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    #1

    be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    The sentence which I came across doesn't make sense especially the underlined words. Could you explain it to me which grammatical structure is? Thank you in advance.

    " Whether these are real or not, we are led to believe our lives are in constant danger, be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport."

  1. Piscean's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    It does make sense. 'Be it' means, in this sentence, 'whether we are'.

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    #3

    Re: be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    "Flying on a plane or travelling on public" functions as a Noun phrase in the sentence with Gerunds at the beginning?

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    #4

    Re: be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    I consider them participial phrases modifying 'it'.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #5

    Re: be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    Quote Originally Posted by Son Ho View Post
    Does "flying on a plane or travelling on public" functions function as a noun phrase in the sentence with gerunds at the beginning?
    Note the correct way to ask a question like this, indicated above.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #6

    Re: be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    Public transport = buses, trains, planes

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    #7

    Re: be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    Replace "be it" with "whether it is".

    "be it" is a more poetic form than "whether it is".

    (Likewise, "be he" = "whether he is", "be they" = "whether they are", etc.)
    Translator, editor and TESOL certificate holder, but not a teacher. Native speaker of American English (West Coast)

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    #8

    Re: be it flying on a plane or travelling on public transport.

    Quote Originally Posted by Son Ho View Post
    "Flying on a plane or travelling on public" functions as a Noun phrase in the sentence with Gerunds at the beginning?

    NOT A TEACHER


    Hello, Son Ho:

    I agree with you that we can probably parse those -ing words as "gerunds" (nouns).

    1. "Our lives are in constant danger, whether it be (is) flying on a plane or traveling on public transport."

    a. "it" seems to mean "the potential danger."

    b. "be" ("is" in modern English) seems to be a linking verb.

    *****

    P.S. If you find time, you may wish to check a good book or the World Wide Web for the topic "clauses of concession." Such sources will explain the use of the subjunctive in such clauses.

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