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    #1

    Leaving home

    I'm a bit confused here, can anyone give me some advice?
    Leaving home: a double barreled noun?
    Going broke: a phrasal verb?
    Painting pause: a pause during the painting, painting an adjective?
    Are these noun phrases, verb phrases or what? They all have the -ing form of the verb. Home and pause are nouns. Broke is an adverb?

    Leaving home is traumatic.
    Going broke is traumatic.
    Painting pause is traumatic.*
    A leaving home.*
    A going broke.*
    A painting pause.
    I am leaving home.
    I am going broke.
    I am painting pause.*

    Does the fact that painting is an adjective mean that the past and present continuous actually don't exist? Future continuous has another verb in there, I'll reserve judgement! I am walking. Walking a predicative adjective?

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    #2

    Re: Leaving home

    Hi Pedroski

    Gerund phrase: Leaving home is traumatic.
    => Gerunds are -ing words that functions as subjects or objects, and because they are verbal-like, they can take an object just like a verb can, as is the case with our example 'Leaving home' above. The gerund 'leaving' takes 'home' as its object. The whole phrase functions as the subject of the clause, which makes it a gerund phrase. Note, gerund phrases are headed, or begin with an -ing word.

    Gerund phrases: Going broke is traumatic.

    Noun Phrase: A painting pause is traumatic.
    => Noun phrases end in a noun (e.g., 'pause'), usually start with a determiner (e.g., 'A'), and the noun is often modified by an adjective (e.g., 'painting').

    Noun Phrases
    a leaving home
    a going broke
    a painting pause

    Verb Phrase: I am leaving home.
    => BE + ing marks the present continuous.

    Idiom: I am going broke.
    => a. to become destitute of money or possessions. b. to go bankrupt: In that business people are forever going broke.

    Semantically awkward: ?I am painting pause.

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    #3

    Re: Leaving home

    Knew I could count on you Soup.
    I marked some 'sentences' with an asterisk, because they aren't sentences, or at least not correct or English. They were just as a comparison. Iwould never write them in earnest.

    So there is such a thing as the Present Continuous?
    If I write Peter is painting, is that not just a verbal predicate adjective describing Peter?
    I ask because in another thread, can't remember which one right now, I think it was David.L, commenting on the sentence: 'Just after they arrived their food was gone.' said, rightly or wrongly, gone here is an adjective. If that is correct, then any construction Noun + be + -ing form must also be the same. Pronouns are a subset of nouns. They don't seem to take adjectives as pre- or post-modifiers, except maybe 'silly me', but then some adjectives cannot be used attributively.

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    #4

    Re: Leaving home

    Hi Pedroski

    The convention is as follows:

    Use the symbol ? to mark a semantically awkward sentence; e.g., ?I am a painting pause.

    Use the symbol * to mark an ungrammatical sentence; e.g., *I like run.

    _______________________

    [1] Peter is painting. <present continuous>
    Let's test it
    Adjective? painting Peter
    Participle? Peter is doing something.

    The present continuous takes the form BE + -ing, also called a present participle. Delete BE and the -ing becomes a nominal, either an adjective (also called a present participle) or a noun or a gerund. Word order is important here:
    Present Continuous: I am swimming. <doing>
    Gerund: Swimming is fun. <subject>
    Adjective: She has a swimming suit. <modifier>
    [2] Their food was gone. <past participle>
    There are two kinds of participles, present (-ing) and past (-ed). They're named as such because their morphology is as such.

    Past participles, as with present participles, can function as adjectives:
    a viewing screen
    Test: What kind of screen? A viewing one

    a gone feeling
    Test: What kind of feeling? A gone one
    Adjectives can go either before or after the noun they modify:
    Max is old ~ old Max
    When the adjective comes after its noun, it's usually separated from its noun by a form of BE, as in our example Max is old.

    Another way to test to see if the word after BE is a modifier or not is to use the equals sign (=):
    Max = old <adjective>
    ('old' describes a characteristic of Max's)

    Max = swimming <not an adjective>
    ('swimming' tells us what Max is doing; it doesn't describe a characteristic; unless, say, the -ing word describes him:

    boring Max ~ Max is boring ~ Max = boring <adjective>
    Here's another way to test to see how a past participle is functioning in a given sentence. Going back to our example [2] The food was gone, notice the verb 'was'. It's in its past tense (e.g., is: present; was: past). There's this grammar rule that says there can be only one tense carrying verb per clause. In our clause above 'was' carries the tense, which means 'gone' can't be a verb; it has to be a past participle.

    Let's test it
    The food was gone ~ the food = gone

    The word 'gone' modifies the 'food'. It describes it.

    (On a side note, you could argue/say from a semantic point of view that 'gone' functions adverbially here:

    Adverb Test
    Where is the food? It's not there; it's gone.)

    In other words, there is more than one way to interpret a given utterance. Generally, though, especially when you're starting out, it's best to follow the basics.
    ________________________
    Yes, pronouns are a subset of nouns. They refers to nouns; that is, instead of using a whole-big-long noun, you can use a little-small-short pronoun; e.g., Max was happy ~ He was happy. Pronouns are quite efficient.

    Right, pronouns are not full nouns, so they cannot do as much as nouns.

    ___________________
    Note the ellipsis in silly [for] me. Drop 'for' and the resulting form appears to be modified by an adjective. Not so. That's just what we see/read and hear; It's not it's real or underlying representation. That is, in language, any given utterance has two realizations, the one we see/read and hear, and the one our wetware/brain processes.

    When analyzing a phrase or sentence that you know is grammatical, yet doesn't fit the rules of the grammar, look for what's not there. You'll find that ellipsis, the omission of words, even phrases, is at play and having fun. The reason there's so much ellipsis is that language is the more preferred when it is more efficient. Which is why speakers will and do drop words and phrases now and then.

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