Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    1
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Is this a proper sentence?

    Hi folks. is this a proper sentence as far as using the words "were they" where they are used?

    The Internet is littered with tough guys like
    you who would have long ago had a knife plunged in their belly were they running that mouth in person like they are brave enough to do on
    the wire.

    The words "were they" in this sentence appear to me to mean *if they were running their mouth in person* are these words proper in this sentence? Is this a proper sentence as it is, with acceptable word usage?

    Thanks for any help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    23
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarwreck View Post
    Hi folks. is this a proper sentence as far as using the words "were they" where they are used?

    The Internet is littered with tough guys like
    you who would have long ago had a knife plunged in their belly were they running that mouth in person like they are brave enough to do on
    the wire.

    The words "were they" in this sentence appear to me to mean *if they were running their mouth in person* are these words proper in this sentence? Is this a proper sentence as it is, with acceptable word usage?

    Thanks for any help.
    Well, I'm certainly not an english major; however, you did write "Thanks for any help".

    I would not speak or write the phrase the way you have listed unless I was quoting someone or in an environment where slang is perfectly acceptable.

    I would probably say something along the line of, "..if they were" as you have mentioned or just restructure the phrase altogether.

    Please don't interpret this as being a snob. I am assuming this is in a written format.

    As far as I'm concerned, slang is perfectly acceptable as long as the thought is clearly conveyed and no one has been intentionally offended.

    cheers

  3. #3
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    2,585
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    Hello GW

    "The Internet is littered with tough guys like you, who would have long ago had a knife plunged in their belly, were they running that mouth in person [like they are brave enough to do on the wire]."

    "Were they" does indeed mean "if they were" in this sentence.

    I think it's a little more forceful without the part in square brackets; but other members might disagree.

    All the best,

    MrP

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    289
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    Quote Originally Posted by MrPedantic View Post
    Hello GW
    "The Internet is littered with tough guys like you, who would have long ago had a knife plunged in their belly, were they running that mouth in person [like they are brave enough to do on the wire]."
    "Were they" does indeed mean "if they were" in this sentence.
    I think it's a little more forceful without the part in square brackets; but other members might disagree.
    All the best,MrP
    Hi, my friends, excuse for interrupting abruptly, but I'm really intriqued by the base sentence.
    Yet, I'm not quite certain what the lines in bold mean; will someone be kind enough to rephrase it for me? Thanks.

  5. #5
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    19,448
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Guitarwreck View Post
    Hi folks. is this a proper sentence as far as using the words "were they" where they are used?

    The Internet is littered with tough guys like you who would have long ago had a knife plunged in their belly were they running that mouth in person like they are brave enough to do on the wire.

    The words "were they" in this sentence appear to me to mean *if they were running their mouth in person* are these words proper in this sentence? Is this a proper sentence as it is, with acceptable word usage?

    Thanks for any help.
    Perfectly acceptable, but not very common. It's a literary use rather than a colloquial one.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    23
    Post Thanks / Like

    Smile Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    Perfectly acceptable, but not very common. It's a literary use rather than a colloquial one.

    Perfectly acceptable? According to whom? I beg to differ, somewhat my friend.

    The statement is both; literary when written and colloquial when spoken.

    In my humble opinion, unless communication written or otherwise is understood between the parties it is far from perfect.

    Consider the latest post of Piousoul:

    Originally Posted by MrPedantic
    Hello GW
    "The Internet is littered with tough guys like you, who would have long ago had a knife plunged in their belly, were they running that mouth in person [like they are brave enough to do on the wire]."
    "Were they" does indeed mean "if they were" in this sentence.
    I think it's a little more forceful without the part in square brackets; but other members might disagree.
    All the best,MrP


    Hi, my friends, excuse for interrupting abruptly, but I'm really intriqued by the base sentence.
    Yet, I'm not quite certain what the lines in bold mean; will someone be kind enough to rephrase it for me? Thanks.
    It reads as though he is trying to understand what is actually being said as oppose to the syntax of the phrase.

    As I have mentioned earlier, it depends on your audience.

    I, like so many others understand "perfectly" what GW is saying. However, it seems Piousoul is from Taiwan and may not be familiar with the different dialects of the english language.

    For the sake of Piousoul I write:

    "The Internet is filled with guys like you; who use their anonymity to speak boldly and fearlessly.

    If it were not for the fact that your identity has been concealed, you would have been dead (GW started this) a long time ago."

    The statement conveys the same thought; especially, in the written format. If I were to speak GW statment verbally, it would still convey the same thought because my audience would understand my dialect by the way I use body language to accent my point.

    Regarding the words in the [ ] ["Like they are brave enough to do on the wire."] is the same as "Like they are brave enough to do on the Internet."

    Cheers to all

  7. #7
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    19,448
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    If the cap fits, wear it.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Posts
    23
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    If the cap fits, wear it.
    I understand that "PERFECTLY"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    289
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Is this a proper sentence?

    Quote Originally Posted by word View Post

    For the sake of Piousoul I write:

    "The Internet is filled with guys like you; who use their anonymity to speak boldly and fearlessly.

    If it were not for the fact that your identity has been concealed, you would have been dead (GW started this) a long time ago."

    Regarding the words in the [ ] ["Like they are brave enough to do on the wire."] is the same as "Like they are brave enough to do on the Internet."Cheers to all
    Thank you, word, for your paraphrase, through which I see clearly what the base sentence refers to. Thanks.

Similar Threads

  1. Are the 5 basic sentence patterns sacred?
    By infinikyte in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 49
    Last Post: 28-Aug-2009, 21:52
  2. Dear MikeNewYork... sentence fragment
    By wendy in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 09-Mar-2009, 09:50
  3. using a proper word in a sentence
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 09-Jan-2006, 04:09
  4. Attributive Clause - China Needs Your Help
    By ChinaDavid in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 09-Jan-2005, 15:56
  5. proper sentence structure...
    By Anonymous in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 29-May-2004, 23:45

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Hotchalk