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  1. #31
    Frank Antonson's Avatar
    Frank Antonson is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Let me try again.

    DIAGRAMMING SENTENCES

    Frank

  2. #32
    Frank Antonson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Okay.

    That's a start.

    Still, I think that if you want to understand the whole American system, you should follow my videos, tedious though they may be.

    What happens is that Reed-Kellogg diagramming is so much fun that often people are not willing to do the preparatory work in morphology, so they hit a dead end.

    Frank

  3. #33
    barryashton is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Frank

    I will have a look at that site in the morning as I am away this evening. If I can return to the site I mentioned - it gave the example:

    My father's hair, streaked with gray and receding on both sides, is combed straight back to his collar.

    I was simply going to point out that in this example 'streaked' and 'receding' are used as verbs not adjectives. So it is not analogous to my original sentence.

    Barry

  4. #34
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Antonson View Post
    Morphology involves the 8 "parts of speech" -- noun, verb, adjective, adverb, pronoun, conjunction, preposition, and interjection. Interjection is arguably not a part of speech, but it is normally included. The first four are "open classes" with thousands of examples, the next three are closed classes with very few members and very slow to change within the history of a language.
    I always thought that morphology was about how words are formed. Actually, I still do. My (American) Webster's 3 defines the word as "a study and description of word-formation in a language including inflection, derivation, and compounding".

  5. #35
    barryashton is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    As a matter of interest Frank my A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language by Quirk et al is similar in its definition of morphology to that referred to by 5jj. I remain very puzzled by your arguments but look forward to viewing the web page tomorrow.


    Barry

  6. #36
    Frank Antonson's Avatar
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Barry,

    Thanks. It has been interesting.

    I have often heard about Quirk et al, but his work is not part of the American experience.

    Talk to you tomorrow.

    Frank

  7. #37
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Barry,

    "My father's hair, streaked with gray and receding on both sides, is combed straight back to his collar."

    In American terms, "streaked" is a past participle of the verb "to streak" used to modify "hair", "receding" is a present participle of the verb "to recede" used to modify "hair" and "is combed" is the passive voice, present tense of the verb "to comb", and, in this case, the simple predicate of the sentence.

    Frank

  8. #38
    5jj's Avatar
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Quote Originally Posted by Frank Antonson View Post
    I have often heard about Quirk et al, but his work is not part of the American experience.
    I think, Frank, that their work may not be part of your experience.

    Quirk et al may not be as respected in America as in Britain, but virtually every American grammarian I have read has been aware of the team.

    By the way - I have in this thread read your posts, and made a few comments on them, as well as asking a couple of questions. I'd be interested to read your responses.

  9. #39
    barryashton is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Frank

    I think what you, and the Diagramming Sentences website you referred to, fail to do is to adequately distinguish those words with the form of a participle that function as an adjective from those words with the form of a participle that do not function as an adjective. For example (modifying examples in Quirk et al that deal with this distinction):

    1. She is (very) calculating.
    2. She is calculating my salary.

    'Calculating' has the form of a participle. In example 1 it functions as an adjective. In 2 it does not. Identifying a word as having the form of a participle is straightforward, deciding what function that word performs is not. Many participle form words will function as an adjective and many will not - but it is surely the function not the form that interests us.

    One can also give examples of -ing, -ed words that function as adjectives but are not participles because there is no related verb. For example:

    She is (very) talented.

    'Talented' functions as an adjective but is not a participle - there being no verb 'talent' ('to talent' as you would have it).

    Barry

  10. #40
    barryashton is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Identifying the verb

    Frank has analysed the following sentence:

    My father's hair, streaked with gray and receding on both sides, is combed straight back to his collar.

    I disagree with his analysis. 5jj, if you have time, would you please consider my attempt at analysis. Be as brutal as you wish - it helps with the learning process.

    Frank identifies 'is combed' as the simple predicate. I would describe 'combed' as the main verb and 'is' as an auxiliary. However, this is a difference of terminology not a difference of substance.

    Frank describes 'streaked' and 'receding' as a participles modifying 'hair'. For my part the subject is 'My father's hair' not 'hair' and it is the subject that is being modified. The question then arises as to what is modifying the subject. I take the view that the main clause is:

    My father's hair ... is combed straight back to his collar

    and that there are subordinate clauses:

    1. streaked with gray
    2. and receding on both sides

    and that it is these that modify the subject.

    These two clauses are nonfinite clauses that do not have a subject of their own (see Quirk et al 14.6). Using Quirk's definitions, these subordinate clauses perform the function of adverbials.

    The phrase 'straight back to his collar' also performs the function of an adverbial.

    I could go on to analyse the functions of individual words but will halt and await any comments.

    Barry

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