Author Topic: Grammar and the word "had"  (Read 1991 times)

Offline johnnyh2

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #15 on: October 30, 2011, 09:11:09 PM »
No he did not.  ;D
 
Hmmm, I think I’m going to regret writing that.  I bet I can’t punctuate it correctly myself, although I can say the sentence aloud and make it make sense.  Actually, I can probably write the explanation.  If no one gets it, I guess I’ll have to.

Should I leave a clue?

Offline 510bhan

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #16 on: October 30, 2011, 09:13:22 PM »
I remember an English lesson at school.  Must have been around 1975.  Mr Evans wrote the following sentence on the blackboard.

John where Paul had had had had had had had had had had been correct.  

He offered £1 to anyone who could punctuate the sentence correctly.    

Anyone?


"John, where Paul had had 'had', had had 'had had'; 'had had' had been correct."

Offline johnnyh2

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #17 on: October 30, 2011, 09:18:53 PM »
Hey 5io, I might have know you'd be in there like a shot  ;D  And get it right.

I'm so glad you got it, 'cos I was dreading having to try the task myself :D

I remember next to nothing from my school days.  Quite why that stuck in my brain, goodness knows :D

Offline 510bhan

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #18 on: October 30, 2011, 09:20:39 PM »
Yay! ;D ;D ;D ;D ;D

My head is full of dopey stuff only useful for trivia quizzes or to confuse interrogators . . . I come across them a lot in my line of work :o

Offline Hugh

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #19 on: October 31, 2011, 06:38:45 AM »
I have a sudden feeling of déjà vu. I wonder why.

Max_with_word_processor

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #20 on: October 31, 2011, 08:47:45 AM »
Thanks to everyone for great answers.

Offline bonitakale

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #21 on: October 31, 2011, 11:39:09 AM »
I think it depends on what you mean. If your meanings are as follows, the hads work very well.


Is it acceptable or preferred to leave the word "had" out of these sentences? This is all past tense, but sometimes the word "had" feels redundant. Please tell me what you think.


1. The government had sponsored the project; now it was up to the university to carry it out.

2. Last year, only a few people came. But for today’s rally we had put up signs, and we were hopeful of getting a bigger crowd..

3. I stared at the man as if he had appeared from nowhere. [Absolutely necessary as stated.]

4. If you had read his book, you would have known that he couldn't spell. Now that you do know it, try to avoid his influence.

5. I had intended to be polite, but something I'd said had offended her.

6. How many days I had spent practicing the violin--and yet, my playing never got better.

7. No one had ever asked me to sing, and I had hoped no one ever would. But here came Grandma to dash all my hopes.



Offline Boshman

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #22 on: October 31, 2011, 04:39:07 PM »
I think it also depends if you are trying to write 'text book' or standard common language.

Leaving some of these 'hads' out may be grammatically correct, but in practice people often don't speak that way. What I then find, although this may be something that just niggles me, is when I then read a story and the 'flow' is not the same as the way people speak, it almost makes me stumble and have to read the sentence again. So it may be grammatically correct but doesn't 'flow' smoothly into my aged brain.

It then makes a difference as to how well I enjoy the book.

Am I just waffling or does anyone agree with me?

Boshman

Offline Taylor

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Re: Grammar and the word "had"
« Reply #23 on: October 31, 2011, 04:47:57 PM »
I don't think it matters too much with dialogue, unless the person speaking happens to be a professor of English.  :)

But with narrative I do think you should use it when necessary.