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    #1

    Back as an adverb

    I have a question – I am wondering if the word “back” is an adverb in the way it is used in the following sentence.


    Nursing helps speed the shrinking of the uterus back to its prepregnant size.


    I believe “back” is an adverb in this sentence. I believe it is describing the verb, “speed.”
    Am I right?
    Thanks in advance

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Back as an adverb

    Yes.

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    #3

    Re: Back as an adverb

    'Back' modifies the verb 'shrinking', not 'speed'.

    not a teacher

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Back as an adverb

    "Shrinking" is not a verb, but that is another possibility.

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    #5

    Re: Back as an adverb

    OK, the 'shrinking back of the uterus' is a gerund but it is not 'speed back'.

    not a teacher

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    #6

    Re: Back as an adverb

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

    Hello, Rojas:

    I was wondering whether this dialogue, which I made up, might be of some help.

    Mrs. X: After I give birth, I want my uterus to quickly shrink to its original size.

    Doctor Y: What did you say? A noisy airplane just flew over.

    Mrs. X: I said: I want my uterus to quickly shrink back to its original size.

    Doctor Y: Don't worry. I am getting you the best nurse in the world.

    Mrs. X: How does that help?

    Doctor Y: From my many years' experience, I know that good nursing can help speed up the uterus shrinking back to its original shape.

    Mrs. X: Thank you so much, Doctor.

    *****

    I also found this in the "books" section of Google. It has to do with cows. Every word -- including those in parentheses -- is the author's.

    "Complete involution (shrinking back to normal size) of the uterus takes some time. Wait at least 45 days before rebreeding the cow." -- Essential Guide to Calving (2008) by Heather Smith Thomas.
    Last edited by TheParser; 17-Dec-2014 at 23:53. Reason: spelling

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    #7

    Re: Back as an adverb

    I got it
    "Speed back" cannot be possible
    "Shrink back" is completely possible
    even if "shrinking" in my example is a noun(or gerund) it can be modified by an adverb
    "The shrinking of the uterus back"

    Thanks a lot
    Last edited by rojas0717; 21-Dec-2014 at 19:11.

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    #8

    Re: Back as an adverb

    Yes, verbals (gerunds and participles) can be modified by adverbs. They retain certain characteristics of verbs.

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