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Thread: Ving

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    #1

    Ving

    Hello there.
    Anybody can help me with this?

    Which sentence is correct? Or both are correct? If so, is there any difference?

    (A) She's clipping her toenails, chatting on the cell phone.
    (B) She's clipping her toenails, chat on the cell phone.

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Ving

    Quote Originally Posted by doraemonz View Post
    Hello there.
    Anybody can help me with this?

    Which sentence is correct? Or both are correct? If so, is there any difference?

    (A) She's clipping her toenails, chatting on the cell phone.
    (B) She's clipping her toenails, chat on the cell phone.
    In the first, there is a misplaced modifier that suggests that her toenails were chatting. The second is just wrong.

    She's clipping her toenails while chatting on her cell phone.

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    #3

    Re: Ving

    Thank you very much!

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Ving

    Quote Originally Posted by doraemonz View Post
    Thank you very much!
    I appreciate your thanks, but the moderators here prefer that you just click the like button rather than post a separate message for that. It makes it appear that there has been another comment in the thread.

  3. konungursvia's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Ving

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    In the first, there is a misplaced modifier that suggests that her toenails were chatting. The second is just wrong.

    She's clipping her toenails while chatting on her cell phone.
    I disagree, and would say sentence (A) is perfectly correct. Contextually, toenails don't make phone calls, but even if they did, there is only one subject in the sentence, "She," and the complement "toenails" is introduced as an object to its verb.

    Consider:

    "Riding my bicycle through the countryside last Sunday, a cow knocked me over."

    Now there is a sentence like the one you were imagining, with an unclear subject-object relationship (cows can't ride bicycles, and what was that cow doing riding my bike through the countryside?)

  4. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Ving

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    I disagree, and would say sentence (A) is perfectly correct. Contextually, toenails don't make phone calls, but even if they did, there is only one subject in the sentence, "She," and the complement "toenails" is introduced as an object to its verb.

    Consider:

    "Riding my bicycle through the countryside last Sunday, a cow knocked me over."

    Now there is a sentence like the one you were imagining, with an unclear subject-object relationship (cows can't ride bicycles, and what was that cow doing riding my bike through the countryside?)
    Yes, context can clear up the discrepancies. But the position of a participial phrase in a sentence is grammatically important. We know that toenails don't use phones and we also know that cows don't ride bicycles. But placing a participial phrase in the wrong position is considered incorrect by many.

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