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  1. enydia's Avatar

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
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    #1

    rather than

    Hello, Teachers.

    Does the phrase 'rather than' work as a preposition or a conjunction?
    Which of the following sentences is correct?

    She made students think for themselves, rather than telling them what to think.
    She made students think for themselves, rather than tell them what to think.

    Why didn't you ask for help, rather than trying to do it on your own?
    Why didn't you ask for help, rather than tried to do it on your own?
    Why didn't you ask for help, rather than try to do it on your own?

    He started to sing rather than dancing.
    He started to sing rather than to dance.
    He started to sing rather than dance.

    Rather than risked breaking up his marriage he told his wife everything.
    Rather than risking breaking up his marriage he told his wife everything.
    Rather than risk breaking up his marriage he told his wife everything.

    It would be very nice if you could explain your choice.

    Thanks in advance.

    Enydia ^_^

  2. juampiok's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jul 2008
    • Posts: 30
    #2

    Re: rather than



    Than is a preposition. It isn't used to join two statements that could each be a sentence in their own rights. Rather is an adverb that must be followed by than; it says that it would be preferable for you to do the first option than the second and has the same effect when put before rather as when put after the verb.

    For me itīs

  3. BobK's Avatar
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    • Join Date: Jul 2006
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    #3

    Re: rather than

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    Hello, Teachers.

    Does the phrase 'rather than' work as a preposition or a conjunction?
    Which of the following sentences is correct?

    She made students think for themselves, rather than telling them what to think.
    She made students think for themselves, rather than tell them what to think.

    Why didn't you ask for help, rather than trying to do it on your own?
    Why didn't you ask for help, rather than tried to do it on your own?
    Why didn't you ask for help, rather than try to do it on your own?

    He started to sing rather than dancing.
    He started to sing rather than to dance.
    He started to sing rather than dance.

    Rather than risked breaking up his marriage he told his wife everything.

    Rather than risking breaking up his marriage he told his wife everything.

    Rather than risk breaking up his marriage he told his wife everything.
    It would be very nice if you could explain your choice.

    Thanks in advance.

    Enydia ^_^
    I agree about it being nice, but I'm afraid I can't! - as far as I know, "rather than" can be followed by a bare infinitive or a gerund but not by a to-infinitive or a simple past. If there is a reason, I'd like to hear it too, if any other teacher would do the honours...

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 28-Jul-2008 at 22:12. Reason: Correction

  4. BobK's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: rather than

    Sorry if my original post misled anyone - I got my ticks and crosses mixed up.

    b

  5. Philly's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jun 2006
    • Posts: 620
    #5

    Re: rather than

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    I agree about it being nice, but I'm afraid I can't! - as far as I know, "rather than" can be followed by a bare infinitive or a gerund but not by a to-infinitive or a simple past. If there is a reason, I'd like to hear it too, if any other teacher would do the honours...

    b
    At your service, Bob.
    This may possibly be one of those AmE vs BE differences, but a to-infinitive doesn't bother me at all after "rather than" -- it depends on the structure of the sentence. I would tend to use it for balance. In other words, if there is a to-infinitive preceding "rather than", then a to-infinitive afterwards can balance things quite nicely.

  6. Raymott's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: rather than

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    At your service, Bob.
    This may possibly be one of those AmE vs BE differences, but a to-infinitive doesn't bother me at all after "rather than" -- it depends on the structure of the sentence. I would tend to use it for balance. In other words, if there is a to-infinitive preceding "rather than", then a to-infinitive afterwards can balance things quite nicely.
    Wouldn't it be better to give an example rather than to simply explain it? I think learners prefer that.

  7. Philly's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jun 2006
    • Posts: 620
    #7

    Re: rather than

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    Wouldn't it be better to give an example rather than to simply explain it?
    Good example.

  8. Disaster Master's Avatar

    • Join Date: Jul 2008
    • Posts: 25
    #8

    Re: rather than

    Quote Originally Posted by Philly View Post
    Good example.
    Sufficient Reply

  9. enydia's Avatar

    • Join Date: Apr 2008
    • Posts: 414
    #9

    Re: rather than

    Quote Originally Posted by BobK View Post
    I agree about it being nice, but I'm afraid I can't! - as far as I know, "rather than" can be followed by a bare infinitive or a gerund but not by a to-infinitive or a simple past. If there is a reason, I'd like to hear it too, if any other teacher would do the honours...

    b
    I really saw some sentences using 'rather than v-ed', such as
    (1) She left rather than stayed at home.
    (2) He ran rather than walked.

    Are (1) and (2) correct? If it is, do they have the same meaning as the following sentences:
    (1.1) She left rather than stay at home.
    (2.1) He ran rather than walk.

    In my opinion, (1) means she left home and she didn't stay at home, and (1.1) means she left home in order not to stay at home. In other words, (1) just describes the objective fact, but (1.1) contains sth subjective.

    Thank you in advance.

    Enydia

  10. Raymott's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: rather than

    Quote Originally Posted by enydia View Post
    I really saw some sentences using 'rather than v-ed', such as
    (1) She left rather than stayed at home.
    (2) He ran rather than walked.

    Are (1) and (2) correct? If it is, do they have the same meaning as the following sentences:
    (1.1) She left rather than stay at home.
    (2.1) He ran rather than walk.

    In my opinion, (1) means she left home and she didn't stay at home, and (1.1) means she left home in order not to stay at home. In other words, (1) just describes the objective fact, but (1.1) contains sth subjective.

    Thank you in advance.

    Enydia
    Hi Enydia,
    BobK has admitted that he was having a blank moment when he wrote that:
    "Sorry if my original post misled anyone - I got my ticks and crosses mixed up"
    I gather you are content that the to-infinitive has been accepted, and that you still have a problem with the past tense usage?
    No, 1 and 2 are incorrect. You can't say "rather than walked". You can say:
    "He ran rather than walking."
    "She left rather than staying at home."
    I can't explain this in grammatical terms any better than BobK did. But it's what we say.

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