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    #1

    Dangling Modifier

    Hi,
    In the online writing lab of Purdue University, there is an example about a dangling modifier (there is a similar example in Toronto University website too):

    "To improve his results, the experiment was done again."

    They said that "the experiment" cannot improve its results, so they corrected it in this way:
    "He improved his results by doing the experiment again."

    I have two questions:
    1- I think there should not be dangling because "to improve" is infinitive and infinitive does not have a subject. So why there is a dangling modifier?

    2- How one can correct the first sentence without changing it into the active voice?

    I appreciate if you can provide any help.

    Thanks

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    #2

    Re: Dangling Modifier

    Quote Originally Posted by fargh View Post



    2- How can one correct the first sentence without changing it into the active voice?





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


    Hello, Fargh:

    I have found something that may interest you since you do NOT want to change that main clause to the active voice.

    Dangling: "To get the most out of a sport, the equipment must be in perfect condition."

    The book says that we can change this to: "For someone to get the most out of a sport, the equipment must be in perfect condition."

    So I was just wondering whether we could say something like:

    "For Tony to improve his results, the experiment was done again (by him)."


    Source: Wilma and David Ebbitt, Perrin's Index to English (copyright 1939 to 1977).

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    #3

    Re: Dangling Modifier

    Those interested can also read this thread.

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Dangling Modifier

    Quote Originally Posted by fargh View Post
    Hi,
    In the online writing lab of Purdue University, there is an example about a dangling modifier (there is a similar example in Toronto University website too):

    "To improve his results, the experiment was done again."

    They said that "the experiment" cannot improve its results, so they corrected it in this way:
    "He improved his results by doing the experiment again."

    I have two questions:
    1- I think there should not be dangling because "to improve" is infinitive and infinitive does not have a subject. So why there is a dangling modifier?

    2- How one can correct the first sentence without changing it into the active voice?

    I appreciate if you can provide any help.

    Thanks
    The infinitive is a modifier there. But the way the sentence is phrased, it appears to modify the wrong word. That is why it is "dangling".

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