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148 - 159) Subject-Complement and Object-Complement Agreement What are the relationship between the two underlined parts in each of the sentences below? 2. Which of the following sentences are correct?
1. • • •
The child was angels. I consider my children angels? The younger children are a problem.
3. Justify your answers.
The subject and the subject complement of a sentence should agree in number. So do the object and the object complement of a sentence.
e.g. The child was an angel. The children were angels. I consider my child an angel. I consider my children angels. S-Sc S-Sc O-Oc O-Oc
However, a subject complement can be an abstracted quality or carries the meaning of a group or unit. e.g., Good manners a very rare group of acts. a rarity Children a particular group of people who can cause problems these problems can be abstracted to mean a big problem.
Therefore, Good manners are a rarity these days. [S-V agr The younger children are a problem. Their principal crop is potatoes. [Cf: Potatoes are their principal crop] Case
What cases are the highlighted parts subjective or objective?
2. Decide if the following sentences are right? • You and she will take charge. • I think Bob and me have the right approach. • Everybody knows Nancy and I. 3. Justify your answers. Parallel use of cases at subject and object positions in coordinated clauses. [i.e., Standard English]
e.g. You and she will take charge. I think Bob and I have the right approach. Everybody knows Nancy and me. The tickets are for you and me.
[Subjects coordinated] [Subjects coordinated] [Objects coordinated] [Objects coordinated
The same is true for pronouns accompanied by a noun. e.g. They complained about the way we [Lisa, Mary, etc.] students were behaving. They will not succeed in pushing us [Lisa, Mary, etc.] Australians around. Parallel use of cases after as and than in comparisons, the case of the pronoun depends on its function in the comparative clause. e.g. They felt the same way as he [did]. (...as he felt.) She works faster than we [do] (…than we work.) He loves Mary more than me. (...more than loves me.) He loves Mary more than I. (...more than I love Mary.)
In less formal contexts, the objective case is normal even when the pronoun is a subject. After the word except, the pronoun should be in the objective case even when the pronoun acts as a subject, as except is considered as a preposition.
e.g. Nobody except her rejected. Everyone except John and me can do the exercise.
After the word but meaning "except", the pronoun can be in both the subjective and objective cases if it is used as a subject, and in the objective case when it is used as an object.
e.g. Nobody but me can tell the difference. Nobody but she objected. I know everybody here but her. After the word let, the objective case is used.
e.g. Let me do it for you. Let us examine this first. Let you and me take the matter in hand. Let John and her finish the work first.
Before an -ing participle clause and after a preposition: a direct object or a prepositional complement.
e.g. They were surprised at his refusing to join the strike. (formal, possessive + participial phrase acted as an object or a noun)
They were surprised at him refusing to join the strike. (informal, ‘him’ taken as an object of the preceding preposition) He was afraid of my protesting against the new rule. (formal) He was afraid of me protesting against the new rule. (informal) I don't know the reason for my sister's breaking off the engagement. (formal) I don't know the reason for my sister breaking off the engagement. (informal) I dislike John's seeing x-rated movies. I dislike John seeing x-rated movies.
In both formal and informal styles, the genitive case is used when the -ing clause concerned is the subject of the whole sentence.
e.g. My forgetting her name amused everybody. *Me forgetting her name amused everybody. [substandard] Their protesting against the campaign is unreasonable. *Them protesting against the campaign is unreasonable. [sub-standard] Shelly's refusing the help was a surprise.
*Shelly refusing the help was a surprise. [sub-standard] In subordinate clauses, use who or whoever for all subjects, whom or whomever for all objects.
e.g. I remember who was sitting on the sofa. [formal] Give the clothes to whoever needs them. [informal] I don't know whom the mayor appointed. [formal] I will offer advice to whomever I wish. Past and Past Subjunctive
The past subjunctive is used to refer to situations that are very unlikely or that are contrary to the facts. The only past subjunctive is were.
e.g. I wish she were here. [formal] He behaves as though he were your friend. [formal]
In less formal style, the simple past was is used in the same contexts.
e.g. I wish she was here.
He behaves as though he was your friend. Multiple Negation It is non-standard English to have two or more negatives in the same clause. As such, sometimes its use is regarded as sub-standard. e.g. They didn't say nothing. [sub-standard] They didn't say anything. [standard] Nobody never believes nothing I say. [sub-standard] Nobody ever believes anything I say. [stdanrd] I can't hardly tell the difference. [sub-standard] I can hardly tell the difference. [standard]
It is acceptable in standard English to have two negatives combined to make a positive.
e.g. It was not an unhappy occasion. It was a not unhappy occasion. She spoke not indecisively. There is no reason why we cannot believe it. There is no reason why you are not allowed to go.
What is the meaning of the following sentences in standard English? Nobody has no complaints. No one says nothing. Dangling Modifiers
Usually a participial phrase, but can also be an infinitive verb phrase or a prepositional phrase
• A dangling modifier has no subject of its own, and its implied subject cannot be identified with the subject of the sentence though it can usually be identified with some other phrase in the sentence. • Usually placed at the beginning of the sence e.g. *Being blind, a dog guided her across the street. (Who is blind?) *Taking our seats, the game started. (Who took the seats?) *After turning the radio off, the interior of the car became silent. (Who turned off the radio?) *Being a teacher, the workload is too heavy for me. (Who is a teacher?)
*To write well, it is necessary to read more. writes well?)
*When only a small boy, my father took me with him to Chicago. (Who was a small boy?)
The general rule is that the subject of the dependent clause (if not specified) should be the same as the subject of the main clause. To correct a dangling modifier, we have to rearrange the words in the sentence to make the modifier clearly refer to the right word, or add words to make the meaning clear and logical.
e.g. Being blind, she was guided across the street by a dog. Taking our seats, we started the game. After we turned the radio off, the interior of the car became silent. Being a teacher, I have too much work to do. To write well, we must read more. When I was only a small boy, my father took me with him to Chicago. Misplaced Parts Do the following sentences have the same meaning? What is the difference?
Helen went out with just her coat on. Helen just went out with her coat on. Just Helen went out with her coat on. Only children can swim in the lake before noon. Children can only swim in the lake before noon. Children can swim only in the lake before noon. Children can swim in the lake only before noon.
In formal English, place modifiers such as almost, only, just, even, hardly, nearly, and merely immediately before the words they modify. Place a modifying prepositional phrase to indicate clearly what the phrase modifies.
e.g. *Arne says that he means to leave the country in the first stanza. Arne says in the first stanza that he plans to leave the country. *Heated arguments had often occurred technicalities in the middle of a game. over
Heated arguments over technicalities had often occurred in the middle of a game.
• Place relative clauses near the words they modify. e.g. *I put the chair in the middle of the room which I had recently purchased. I put the chair, which I have recently purchased, in the middle of the room.
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