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    #1

    starting a sentence with the word "Subject"??

    This question really stems from technical writing (police reports). Can you start a sentence with the word "Subject?"

    eg. Subject stated that he did not know.

    Or should it be, The subject stated that he did not know. ?

    Thanks

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    #2

    Re: starting a sentence with the word "Subject"??

    Quote Originally Posted by orbit308 View Post
    This question really stems from technical writing (police reports). Can you start a sentence with the word "Subject?"

    eg. Subject stated that he did not know.

    Or should it be, The subject stated that he did not know. ?

    Thanks
    I daresay either variant is possible. Here is a quote from a story by R.Chandler (a popular detective story writer, the 30s-40s of the 20th century):1. A waitress came with the inevitable glass of ice water, and the menu. The subject gave an order.2. I went back to the coffee shop and looked in through the glass wall. Subject was reading her paperback and toying with coffee and a snail. Indeed the ways of English grammar are very mysterious.
    Last edited by Pokemon; 18-Sep-2010 at 21:59.

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    #3

    Re: starting a sentence with the word "Subject"??

    Quote Originally Posted by Pokemon View Post
    I daresay either variant is possible. Here is a quote from a story by R.Chandler (a popular detective story writer, the 30s-40s of the 20th century):1. A waitress came with the inevitable glass of ice water, and the menu. The subject gave an order.2. I went back to the coffee shop and looked in through the glass wall. Subject was reading her paperback and toying with coffee and a snail. Indeed the ways of English grammar are very mysterious.
    Did R.Chandler find the second appearance of the definite article in the next sentence redundant?
    Or maybe he named the person that way?

    Thanks

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    #4

    Re: starting a sentence with the word "Subject"??

    Quote Originally Posted by e2e4 View Post
    Did R.Chandler find the second appearance of the definite article in the next sentence redundant?
    Or maybe he named the person that way?

    Thanks
    I really couldn't say. As is known, the human heart (probably, the human mind also) is one of the biggest mysteries. But maybe the British gentleman we were on another thread with, who must have returned from an expedition around India recently, judging by his nickname and avatar, would be kind enough to throw some light on the matter.

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    #5

    Re: starting a sentence with the word "Subject"??

    In police reports or notes made by a private investigator, brevity is key - both for speed of recording facts and to save the time of those who have to read them.

    Standard English goes out of the window here.

    Rover

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    #6

    Re: starting a sentence with the word "Subject"??

    Absolutely, Rover!

    When writing notes or reports in many law-enforcement agencies, the normal rules of grammar don't necessarily apply.

    Subject known to police = The subject is known to the police.
    Subject arrested 1028hrs = The subject was arrested at 10.28am.

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