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  1. #1
    donnach is offline Member
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    Default Red -- predicate adjective or predicate noun? Or both? (previous post)

    I have a question regarding the response to a previous post. (The original post is below my question.)

    If "as" functions as a subordinate conjunction, where is the subject for the dependent clause? The original poster thought "as" was a relative pronoun, which would allow it to function as the subject, but the responses say that "as" is a conjunction. Is the subject of the clause "as makes the eyes ache" elliptical?

    Thank you,

    Donna

    Re: Red -- predicate adjective or predicate noun? Or both?
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Lucky
    Posted this question in another forum. I probably should have put it here. Please have a look at it and tell me what you think. Thank you.

    1. The color of her gown was such a red as makes the eyes ache.

    I wondering whether "red" functions both as an adjective and as a noun. For instance, isn't an adjective modifying the sentence's subject "color"? And isn't it a noun, functioning as the antecedent of the relative pronoun "as"? Could "red" possibly have a dual function.
    And also confusing me is the word "such." Is "such" an adverb modifying the adjective "red," or is it an adjective modifying the noun "red."

    Thank you very much.

    --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    MM wrote:

    'Red' is the noun complement of 'color', and 'such(a)' is an adjective modifier of 'red'. 'As' is a conjunction to introduce the exemplifying clause.


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Casiopea wrote:

    In addition to MM's excellent reply, I'd like to add something small, but noteworthy. The article "a" tells us "red" functions as a noun: Only nouns take articles.

    a red (article + noun = noun phrase)

    As for "such", and as MM has noted, it functions as an adjective here. We know that because adjectives modify noun phrases:

    such a red (adjective+noun phrase)

    As for whether or not "red" has a dual function, please note that, the entire phrase 'such a red as makes the eyes ache' functions as the subject complement:

    The color of her dress was such a red as makes the eyes ache.

    As for whether the underlined portion functions as a predicate noun or a predicate adjective, here's a test that always works: Add the Subject complement to 'seems':

    The color seems such a red as makes the eyes ache. (not OK)
    She is a doctor / She seems a doctor. (not OK)

    The underlined portion doesn't work with 'seems', so its not an adjective. (Only adjectives can occur in that position--after 'seems'.)

    The underlined portion is a predicate noun and within that structure 'red' has its own separate function: noun (i.e., "red" is the name of a color).

    All the best, :D

  2. #2
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    Soup is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Red -- predicate adjective or predicate noun? Or both? (previous post)

    Pronoun
    (used relatively) that; who; which (usually prec. by such or the same).
    Ex: ...such a red as makes the eyes ache. <as = pronoun>


    If as were a conjunction, and the subject covert (not seen or heard), then the verb would lack tense like this:
    Ex: He was so foolish as to lie. <as = conjunction>
    Note that, when as functions as a conjuction it means "with the result", which our example sentence such a red as makes the eyes ache appears to express; however, if we take a look at the syntax, the verb makes carries tense, which means it has an overt subject--that subject being the pronoun as.

    Last edited by Soup; 15-May-2008 at 15:12.

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    donnach is offline Member
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    Default Re: Red -- predicate adjective or predicate noun? Or both? (previous post)

    Thanks, that makes sense. As = pronoun and subject of relative clause.

    I have another question:





    If as were a conjunction, and the subject covert (not seen or heard), then the verb would lack tense like this:
    Ex: He was so foolish as to lie. <as = conjunction>
    I do not understand the idea that a conjunction that opens a clause with covert subject will lead to a verb that lacks tense.

    My understanding of subordinate conjunctions is that they always precede a clause. "As to lie" is not a clause.

    Could "as" be a preposition in this case? It precedes the infinitive phrase "to lie", which would serve as its noun object.

    Thanks,

    Donna
    Last edited by donnach; 16-May-2008 at 00:14.

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    Default Re: Red -- predicate adjective or predicate noun? Or both? (previous post)

    Hi Donna

    Here we have an example of as joining two verb phrases:
    Ex: He was so foollish as to lie.
    Here we have an example of a subordinating conjunction:
    Ex: He was so foolish because he lied.

  5. #5
    donnach is offline Member
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    Default Re: Red -- predicate adjective or predicate noun? Or both? (previous post)

    Here we have an example of as joining two verb phrases:
    Ex: He was so foollish as to lie.
    Hi Soup. "Was so foolish" is a verb phrase? And I though "to lie" is a verbal not a verb phrase. Guess I need to look up the definiation for those two for my own understanding.
    Is there a rule or concept that you can let me know about regarding subordinating conjunctions joining verb phrases\verbals. (I know we're not supposed to rely so much on rules in grammar, but at this point I need them to help me to understand it.)

    Thanks,

    Donna

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