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    #1

    adverb position

    In 2008, shortly after Bill Gates stepped down from his executive role at Microsoft, he often awoke in his 66,000-square-foot home on the eastern bank of Lake Washington and walked downstairs to his private gym in a baggy T-shirt, shorts, sneakers and black socks yanked up to the midcalf.

    In the above sentence shortly is placed before preposition after. How is it possible? Can an adverb be placed before a prep? Please clarify with adverb position.

    Thanks regards.

    PS Can the above sentence can be broken into different parts of speech? Please help.

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    #2

    Re: adverb position

    I think where you are going wrong is focussing on the word "after". "Shortly" does not modify "after." It modifies the whole clause "after Bill Gates etc." Other adverbs could easily be substituted for shortly, e.g. soon, even, because, unless, etc. although different predicates might be required in each case.

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    #3

    Re: adverb position

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    I think where you are going wrong is focussing on the word "after". "Shortly" does not modify "after." It modifies the whole clause "after Bill Gates etc." Other adverbs could easily be substituted for shortly, e.g. soon, even, because, unless, etc. although different predicates might be required in each case.
    Thank you Mr Probus. This sentence was adapted from an article in New York Times. What part of speech shortly refer to? If it modifies the whole clause "after Bill Gates". Can an adverb come before a _______ clause. I want to know what type of clause.
    Please split the whole sentence in different parts of speech.

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    #4

    Re: adverb position

    Quote Originally Posted by venkatasu View Post
    Please split the whole sentence in different parts of speech.
    You might have to wait a long time for somebody to do this. You surely know most of the parts of speech already.

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    #5

    Re: adverb position

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello, Venkatasu:

    May I share some thoughts?

    1. First, for the sake of analysis, let's greatly simplify your sentence:

    "After Bill Gates retired, he often awoke and walked downstairs to his private gym."

    a. I could (easily!) be wrong, but I do not think that "after" in that sentence is considered a "preposition." As you know, a (pro)noun ( "his retirement") must follow a preposition, but a clause ("Bill Gates retired") follows. So "after" in your sentence is considered a relative adverb or conjunction or conjunctive adverb. In other words, it is a connective. That is, it connects "Bill Gates retired" to "He often ... gym."

    2. Now look at this sentence: "They left soon after the contract was signed."

    a. One book says:

    i. "Soon" modifies the clause "after the contract was signed."
    ii. "Soon" modifies the connective "after."

    It's your choice, it says.

    3. As Probus reminded us, "soon" is about the same as "shortly."

    4. Now look at this phrase from another book: "Just before noon." "Before noon" is definitely a prepositional phrase. Let me make up a sentence: "Just before noon, there was a big explosion."

    a. That book claims that "just" seems to "limit the [idea] expressed in the preposition." And no doubt some books would claim that "just" modifies the prepositional phrase "before noon." Your choice again!


    5. It is ONLY my opinion that "shortly" in your sentence modifies the connective "after."



    James


    Sources:

    House and Harman, Descriptive English Grammar (1950).
    Walter Kay Smart, English Review Grammar (1940, copyright renewed 1968).
    Last edited by TheParser; 09-Sep-2014 at 13:25. Reason: I added quotation marks.

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    #6

    Re: adverb position

    Thanks rover. Is "surely" a subordinate conjunction. My English teacher colleague says like this. Is it correct or is it an adverb as the dictionary says. Once again thank you teachers
    Last edited by venkatasu; 09-Sep-2014 at 17:48.

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    #7

    Re: adverb position

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Hello, Venkatasu:

    May I share some thoughts?

    1. First, for the sake of analysis, let's greatly simplify your sentence:

    "After Bill Gates retired, he often awoke and walked downstairs to his private gym."

    a. I could (easily!) be wrong, but I do not think that "after" in that sentence is considered a "preposition." As you know, a (pro)noun ( "his retirement") must follow a preposition, but a clause ("Bill Gates retired") follows. So "after" in your sentence is considered a relative adverb or conjunction or conjunctive adverb. In other words, it is a connective. That is, it connects "Bill Gates retired" to "He often ... gym."

    2. Now look at this sentence: "They left soon after the contract was signed."

    a. One book says:

    i. "Soon" modifies the clause "after the contract was signed."
    ii. "Soon" modifies the connective "after."

    It's your choice, it says.

    3. As Probus reminded us, "soon" is about the same as "shortly."

    4. Now look at this phrase from another book: "Just before noon." "Before noon" is definitely a prepositional phrase. Let me make up a sentence: "Just before noon, there was a big explosion."

    a. That book claims that "just" seems to "limit the [idea] expressed in the preposition." And no doubt some books would claim that "just" modifies the prepositional phrase "before noon." Your choice again!


    5. It is ONLY my opinion that "shortly" in your sentence modifies the connective "after."



    James


    Sources:

    House and Harman, Descriptive English Grammar (1950).
    Walter Kay Smart, English Review Grammar (1940, copyright renewed 1968).

    Thank you James for your sincere efforts. Please help me whether shortly is an adverb here modifying the connective. If so can it be an adverb

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