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  1. Newbie
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    #1

    A question and a statement in one sentence

    I'm sure I've seen sentences such as this, but I'm wondering if they are grammatically correct.

    "Does he prefer washing the car or washing the dog, the latter being far more troublesome?"

    The first phrase is a question, the last is a comment. Of course, in speaking this sentence, one would voice the first part as a question and the last as a statement. Is is acceptable to combine them in one sentence?

    Thanks

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    #2

    Re: A question and a statement in one sentence

    I'd use a dash rather than the comma. That makes the second part a parenthetical clause* and, even though the clause has no other closing punctuation, the reader will understand that the question mark goes with the first part.

    *(I think it does, anyway. My analysis is quite likely faulty.)
    I am not a teacher.

  3. Piscean's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: A question and a statement in one sentence

    I agree with GS that the second clause is parenthetical. I, however, would put it in parentheses. The question mark being outside the parentheses, there is no problem:


    Does he prefer washing the car or washing the dog (the latter being far more troublesome)?

  4. Senior Member
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    #4

    Re: A question and a statement in one sentence

    "Does he prefer washing the car or washing the dog, the latter being far more troublesome?"

    I honestly would just keep it as is. I have seen commas used in this case more than dashes. But of course that doesn't mean it is strictly grammatically correct. But since your question is about whether this is acceptable. The answer is yes.

  5. teechar's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: A question and a statement in one sentence

    Quote Originally Posted by andrewg927 View Post
    But since your question is about whether this is acceptable, the answer is yes.
    See correction.

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