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  1. Trance Freak's Avatar
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    #1

    Post Simple or Complex

    Having brushed his teeth, he went to bed.

    I know that "Having brushed" is a complex non-finite verb phrase, and "went" is a simple finite-verb phrase. But does that make the sentence complex?
    I thought it was simple !

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    #2

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Is 'having brushed his teeth' dependent or independent?

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    #3

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Quote Originally Posted by Trance Freak View Post
    Having brushed his teeth, he went to bed.

    I know that "Having brushed" is a complex non-finite verb phrase, and "went" is a simple finite-verb phrase. But does that make the sentence complex?
    I thought it was simple !
    Neither a teacher nor a native speaker

    My point of view:
    It is a subordinate clause:

    Once he had brushed your teeth, he went to bed or
    After having brushed his teeth, he went to bed

    Main clause: he went to bed
    Subordinate : When? After he brushed his teeth / having brushed his teeth


  2. Trance Freak's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Thanks for the whole thing, but my question was if the sentence was simple or complex?
    If a clause has a non-finite verb, does that make the sentence simple or complex?
    Last edited by Trance Freak; 28-Feb-2010 at 17:12.

  3. Raymott's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Quote Originally Posted by Trance Freak View Post
    Thanks for the whole thing, but my question was if the sentence was simple or complex?
    If a clause has a non-finite verb, does that make the sentence simple or complex?
    It depends on which grammar you use.
    When I was at school, I learnt that a clause has to have a finite verb. There is only one finite verb here, so it's a simple sentence.

    On the other hand, it seems to be common now to consider this as a two clause sentence, and so it's complex.

    Obviously if you change "Having brushed his teeth" into "After he had brushed his teeth" then you have a complex sentence. But that wasn't your question, I know.

  4. Trance Freak's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    It depends on which grammar you use.
    When I was at school, I learnt that a clause has to have a finite verb. There is only one finite verb here, so it's a simple sentence.

    On the other hand, it seems to be common now to consider this as a two clause sentence, and so it's complex.

    Obviously if you change "Having brushed his teeth" into "After he had brushed his teeth" then you have a complex sentence. But that wasn't your question, I know.


    It is somehow my question.
    Indeed, when I was young, I was taught that a simple sentence is a sentence that contains one finite verb.
    Then, in college, I realized that a two-clause sentence, containing a finite verb & a non-finte verb, is a complex sentence, even though there is only ONE FINTE VERB.
    My professor said that while diagramming this sentence, it should be represented as "After he had brushed his teeth, he went to bed," so the sentence is no longer simple since its diagram says it is complex!

    It doesn't make sense to me.
    It's either simple or complex. I don't have to change the non-finite verb phrase into a finite-verb phrase to say that the sentence is complex! Do I?
    Last edited by Trance Freak; 28-Feb-2010 at 19:36.

  5. Raymott's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Quote Originally Posted by Trance Freak View Post
    It either simple or complex.
    If only life (and grammar) were as simple as that! But unfortunately, you have to take into account the ontological possibilities.

    I don't have to change the non-finite verb phrase into a finite-verb phrase to say that the sentence is complex! Do I?

    I'm not sure. Maybe someone else who cares more about simple/complex sentences could give an opinion.
    R.

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    #8

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Quote Originally Posted by Trance Freak View Post
    Thanks for the whole thing, but my question was if the sentence was simple or complex?
    If a clause has a non-finite verb, does that make the sentence simple or complex?
    As far as I know and following the rules I have been taught when we speak of a subordinate sentece we speak of a complex sentence.

  6. mara_ce's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Simple or Complex

    I´ve got a definition of complex sentences:

    They are like simple sentences in that they consist of only one main clause, but unlike simple sentences they have one o more subordinate clauses that are grammatically dependent upon the main clause and that function as an element of the sentence, for example:

    What he said is not true.
    The man who came yesterday is my uncle.
    Although I admire her reasoning, I reject her conclusions.

  7. Trance Freak's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: Simple or Complex

    Quote Originally Posted by mara_ce View Post
    I´ve got a definition of complex sentences:

    They are like simple sentences in that they consist of only one main clause, but unlike simple sentences they have one o more subordinate clauses that are grammatically dependent upon the main clause and that function as an element of the sentence, for example:

    What he said is not true.
    The man who came yesterday is my uncle.
    Although I admire her reasoning, I reject her conclusions.
    Thanks, but there is no non-finite verbs in these sentences.

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