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  1. #1
    icarlos is offline Newbie
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    Exclamation I need help with analysing a sentence

    Hi !

    I'm studying how to analyse sentences in my grammar course at the university, and I was given a homework. I needed to analyse a whole text, and identify simple, compound and complex sentences. and then if it is complex I have to divide it into an adverb, adjective or noun clause.

    I analysed the text with no problem except for one sentence.

    Here it goes:

    "Only a little tired of myself", replied Estella, freeing her arm, and moving to the chimney piece, where she stood looking down at the fire.


    I'm really confused with this one. I hope you can help me !, Thanks !

  2. #2
    Teia is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by icarlos View Post
    Hi !

    I'm studying how to analyse sentences in my grammar course at the university, and I was given a homework. I needed to analyse a whole text, and identify simple, compound and complex sentences. and then if it is complex I have to divide it into an adverb, adjective or noun clause.

    I analysed the text with no problem except for one sentence.

    Here it goes:

    "Only a little tired of myself", replied Estella, freeing her arm, and moving to the chimney piece, where she stood looking down at the fire.


    I'm really confused with this one. I hope you can help me !, Thanks !
    Hi Carlos.
    In my opinion this is a complex sentence. Complex sentences describe more than one thing or idea and have more than one verb. They are made up of more than one clause : an independent clause[it can stand by itself] and a subordinate clause[ which cannot stand by itself].
    Let`s take your example:
    "Only a little tired of myself" - noun clause [ I am not sure]
    .........replied Estella,..-main clause
    freeing her arm - subordinate clause[ adverbial clause of manner]
    and moving to the...- subordinate clause[adverbial clause of manner]
    where she stood ..- subordinate clause of place

    If we take "while freeing her arm, and moving ....", then we have 2 subordinate clauses of time.

    I`d like to see some experts` advice.

    All the best.

  3. #3
    RonBee's Avatar
    RonBee is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    "Only a little tired of myself" is an adjectival clause. It describes how Estella is feeling.

    ~R

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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    Additionally, ellipsis is the key:
    Ex: (I am) only a little tired of myself, replied Estella, ...
    The speaker, Estella, has omitted (...) the subject-verb pair I am:
    “What!” said Miss Havisham, flashing her eyes upon her, “are you tired of me?”

    (No. I am) Only a little tired of myself,” replied Estella, disengaging her arm, and moving to the great chimney-piece, where she stood looking down at the fire.

    Great Expectations (Chapter XXXVIII)
    by Charles Dickens


  5. #5
    Teia is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    Thank you Casiopea and RonBee.

    I still have a question if you don`t mind :

    [I am ] Only a little tired of myself -is this sentence an independent one? can it be taken that way?
    The question word we can use here is : What did Estella reply?
    She replied , [she was] Only a little tired of herself. Is this sentence still an adjectival clause ? I don`t know how to ask the question by which I can state the subordinate clause Only a little tired of myself.

    Thank you.
    Last edited by Teia; 18-Aug-2007 at 20:54.

  6. #6
    RonBee's Avatar
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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    "I am only a little tired of myself" can certainly be an independent clause (sentence).

    Did I answer your question?

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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by teia_petrescu View Post
    [I am] Only a little tired of myself - is this sentence an independent one?
    Elided, yes, but, and as you have mentioned, it functions as the object of the verb replied;i.e., What did Estella reply?:
    Ex: She replied, "Only tired of myself."

    Quote Originally Posted by teia_petrescu
    Is this sentence still an adjectival clause?
    There are two possibilities:
    #1 Adjectival: I am only tired of myself.
    #2 Adverbial: I am only tired of myself. (Meaning, I am tired of myself, only.)
    Which meaning do you think Estella intended?

  8. #8
    Teia is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by Casiopea View Post
    Elided, yes, but, and as you have mentioned, it functions as the object of the verb replied;i.e., What did Estella reply?:
    Ex: She replied, "Only tired of myself."

    There are two possibilities:
    #1 Adjectival: I am only tired of myself.
    #2 Adverbial: I am only tired of myself. (Meaning, I am tired of myself, only.)
    Which meaning do you think Estella intended?
    Well, I think that the first one is correct. Yet, I am not sure if my choice is good. Estella says she is tired only of herself and not [tired]of Miss Havisham. Is my choice correct? Or, should I think it over again?

    Thank you.
    Last edited by Teia; 19-Aug-2007 at 21:56.

  9. #9
    Teia is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: I need help with analysing a sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by RonBee View Post
    "I am only a little tired of myself" can certainly be an independent clause (sentence).

    Did I answer your question?
    Yes, you did. Thank you very much RonBee.

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