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Thread: comma

  1. #1
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    Default comma

    That capacity to form hybrids as well as the virus's large genome, enables the genus to easily gain or lose traits.

    why is there a comma in the sentence?

  2. #2
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    As it stands, it's wrong. There should be a comma before 'as well as', which makes the subject singular.

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    if i rewrite the sentence to
    "That capacity to form hybrids as well as the virus's large genome enable the genus to easily gain or lose traits."

    is it correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    As it stands, it's wrong. There should be a comma before 'as well as', which makes the subject singular.

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    That works because of the change made to the verb.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mengta
    if i rewrite the sentence to
    "That capacity to form hybrids as well as the virus's large genome enable the genus to easily gain or lose traits."

    is it correct?

    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    As it stands, it's wrong. There should be a comma before 'as well as', which makes the subject singular.
    I don't agree. The "as well as" phrase does not become part of the subject just because one removes the commas. The commas are needed there, IMO. If one wants to make the subject plural, one should change "as well as" to "and". :wink:

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    'And' would be better, but I'll take the 'as well as' as part of the subject if there are no commas.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    'And' would be better, but I'll take the 'as well as' as part of the subject if there are no commas.
    What, then, does "as well as" mean if not "in addition to"?

    John, as well as his brothers, goes to Harvard.
    John, along with his brothers, goes to Harvard.
    John and his brothers go to Harvard.

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    Can't it mean both things? It seems to in good old Blighty. ;-(

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    Quote Originally Posted by tdol
    Can't it mean both things? It seems to in good old Blighty. ;-(
    It's the same old subject-verb thing. :wink:

  10. #10
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    There are so many areas where we seem to have moved away from the more fixed approach.

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