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  1. aachu's Avatar
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    #1

    Sequence of 'the subject'.

    I just made a post here on this forum where I wrote, "It occurred to me at once as to how can we use XYZ in the past".

    My question is, is there any rule regarding the subject, I and we in this case, which asks us to/not to use one with the other? To put it differently, shouldn't have I said, "It occurred to me at once as to how can I use ....", or my sentence in the quotation marks is correct?

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    #2

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.

    Quote Originally Posted by aachu View Post
    I just made a post here on this forum where I wrote, "It occurred to me at once as to how can we use XYZ in the past".

    My question is, is there any rule regarding the subject, I and we in this case, which asks us to/not to use one with the other? To put it differently, shouldn't have I said, "It occurred to me at once as to how can I I can use ....", or my sentence in the quotation marks is correct?
    Either one would be correct depending on the situation. If you were speaking only of your use of XYZ, then "I" would be OK. But if you were speaking about the use by you and others, then "we" is OK.

  2. 5jj's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.

    Quote Originally Posted by aachu View Post
    "It occurred to me at once as to how can we use XYZ in the past".
    That sentence is not natural. You'd have to restructure it as: 'The question of how we can use XYZ in the past occurred to me'.

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    #4

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    That sentence is not natural. You'd have to restructure it as: 'The question of how we can use XYZ in the past occurred to me'.
    Except for the placement of "we", what do you see that is "not natural"?

  3. 5jj's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.

    Quote Originally Posted by billmcd View Post
    ... what do you see that is "not natural"?
    'As to how we can use ....' cannot 'occur to me'.

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    #6

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    'As to how we can use ....' cannot 'occur to me'.
    Sorry, maybe it's the weather, but I must be missing something. "It occurred to me at once as to how we can use XYZ in the past", for me and for example, means that suddenly, I realized how we can use the verb "go" (XYZ) in the past form.

  4. 5jj's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.

    Quote Originally Posted by billmcd View Post
    Sorry, maybe it's the weather, but I must be missing something. "It occurred to me at once as to how we can use XYZ in the past", for me and for example, means that suddenly, I realized how we can use the verb "go" (XYZ) in the past form.
    In the thread aachu referred to, he appeared to me to be presenting those words as if they had the meaning of " The question (of how we can use XYZ in the past) occurred to me at once." I was led astray by the original 'can we' word order. If that had been his intention, the words he used were clearly unnatural.

    Now that you have pointed out a more probable meaning, the sentence is not nearly as unnatural as it first appeared to me, but I still think "It occurred to me at once as to how we can..." is not natural English. It's fine without 'as to", but not as it is - in my opinion.

    You clarified the meaning for me. Have I clarified my objection to the words for you?

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    #8

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.

    Quote Originally Posted by 5jj View Post
    In the thread aachu referred to, he appeared to me to be presenting those words as if they had the meaning of " The question (of how we can use XYZ in the past) occurred to me at once." I was led astray by the original 'can we' word order. If that had been his intention, the words he used were clearly unnatural.

    Now that you have pointed out a more probable meaning, the sentence is not nearly as unnatural as it first appeared to me, but I still think "It occurred to me at once as to how we can..." is not natural English. It's fine without 'as to", but not as it is - in my opinion.

    You clarified the meaning for me. Have I clarified my objection to the words for you?
    Well maybe it's a BrE/AmE thing. Let's leave it at that. Vive la difference!

  5. 5jj's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: Sequence of 'the subject'.


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