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  1. #1
    Leafy is offline Newbie
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    Default I gained... as well as preserving a relationship

    A Chinese-speaker wrote, '"I gained confidence, positive energy as well as the preserved healthy, supportive relationship with Jen." I suggested changing it to "I gained confidence and positive energy, as well as preserving my healthy, supportive relationship with Jen."

    The writer explained that she sees this sentence as presenting a list of three nouns (confidence, positive energy, an intact or "preserved" healthy/supportive relationship) so no further verb is needed (i.e. the adjective "preserved" should not be changed to "preserving.") While I can easily explain the use of "intact" as a more appropriate adjective than "preserved," I don't know how to explain the use of the verb "preserving."

    In my version, the sentence will newly contain TWO verbs, gained and preserving. Why does the second verb (preserving, in the present) not follow the same tense as the first verb (gained, in the simple past)? I would appreciate help in articulating a clear, defensible rationale for this new version of the sentence. Note that I do recognize the further alternative of "I gained confidence and positive energy, and preserved my healthy, supportive relationship" in which both verbs are in the simple past, but I want to better understand why the first alternative, using "preserving," is also correct.

    Thanks for whatever insights and explanation you can offer.

  2. #2
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    MikeNewYork is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: I gained... as well as preserving a relationship

    Quote Originally Posted by Leafy View Post
    A Chinese-speaker wrote, '"I gained confidence, positive energy as well as the preserved healthy, supportive relationship with Jen." I suggested changing it to "I gained confidence and positive energy, as well as preserving my healthy, supportive relationship with Jen."

    The writer explained that she sees this sentence as presenting a list of three nouns (confidence, positive energy, an intact or "preserved" healthy/supportive relationship) so no further verb is needed (i.e. the adjective "preserved" should not be changed to "preserving.") While I can easily explain the use of "intact" as a more appropriate adjective than "preserved," I don't know how to explain the use of the verb "preserving."

    In my version, the sentence will newly contain TWO verbs, gained and preserving. Why does the second verb (preserving, in the present) not follow the same tense as the first verb (gained, in the simple past)? I would appreciate help in articulating a clear, defensible rationale for this new version of the sentence. Note that I do recognize the further alternative of "I gained confidence and positive energy, and preserved my healthy, supportive relationship" in which both verbs are in the simple past, but I want to better understand why the first alternative, using "preserving," is also correct.

    Thanks for whatever insights and explanation you can offer.
    In the original sentence, there is one verb (gained). You gained confidence, positive energy. and the preserved relationship.... I have a problem with that construction. A "preserved relationship" is not terribly natural. I would have written "I gained confidence and positive energy and preserved a/my healthy, supportive relationship with Jen.

    In your revision, there is still only one verb. Because there is no use of a verb "to be", "preserving" is just a present participle or gerund, neither of which fits that sentence. One cannot use "gained preserving" as a verb.

  3. #3
    Leafy is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: I gained... as well as preserving a relationship

    Quote Originally Posted by MikeNewYork View Post
    In the original sentence, there is one verb (gained). You gained confidence, positive energy. and the preserved relationship.... I have a problem with that construction. A "preserved relationship" is not terribly natural. I would have written "I gained confidence and positive energy and preserved a/my healthy, supportive relationship with Jen.

    In your revision, there is still only one verb. Because there is no use of a verb "to be", "preserving" is just a present participle or gerund, neither of which fits that sentence. One cannot use "gained preserving" as a verb.

    I see your point, and appreciate your input. But I perceive "and also preserving my relationship" as separate from the "gained" (which is why I added "and" between "confidence AND positive energy", showing (I hope) that "energy" is the second/last item in a list of only two things, thereby indicating that the "relationship" is no longer a third item in the list.

    If changed to "..WHILE preserving my healthy/supportive relationship," does "preserving" seem okay? If so, why?

  4. #4
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    MikeNewYork is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: I gained... as well as preserving a relationship

    Quote Originally Posted by Leafy View Post
    I see your point, and appreciate your input. But I perceive "and also preserving my relationship" as separate from the "gained" (which is why I added "and" between "confidence AND positive energy", showing (I hope) that "energy" is the second/last item in a list of only two things, thereby indicating that the "relationship" is no longer a third item in the list.

    If changed to "..WHILE preserving my healthy/supportive relationship," does "preserving" seem okay? If so, why?
    Yes, if you add "while" the participle is then connected to the sentence.

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