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  1. #1
    jiang is offline Key Member
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    Default grammar

    Dear teachers,

    I don't understand the choice for the folloing sentence. Please help me.

    Rather than ___ trouble, he left.

    a. cause b. to cause c. causing d. caused

    They key is 'a'. The explanation is that rather than should be followed by infinitive. But as far as I know, rather than should be followed by parallel parts. According to that theory can I choose 'd'?

    Thank you.

    Jiang

  2. #2
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    RonBee is offline Moderator
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    I am not sure what you mean there by parallel parts. However, "cause trouble" is a phrasal verb which is pretty much self-explanatory. (You could also say, "Because he didn't want to cause trouble, he left.")

    :)

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    Default Re: grammar

    Quote Originally Posted by jiang
    Dear teachers,

    I don't understand the choice for the folloing sentence. Please help me.

    Rather than ___ trouble, he left.

    a. cause b. to cause c. causing d. caused

    They key is 'a'. The explanation is that rather than should be followed by infinitive. But as far as I know, rather than should be followed by parallel parts. According to that theory can I choose 'd'?

    Thank you.

    Jiang
    'caused' needs a subject, whereas the bare infintive 'cause' does not. The to infintive 'to cause' needs a verb, like this,

    He wanted to cause a problem.

    :D

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    Default Re: grammar

    Do you mean that " cause" is a suitable choice? How about the word "causing"?

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    Default Re: grammar

    Quote Originally Posted by solace
    Do you mean that " cause" is a suitable choice? How about the word "causing"?
    Well, jiang, the original poster, writes

    But as far as I know, rather than should be followed by parallel parts.
    The unparallel structure below would not work because 'causing' is a participle and 'left' is a verb. Note, for 'causing' to be a verb it would require some form of the verb To Be (e.g. is causing)

    Unparallel
    Rather than causing (participle) trouble, he left (verb).

    The parallel structure that follows works because 'cause' and 'left' are verbs.

    Parallel
    Rather than cause (verb) trouble, he left (verb).

    :D

  6. #6
    jiang is offline Key Member
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    Dear RonBee,
    I am sorry I didn't express my idea clear. I can cite a sentence to express my point.
    I'd prefer to go in August rather than in July.
    Here in August parallels with in July. In my sentence, because there is the word 'left' I thought we should use 'caused' to parallel 'left'. That's why I felt confused. But it seems I am wrong. The grammar shouldn't be analyzed this way.

    Thank you for your help.

    Jiang
    Quote Originally Posted by RonBee
    I am not sure what you mean there by parallel parts. However, "cause trouble" is a phrasal verb which is pretty much self-explanatory. (You could also say, "Because he didn't want to cause trouble, he left.")

    :)

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    Quote Originally Posted by jiang


    Dear RonBee,
    I am sorry I didn't express my idea clear. I can cite a sentence to express my point.
    I'd prefer to go in August rather than in July.
    Here in August parallels with in July. In my sentence, because there is the word 'left' I thought we should use 'caused' to parallel 'left'. That's why I felt confused. But it seems I am wrong. The grammar shouldn't be analyzed this way.

    Thank you for your help.

    Jiang
    Quote Originally Posted by RonBee
    I am not sure what you mean there by parallel parts. However, "cause trouble" is a phrasal verb which is pretty much self-explanatory. (You could also say, "Because he didn't want to cause trouble, he left.")

    :)
    The verb is cause trouble, not cause. Perhaps Cas or Mike can explain the grammatical reason for it, but here is the way I would use it"
    • He didn't want to cause trouble, so he left.
      He caused trouble, and then he left.
      To avoid causing trouble, he left.


    I am not sure if that is much help.

    :(

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