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  1. #1
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    Default Gerund or Adjective

    Hi,

    I have this one sentence;

    The girl whistling a tune is bathing.

    In this sentence, is whistling gerund or an adjective? How can I differentiate between these two.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    Fazzu's Avatar
    Fazzu is offline Member
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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    I hope it is neither gerund nor an adjective.It is a verb.
    Gerund is a verb which acts like a noun. For e.g. I like swimming.
    Adjective modifies a noun. For e.g. The red, shiny, attractive sports car is mine.

    Hope I'm right.
    (Please correct me teachers if I am wrong)

  3. #3
    riverkid is offline Banned
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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    Quote Originally Posted by norlina View Post
    Hi,

    I have this one sentence;

    The girl whistling a tune is bathing.

    In this sentence, is whistling gerund or an adjective? How can I differentiate between these two.
    This is an ellipted relative clause.

    The girl [She is whistling a tune] is bathing.

    The girl who is whistling a tune is bathing.

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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    Hi,
    It's a verbal, Participle I; the same as in She is whistling a tune.
    Rgs

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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    You're right, Humble!

  6. #6
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    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    Quote Originally Posted by norlina View Post
    Hi,

    I have this one sentence;

    The girl whistling a tune is bathing.

    In this sentence, is whistling gerund or an adjective? How can I differentiate between these two.

    Thank you.
    Yes in this sentence it's a participle. Here's a context in which the same word (although some purists would argue it's not the same word at all, just a homonym) is a gerund:"Whistling is a dying art. It's not nearly as widely practised as when I was a boy". One of the things that distinguishes it as a gerund is that it behaves syntactically like a noun.

    My favourite example is this pair:
    Flying planes is dangerous
    (in which 'flying' is a gerund: it is a dangerous thing to fly planes) and
    Flying planes are dangerous
    (in which it's a participle: the dangerous things are planes, and what they're doing is flying).

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 20-Sep-2006 at 22:02. Reason: Added to last parenthesis

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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    It's verb? i thought verb supposed to have an aux in front of it. Like: She is reading the book since this morning. So, reading there is a verb -ing. But in this sentence: The girl whistling a tune is bathing. There is no aux be before whistling. I am still confused because a friend of mine told me that whistling here is an adjective. This kind of adj is placed after the subject (The girl) and before an object (a tune). Please clarify. Thank you.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    It's a verbal = a verbal form. Verbs have some derivative forms:
    1. Participle I, Gerund - a verb+ing (seeing, spying etc)
    2. Participle II - forgotten, washed etc
    Sorry, no more time now.
    Cheers

  9. #9
    riverkid is offline Banned
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    Default Re: Gerund or Adjective

    Quote Originally Posted by norlina View Post
    It's verb? i thought verb supposed to have an aux in front of it. Like: She is reading the book since this morning. So, reading there is a verb -ing. But in this sentence: The girl whistling a tune is bathing. There is no aux be before whistling.

    Noralina, it's a verb that has had the auxiliary [aux] ellipted. "Ellipted means taken out. We can do this in relative pronoun clauses that use 'ing'.

    As I wrote in my first posting,

    Quote Originally Posted by riverkid View Post

    This is an ellipted relative clause.
    The girl [She is whistling a tune] is bathing.
    The girl who is whistling a tune is bathing.
    This can be shortened, [ellipted] to,

    The girl whistling a tune is bathing.



    I am still confused because a friend of mine told me that whistling here is an adjective. This kind of adj is placed after the subject (The girl) and before an object (a tune). Please clarify.
    It is a kind of adjective but the entire relative clause,

    "who is whistling a tune" shortened to "whistling a tune"

    is the adjective which gives us further information about which girl it is.

    Let's try a few more of these "long" adjectives.

    The girl who lives in Malaysia is Noralina.

    Here we can't shorten the long adjective relative clause.

    The girl who is asking us these questions is Noralina.

    Now we can shorten it;

    The girl [who is] asking us these questions is Noralina.

    Notice that there is subject -> 'who' and an aux -> 'is'. It's just okay for us to drop it here. So though these relative clauses act as adjectives, 'long adjectives', they aren't really adjectives.

    If you have any more questions, feel free to ask.

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