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    #1

    Order of information in a sentence

    Hi, have I put "why" in the corect place if I was writing a sentence and where should I put "how"?

    who ⇨ what ⇨ why ⇨ where ⇨ when

    Thanks

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    #2

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    not a teacher

    Where did you read that rule?
    I don't think that order is necessary to form "correct", i.e. grammatical sentences. It could be necessary to follow such order in some contexts. I could be wrong though.

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    #3

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    I didn't read it a friend told me that I should follow this order.

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    #4

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    OK, I guess it has something to do with W-questions when describing a situation. I din't know you have to follow a certain order.
    I don't believe (just my opinion!) that anyone will be confused if you start with the time first.
    If it's not a fixed rule, you can put the date, time, reason etc. wherever you want.

    I hope a teacher will give us more insight.

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    #5

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    Thanks Michael, we'll wait and see.

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    #6

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    [QUOTE=crazyaboutenglish;811014]


    NOT A TEACHER


    (1) What an interesting question!

    (2) I have a 1954 book entitled An Introduction to Journalism. It lists the so-called

    five W's (for a news article) as:

    Who?

    What?

    When?

    Where?

    Why?

    and

    How?

    (3) If you google "The Five W's," you will probably find what order is used by

    other people.

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    #7

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    I've Googled it and it's very interesting - thanks. So, can I say that the order of this information in a sentence doesn't really matter nowadays or do you think I should follow this when I'm talking/writing?

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    #8

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by crazyaboutenglish View Post
    I've Googled it and it's very interesting - thanks. So, can I say that the order of this information in a sentence doesn't really matter nowadays or do you think I should follow this when I'm talking/writing?

    NOT A TEACHER


    (1) Let's be honest: nowadays nothing seems to matter!

    (2) You say that you googled and found many results. Was one order the most

    popular among the various orders? Then you might want to adopt that one.

    (3) It would be especially helpful to know what a professional journalist

    has to say. Hopefully, one will soon answer us. Until he or she does, I guess that

    I will stick with the order in that 1954 book.

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    #9

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    Generally speaking the order of adverbs is: manner (how), place (where), time (when).

    I had luch quickly at a local pub yesterday.

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    #10

    Re: Order of information in a sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by crazyaboutenglish View Post
    I didn't read it a friend told me that I should follow this order.

    NOT A TEACHER


    (1) I have done some research, and I now have the confidence to tell you: your

    friend is wrong. (Please don't tell him/her that I said that!)

    (2) I checked the 2001 edition of my 2,214-page Random House Webster's Unabridged Dictionary (which has many journalism terms). It agrees with that 1954 book: who? what? when? where? why? how? It calls them "the essential questions about the subject of a news story."

    (2) I then did some googling. It appears that The New York Times has a different

    order: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? (The 5 W's and an H)

    (a) You probably know that some people feel that TNYT is the most important

    newspaper in this country and perhaps in the world. If TNYT accepts that

    order, who am I to argue with it?

    (b) Furthermore, it seems to make more sense:

    Who did it?
    What did he do? (or "she")
    Where did he do it?
    When did he do it?
    Why did he do it
    ___

    How did he do it?

    (i) It seems to me that it makes sense to say "where" it happened before you say

    "when" it happened. Therefore, I have decided to follow the lead of TNYT.

    If you also decide to follow it and someone says that you are wrong, you could

    simply say "That's the order suggested by The New York Times." That should

    humble your friend!

    ***

    Who? Crazy About English.

    What? Asked about the correct order of the 5 W's.

    Where? On the "Ask a Teacher" forum of usingenglish.com.

    When? Today.

    Why? This information is needed for writing and speaking purposes.

    How? NA. (Not applicable. That is, in this case, there is no "how.")
    Last edited by TheParser; 15-Oct-2011 at 10:16.

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