i am confused about the following sentence:
the residents escape unhurt before the blaze gutted their single wooden and tin-sheeted homes.
"escape unhurt" a linking verb + adjective , do you think i am right?
2006 is absolutely right. Some times distinguishing an action verb from a linking verb can be tricky and difficult. If you can’t decide whether a verb is active or linking, here is a simple test. Try to apply the word ‘force’ and to+verb in the sentence. If the sentence makes sense or sounds logical the verb is an action verb. Have a look at the following sentences:
Mary appears angry.
Mary is forced to appear angry.
Mr. Smith looked unhappy yesterday.
Mr. Smith was forced to look unhappy yesterday.
These sentences make no sense because you can not force any one to appear angry or to look unhappy. So they are linking verbs.
The residents escaped unhurt before the blaze…..(your sentence)
The residents were forced to escape unhurt before the blaze……(lucky, they are all safe now)
So ‘escape’ is an action verb without any doubt.
Your name escapes me. (action) SVO
The residents escaped unhurt. (result copula) SVC
The residents were unhurt.
Children grow so quickly. (action) SV
I grew weary of your complaints. (result copula) SVC
Furthermore, there are three possible positions of adjectives in relation to the noun they modify:
- attributive -- This is not the case here as an attribute adjective is always followed by the noun it modifies.
- postpositive -- Again, we do not have a postposed adjective in the OP's sentence as postposed adjectives closely follow the noun they modify.
- predicate adjective -- That is what we have here. Since predicate adjectives can only appear in copular constructions, 'escaped' is most obviosly functions as a copula.
'escape' is a copula in the sentence.
would you mind giving me a list of "result copular verb"?
or copular) verb is a verb that connects the subject to the complement. They are sometimes called linking verbs. Linking verbs do not describe action. So when a verb describes an action and also links a complement, you can not call it a copular verb. The example sentence can be expressed without linking an adjective but with an adverb, as:
The residents escaped quickly before the blaze gutted their single wooden and tin-sheeted homes
The residents escaped quickly without getting hurt before the blaze gutted their single wooden and tin-sheeted homes
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Last edited by BobK; 15-Feb-2010 at 15:26.