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  1. #1
    rebamaniac is offline Newbie
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    Default Subject complement vs. (optional) adverbial

    Hi!
    In class today, we were given a sentence to analyze by means of the SPOCA. After pondering this for quite some time, I find myself unsure of what is actually a subject complement and what is an adverbial here. The sentence is as follows:

    "This is a different book from the one you recommended in your paper"

    My original idea was that <a different book from the one you recommended> is the subject complement and that <in your paper> is an optional adverbial, but after discussing this with a friend I find myself uncertain of where the subject complement ends and the adverbial begins. My friend expressed total certainty in his analysis of <a different book> as the subject complement, and <from the one you recommended> and <in your paper> as two individual optional adverbials. Can anyone tell me if we're both completely clueless, or if one of us is onto something?

    Thanks so much in advance!
    Last edited by rebamaniac; 14-Feb-2012 at 17:24.

  2. #2
    TheParser is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Subject complement vs. (optional) adverbial

    CAUTION: NOT A TEACHER


    (1) I love to, well, parse. So may I join this stimulating discussion?

    (2) IMHO, your sentence breaks down like this:

    This is a different book.

    from the one

    that you recommended

    in your paper

    *****

    This = subject.

    is = linking verb.

    a different book = subject complement

    from the one = prepositional phrase that modifies (belongs to) "book"

    that you recommended = adjective clause that modifies "one."

    in your book = prepositional phrase that modifies "recommended."


    That was fun! I hope that I was correct. If anyone convinces me that I am wrong, I will

    delete this post. Usingenglish. com has a reputation for giving only accurate answers

    to its international readers.

  3. #3
    rebamaniac is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Subject complement vs. (optional) adverbial

    So, according to your breakdown, the three last elements would all be individual, optional adverbials in a SPOCA analysis? My idea was that <from the one you recommended> is the postmodifier in the noun phrase that realizes the subject complement, which I believe to be <a different book from the one you recommended>. This postmodifier is in turn realized by the embedded prepositional phrase <from the one> and the embedded, finite, nominal zero relative clause <you recommended> ("that" having been ellipted).

    Or I might just be tripping.

    Thanks so much for taking the time to answer, by the way!
    Last edited by rebamaniac; 14-Feb-2012 at 17:44. Reason: Forgot to add thank you's

  4. #4
    TheParser is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Subject complement vs. (optional) adverbial

    Quote Originally Posted by rebamaniac View Post

    Or I might just be tripping.

    Thanks so much for taking the time to answer, by the way!

    First, you are very welcome. Teachers and non-teachers are delighted to do their

    best for thread starters who have the good manners to express their appreciation.

    Second, you are not tripping. In fact, you are a grammar teacher's dream: someone

    who likes to parse sentences.

    Third, I do not dare answer your questions. I have just given what I think is an

    accurate breakdown of the sentence. But that's where I have to stop.

    Finally, I have a great suggestion. If someone else does not answer your questions,

    post this in the "Analyzing and Diagramming Sentences" forum. That forum is

    devoted to, well, analyzing sentences. (Forgive me for spelling "analyzing" with a

    "z." That's the American way.)

    I notice that you are a new member. In a short time, you will come to know the

    names, personalities, and styles of the teachers and non-teachers who do their best to answer

    questions. (Don't forget, please, that other forum devoted to analyzing sentences.)

    Nice meeting you.

  5. #5
    rebamaniac is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: Subject complement vs. (optional) adverbial

    Thank you so much again; I will definitely post my question in that forum if no one can answer it here. And thank you for welcoming me; I stumbled upon this forum by accident, and it seems like a great, friendly and not to mention resourceful place.

    P.S. Spelling analyze with a "z" is the way to go; American spelling for the win, I say!

  6. #6
    TheParser is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Subject complement vs. (optional) adverbial

    Quote Originally Posted by rebamaniac View Post

    P.S. Spelling analyze with a "z" is the way to go; American spelling for the win, I say!

    Say it very quietly. Otherwise, you will hurt some people's feelings!

  7. #7
    5jj's Avatar
    5jj is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Subject complement vs. (optional) adverbial

    Sorry, rebamaniac. Our members don't seem to be into SPOCA. I'll give your thread in the other forum a boost, to see if it attracts any attention.
    Please do not edit your question after it has received a response. Such editing can make the response hard for others to understand.


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