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  1. #1
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default Questions about subjects/prepositions

    Questions about subjects/prepositions
    Hi there, in the example:

    "My dog, along with her seven puppies, has chewed all of the stuffing out of the sofa cushions."

    They say that my dog is the only subject. Here is the reasoning below:

    "Here, both my dog and her seven puppies are chewing on the sofa, but because the puppies are part of the prepositional phrase along with her seven puppies, the only word that counts as the subject is dog."

    MY QUESTION---How does that work? I mean, if the dog and puppes are chewing, then isn't that whole entire phrase really the subject, not just my dog? We understand it as my dog and puppies doing the action so how can that be. Please explain???

    Here is the link to the site, thanks
    here

    This thread by alkaspeltzar was closed while I was trying to answer it! (very strange!)
    I will attempt to respond again, and of course others are welcome to respond to. What should I do if it closes again?

  2. #2
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default Re: Questions about subjects/prepositions

    Quote Originally Posted by 2006 View Post
    Questions about subjects/prepositions
    Hi there, in the example:

    "My dog, along with her seven puppies, has chewed all of the stuffing out of the sofa cushions."
    The first, though not the most important, thing is if the puppies were part of the subject "has" would be changed to 'have'.
    They say that my dog is the only subject. Here is the reasoning below:

    "Here, both my dog and her seven puppies are chewing on the sofa, but because the puppies are part of the prepositional phrase along with her seven puppies, the only word that counts as the subject is dog."
    If the puppies were part of the subject, we would have, based on the grammar and punctuation of the sentence, a main subject "My dog" and a lesser subject "her seven puppies". I don't think this is ever allowed in English.
    So it has been decided by the powers that be that the prepositional phrase can never be considered to be part of the subject.
    MY QUESTION---How does that work? I mean, if the dog and puppes are chewing, then isn't that whole entire phrase really the subject, not necessarily not just my dog? We understand it as my dog and puppies doing the action so how can that be. Please explain???

    Here is the link to the site, thanks
    here
    Finally, the last two senteces in your link are other examples showing that a prepositional phrase cannot be a subject. So maybe that is just a rule.

    But I think the main reason "her seven puppies" is not part of the subject is that a sentence cannot have a major subject and a minor subject. It can only have one subject, and all parts of the subject, as in a compound subject, are equally important.
    2006
    Last edited by 2006; 26-Oct-2010 at 02:53. Reason: minor correction

  3. #3
    e2e4 is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Questions about subjects/prepositions

    /A learner/

    My opinion

    1. "My dog, along with her seven puppies, has chewed all of the stuffing out of the sofa cushions."

    They say that my dog is the subject only. I agree.
    I see "along with her seven puppies" as a non-defying clause. (dog is already mine)

    2. "My dog and her seven puppies are chewing on the sofa.
    My dog and her seven puppies ~ subject

  4. #4
    corum is offline Banned
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    Default Re: Questions about subjects/prepositions

    Quote Originally Posted by 2006 View Post

    "My dog, along with her seven puppies, has chewed all of the stuffing out of the sofa cushions."
    Quasi-coordination. Preposition versus true conjunction -- neither one thing nor the other.

    No true coordinator because no plural verb (has chewed).
    Subject-operator inversion? What happens? Let us see!

    Has my dog chewed ... along with her seven puppies.
    Has my dog, along with..., chewed....

    The "My dog along with her seven puppies" does not behave like one constituent: when this string of words shifts location, it may break up.

    Semantics. Who chewed the cushion? Eight dogs.
    The subject is what (or whom) the sentence is about,
    Definitions.

  5. #5
    2006 is offline Banned
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    Default Re: Questions about subjects/prepositions

    [QUOTE=corum;669187/QUOTE]

    I have no idea what you are trying to say.

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