A person looking for a house should look for
announcements.
4. People who want to travel abroad should hold a valid
passport.
5. The young couple, who got married on Saturday, left for
their honeymoon.
6. Is he the only person that can advise you?
7. Which is the nearest place where the tourists can be
housed?
8. Some parents allow their children to play on the main
roads, which is extremely dangerous.
9. The students who sat for the test passed it.
10. The medicine taken by the patient did not relieve the pain.

196
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

III. Complete the blanks with relative pronouns or adverbs only where
necessary and use contact clauses where possible. Pay attention to
the structure of the relative clause.
1. The house _____ they are looking at is for sale.
2. Nobody knew the girl _____ won the first prize.
3. The bridge, _____ was built 50 years ago, collapsed.
4. I think this is all the money _____ I have.
5. His mother always finds fault with him, _____ annoys him.
6. People _____ live in glass houses should not throw
stones.
7. It will be summer by the time _____ you will be back.
8. All the goods, _____ are displayed, must be sold within a
week.
9. The film about _____ they are talking must be very new.
10. The new building _____ the Ministry of Education will
move is finished.

Send your answers to your tutor.

197
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
a)
2. which/that
3. whose
4. who/that
5. who/that
6. where
7. which
8. when
9. that
10. which/that

b) The sentences are nr. 1, 4, 5, 10

SAQ 2
3. The flowers I got yesterday have already died.
4. Can you remember the shop you bought it from?
5. The house they are admiring belongs to a friend of mine.
6. All the papers you read carry the same story.
7. I saw the girl you were with in the street yesterday.
8. A person who works in a hospital is a doctor or a nurse.
9. Give me the knife you cut the meat with.
10. Everything that happened was our fault.

SAQ 3
2. , which is the capital of the UK,
3. , who is the best Romanian poet,
4. , which was sold two years ago,
5. , who always comes in the morning,
6. , whose father is a teacher,
7. , who have been in school for more than two months,
8. , when the days are longer,
9. , about which I was talking to my students,
10. , where they can learn about folk traditions,

SAQ4
I.
3. Money given for charity
4. The man carrying the bag
5. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, published a century ago,
6. Money spent on books
7. The rain, falling night and day,
8. The flowers given to me by my students
9. The letter posted a month ago
10. Children playing in the street

198
Subordinate Clauses (I). Relative Clauses

II.
2. The house to buy
3. The book to read
4. Sunday is the day to rest.
5. London is the place to visit.

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

10.2.1 for SAQ 1 (I a, b)


10.2.2 for SAQ 2
10.3 and 10.3.1 for SAQ 3
10.5 for SAQ 4

199
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

UNIT 11

SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (II). NOMINAL CLAUSES

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 201


11.1. What are Nominal Clauses 201
11.2. Classification of Nominal Clauses 2033
11.3. That- Nominal Clauses 203
SAQ 1 206
11.4. Nominal Relative Clauses 207
11.5. Wh- Nominal Clauses 208
SAQ 2 209
SAQ 3 213
Summary 214
Key Concepts 215
Selected Bibliography 215
PA No. 8 216
Answers to SAQs 217

200
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

Nominal clauses or noun clauses form a separate group of


subordinate clauses. They may be finite or non-finite clauses and
they perform syntactic functions in a complex sentence. Finite
clauses are marked by subordinators. These subordinators are
identifiable if the whole context of the sentence is taken into
consideration.

a) The story that I have told you is very famous.


b) I have told you that the story is famous.

In example (a) that introduces a relative clause. It refers to the


story, while in example (b) that introduces a nominal clause which
states what I have told you.
In order to interpret subordinate nominal clauses, we have to
take into consideration the linguistic environment in which they
appear and identify their syntactic functions in relation to their
position in the sentence.

After you have studied the unit and completed the tasks, you
should be able to:

unit identify the syntactic functions performed by the nominal


objectives clauses
distinguish the nominal clauses and their functions
according to their position in the sentence
distinguish nominal clauses according to their
introductory markers
identify the non-finite nominal clauses and their functions
use nominal clauses according to a provided context

11.1. What are Nominal Clauses


Nominal clauses, also called noun clauses, are subordinate
clauses which perform in a complex sentence those syntactic
functions which are generally performed by a noun in the simple
sentence.

201
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

Stop and think!

If you take into consideration the constituents of a sentence:


subject, predicate, complements, objects and adverbials, try to
remember those which are most commonly expressed by nouns.
In the space below, write down your answer and provide your
own examples. Take them with you to the next tutorial and discuss
them with your classmates and your tutor.

In the simple sentence, the noun or the noun phrase performs


most commonly the functions of: subject, subject complement, direct
object, and object complement.

The pupils are writing a test paper.


Mrs. Smith is a teacher.
The teacher told us a story.
They named the dog Rex.

Nouns are often associated with prepositions, forming


prepositional phrases. They also perform syntactic functions in a
sentence as: complements of adjectives or prepositional objects.

Children are afraid of darkness.


They agreed on a plan of action.

This means that from a purely syntactic point of view nominal


clauses will perform the same functions. But in order to make up
complex sentences with appropriate nominal clauses we have to
take into account the grammatical context or linguistic environment
and also the content of the message we want to convey by means of
nominal clauses.

202
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

11.2. Classification of Nominal Clauses


Nominal clauses are classified into the following groups
according to the introductory markers:

a) clauses introduced by that, known as that-clauses


b) clauses introduced by: whoever, whatever, whichever,
known as nominal relative clauses
c) clauses introduced by: who, what, how, when, where,
why, known as wh-clauses
d) clauses which have no introductory markers and the verb is
a non-finite one, known as non-finite nominal clauses.

11.3. That- Nominal Clauses


That-nominal clauses are the most frequently used nominal
clauses. They perform the following syntactic functions in a complex
sentence:

a) subject

That he is still alive is a mystery.

b) logical subject, also called delayed subject, introduced by


an introductory it

It is strange that they havent left yet.

c) subject complement

The problem is that the witness lied.

d) direct object

They knew that the witness lied.

e) complement of an adjective

Everybody is sure that things will change.

f) an apposition associated with an abstract noun

The fact that nobody wanted to tell the truth annoyed


the police.

a) That-clauses as subject

That-clauses as the subject always occur in an initial position


followed by the verb of the main clause.

That he was here doesnt mean that we invited him.


That he told lies came as no surprise.

203
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

b) That-clauses as delayed subject

When a that-clause performs the function of a delayed


subject the introductory it is associated with adjectives as:
advisable, possible, likely; or nouns as: pity, shame; or a
passive impersonal construction as: it is regretted, it is agreed,
it has been suggested, etc.

It is possible that they have already moved from Bucharest.


Its a shame that you couldnt come on the trip.

It was suggested that you should be there in due time.

c) That-clauses as subject complement

That-clauses as subject complement always follow the linking


verb together with which they form the nominal predicate.

The truth is that nobody seems to be guilty.


The main objection to his proposal is that it is not feasible.

d) That-clauses as direct object

The most frequent function of that-clauses is that of the direct


object. In such a function, the object that-clause always follows a
transitive verb.

They knew that his story was not true.


We understand that the situation is difficult.
They realized that many people were unemployed.

That-clauses as the direct object follow certain verbs such as: verbs
of telling, verbs of mental activities, verbs of potential situation or
verbs of proposal/suggestion. Depending on the meaning of the verb
which requires a direct object that-clause we use certain verb forms
as predicates of the subordinate clause.

verbs of telling and mental activities are followed by a that-clause


in which the verb is generally in the indicative mood:

I told him that he was a liar.


He announced to us that the performance had been
postponed.
They believe that everybody is honest.
He understood that something unexpected happened.

verbs of potential situation as: to hope, to expect, to suppose, to


promise, to threaten are generally followed by a that-clause in which
the verb is in the future tense or is associated with a modal verb:

I hope that you will understand me.


They supposed that everyone could do the task.

204
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses
I promise that I will help you.
They expect that their friends can/will help them.

verbs of suggestion/proposal as to suggest, to insist, to propose,


require a that-clause in which the verb is in the subjunctive mood:

They suggested that we all should see the performance.


Mary insisted that I should go, too.
They proposed that the meeting should be postponed.

NOTE!
In American English the should + infinitive subjunctive is
replaced by the short infinitive of the verb as
They suggested that we all see the performance.
Mary insisted that I go, too.
They proposed that the meeting be postponed.

In colloquial speech that as an introductory marker, can be


deleted in direct object clauses.

I know (that) you are a good student.


I promise (that) I will come.
I expect (that) he will do it for me.

e) That-clauses as adjective complement

As an adjective complement, a that-clause should follow a


predicative adjective (afraid of, aware of, certain, sure, etc.) which
forms the nominal predicate together with the linking verb. When the
complement of the adjective is expressed by a clause the preposition
of the adjective is dropped.

They are certain of success.


They are certain that they will be successful.

He is aware of danger.
He is aware that the experiment is dangerous.

f) That-clauses as apposition

That-clauses having the function of apposition are used after


nouns which have an abstract meaning. Their role is to explain what
this abstract noun refers concretely to.

The fact that they were caught stealing surprised everybody.


The news that the boy ran away shocked his friends.

Nouns as fact, news, problem, belief, used with a general,


abstract meaning, are made concrete by these appositive that-
clauses:

205
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

The problem that he was severely ill was not discussed in the
family.
The belief that money makes the man is not always true.

NOTE!
These that-clauses look very much like relative clauses but
they are not. First there is the head noun which is used in a
general way. Secondly the that introductory marker cannot be
replaced by which.
The fact that they were stealing

cannot be replaced by
*The fact which they were stealing

SAQ 1
Identify the syntactic function of the that-clauses in bold. Pay
attention to their position in the complex sentence and to the words
that precede the that-clause. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. It is surprising that nobody offered to help them.


[delayed subject]

2. The story was that they found a treasure.


_______________

3. Did you know that your team lost the match?


_______________

4. That they make a lot of money is quite unbelievable.


_______________

5. They are sure that they will be rewarded.


_______________

6. The survivors hoped that they would be rescued.


_______________

7. It is strange that he treats his children so severely.


_______________

8. She found out that the papers had been missing for
several days.
_______________

206
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses
9. The rumour that Mary became an actress was proved
wrong.
_______________

10. The teacher suggested that the students should start


preparing for the exam.
_______________

11.4. Nominal Relative Clauses

Nominal relative clauses are introduced by whoever,


whatever, whichever. They are called nominal relatives as the
introductory words actually mean: any person who, anything that.

Whoever laughs last, laughs best.


[Any person who laughs last, laughs best.]

Whatever he does is well done.


[Anything he does is well done.]

Nominal relative clauses perform the following functions in a


complex sentence:

a) subject

Whoever comes is welcomed.


Whatever you do will hurt him.

As the subject, the nominal clause takes initial position followed by


the verb of the main clause.

b) subject complement

The winner will be whoever arrives first.

As a subject complement, the nominal clause follows the linking


verb be.

c) direct object

You can take whichever you like.


You can offer whatever you want to them.

As a direct object, the nominal clause follows a transitive verb.

d) indirect object introduced only by whoever as the indirect


object is a person towards whom the action is directed.

They offered the flowers to whoever passed by.


You can give it to whoever needs it.

As an indirect object, the nominal clause follows a ditransitive


verb.

207
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

e) object complement

They will appoint him whatever they want.


As an object complement, the nominal clause is introduced by
whatever as the object complement expressed by a noun which
refers to the position of the person expressed by the direct object.

f) prepositional object

He approves of whatever his parents tell him to do.


He always insists on whatever he tells you.

As a prepositional object clause, the nominal clause follows a


verb with obligatory preposition.

11.5. Wh- Nominal Clauses

Wh-nominal clauses are introduced by who, what, which, how,


where, when, why and they perform the following functions:

a) subject

Who is to be blamed is still a mystery.


How the accident happened remains to be seen.

Wh-nominal clauses, functioning as subject, take initial position


followed by the verb of the main clause.

b) subject complement

The question is who will manage to solve the


situation.
The mystery is how they managed to escape.

The wh- nominal clause as subject complement always follows


the linking verb be.

c) direct object

We dont know what happened to them.


Nobody understood how the money disappeared.
I can guess where you hid the toy.
We dont know why he behaved like that.

The most frequent function of this nominal clause is that of the


direct object after a transitive verb.

d) adjective complement

They were not sure who the man was.


He wasnt certain of what he had to do.

208
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

Unlike in other nominal clauses, the preposition of the adjective


may precede the wh- clause.

e) prepositional object

The final decision depends on when the official answer


will be given.
The manager approved of what had been decided by
the board.

The obligatory preposition of the verb precedes the wh- nominal


clause.

SAQ 2
Identify the syntactic functions of the nominal relative clauses and
wh- nominal clauses in bold. Pay attention to the position of the
subordinate clause in the complex sentence and the words which
precede the nominal clause. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Whoever looks at you will think that you are a clown.


[subject clause]

2. They did not understand why the plane couldnt take off.
_______________

3. An answer is what they came here for.


_______________

4. Whatever you are doing seems like nonsense to me.


_______________

5. He did not tell us where he put the documents.


_______________

6. They are not sure when the news will come out.
_______________

7. She would tell her stories to whoever was willing to listen.


_______________

8. The answer depends on who will sign the paper.


_______________

9. You should explain to them how this phenomenon took place.


_______________

10. You can have whichever is useful to you.


_______________

209
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

11.6. Non-Finite Nominal Clauses

Stop and think!

When we discussed the constituents of the simple sentence


as subject or direct object, we mentioned the means that they are
expressed by. Do you remember the non-finite forms of the verb
which can function as the subject or direct object?
Write down your answers and provide your own examples.
Take them with you to the next tutorial to discuss them with your
classmates and your tutor.

The non-finite forms of the verb, namely the long infinitive and
the gerund, can have syntactic functions which are identical with
those of a noun. For instance, in the following examples the
infinitive or the gerund can function as the subject.

To tell lies is a sin.


Telling lies is a sin.

These clauses with the infinitive and the gerund are known as
non-finite nominal clauses.

A. The infinitive clauses perform the following functions in a


sentence:

a) subject

To behave like that is unconceivable.


To waste your time means to waste money, too.

Such sentences start with the infinitive as the subject takes first
position, and the infinitive clause is followed by the verb of the main
clause.

210
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

b) adjective complement

He is sure to go to the university.


She is not afraid to live by herself.

In such instances the preposition of the adjective is dropped (to


be sure of, to be afraid of).

c) subject complement

His desire is to be helpful.


He seems to be happy.

The subject complement infinitive is mostly used after the


linking verbs to be and to seem.

d) direct object
The most common function of the infinitive is that of the direct
object after a transitive verb.

He wanted to leave right away.


I like to be here.
Mary loves to dance and sing.

With verbs like to know, to teach, to understand, the infinitive


can be preceded by how.

He knew how to mend the clock.


Teach him how to solve such problems.
I dont understand how to do it.

B. The clauses which contain a gerund are also nominal clauses as


the gerund as a verbal mood has verb and noun characteristics.
The gerund clauses perform the following syntactic function in a
sentence:

a) subject

Going to school is a pupils duty.


Reading books makes one wiser.

As in the other cases, the non-finite clause as the subject takes initial
position.

b) subject complement mostly after the linking verb be:

His favourite hobby is fishing.


What he likes most is going to movies.

c) direct object

She avoided meeting us.


She didnt remember having locked the door.

211
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

There are certain transitive verbs which ask for a gerund non-
finite direct object clause. Such verbs are: to avoid, to deny, to
dislike, to postpone, to risk, to finish.

They risked being caught by the police.


They denied having seen the accident.

There are some verbs that require a gerund non-finite clause


which may have its own subject as the doer of the action.

1. Do you mind my coming with you?


2. Everybody appreciated his being honest about his
mistake.

In example (1) you is the subject of the main clause and my


expresses the logical subject of the gerund clause. In sentence (2)
everybody is the subject of the main clause and this is the logical
subject of the gerund clause.

Stop and think!

Compare the following sentences and say who has to


perform the action expressed in the gerund clause.
He certainly minded leaving the room.
He certainly minded Marys going away.
Write your answers in the space below. Take them to the
next tutorial and discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

With a gerund clause, the two actions of the two verbs can be
performed by the same subject as in He certainly minded leaving the
room. or by two different subjects

He minded Marys leaving the room.


Mary/her
The subject of the gerund clause is expressed by the
possessive or the accusative form of the noun or pronoun.
d) prepositional object
212
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

They insisted on going on the trip.


They insisted on us going on the trip.
Everything depends on finishing the project in due
time.
Everything depends on us finishing the project.

NOTE!
In the case of verbs + compulsory preposition the existence of
the different subjects is also marked grammatically by using
the possessive or the accusative form of the subject of the
gerund.

SAQ 3
Identify the syntactic functions of the non-finite infinitive and gerund
clauses in the following sentences. Pay attention to the position of the
clause in the complex sentence and to the words that precede them.
The first two are done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. We were sorry to hear the bad news.


[adjective complement after sorry]

2. Do you mind speaking to me first?


[direct object]

3. They finished reading the book in three days.

4. Mother was afraid to leave the baby alone.

5. His hobby is collecting expensive stamps.

6. He wanted to move to a better place.

7. Did he object to your leaving so early?

8. To leave in such weather is foolish.

9. Writing letters nowadays is a waste of time.

10. He forgave my being late for his lecture.

11. The teacher promised to help us with our work.

12. I dont remember having seen such a good film for a


long time.

213
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

Summary

Nominal Clauses
o perform syntactic functions in a complex sentence

Classification of nominal clauses


o that-clauses
o nominal relative clauses
o wh-clauses
o non-finite clauses

That-Clauses
o introductory word that
o syntactic functions:
subject
delayed subject
subject complement
direct object
indirect object
complement of adjective
apposition

Nominal Relative Clauses


o introductory words whoever, whatever, whichever
o syntactic functions
subject
subject complement
direct object
object complement
prepositional object

Wh- Nominal Clauses


o introductory words who, that, which, how, where,
when, why
o syntactic functions
subject
subject complement
direct object
adjective complement
prepositional object

Non-Finite Nominal Clauses


expressed by infinitive and gerund

Infinitive Clauses
o no introductory word
o syntactic functions
subject
subject complement
adjective complement
direct object

214
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

Gerund Clauses
o no introductory word (can take their own subject expressed
by a possessive or accusative noun or pronoun)
o syntactic functions
subject
subject complement
direct object
prepositional object

Key Concepts

apposition
nominal-relative clause
nominal clause
finite clause
non-finite clause
introductory marker
contact clause
subordination
subordinator
subordinate clause
subjunctive
syntactic function

Selected Bibliography

Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin


Books, 1990, pp. 177 - 198

215
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses
PA No. 8
I. State whether the following statements are true or false. Write T or
F after each statement.
1. Nominal clauses are also defined as noun clauses because
they perform the syntactic functions of a noun.
2. Nominal clauses are finite and non-finite.
3. That-clauses always take end position.
4. Nominal relative clauses are introduced by who and which.
5. Only nominal relative clauses can be indirect objects.
6. Wh-nominal clauses are questions.
7. Non-finite nominal clauses perform the functions of a noun.
8. All nominal clauses can be the subject or object of a complex
sentence.
9. A non-finite gerund clause can have its own subject.
10. Nominal clauses are important constituents in a complex
sentence.

II. Complete the sentences with a finite nominal clause introduced


by the word in bold. State the function of the clause you added.
1. It is clear that...
2. He was wondering who...
3. What... is more important than what you say?
4. I cannot remember where...
5. If you like both of them, take whichever...
6. The news that
7. His argument was that. .
8. He couldnt think of what...
9. He insisted that...
10. Nobody knows when...

III. Complete the blanks spaces with one of the non-finite verb forms
given below.
smoking, to live, to hear, helping, to see, to lose,
having taken, to teach, to do, to open
1. Dont promise _____ it if you are not sure that you can.
2. He appreciated our _____ them.
3. Mary was pleased _____ the good news.
4. Nobody knew how _____ the new window.
5. We were delighted _____ them again.
6. She was happy _____ in such a beautiful house.
7. They seemed _____ courage.
8. Do you mind my _____ here?
9. _____ someone like you is a pleasure.
10. They denied _____ the books from the library.

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

216
Subordinate Clauses (II). Nominal Clauses

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
2. subject complement
3. direct object
4. subject
5. adjective complement
6. direct object
7. delayed subject
8. direct object
9. apposition
10. direct object

SAQ 2
2. direct object
3. subject complement
4. subject
5. direct object
6. adjective complement
7. indirect object
8. prepositional object
9. direct object
10. direct object

SAQ 3
3. direct object
4. adjective complement
5. subject complement
6. direct object
7. prepositional object
8. subject
9. subject
10. direct object
11. direct object
12. direct object

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

1.1.3 for SAQ 1


1.1.4 and 1.1.5 for SAQ 2
1.1.6 for SAQ 3

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Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

UNIT 12

SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (III). ADVERBIAL CLAUSES (I)

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 219


12.1. What are Adverbial Clauses 219
12.2. Classification of Adverbial Clauses 220
12.3. Adverbial Clauses of Time 221
12.3.1. Finite Time Clauses 221
SAQ 1 224
12.3.2. Non-Finite Clauses 225
SAQ 2 226
12.4. Adverbial Clauses of Place 226
12.5. Adverbial Clauses of Manner 227
SAQ 3 228
12.6. Adverbial Clauses of Purpose 229
12.6.1. Non-Finite Clauses 229
12.6.2. Finite Clauses 230
SAQ 4 232
Summary 232
Key Concepts 234
Selected Bibliography 234
PA No. 9 235
Answers to SAQs 236

218
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

Adverbial clauses perform in the complex sentence the roles


that adverbial modifiers perform in a simple sentence. They provide
information about time, or place or express more complex concepts
as condition, concession, purpose a.s.o. The difference between the
adverbial modifiers and adverbial clauses lies in the fact that
adverbial modifiers are related to one action, while with adverbial
clauses, we establish relationships between two actions. For
instance if we say that John met Mary in 1978., the time adverbial
provides information about the time of the action met while in the
sentence John met Mary when he was a student, we speak of two
actions met was a student, and we establish a temporal
relationship between them. As we can relate actions and events to
one another in terms of time, place, condition, purpose a.s.o., the
adverbial clauses are widely used both in speech and in writing.
In the two units that will deal with adverbial clauses, we will
point out their structural features and functional meanings so that we
will be able to identify them and use them accordingly.

After you have studied this unit and completed the tasks, you
should be able to:

unit identify the concepts expressed by adverbial clauses


objectives identify temporal relationships between actions
express temporal relationships with reference to time
distinguish between finite and non-finite adverbial
clauses
make use of adverbial clauses of time, place, manner
and purpose to construct complex sentences

12.1. What are Adverbial Clauses


Adverbial clauses are subordinate clauses which are related to
an action/situation in the main clause in order to denote various
concepts as time, manner, purpose, concession a.s.o. They are
dependent clauses whose meaning and structure depend on the
main clause. They are introduced by subordinating markers which
generally signal the kind of relationship that is established between
two actions or events. But as sometimes one and the same
subordinator can introduce different clauses, we have to take into
account the whole context in the interpretation of their meaning.

219
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

12.2. Classification of Adverbial Clauses

Stop and think!

Which were the adverbial modifiers that occurred in the


simple sentence? Which of them are very well represented in the
simple sentence and most frequently used?
In the space below write down your answers. Take them with
you to the next tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and
your tutor.

The adverbial modifiers which were very well represented were


those of time, place and manner, although we mentioned adverbial
modifiers of concession, condition, result and purpose, too.
From the point of view of the concepts they express, adverbial
clauses cover the same concepts as the adverbial modifiers.
Accordingly, there are the following adverbial clauses: of time,
of place, of manner, of reason, of purpose, of condition, of
concession and of result.
From the point of view of their structure, adverbial clauses fall
into two main groups: finite verb clauses, non-finite verb clauses,
and a minor group of verbless clauses.
For instance, the adverbial time clause in bold in

When you are walking in the street, pay attention to the traffic
lights.

can be reduced to

When walking in the street pay attention to the traffic lights.

in which the verb is a non-finite one.


Having in view that not all adverbial clauses are both finite and
non-finite and that certain conditions are necessary to reduce a finite
clause to a non-finite one, we will discuss the structure of the clauses
within each functional type of adverbial clause.

220
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

12.3. Adverbial Clauses of Time


Adverbial clauses of time establish temporal relationships
between two actions or two events. In order to establish the temporal
relationship we have to see when the action of the main clause takes
place in relation to the subordinate time clause.
In the following sentences introduced by time subordinators we
distinguish three situations.

(1) When he was a student, he worked hard.


(2) After he had graduated, he worked as a teacher.
(3) He wont get a better job until he finishes his teaching
practice.

In example (1) the two actions are simultaneous. In example (2)


the action of graduating took place before he got the job and in
example (3) getting a better job will follow the completion of the
action in the subordinate clause.
This means that the temporal relationships express three basic
situations: (1) simultaneity, (2) anteriority, and (3) posteriority.
Also adverbial clauses can express other time relations as the
beginning of an action related to another one, a short lapse of time
between two actions, a.s.o. as some of the adverbial modifiers did.
These relations are signalled by the subordinator used.

12.3.1. Finite Time Clauses

Adverbial clauses of time are introduced by the following


subordinators: when, while, whenever, after, before, as, as soon
as, as long as, once, till, until, since

1. When he graduated, he realized there were many things


he didnt know.
2. He met his future wife while he was studying in Paris.
3. Join us whenever you like.
4. After his mother died, David was taken to an orphanage.
5. They had left school before the exams started.
6. As he was walking down the street, he noticed the girl in
red.
7. Check your mail as soon as you get home.
8. I wont forget my school friends as long as I live.
9. Once you get to know him, youll like him.
10. They were not allowed to leave till/until they had
finished their task.
11. I havent seen my friend since I was in Bucharest.

From these examples we can see that simultaneity can be


expressed by using the subordinators when, while, and as,
(sentences 1, 2 and 6), anteriority is expressed by using after,
(sentence 4), posteriority is expressed by before, (sentence 5) or
till, until, (sentence 10). There are other time relationships as:

221
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)
period of time expressed by as long as, (sentence 8), short lapse of
time between two actions, as soon as and once, (sentences 7 and
9), frequency expressed by whenever, (sentence 3), and beginning
of the action, since, (sentence 11).

Stop and think!

If the relationship between the actions is marked by the


subordinators, what is the time reference of the actions expressed
by? Is there any relationship between the tenses used in the time
clause and the main clause?
Write down your answers in the space below. Check them as
you read on.

In a complex sentence in which we have a time clause, as in


other cases of making up messages, we can refer to a past, a
present or a future time. In expressing temporal relationships we
have to make sure to what time we refer and to use the adequate
tenses.

A. Expressing temporal relations with reference to past time

Past time actions are expressed by the past tenses simple


and continuous past, simple and continuous past perfect.

Main Clause Time Clause


Past Simple or Continuous Past Simple or Continuous
We stood up when the teacher entered the
room.
I was writing while he was reading.
They were playing cards when I entered the room.

Past Past Perfect


He left the town after he had won the
scholarship.

Past Perfect Past


He had left the town before his parents died.

Past Perfect Continuous Past


He had been reading when his friends called.
222
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

A special construction to express time relationship in the past is


expressed by the correlatives no sooner than; hardly when
with Past Perfect and past tense.

No sooner had they got home than it started pouring.


Hardly had he entered his office when the phone started
ringing.

The relationship between the two actions is that of simultaneity,


and the construction with correlatives emphasizes this relationship
between two instantaneous actions. The emphatic value of the
construction is marked by the inversion between the subject and the
auxiliary had in the first clause.

B. Expressing temporal relations with reference to present time

Main Clause Time Clause


Present Simple or Continuous Present Simple or Continuous
You can do your homework while I am watching TV.
He is working whenever I go to see him.

With present time reference we use the present perfect tense to


refer to an action which started in the past and goes on at the
moment of speaking. The subordinator we use in this case is always
since and the use of tenses is restricted to Present Perfect in the
main clause and Past Tense in the subordinated clause.

Main Clause Time Clause


Present Perfect Simple or Past Tense Simple
Continuous
She has been working hard since she became a mother.

C. Expressing temporal relations with reference to future time

Time clauses that refer to the future are made with the verb in
the Present tense or Present Perfect tense, while in the main clause
we can use a future tense or the imperative.

Main Clause Time Clause


Future, Imperative, Present Present, Present Perfect
He will be here before the clock strikes 10.
Do it after I leave.
She has dinner when she has finished her
work.

The present tense is used instead of the future tense and the
present perfect instead of the future perfect tense.

223
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

NOTE!
Future tenses are not used in time clauses.

We have to make sure that the when introduced clause is a


time clause because when also introduces relative clauses or
nominal clauses.

There will come a time when you will understand older


people.
[relative clause referring to the noun time]

He doesnt know when his friends will come.


[direct object clause after the transitive verb know]

Time clauses can take initial or end position in the complex


sentence. When the time clause takes initial position, it is separated
by a comma from the main clause.

SAQ 1
Complete the adverbial clause of time with the verb given in
brackets in the appropriate tense. Pay attention to the tense used in
the main clause and to the subordinator which signals the temporal
relationship between the two actions. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. After she (graduate) had graduated from the university,


she got married.

2. He always has breakfast before he (go) _____ to school.

3. John has made good progress since (start) _____


studying English.

4. When they (arrive) _____ at the station, the train had


already left.

5. Some students were working on a project while others


(try to solve) _____ a difficult problem.

6. You will get wet before you (get) _____ home.

7. He was very happy when he (hear) _____ the news.

8. I will help you when you (ask) _____ me to.

9. As they were driving along the road, they (see) _____


some deer.

10. No sooner had he locked the door, than somebody (ring)


_____ the bell.
224
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

12.3.2. Non-Finite Clauses

Time clauses can also have a verb in a non-finite form. If we want to


say:

While he was walking down the street, he met his friend.

we can reduce it to:

While walking down the street, he met his friend.

Similarly, if we want to say:

Once the book is published, the book will be successful.

we can reduce it to:

Once published, the book will be successful.

Non-finite time clauses can occur when the subject of the main
clause is identical with the subject of the time clause, and so the
subject of the time clause can be omitted.
The non-finite forms in ing and ed result from the reduction
of the continuous and of the passive forms of the verb by omitting the
verb be, and the subject of the time clause.

After the doctor had consulted the patient, the doctor


prescribed the necessary medicine.

This time clause can be reduced to:

After having consulted the patient, the doctor prescribed the


necessary medicine.

If the verb is in the Past Perfect tense, it is replaced by a perfect


participle (having + main verb + -ed).
In non-finite time clauses, the while and after subordinators are
optional.

While walking down the street, he met his friend.


or
Walking down the street, he met his friend.

After having consulted the patient, the doctor prescribed the


necessary medicine.

or
Having consulted the patient, the doctor prescribed the
necessary medicine.

225
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

SAQ 2
Rewrite the time clause in bold into a non-finite clause making the
necessary changes. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. After they had dinner, they went for a walk.


Having had dinner, they went for a walk.

2. While he was working, he came across an interesting solution.


___________________________________

3. He cant be sure of the result until he has finished the


experiment.
___________________________________

4. After the tourists had visited the museum, they left the small
town.
___________________________________

5. Once the results are verified, they can be published.


___________________________________

6. He always has breakfast before he goes to school.


___________________________________

12.4. Adverbial Clauses of Place

Stop and think!

When we refer to place we think of exact location, positioning


objects or we think of direction or destination. How were these
concepts expressed in the simple sentence with reference to the
action?
Write down your answers in the space below and take them
with you to the next tutorial to discuss them with your classmates
and tutor.

226
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

The concept of place is best expressed by prepositional


phrases which can be directly linked to the verb. As there are fewer
possibilities to express place relations between actions, the adverbial
clauses of place are less frequent and there are only two
subordinators which introduce such clauses.
Adverbial clauses of place are introduced by where and
wherever and can take initial or end position.

Stay where you are!


Wherever he went, he made new friends.
You can go wherever you want.

NOTE!
The subordinator where also introduces relative clauses and
nominal clauses, which do not establish relationships between
actions but refer to a noun (in the relative clause) or perform a
syntactic noun function (the nominal clause) in the complex
sentence.

12.5. Adverbial Clauses of Manner


In comparison with the adverbial modifiers in the simple
sentence, which constitute a large and diversified class, the clause of
manner represents a minor category. In establishing manner
relationships between two actions, we actually compare the way in
which two actions are performed.

Do (something) as he does (something).

The means by which this comparison between two actions is


expressed is signalled by the subordinators: as, than, just as, as if,
as though.

They treat him as they treat an old man.


Follow the instructions just as I do.
You work harder than I do.

In case of using as if or as though, we usually compare two


situations or actions but one of them, that expressed by the
subordinate clause, is hypothetical or not true.

It looks as if its going to rain.


She looked as if she was frightened.

The two actions is going to rain, was frightened are only


hypothetical. We are not sure whether it will be raining, or whether
she was frightened or not.

227
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

When the comparison of two situations refers to one which is


not real or true, in the as if / as though clause, the subjunctive form
of the verb is used.

He speaks as if/as though he were an expert in all fields.

It is clear that a person cannot be an expert in all fields, so the


situation expressed in the adverbial clause is not real.

He told the story as if he had been its main character.

With reference to past, we express the same idea of unreal


situation by using in the subordinate the past perfect form of the
verb with its subjunctive value.

SAQ 3
Complete the following sentences with the appropriate form of the
verb given in brackets to indicate real, hypothetical and unreal
comparison between the two actions. Pay attention to the
subordinators. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. This child behaves as if he (be) a grown-up.


This child behaves as if he were a grown-up.

2. When in Rome do as the Roman (do).


___________________________________

3. What happened? You look as if you (see) a ghost.


___________________________________

4. Relax! You talk as if you (be) in a hurry.


___________________________________

5. Her eyes were red, and she looked as if she (be crying).
___________________________________

6. He should behave as his parents (teach) him to behave.


___________________________________

228
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

12.6. Adverbial Clauses of Purpose

Stop and think!

If you are asked: What is the purpose of someone working in


a school? what would you say? Write your answer in the space
below. Start your sentence with:

Someone works in a school ________________________

Check your answer as you read on.

Adverbial clauses of purpose denote the aim of the action in


the main clause, which can refer to a state or to another action.

1. They work hard in order to become rich.


2. They got up early in order to catch the first bus to the
resort.
3. The teacher always speaks clearly so that his pupils
can understand him.

The words in bold are adverbial clauses of purpose which show the
aim of performing the actions in the main clauses. So the purpose of
working hard is to become rich (1); the purpose of getting up early
was to catch the bus (2), and the purpose of speaking clearly is that
the pupils may understand him (the teacher)(3).

12.6.1. Non-Finite Clauses


Purpose clauses fall into two distinct groups: finite and non-
finite. As we have already seen with the adverbial modifiers, the
concept of purpose is expressed rather by another action than by a
prepositional phrase. The action can be expressed by the long
infinitive or by a finite form of the verb.
Non-finite purpose clauses are very common in speech as
they refer to the doer of the main action who pursues the aim of that
action.

1. I got up early to be at school in time.


2. He works hard in order to get better marks.

In both examples the same subjects, I (1) and he (2), refer to


both actions, the one in the main clauses and the aimed one in the
subordinate clause.

Non-finite clauses with the infinitive are used when the subject of
the main clause is identical with the subject of the purpose clause.

229
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

Non-finite clauses can be signalled by the following subordinators:


in order + long infinitive, and so as not + long infinitive for negative
purpose.

Non-finite affirmative subordinate clauses can take initial position


or end position, while negative ones usually take end position.

In order to understand what happened, we should ask the


witness.
To get better results, you have to repeat the experiment.
They stopped at the bookstore to buy the new dictionary.
Peter spoke in a low voice so as not to disturb his
neighbours.
He started to run so as not to miss the bus.

In initial position the subordinate clause is separated by a


comma from the main clause.

12.6.2. Finite Clauses


Finite purpose clauses are used when one action is
performed by a doer, the subject of the main clause. The aim is
directed towards another subject.

The teacher translated the text so that the pupils could


understand it.

The subject in the main clause is the teacher while in the subordinate
clause the subject is the pupils.
Finite purpose clauses are introduced by the following
subordinators: so that, in order that in affirmative clauses and for
fear that or lest in negative clauses.
With purpose clauses, as with other subordinate clauses, there
is a relationship between the tenses or verbs that are to be used in
the main clause and the subordinate clause.

The subordinate clause usually contains a modal verb as:


can/could, may / might, should or the auxiliary will / would, shall
/ should.

Ill explain it to you so that you can do it yourself.


I explained it to him so that he could do it.
The teacher explained the words so that the pupils might
understand them better.
Ill bring you a chair so that you will feel more comfortable.
Mary phoned her mother so that she wouldnt worry.
He had gone there so that his friends wouldnt consider him
a coward.

The relationship of verb forms in the two clauses is the


following:

230
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

Main Clause Subordinate


clause
Future can
Indicative Present may
Imperative Present shall
Perfect will

Past could
Indicative Past Perfect might
should
would

Negative purpose clauses introduced by for fear that, lest are


always formed with should in the affirmative, as the negative
meaning is expressed by the subordinators.

She has locked the door lest someone should get in.
She locked the door for fear that someone should get in.

Finite purpose clauses take only end position.

We can use finite purpose clauses with the two clauses having the
same subject when the action in the subordinate clause has a modal
connotation and is rather hypothetical than factual.

They work overtime so that they may earn more money.


Write it down so that you wont forget it.
He didnt move lest he should be heard.

Compare:

They work overtime in order to earn more money.


They work overtime so that they may earn more money.

With the infinitive, the non-finite purpose clause is considered to be


a fact that those who work overtime earn more money, while in the
finite clause we consider working overtime as a possibility of earning
more money.

231
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

SAQ 4
Complete the following main clauses with a purpose clause by
using the verb in brackets in the appropriate form. Pay attention to a)
the subordinator; b) subjects of main clause and subordinate clause.
The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Come nearer so that I (see) you better.


Come nearer so that I can see you better.

2. He went to England in order (learn) English better.


________________________________________

3. He didnt say anything, lest he (hurt) his friends feelings.


________________________________________

4. The child hid behind the door so as not (be seen).


________________________________________

5. They have finished the work earlier so that they (go)


somewhere tonight.
________________________________________

6. Many people eat only vegetables in order (get slimmer).


________________________________________

7. Mary will take a week off in order (do) the spring


cleaning.
________________________________________

8. Take an umbrella so that you (not get wet).


________________________________________

9. He decided to live in a village in order (learn) about folk


traditions.
________________________________________

10. The leader of the group gave the tourists a map for fear
that they (lose) their way.
________________________________________

Summary
Adverbial Clauses
o express concepts like time, reason, purpose, etc., and
establish relationships between actions
o are introduced by subordinators
o can be finite and non-finite

232
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

Adverbial clauses of time


establish temporal relationships between actions and events:

Finite clauses
subordinators: when, whenever, which, as, once, after,
before, as soon as, as long as, since, till, until
time tense relationship observed between main clause
and subordinate clause
no future tense in the subordinate clause to express
futurity

Non-finite clauses
subordinators: optional
the ing or ed forms of the verb are the non-finite forms
of the verb
the two actions are performed by or refer to the same
subject

Adverbial clauses of place (finite clauses)


subordinators: where, wherever

Adverbial clauses of manner (comparison between two actions


finite clauses)
subordinators: as, than, just as, as if, as though
verb forms used:
o indicative
o subjunctive

Adverbial clauses of purpose


express the aim of performing an action
the aim is expressed by another action

Non-finite clauses
expressed by the long infinitive of the verb
subordinators:
o in order affirmative clauses
o so as not negative clauses
identical subject for main clause and subordinate clause

Finite clauses
verbs used in the subordinate clause
o can/could
o may/might + main verb
o shall/should
o will/would
subordinators:
o so that, in order that in the affirmative clause
o for fear that, lest in the negative clause
subject of the main clause different from subject of the
subordinate clause or same subject for both clauses with
modal connotation of the action in the subordinate clause

233
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

Key Concepts
time clause
temporal relationship
o simultaneity
o anteriority
o posteriority
subordinators
finite clause
non-finite clause
emphasis
inversion
clause of place
clause of purpose
clause of manner
clause of comparison
indicative
subjunctive
hypothetical

Selected Bibliography
1. Beaumont, D., Granger, C. The Heinemann ELT English Grammar,
MacMillan Heinemann, 1989, 1992, pp. 244 - 249

2. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin


Books, 1990, pp. 29 - 39

234
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

PA No. 9
I. Underline the subordinate clauses of time, place, manner and
purpose in the following texts.
1. As we were leaving, my father came up to where my mother
was and they stopped the carriage to kiss me good-bye.
2. I was met by my nurse before I got to the door, and she took
me into the house. Her grief burst out when she first saw me;
but she controlled it and spoke in whispers as if the dead
could be disturbed.
3. When he got near the house he got out of the car as quickly
as he could so that he might not be in that company which he
disliked so much.

II. Complete the following sentences with finite or non-finite


adverbial clauses of your own according to the type required in
brackets. Use the appropriate subordinators.
1. John was sent __________. [Place]
2. They must go home __________. [Time]
3. They opened all the windows __________. [Purpose]
4. The boys behaved __________. [Manner comparison]
5. __________ he became very famous. [Time]
6. Wait for me here __________. [Time]
7. The pilot opened the emergency door __________.
[Purpose]
8. __________ he was happy. [Place]
9. I havent heard from him __________. [Time]
10. Children usually talk __________. [Manner comparison]
11. They decided to leave the camp __________. [Time]
12. They booked rooms at the hotel __________. [Purpose]
13. They parked the car __________. [Place]
14. Charity organizations are formed __________. [Purpose]
15. I will write to him __________. [Time]
16. They always light fire in the fireplace __________. [Time]
17. He put on his glasses __________. [Purpose]
18. Why dont you talk to them __________. [Manner
comparison]
19. __________ he found an old letter. [Time]
20. People learn foreign languages __________. [Purpose]

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

235
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (I)

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
2. goes
3. started
4. arrived
5. were trying
6. get
7. heard
8. ask
9. saw
10. rang

SAQ 2
2. while working
3. until having finished
4. (after) Having visited the museum, the students
5. Once verified, the results can be published.
6. / before going to school

SAQ 3
2. do
3. had seen
4. were
5. were/had been crying
6. teach

SAQ4
2. to learn
3. should hurt
4. not to be seen
5. may go
6. to get slimmer
7. to do
8. wont get wet
9. to learn
10. should lose

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

12.3. for SAQ 1


12.3.2 for SAQ 2
12.5 for SAQ 3
12.6.1 and 12.6.2 for SAQ 4

236
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

UNIT 13

SUBORDINATE CLAUSES (III). ADVERBIAL CLAUSES (II)

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 238


13.1. What are Conditional Clauses 238
13.1.1. Classification of Conditional Clauses 239
13.1.1.1. Factual Conditionals or Type 0 241
SAQ 1 242
13.1.1.2. Open Conditionals Type 1 242
SAQ 2 244
13.1.1.3. Hypothetical Conditionals Type 2 245
SAQ 3 246
13.1.1.4. Unreal Past Conditionals Type 3 247
SAQ 4 249
13.2. Adverbial Clauses of Concession 250
SAQ 5 253
13.3. Adverbial Clauses of Reason 253
13.4. Adverbial Clauses of Result 255
SAQ 6 257
Summary 258
Key Concepts 259
Selected Bibliography 259
SAA No. 4 260
Answers to SAQs 261

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Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

The subordinate clauses of condition, concession, reason and


result are very well represented as in complex messages we usually
relate actions or events to each other in terms of condition, contrast,
cause and consequence.
All these subordinate clauses are introduced by identifiable
subordinators, but in order to interpret their meaning, we also have to
take into account the logical relationship that is made between the
two clauses, main and subordinate and the kind of statements they
express.
The verb forms are also very important not only because tenses
indicate the time of the actions or events, but also because the use
of one verb forms in one clause requires a certain verb form in the
other one. Unlike the time clauses or purpose clauses which are
frequently used in their non-finite form, these clauses are mostly
used as finite-verb clauses.

After you have studied this unit and completed the tasks you
should be able to:

unit understand the logical relationships between the main


objectives clause and the subordinate clause and the concepts
expressed by these subordinate clauses
identify the types of conditional clauses
construct adequate conditionals according to the kind of
condition: real, hypothetical, imaginary and unreal
use the appropriate verb forms for each type
express the concept of contrast by means of clauses of
concession
identify clauses of reason and result
make up complex sentences with adverbial clauses to
express the concept of reason and result

13.1. What are Conditional Clauses

Conditional clauses are clauses in which the fulfilment of the


action expressed in the subordinate clause makes possible the
fulfilment of the action in the main clause. In other words, they state
the condition that must be satisfied in order for something to happen
or to become true or not in the main clause. Subsequently, there is a
tight relationship between the main clause and the subordinate
clause, hence the term conditional sentences or simply
conditionals. For example, if we take the following sentences:

a) If you boil water, it vaporizes.


b) If I have some spare time, I always read.
c) If he says that, he knows the truth.
d) If I have time, Ill read this new novel.
e) If I had time, I should/would read this novel.
f) If I had had time, I should/would have read this novel.

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Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

All the clauses in bold are conditional clauses which express


the condition that must be fulfilled

a) for the water to boil


b) for me to read
c) for him to say that
d) for me to read
e) for me to read
f) for me to read

But as we can see, there are differences in meaning if we


analyse these sentences. For instance, in sentence b) the two
actions refer to a real situation, a habit. In sentence d) the actions
refer to a future possible fulfilment of the action while in sentence f)
the two actions were not fulfilled. These different meanings are
signalled by the various verb forms that we use in the two clauses.
Having in view that conditional clauses are of different types
according to the meaning they convey and the verb forms they are
constructed with, they are classified in groups identifiable according
to these two criteria meaning and verb form.

13.1.1. Classification of Conditional Clauses


Conditional clauses are classified according to their truth-
value at the moment of speaking and the degree of possibility
according to which the action in the main clause will be/is/was
fulfilled or not.

The first group of conditionals are those which express a


general truth, a habitual action or a logical deduction. They are called
factual conditionals:

a) If you boil water, it vaporizes. [general truth]


b) If I have some spare time, I always read. [habitual]
c) If he says that, he knows the truth. [logical
deduction]

For practical reasons we will refer to these clauses as Type 0.

The second group of conditionals refers to a situation which


is not true for the moment. It may or may not become true in the
future or to a situation which may be remote or close to the present
time as in the following sentences:

If I have time, Ill read this new novel.


If he goes there, he will see the changes.
If you have time, lets go to the movies.

These conditionals are called open conditionals Type 1.

239
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

A third group of conditionals are those in which the condition


represents only a hypothesis or an imaginary action or situation with
reference to a present fact.

If I had time, I should read the novel.


If we started now, we would get there in time.

In both cases, the conditional clauses are only hypothetical


statements. Neither of the actions is seen as possible to be
performed at the moment of speaking. These clauses are
hypothetical improbable conditionals.
When the statement expressed in the conditional clause is
imaginary, out of touch with reality or present reality, we can speak of
an unreal present hypothesis.

If I were a princess, I should wear a long dress.


[purely imaginary]
If I had money, I should travel all over the world.
[its my dream to do that as some people
do travel round the world]

These conditionals are completely unreal now. We will refer to


both kinds, hypothetical improbable or imaginary, as Type 2.

The last group of conditionals refers to situations when the


condition was not fulfilled in the past, so the whole situation is viewed
as unreal as the action in the main clause did not happen.

If he had gone to the conference, he would have met a


famous scientist.
[he didnt go, so he did not meet the scientist]
If he had studied more, he wouldnt have failed his exam.
[he didnt study, so he failed the exam]

We will call these clauses conditionals of unreal past or Type


3.

So, we distinguish the following groups of conditionals:

Type 0 factual conditionals


Type 1 open conditional
Type 2 hypothetical improbable/imaginary conditionals
Type 3 conditionals of unreal past

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Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

13.1.1.1. Factual Conditionals or Type 0

Type 0 Conditionals, first and foremost, express statements of


universal truth or general validity which have been experimented or
experienced.

If the temperature goes below 0 degree, water freezes.


If you heat butter, it melts.

In such conditionals both verb forms are in the simple Present


tense as expressing a general truth. Also, in the main clause, it is
possible to use the modal will as a frequentative modal verb.
By saying If you heat butter, it will melt instead of If you heat
butter, it melts, the truth value of the statement is not changed. It
only focuses on the fact that whenever one heats butter the same
phenomenon will take place.

Type 0 conditionals also refer to habitual actions which


depend on a condition to be performed.

If she has money to spend, she always buys flowers.


If I get up early, I always listen to the weather forecast.

In these instances, the if-clause is synonymous in meaning


with a clause like: When she has money to spend or Whenever I get
up early. The verb form which is used in both clauses is the simple
present. If we refer to such a habitual situation in the past, in both
clauses simple past is used.

If she had money to spend, she always bought flowers.


If I got up early, I always listened to the weather forecast.

A variation of a factual conditional is that which is based on a


logical deduction. The speaker assumes that with the condition
fulfilled, the action in the main clause should be a fact.

If he has accepted the proposal, he knows what it is about.


If he went there, he found out the truth.
If he works the land, he must be a farmer.

The factual feature of this conditional is signalled by the tenses


of the Indicative mood which are used in both clauses or the modal
must in the main clause with its meaning of logical deduction.

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Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

SAQ 1
Answer the following questions which refer to general truth or
habitual actions by providing the main clause. When the question
refers to you, answer with a personal response having I as subject.
The first two are done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. What happens if ice is heated?


If ice is heated, it melts.

2. What do you do if you are late?


If I am late, I take a taxi.

3. What happens if you dont water the flowers?


__________________________________

4. What do you do if you are hungry?


__________________________________

5. What happens if there is a fire?


__________________________________

6. Where do people go if they are very ill?


__________________________________

7. What happens to the plants in the field if the temperature


goes below 0 degrees?
__________________________________

8. What do you do if you have some spare time?


__________________________________

9. What happens if a tree is struck by lightning?


__________________________________

10. What do you do if you want to see a film?


__________________________________

13.1.1.2. Open Conditionals Type 1

Type 1 conditionals are used when the speaker considers that


the action in the main clause may happen or is likely to happen on
condition that the action in the subordinate clause is or will be
fulfilled.

If I need help, Ill ask someone to help me.


If you have finished, lets go.
If you want some coffee, I can make you some.

242
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

In the case of this type of conditionals, as in all the other types,


there is a close relationship between the verbs used in the main
clause and the subordinate clause.
In the conditional subordinate clause we use a Present or
Present Perfect tense, while in the main clause we can use Future
tense, an Imperative or a modal verb as in the above sentences.

Subordinate Clause Main Clause


If Present Tense Future Tense
Present Perfect Tense Imperative
Modal + Main verb

NOTE!
There are some variations of verb form usage in these
conditionals:
a) in the if-clause we can use the verb should to indicate
that the speaker considers the condition less likely to
be fulfilled: If I should need help is less likely to happen
than If I need help. In such instances, we can drop the
conjunction if and invert should with the subject:
Should I need help, Ill ask someone to help me.
Should he come here, tell him that Ill be back soon.

The meaning of should is synonymous with that of by


any chance.
b) in the if-clause we can use the verb will with its modal
meaning of willingness.
If you will help me, Ill be grateful.
If he will book the tickets for us, well surely go to the
movies.

243
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

Stop and think!

Are there such instances in your mother tongue when you


use a conditional associated with the idea of any chance, or a
conditional used to refer to the willingness of the subject?
In the space below write down your answers with examples
and compare with the examples in English. Take your examples to
the next tutorial and discuss them with your classmates and your
tutor.

Such modal variations of the open conditionals exist in other


languages too (Romanian and Hungarian, for example), only that the
means by which they are expressed are different, namely rather
lexical than grammatical.

SAQ 2
a) Complete the following sentences with the appropriate form
(future or imperative) of the verb given in brackets. The first one is
done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. If he comes, he (meet) my best friend.


If he comes, he will meet my best friend.

2. If it rains so hard, they (get wet).


___________________________________

3. If you think that youll be late, (call up) me.


___________________________________

244
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

4. If he is not careful, he (drop) the plates.


___________________________________

5. If dinner is ready, (eat).


___________________________________

6. If he writes to me, I (answer) him.


___________________________________

7. If the weather is fine, we (go) for a walk.


___________________________________

8. If he works hard, he (pass) the exam.


___________________________________

9. If the people have gathered, (start) the lecture.


___________________________________

10. If you know the truth, (tell) it.


___________________________________

b) Rewrite sentences 1 and 6 with should + the main verb, instead of


the simple present.

1. __________________________________

6. __________________________________

13.1.1.3. Hypothetical Conditionals Type 2

These conditionals refer to a situation which at the moment of


speaking is a mere possibility or an imaginary situation contrary to
reality.

If I won the lottery, I should/would/could buy a new car.

The possibility lies in my winning the lottery as I play the lottery


and if that could become reality then I can fulfil the action in the main
clause.
In the next example:

If I were a princess, I should wear a long dress.

the situation in the conditional is completely imaginary [I am not and


there is no way for me to become a princess], so the action in the
main clause, linked to the situation in the subordinate clause is also
imaginary.
The relationship between the two clauses with Type 2
conditionals is also marked by the verb forms.

245
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

Conditional Main Clause


Clause
were should/would
If had + Main verb +
went Main verb
bought

The past form of the verb in the conditional clause is called past
tense only for practical reasons. Actually it is the subjunctive form
of the verb, subjunctive which expresses an action contrary to
reality at the moment of speaking. The subjunctive form of the
verb is expressed only by the verb to be, the form were in the first
person singular and plural.
The main clause is constructed with the conditional mood
should/would + the short infinitive of the verb. The use of would
is more common, and the contracted forms are common in speech: I
would go/Id go.

If there are modal connotations of the action in the main clause,


then the modals could and might can be used.
If you explained it to me more clearly, I could understand it.
[ability]
If he left earlier, he might catch the train.
[possibility]

NOTE!
As with the open conditionals, there occurs the situation when
the willingness of the subject in the conditional clause is
required for the fulfillment of the action in the main clause. In
such instances, would is used in the if-clause:
If you would be so kind to help me, I could finish by
two oclock.
Actually, this conditional functions as a polite request.

SAQ 3
a) Complete the following sentences with the appropriate auxiliary
or modal (should, would, could, might) of the verb given in brackets.
The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. If you joined me, I (be pleased).


If you joined me, I would be pleased.

2. If he knew the truth, he surely (tell) it.


___________________________________

246
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)
3. If he were in good shape, he (work) in the garden.
___________________________________

4. If the teacher had time, he (join) the pupils party.


___________________________________

5. If you explained it to me, I (be able) to solve the problem.


___________________________________

6. If you did as I told you, you (win).


___________________________________

7. If he were a prince, he (marry) a princess.


___________________________________

8. If I were you, I (go) to see a doctor.


___________________________________

9. If you phoned him, you (not worry).


___________________________________

10. If no one came to the party, what you (do)?


___________________________________

b) Answer the following questions of imaginary situations, referring to


yourself. The first one is done for you.
1. What would you do if you saw a bear?
I would run away as fast as I could.

2. What would you look for if you found yourself on a deserted island?
___________________________________

3. What would you do if you were the president of a country?


___________________________________

4. What would you do if you found yourself lost in a big city?


___________________________________

5. What would you do if you lived in a glass-house?


___________________________________

13.1.1.4. Unreal Past Conditionals Type 3

These conditionals represent situations and events contrary to


a past fact. The condition of the if-clause refers to a past event which
makes the action in the main clause remain unfulfilled (so contrary to
reality).

If I hadnt been caught in the heavy rain, I would have caught


the train.
If I had left earlier, I would have caught the train.
247
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

The event of being caught in the rain and the fact that I did not
leave early enough, made the catching of the train impossible.
The relationship between the main clause and the subordinate
clause is also signalled by the verb forms. The Past Perfect form of
the verb in the if-clause refers to an unreal situatio, so it is actually a
past subjunctive which expresses past situations contrary to reality.
In the main clause, the form of the verb is should / would +
have + -ed.

Conditional Clause Main Clause


If had been should/would
had had + have + -ed
had bought could/might
+ have + -ed

If he had been a doctor, he could have helped you.


If I had had money, I could have bought more presents.
If they had bought more books, each student could/might
have had one.

NOTE!
The conjunction if can be omitted with this type of conditional.
In such cases inversion between the auxiliary had and the
subject takes place:
If they had bought more books
Had they bought more books

All three types of conditionals can be introduced by the


following subordinators: if, provided that, on condition that and unless
for negative sentences.
Provided that and on condition that are used in more formal
contexts.

Tourists can travel from one country to another provided that /


on condition that they held valid passports.
You could get this job provided that/on condition that you
mastered two foreign languages.
They would have hired him on condition that he could have
spoken their language.

Unless in negative clauses is synonymous with if not, but its


use is more emphatic.

You wont get your cake, unless you eat your soup.
Dont ask for their help, unless you are in real need of it.

In the negative conditional clause introduced by unless the


verb is in the affirmative.

248
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

NOTE!
Conditional subordinate clauses can take both initial position
and end position, but in the end position the focus is rather on
the result than on the condition:
Youll drop it if you are not careful.

SAQ 4
a) Complete the following sentences with the appropriate form of
the verb given in brackets (should/would/could/might + have + -ed).
The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. If he had taken his medicine, he (feel) much better.


If he had taken his medicine, he would have felt much
better.
2. If she had read the novel, she (know) what the story was.
________________________________________

3. If he had spoken more clearly, we (understand) him


better.
________________________________________

4. If he had taken a taxi, he (arrive) there in time.


________________________________________

5. If he had taken his parents advice, he (study) in


England.
________________________________________

6. If he had known that his friend was ill, he (visit) him.


________________________________________

7. If the rains hadnt been so heavy, the crop (be saved).


________________________________________

8. If he had realized the importance of the matter, he


(examine) it more accurately.
________________________________________

9. If they had invited him, he (come).


________________________________________

10. If he hadnt been such an expert, he (not get) the job.


________________________________________

b) Rewrite sentences 2, 3, 5, 6, and 8 omitting if and inverting the


auxiliary had with the subject. The first one (2) is done for you:

249
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)
Had she read the novel
3. __________________________

5. __________________________

6. __________________________

8. __________________________

13.2. Adverbial Clauses of Concession


The concept of concession as expressed by the subordinate
clause refers to a statement which is set in contrast with that of the
main clause. This contrast between the two clauses is seen as
unexpected or unusual.

Although they were poor, they were happy.


Though it was very late, my friend called.
However old he was, he still worked.

The two statements can be set separately and then connected


by the subordinator.

They were poor.


They were happy.

It was very late.


My friend called.

He was old,
He still worked.

Stop and think!

How else can we connect two simple sentences to express


contrast?
Try to link the pairs by another syntactic means and write
down your answers in the space below. Check your answers as you
read on.

250
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

Contrast can be expressed also by the coordinating conjunction


but. We can rewrite the following pairs as:

They were poor but (they were) happy.


*It was very late but my friend called.
He was old but he worked.

Still, as there are only certain situations when we contrast two


statements with the coordinating conjunction but, the clauses of
concession offer more possibilities and shades of meaning than the
coordinated clauses. For instance, the sentence It was very late
but my friend called. is not a properly built sentence and should be
replaced by Although it was very late.

Clauses of concession are introduced by the following


subordinators: although, though, however, no matter how/what,
even though.

Although it was quite late, they decided to go on.


There was no audience, though/even though the show was
advertised.
However much he liked the idea, he couldnt accept the offer.
No matter how hard he tried, he couldnt win the match.
No matter what you say, Ill be going.

Adverbial clauses of concession can take initial position or end


position, although clauses introduced by no matter how/what and
however usually take initial position.

Clauses of concession generally refer to an action which is


assumed as a fact by the speaker. Still, with the clauses introduced
by however and no matter how, there are two cases regarding the
reality or non-reality of the action. This difference is signalled by the
verb form.
If the action in the subordinate clause is considered as real,
then the form of the verb is one of the indicative mood, usually
present or past tense.

No matter how hard he works, he doesnt make much money.


However hard he worked, he still didnt earn much money.

When the action in the subordinate clause is seen as


hypothetical, then the main verb is associated with may/might.

No matter how hard he may work, he doesnt make much


money.
However hard he might have worked, he couldnt have made
much money.

With reference to the present time, in the subordinate clause we


use may / might + short infinitive of the main verb, while with

251
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)
reference to past time we use might + have + -ed. In the main verb a
modal is commonly used in such cases.

However busy he might be, he should call you.


No matter how difficult the problem might have been, he
could have tried to solve it.

NOTE!
The subordinators, however and no matter how are followed
by the adverb which functions as an adverbial modifier of
manner (work hard), or by an adjective which is the subject
complement of be (might have been difficult).

Adverbial clauses of concession can be reduced when the


subject of the subordinate clause is identical with that of the main
clause, and the predicate is a nominal predicate made up by the
linking verb be + an adjective which functions as subject
complement.

Though he was old, he still worked.

By reduction, we obtain:

Though old, he still worked.

namely, the subject and be are dropped.

Though (cars are) expensive, cars are to be seen everywhere.

Clauses of concession can be used emphatically by placing


in initial position, another constituent of the clause and having a
subordinator in second position before the subject.

Though he was old

can be made emphatic by placing the adjective old (subject


complement of the verb) in initial position, followed by though or as.

Old though he was, he still worked.


Old as he was, he still worked.

Rich though they were, they did not give to the poor.
Rich as they were, they did not give to the poor.

If the emphasis refers to an action, then the adverbial modifier


of manner takes first position followed by as. The most common
introductory construction is much as.

Much as I admire her, I dont like her.


Much as he worked, he couldnt finish in due time.

252
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)
All these emphatic constructions always take initial position and
in initial position, the adverbial subordinate clauses are separated by
a comma from the main clause.

SAQ 5
Combine the pair of statements set in contrast by using the
following subordinators of concession: although, though, even
though. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. It was cold and rainy. We enjoyed the trip.


Although / Though it was cold and rainy, we enjoyed
the trip.

2. He couldnt swim. He jumped into the river.


________________________________________
3. It was late. I went out for a walk.
________________________________________

4. Everybody was invited. A few persons came.


________________________________________

5. He was hungry and thirsty. He didnt stop.


________________________________________

6. They were good friends. They competed for the same


prize.
________________________________________

b) Rewrite sentences 3 and 5 starting with however. Sentence 1 is


done for you:

1. However cold and rainy it was, we enjoyed the trip.

3. ________________________________________

5.
______________________________________________

13.3. Adverbial Clauses of Reason

Frequently used as expressing the reason or cause of the event


or situation in the main clause, adverbial clauses of reason are
commonly introduced by the subordinators because, as and since.

They couldnt start early because the weather was foggy.


As John was away, Mary decided to stay at home.
Since Cathy was rich, it was assumed that she would make a
good wife.
253
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

Subordinate clauses of reason can take initial position or end


position, but because-introduced clauses take end position, while
clauses introduced by as and since take initial position.

Stop and think!

We have already mentioned as and since as subordinators.


What kind of other adverbial clauses do they introduce? What do
you think will be the difference between the following two
sentences?
As he was walking down the street, he found a paper bag
with money in it.
As John had the flue, he could not go to the concert.
Write down your answers in the space below. Check them as
you read on.

As and since also introduce adverbial clauses of time. Since


marks the beginning of an action and there is little or no confusion
between the two following sentences:

He has been working since he was a child.


Since he is a child, he is not allowed to work.

because in the first one we are told about the period of time since he
has been working, and in the second we are told about the reason
why he is not allowed to work, and the position of the two clauses are
different.
As for as, which both in the time clause and the clause of
reason can take initial positions, the logical relationship between the
two statements has to be taken into consideration.

(1) As he was walking in the street


he found the bag.

(2) As he had the flu


he couldnt go to the concert.

In the first case, the logical question is When did he find the
bag? while for the second case the question would be Why couldnt
he go to the concert?

254
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

Adverbial clauses of reason are dependent on their main


clause in offering reason or cause for the action expressed. As the
reason may be real or hypothetical, the forms of the verb are usually
linked to the logical time when the action is viewed as real. The verb
may be associated with a modal verb which expresses the attitude of
the speaker towards the reason when it is a presupposed reason. In
the following examples, the reason is viewed as real:

They did not come to the party because they went on a


holiday.
They havent come to the party because they are on holiday.

while in these examples the reason is only presupposed:

He hasnt come because he must be ill.


They have refused our offer because they may have another
better one.

Adverbial clauses of reason introduced by as can be reduced


to a non-finite clause.

(1) As he was a farmer, he knew how to work the land.


Being a farmer, he knew how to work the land.
(2) As he was the first to hear the news, he phoned his
friends.
Being/having been the first to hear the news, he phoned
his friends.

As with all non-finite adverbial clauses, the subject of the


subordinate clause is identical with the subject of the main clause.
The finite form of the verb is turned into a present participle or perfect
participle and no subordinator is used.

13.4. Adverbial Clauses of Result


The logical connection between a main clause and a
subordinate clause of result, lies in the fact that the subordinate
clause will follow as a consequence to the situation expressed in the
main clause. So the subordinate clause of result will always take end
position.

He was so ill that he couldnt be moved.


They had many friends and guests so that their house was
always full.

In both cases the situation expressed in the subordinate clause


is viewed as a result of the situation in the main clause.

255
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

NOTE!
So that is also used as a subordinator for the clause of
purpose. The difference lies in the relationship established
between the main clause and the subordinate clause.
Compare:
They watered the flowers so that they wouldnt die.
[the purpose of watering the flowers]
They watered the flowers so that they looked much
livelier.
[the result of watering the flowers]

The typical subordinators for the result clauses are the


correlatives so that and such that.

The old man was so tired that he sat down by the side of the
road.
He ran so fast that they couldnt catch him.

The so that correlative is used when the predicate is either


nominal and the subject complement is an adjective (was tired) or
when the main verb is modified by an adverb of manner (ran fast).
The such that correlative is used when such is associated
with a noun phrase.

These birds have such wings that they cannot fly.


He composed such marvellous music that he became
famous at once.

Sentences which contain adverbial clauses of result can be


made emphatic by placing the so + adjective / adverb construction
or the such + NP construction in initial position. This will be followed
by inversion.

So tired was the old man that he sat down by the side of the
road.
Such marvellous music did he compose, that he became
famous at once.

The verb forms in the clauses are related to one another and
belong to the Indicative mood.

They have been working so hard that they need a break now.
They had been working so hard that they needed a break.

Adverbial clauses of result cannot be reduced to non-finite


clauses.

256
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

SAQ 6
Complete the subordinate clauses of reason or result with the verb
given in brackets in the appropriate form. The first two are done for
you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. He sold his car because he (need) money.


He sold his car because he needed money.

2. The storm was so fierce that the ships (not leave) the
harbour.
The storm was so fierce that the ships could not leave
the harbour.

3. As he (have) the flue, Paul didnt come to school.


________________________________________

4. He was so angry that he (not speak).


________________________________________

5. They decided to postpone the meeting because there


(be) a power failure.
________________________________________

6. The movie was so boring that everybody (to fall asleep).


________________________________________

7. Since the weather (be) rainy, theyll play indoors.


________________________________________

8. He was such a man that everybody (love) him.


________________________________________

9. As he (not know) how to handle it, give him instructions.


________________________________________

10. The little boy sang so beautifully that everybody (stop) to


listen to him.
________________________________________

257
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

Summary
Conditional Clauses finite
o subordinators: if, unless, provided that/on condition that
o omission of if + inversion
o use of should/will/would in the subordinate clause

Classification of Conditional Clauses


Type 0 factual conditionals
general truth
habitual actions
logical deduction
verb forms Indicative (present or past)
Type 1 open conditionals
verb forms
o subordinate clause: present, present perfect
o main clause: future, imperative, modal verb +
main verb
Type 2 hypothetical or imaginary conditionals
verb forms
o subordinate clause: past form of the verb
o main clause: should/would/could/might +
main verb
Type 3 unreal past
verb forms
o subordinate clause: past perfect
o main clause: should/would/could/might +
have + -ed

Clauses of Concession
o subordinators: although, though, even though, however, no
matter how
o verb forms
subordinate clause: Indicative; may/might + main
verb
main clause: Indicative; modal + main verb
o finite
o reduced
o emphatic

Adverbial clauses of reason


subordinators: because, as, since
finite
non-finite introduced by as
verb forms: indicative; modal + main verb

Adverbial clauses of result


subordinators: so that, sothat, suchthat
finite clauses
emphatic clauses: initial position + inversion
verb forms: indicative; modal + main verb
258
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

Key Concepts
clauses of condition
o factual conditional
o open conditional
o hypothetical conditional
o imaginary conditional
o unreal past conditional
clauses of concession
o contrast
o hypothetical concession
emphasis
inversion
logical deduction
reduced clauses
clauses of reason/cause
correlative subordinator
subordinator
omission of the subordinator
modal connotations
modal verbs
subjunctive
imperative
indicative
auxiliary verbs

Selected Bibliography
1. Beaumont, D., Granger, C. The Heinemann ELT English
Grammar, MacMillan Heinemann, 1989, 1992, pp. 112 - 120

2. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin


Books, 1990, pp. 87 - 91

3. Murphy, R. English Grammar in Use, Cambridge University


Press, 1985, pp. 72 83

259
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)
SAA No. 4
I. State whether the following statements are true or false.
1. Factual conditionals are statements which express general
truth or habitual actions.
2. Open conditionals express conditions which can become true
in the future.
3. In an open conditional we can use any form of the verb.
4. Hypothetical or imaginary conditionals express a situation /
event which is not true at the moment of speaking.
5. Should or will/would can be used with modal connotations in
the conditional clause.
6. Conditionals of unreal past express an event or situation
which did not take place in the past.
7. The past perfect form of the verb in the conditional clause
expresses an action which was performed in the past.
8. The conjunction if cannot be omitted.
9. When we omit if, the auxiliary is inverted with the subject.
10. All conditional clauses express the condition upon which the
fulfilment of the action in the main clause is dependent.

II. Supply the correct form of the verb in the subordinate clauses.
Pay attention to the form of the verb in the main clause.
1. Tell him to call me if he (want) to see me.
2. If I (know) his address, I would write to him.
3. He would have heard something by now if anything
(happen).
4. If he (not do) it right now, he will do it for the next time.
5. You dont have to do it, unless you (want) to.
6. If you (want) some coffee, you should have told me so.
7. What will happen if you (not go) to work tomorrow?
8. Many people would like to go to the seaside if they (have)
money.
9. If she (like) the job, she would have applied for it.
10. I could have come, if you (invite) me.

III. Complete the following sentences with adverbial clauses of


concession, reason or result indicated in brackets. Provide your own
subordinator.
1. They went out for a picnic __________ [concession]
2. __________, I asked for another cup of tea. [reason]
3. __________ that they could hardly buy their daily bread.
[result]
4. __________, they live very simply. [concession]
5. She couldnt answer the question __________. [reason]
6. __________ that he couldnt even talk. [result]
7. __________, she couldnt persuade them to change their
mind. [concession]
8. __________, there is no use trying to go there. [reason]

260
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

9. __________ that they decided to see it once again.


[result]
10. __________, he still couldnt hear us. [concession]

Send your answers to your tutor.

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
the answers may differ in content, not in form:

3. If we dont water the flowers, they die.


4. If I am hungry, I eat.
5. If there is a fire, we call the firemen.
6. If people are very ill, they go to hospital.
7. If the temperature goes below zero, the plants freeze.
8. If I have some spare time, I watch TV.
9. If a tree is struck by lightning it catches fire.
10. If I want to see a film, I go to the cinema.

SAQ 2
a)
2. will get
3. call me up
4. will drop
5. lets eat
6. Ill answer him
7. well go
8. will pass
9. lets start
10. tell it

b)
1. If he should come, hell meet
6. If he should write to me, Ill answer.

SAQ 3
a)
2. would tell it
3. he could work
4. might join
5. should be able to
6. could win
7. would/could marry
8. would go to see
9. wouldnt worry
10. would you do?

261
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

b) the answers may differ in content, not in form:

2. If I found myself on a deserted island, I would look for drinkable


water.
3. If I were the President of a country, I would spend money for
education.
4. If I found myself lost in a big city, I would look for a policeman.
5. If I lived in a glass house, I wouldnt throw stones.

SAQ 4
a)
2. would have known
3. could have understood
4. might/would have arrived
5. could have studied
6. would have visited
7. would/might have been saved
8. would have examined it
9. he would have come
10. wouldnt/couldnt have got

b)
3. Had he spoken more clearly,
5. Had he taken his parents advice,
6. Had he known that his friend
8. Had he realized the importance

SAQ 5
a)
2. Though/Even though he couldnt swim, he jumped into the river.
3. Although it was late, I went for a walk.
4. Though/Even though everybody was invited, a few persons
came.
5. Although he was hungry and thirsty, he didnt stop.
6. Even though they were good friends, they competed for the same
prize.

b)
2. However late it was, I went for a walk.
5. However hungry and thirsty he was, he did not stop.

SAQ 6
3. had
4. could not speak
5. there was
6. fell/had fallen asleep
7. is
8. loved
9. doesnt know
10. stopped

262
Subordinate Clauses (III). Adverbial Clauses (II)

NOTE:
In case your answers differ from the given ones or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

13.1.1.1 for SAQ 1


13.1.1.2 for SAQ 2
13.1.1.3 for SAQ 3 (a, b)
13.1.1.4 for SAQ 4 (a, b)
13.2 for SAQ 5
13.3. and 13.4 for SAQ 6

263
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

UNIT 14

REPORTED SPEECH AND SEQUENCE OF TENSES

UNIT OUTLINE

Unit Objectives 265


14.1. Reported Speech 265
14.2. Reported Speech from a Present Viewpoint 267
14.2.1. Reporting Statements 267
14.2.2. Reporting Questions 267
14.2.3. Reporting Imperatives 268
SAQ 1 269
14.3. Reported Speech from a Past Viewpoint 271
14.3.1. Tense Changes with a Reporting Verb in the Past 272
SAQ 2 274
14.3.2. Exceptions to Tense or Verb Form Changes 275
SAQ 3 277
14.3.3. Reporting Imperatives and Exclamations 277
14.3.4. Reporting More Complex Messages 278
SAQ 4 279
Summary 280
Key Concepts 281
Selected Bibliography 282
PA No. 10 283
Answers to SAQs 284

264
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

Reported speech forms a chapter apart as it shows how we


can tell what other people say/said to us or what we tell/told to other
people. When we do that, we say that we report speech, namely we
report Direct Speech. We can repeat in other words what has been
said/or was said, but we can actually report the same words. The
difference lies in the fact that certain changes occur which concern
both the structure and verb forms in the reported words/or
utterances.
This chapter is mostly concerned with the ways in which we
report statements, questions, imperatives and exclamations from
a present viewpoint or a past viewpoint.

After you have studied and completed the tasks, you should be
able to:

unit realize the difference between direct speech and reported


objectives speech;
identify the structural changes in reporting statements,
questions and imperatives;
identify the difference between reporting verbs, according
to the type of sentence reported;
identify the changes that concern pronouns, adverbial
modifiers (time and place) in reporting direct speech;
identify verb form changes according to distance in time
by using a past tense reporting verb;
distinguish between the rules of sequence and exceptions
to the rules;
re-tell what you have been told/were told in adequate
structures.

14.1. Reported Speech


The term speech refers to the utterances that people produce
in order to tell/say something.
Very often in our utterances we also insert what other people
told us, said to us, or asked us. When we re-tell what they tell us or
told us, we report more or less precisely their statements, commands
or questions.
The term reported speech refers to ways in which we can
report what other people say, as opposed to direct speech which
refers to actually quoting what someone is saying or said. Compare:

1. a) Are you feeling all right? John asked me.


b) John asked me whether/if I was feeling all right.

2. a) Im going for a walk. Mary said.


b) Mary said that she was going for a walk.

265
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

3. a) Bring me a piece of chalk! said the teacher.


b) The teacher asked the pupil to bring her a piece of
chalk.

In the examples above, all the (a) sentences are in direct


speech, while all the (b) sentences are in reported speech.
When we report someones words, we can report what he/she
is saying or has just said now or what he/she said in the past.

Im going for a walk! Mary says.

We can ask: What is Mary saying? and report it as: Mary is


saying that she is going for a walk., or if we report the same
sentence later, we ask: What did Mary say? and report it as: Mary
said that she was going for a walk.

Stop and think!

When we report, as compared to directly quoting, are there


any changes that you can notice between the two ways? What have
you noticed?
Write down your answers in the space below. Then check
them as you read on.

As we can notice from the above examples, there are notable


differences between direct and reported speech.
When we report, we use a reporting verb such as to tell, to
say, to ask a.s.o. and the sentences of direct speech become
dependent on that verb, thus being introduced by that, whether or if.
Secondly, we also notice that there is a change of pronouns, I (Mary)
became she; we also notice a change of word order in reporting the
question from direct speech in reported speech.
When we report something that was said in the past, as in the
examples (1) and (2), we have also changed the tenses of verbs.

266
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

A number of changes occur when we report someone elses


words, depending on the type of sentences, statements, questions,
imperatives or exclamations and on the time of reporting. We will
discuss reported speech in relation to the time of reporting and from
the point of view of the types of sentences that we report.

14.2. Reported Speech from a Present Viewpoint

14.2.1. Reporting Statements


When we report statements from a present viewpoint, the
reporting verb (to say, to tell) is in Present Simple or Continuous,
or Present Perfect and when we predict what someone will say, in
the Future Simple.

Direct Speech

He says / is saying: I am leaving.


He has said: You can try it if you like it.
He will say: I have been working the whole morning.

Reported Speech

He is saying that he is leaving.


He says that I can try it if I like it.
He will say that he has been working the whole morning.

Changes

a) In reporting, the statement which is reported becomes a that-


nominal clause following the reporting verb.
b) The personal pronouns are changed according to the following
pattern: I and we become he / she and they, and you becomes I
or we as there is a shift of the subject from the direct speech into
reported speech.

The verb in the reported clause remains unchanged.

He says: I was in Africa two years ago.


He says that he was in Africa two years ago.

14.2.2. Reporting Questions

Questions fall into two basic groups general questions and


special questions.

He asks/is asking/has asked: Are you a student?


Where do you study?

267
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

If we report these questions we will say:

He has asked me if/whether I am student and where I study.

Changes

The reporting verb is to ask or rephrased in to want to know.

The question becomes a statement, namely word order is


subject predicate.

The pronouns are changed as in the case of statements: you


becomes I or we, and I becomes he/she.

In the case of the general question the introductory word is


if / whether and thus the question becomes a nominal clause.

In the case of a special question, the interrogative pronoun or


adverb remains the introductory word and, thus, the question
becomes a nominal clause.

The tense of the verb is not changed. It is only the form that
changes from interrogative into affirmative or negative.

He has asked us: Did you see the Tower of London when
you were in London?
He has asked us if/whether we saw the Tower of London when
we were in London.

He asks me: Whom have you seen today?


He asks me whom I have seen today.

14.2.3. Reporting Imperatives

Imperative sentences expressing commands, orders, requests,


advice and invitation are reported with a reporting verb which
conveys the communicative function of the imperative, as to ask, to
tell, to invite, to request, to command, to order, to recommend.

a) Sit down, please! [invitation]


b) Bring me a glass of water! [request]
c) Open your book and start reading! [order]
d) Stay at a hotel. [recommendation]

a) He invites me to sit down.


b) He asks me to bring him a glass of water.
c) The teacher tells us to open our book and start reading.
d) He recommends me to stay at a hotel.

268
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

Negative imperatives will be reported as:

Dont touch it!


He ordered me not to touch it.

1st and 3rd person imperatives will be reported as:

Let me go!
Let them play!
He tells me to let him go.
He tells me to let them play.

Changes

The reporting verb varies according to the function of the


imperative.

The implied you, the addressee, becomes the first person


that is supposed to perform the action.

The imperative form of the verb is changed into a long


infinitive, preceded by not in the negative.

SAQ 1
a) Change the following quoted statements into reported speech
starting with: She is saying. The first is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. I dont understand him.


She is saying that she doesnt understand him.

2. You must see this movie.


__________________________________

3. I havent been at school today.


__________________________________

4. John is ill today.


__________________________________

5. Mother will be late.


__________________________________

b) Change the following questions into reported speech ones,


introducing the reported question with: She wants to know. Pay
attention to word order in the reported question. The first two are done
for you.

1. Have you seen my English book?


She wants to know if/whether I have seen her English
book.

269
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

2. Where did you find it?


She wants to know where I found it.

3. Can you hear a noise?


__________________________________

4. Where have I put my glasses?


__________________________________

5. Is Mary kind to you?


__________________________________

6. What is the time?


__________________________________

7. Do you speak French?


__________________________________

8. What happened here?


__________________________________

9. Have they already left?


__________________________________

10. How much are the apples?


__________________________________

c) Change the following imperative sentences into reported


speech. Use a reporting verb according to the function of the
sentence mentioned in brackets. Start the reported imperative with:
He has invited me / him, has asked me, He has told me / him
The first one is done for you.

1. Go and see a doctor! [advice]


He advised me to go and see a doctor.

2. Open the gates! [order]


__________________________________

3. Let me go! [request]


__________________________________

4. Come in, please! [invitation]


__________________________________

5. Wait outside! [request]


__________________________________

6. Let the dog alone! [order]


__________________________________

270
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

7. Dont touch it! [order]


__________________________________

8. Have one more cake! [offer]


__________________________________

9. Get out of here! [command]


__________________________________

10. Listen to your parents! [advice]


__________________________________

14.3. Reported Speech from a Past Viewpoint


When we report someones words from a past point of view, we
distance ourselves from the event of speaking. This distancing is
marked by changes of tenses and of some adverbial modifiers which
should signal the then and there of the reported words. Thus:

I am not feeling well today.

with a past reporting verb will become:

He told me that he was not feeling well that day.

In order to mark the distance in time between the moment of


reporting and the action, adverbials of time and place as well as the
demonstrative pronoun this are changed as follows:

Direct Speech Reported Speech

here there
now then
today that day
last night the night before
yesterday the day before
a few weeks ago a few weeks before
this evening that evening
this week that week
this book that book
tomorrow the next day/
the following day
next week the next week/
the following week

Similarly, the sentence

Come here.

will be changed to:

271
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

He told me to go there.

as the verb to go indicates distance, while the verb come indicates


proximity together with here.

14.3.1. Tense Changes with a Reporting Verb in the Past


A. The most important change that occurs, concerns the change of
tenses or other verb forms.
In narratives, which are mostly concerned with past events, we
have to observe a relationship between these events in terms of
placing everything into the past.

I wont come with you.

with a past reporting verb will become

He told me that he wouldnt come with me.

The movement of the past, present or future events, situations


or actions expressed in someones words backwards into the past is
realized by means of sequence of tenses.
The sentence

I was in Bucharest last month, and Ill go again next month.

with a past reporting verb will become:

She told me that she had been in Bucharest the month before
and would go again the next month.

Tense changes
Direct Speech Reported Speech
Present Simple Past Simple
Present Continuous Past Continuous
Present Perfect Past Perfect
Past Simple/Continuous Past Perfect or Past
Future Simple/Continuous Future in the Past

She said:
I go to school every day. that she went to school every
day.
I am leaving. that she was leaving.
I have been ill for two weeks. that she had been ill for two
weeks.
I was at home. that she had been/was at
home.
I had been away when they had been away when they
came. came.
Ill help you. she would help me.
Ill be going away. she would be going away.
272
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

The analysis of the above examples shows that after a verb in


the past tense, in the reported clause we can use the following
tenses: Past, Past Perfect and Future in the Past.
This rule of the sequence of tenses is observed when we report
statements, questions and exclamations.

B. When the verb phrase contains a modal verb as can, may, shall
or will, in reporting them we change them into could, might, should
and would. The modal must meaning obligation becomes had to.

Can you open this window?


He asked me whether I could open the window.

I think I must go and see it for myself.


She said that she thought she had to go and see it for herself.

May I go out to play?


The child asked if he might go out to play.

I shall see you again.


She told me that she would see me again.

Shall is changed into would because it refers to the future and


with the change of person would is used.
When shall is a modal verb, it remains should for all persons.

Shall we go now?
He asked whether they should go.

Will you help me?


He asked whether I would help him.

Stop and think!


What are the other changes that have been made in turning
the questions into reported speech? Are they the same as in
reporting with an asking verb in the present?
Write down your answers and examples in the space below.
Then check them as you read on.

273
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

With both questions and statements, the changes are the same as
with the reporting verb in the present. Namely, the pronouns are
changed according to the principle of who speaks and who the
reported sentence is about.
The statements are introduced by that, the general questions
are introduced by if / whether, and the special questions by a wh-
word.
The structure of a question is turned into the structure of a
declarative sentence.
All these reported statements and questions become nominal
clauses, functioning as the Direct Object.

He told me that he was a teacher.


She asked me if I want to go to school in Bucharest.
They wanted to know when I had graduated, before or after
1989.

SAQ 2
I. Turn the following statements in reported speech using as the
reporting verb he/she told. Pay attention to the change of tense. The
first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. Im quite hungry and I dont have time to eat.


She told me that she was hungry and didnt have time to eat.

2. My friends are getting married soon.


___________________________________

3. He has been playing out all day long.


___________________________________

4. Ill be leaving tomorrow.


___________________________________

5. Tom was ill for more than a month.


___________________________________

6. He can speak English quite well now.


___________________________________

7. You may finish it tomorrow.


___________________________________

8. My friend has studied engineering.


___________________________________

9. I dont know what John is doing there.


___________________________________

10. People hardly go to the movies these days.


___________________________________
274
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

II. Turn the following questions, general and special, into reported
speech. Pay attention to the structure of the newly formed sentence.
Introduce your reported question with wanted to know. The first two
are done for you.

1. Do you have a car?


He wanted to know whether I had a car.

2. Where do your friends live?


He wanted to know where my friends lived.

3. Why hasnt Tom gone to school today?


___________________________________

4. Did you have a good time at the seaside?


___________________________________

5. Why do you have to borrow money?


___________________________________

6. Must you do it now?


___________________________________

7. What does this word mean?


___________________________________

8. Can you tell me his address?


___________________________________

9. Why dont you answer the phone?


___________________________________

10. Shall we have dinner together?


___________________________________

14.3.2. Exceptions to Tense or Verb Form Changes


Exceptions to the rule of sequence of tenses or no tense
changes or verb form changes are to be found in the following
situations:

a) the tense of the verb remains the same when the reported
statement contains a general truth:

The Earth is round the teacher told them.


The teacher told them that the Earth is round.

275
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

The truth value of a situation refers also to cases when we refer


to something that still exists as in:

The post office is a red building on the main street.


She told me that the post office is a red building on the main
street.

meaning that the post office is still a red building and still there on the
main street.

b) the past perfect tense remains past perfect:

I had bought it before I went to school.


She said that she had bought it before she went/had gone to
school.

c) modal verbs could, ought to, should, used to as well as


must (with the meaning of logical deduction) and might (meaning
possibility) remain unchanged:

Your glasses could be anywhere.


He told me that my glasses could be anywhere.

You ought to help your friends.


He told me that I ought to help my friends.

You should see the new film.


He told me that I should see the new film.

I used to ski very well.


She told me that she used to ski very well.

It must be very cold there.


She told me that it must be very cold there.

His story might be true.


She said that his story might be true.

d) conditionals of type 2, hypothetical improbable /


imaginary as well as type 3 of unreal past remain unchanged as
far as verb forms are concerned:

I would like to see Paris if I had money to travel.


She said that she would like to see Paris if she had money.

If you had told me, I could have helped you.


She told me that if I had told her, she could have helped me.

276
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

SAQ 3
Turn the following statements and questions into reported speech.
Pay attention to the verb forms in the reported sentence as all the
sentences are exceptions to verb form changes. The first one is done
for you. Choose the reporting verb from: She told me, He said,
She wanted to know, He asked. The first one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. I would go there if I had time.


She told me that she would go there if she had time.

2. The Danube is a long river which crosses many countries.


___________________________________

3. You ought to study more.


___________________________________

4. Where could he be at this time of the night?


___________________________________

5. Mary should be more careful.


___________________________________

6. You ought to study more.


___________________________________

7. They used to spend their holidays in the countryside.


___________________________________

8. What would he have done if he had found out the truth?


___________________________________

9. Would you be so kind to translate the letter for me?


___________________________________

10. Bears are hibernating animals.


___________________________________

14.3.3. Reporting Imperatives and Exclamations


When we report imperatives from a past point of view the
changes that occur refer to:

a) the reporting verb which is used in the past tense, following


the same structure of the long infinitive instead of the imperative. The
reporting verb expresses the communicative function of the
imperative sentence (command, order, request, advice,
recommendation).
277
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

Open the door, please! (request)


Take the umbrella with you. (advice)
Try to get up. (recommendation)

b) the adverbial modifiers of time and place as well as the


demonstrative pronouns this/these are changed to indicate
distance (see 14.3).

Do it now! (order)
Come here! (request)
Buy this book for the child. (recommendation)

He told me to do it then.
He asked me to go there.
He recommended me to buy that book for the child.

Exclamations are seldom reported in spoken English, and the


reporting verbs are usually: to remark, to exclaim. The changes
which occur are identical with those in statements: personal
pronouns change, tenses change according to the sequence of
tenses and the adverbial modifiers of time and place and the
demonstrative pronoun this are changed in order to indicate
distancing:

What bad weather we are having!


He remarked/exclaimed what bad weather they were having.

How nicely you are dressed today!


She remarked how nice I was dressed that day.

What a bright girl you have been!


She remarked what a bright girl I had been.

14.3.4. Reporting More Complex Messages


Very often we report mixed messages, made up of statements
and questions or statements and imperatives or questions and
imperatives or exclamations. In each case we have to pay attention
to the reporting verb which is required and to the changes that occur
in each type of sentence: declarative, imperative, interrogative and
exclamatory.

Statement and question:

Im going to school. Where are you going?


He told me that he was going to school and asked me where I
was going.

278
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

Statement and imperative:

You should relax. Take a few days off.


He told me that I should relax and advised me to take a few
days off.

Statement, question and imperative:

Its time to go. Are you ready? Lets start!


He told us that it was time to go and asked us if we were ready,
then he told us to start.

Exclamation and question:

What a lovely garden you have! Who looks after it?


He remarked that we had a lovely garden and wanted to know
who looked after it.

SAQ 4
Turn the following combinations of sentences into reported speech.
Use the reporting verb of your choice in the past tense and pay
attention to the changes required in each type of sentence. The first
one is done for you.

You will find the answers at the end of the unit.

1. I am tired. Lets go for a walk!


She said that she was tired and told me to go for a walk.

2. Im going shopping. Shall I buy anything for you?


________________________________________

3. Have you got a pencil? I think I have lost mine.


________________________________________

4. Go and ask a policeman! He must know the way.


________________________________________

5. What a beautiful day it is! Its a pity we cant go for a


walk.
________________________________________

6. Do you understand this exercise? I can explain it to you


if you dont.
________________________________________

7. Would you like some coffee? Ill get you a cup.


________________________________________

8. Listen to them! You must follow their instructions.


________________________________________

279
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

9. Why are these people arguing? They can solve the


problem peacefully.
________________________________________

10. Let them do their tasks! They will have an exam soon.
________________________________________

Summary
Reported Speech is saying / telling what other people tell, have told
or told us

Reporting types of sentences


o statements
o questions
o imperatives
o exclamations

Reporting verbs
statements: to say, to tell
questions: to ask, to want to know
imperatives: to order, to ask, to tell, to invite, to recommend, to
request, to advise
exclamations: to remark, to exclaim

Reported Speech from a Present Viewpoint

reporting verbs form introductory word

Statements that

Questions general questions :


if
whether
Present or special questions:
Present Perfect who
what
where
etc.

Imperatives

Exclamations what, how

280
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

Structure Changes
Statements become nominal clauses - pronouns
Questions become nominal clauses - word order
- pronouns
Imperatives infinitive constructions - pronouns
Exclamations nominal clause - pronouns

Reported Speech from a Present Viewpoint

reporting verbs form changes

Statements pronouns
Questions Past sequence of tenses
Imperatives distancing
Exclamations

Sequence of Tenses moving the tense form backwards


Future Future in the Past
Present Past
Present Perfect Past Perfect
Past Past Perfect

Distancing moving words that signal logical time or space and


proximity to words that express remoteness
now then
here there
this that

Exceptions
conditionals (type 2 and 3)
general truth
modals (ought to, should, used to, might, must logical
deduction)
past perfect

Reporting combined messages each type of sentence


(statements, questions, imperatives, exclamations) follow their own
rules in reported speech

Key Concepts
direct speech
reported speech
reporting verbs
reported clause
distancing
sequence of tenses
statements
questions
imperatives
exclamations

281
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

Selected Bibliography
1. Beaumont, D., Granger, C. The Heinemann ELT English
Grammar, MacMillan Heinemann, 1989, 1992, pp. 121 - 128

2. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z, Penguin


Books, 1990, pp. 129 - 134

3. Murphy, R. English Grammar in Use, Cambridge University


Press, 1985, pp. 94 - 101

282
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

PA No. 10
I. Change the following sentences into reported speech.
a) Use the reporting verbs in the present or present perfect and pay
attention to the change of pronouns, word order in questions and
verb form in the imperative.
1. Ill buy the tickets for the cinema tonight.
2. Stand still and listen to the doctor!
3. Where can we find a good bookshop?
4. I met her many years ago but havent seen her for a long
time.
5. Will they play the concert in our town tomorrow?
6. He could have won the game if he had been faster.
7. I am leaving for Bucharest next week.
8. Come in, sit down and have a cup of tea!
9. I dont think I can finish my paper today.
10. How many people have come to the lecture?

b) Report the same sentences but use the reporting verbs in the
past tense and pay attention to the sequence of tenses and change
the adverbial modifiers of time and place to indicate distancing.

II. Change the following combinations of sentences into reported


speech using as subject of the reporting verb Laura (Laura asked,
said, etc.).
1. Why dont you come in? We are preparing for the party.
2. Mother, can I come into your room? I want to tell you
something.
3. There was an accident. A man was killed. Can we help his
family?
4. Im going, mother, to see what we can do. May John come
with me?
5. I went there and I saw the children. I want to take some toys
to the little boys and a doll to the little girls.
6. Why are some people so poor? Dont they have enough
money?
7. I think Ill postpone the party. Ill give the cookies and the
sandwiches to that poor family. Isnt that a good idea?
8. Shall I go now? Come with me mother! Well pack everything
in a basket.
9. What a good idea it was to go there! Im so happy.
10. And now Ill call my friends and Ill tell them that there is no
party tonight.

Keep your answers in a portfolio and take them to your next


tutorial to discuss them with your classmates and your tutor.

283
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

Answers to SAQs

SAQ 1
a)
2. She is saying that I must see the movie.
3. She is saying that she hasnt been to school today.
4. She is saying that John is ill today.
5. She is saying that Mother will be late.

b)
3. She wants to know if I can hear a noise.
4. She wants to know where I have put my glasses.
5. She wants to know if Mary is kind to me.
6. She wants to know what the time is.
7. She wants to know whether I speak French.
8. She wants to know what happened to her.
9. She wants to know whether they have already left.
10. She wants to know how much the apples are.

c)
2. He has told him/has ordered him to open the gates.
3. He has asked me to let him go.
4. He has invited me to go in.
5. He has asked me to wait outside.
6. He has ordered them to let the dog alone.
7. He has ordered/has told me not to touch it.
8. He has told/has invited me to have one more cake.
9. He has ordered them to get out of there.
10. He has told me to listen to my parents.

SAQ 2
I.
2. She told me that her friends were getting married soon.
3. He told me that he had been playing all day long.
4. He told me that he would be leaving the next day.
5. He told me that Tom had been ill for more than a month.
6. She told me that he could speak English quite well then.
7. He told me that I might finish it the next day.
8. He told me that his friend had studied engineering.
9. He told me that he didnt know what John was doing there.
10. He told me that people hardly went to the movies those days.

II.
3. He wanted to know why Tom hadnt gone to school that day.
4. He wanted to know whether I had had a good time at the seaside.
5. He wanted to know why I had to borrow money.
6. He wanted to know whether I had to do that (then).
7. He wanted to know what that word meant.
8. He wanted to know if I could tell him Marys address.
9. He wanted to know why I didnt answer the phone.
10. He asked me whether we would have dinner together.
11. He told me that people hardly went to the movies those days.

284
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

SAQ 3
2. He said that the Danube is a long river which crosses many
countries.
3. She told me that I ought to study more.
4. She wanted to know where he could be at that time of the night.
5. He said that Mary should be more careful.
6. He said that there must be an answer to that question.
7. She told me that they used to spend their holidays in the
countryside.
8. She wanted to know what he would have done if he had found
out the truth.
9. He asked me if I would be so kind to translate the letter for him.
10. She told me that bears are hibernating animals.

SAQ 4
2. She said that she was going shopping and asked me if she
should buy anything for me.
3. He asked me if I had a pencil as he thought that he had lost his.
4. She asked/urged me to go and ask a policeman and told me that
he must know the way.
5. She exclaimed what a beautiful day it was and said that it was a
pity they couldnt go for a walk.
6. She asked me if I understood the exercise and said that she
could explain it to me if I didnt.
7. She asked me if I would like some coffee and said that she would
get me one cup.
8. She advised me to listen to them and told me that I had to follow
their instructions.
9. She wanted to know why those people were arguing and said that
they could solve the problem peacefully.
10. She told me to let them do their tasks and said that they would
have an exam soon.

NOTE:

In case your answers differ from the given ones, or you have
encountered difficulties in solving the SAQs, we suggest you go back
and re-read the following subchapters:

14.2.1, 14.2.2 and 14.2.3 for SAQ 1 (a, b, c)


14.3.1 for SAQ 2 (I, II)
14.3.2 for SAQ 3
14.3.4 for SAQ 4

285
Reported Speech and Sequence of Tenses

BIBLIOGRAPHY

1. Beaumont, D., Granger, C. The Heinemann ELT English


Grammar, MacMillan Heinemann, 1989, 1992

2. Broughton, Geoffrey A Penguin English Grammar A-Z,


Penguin Books, 1990

3. Budai, L. English Syntax, Budapest, 1981

4. Collins Cobuild English Grammar, Collins, London, Glasgow,


1990

5. Cornilescu, Alexandra Complementation in English, Editura


Univ. Bucureti, 2003

6. Freeborn, D. A Course Book in English Grammar, MacMillan,


1987

7. Leech, G., Svartvik, J. A Communicative Grammar of English,


Longman, 1975

8. Murphy, R. English Grammar in Use, Cambridge University


Press, 1985

9. Popa, Ecaterina Elemente de sintax englez, Editura Presa


Universitar, Cluj, 1997

10. Quirk, R., Greenbaum, S. A University Grammar of English,


Longman, 1973

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