Author Topic: Dangling Participle or Gerund  (Read 373 times)

Offline heartsongjt

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Dangling Participle or Gerund
« on: November 28, 2018, 09:14:38 AM »
Dangling Participle or Gerund

  The participial forms of a regular verb are indicated by the bold words:

Active Voice
  Present:  Watching, he saw a light.
  Perfect: Having watched until dawn, Falk was tired.
Passive Voice
  Present: Being watched, the thieves could not escape.
  Past:     Watched closely, the prince became angry.
  Perfect:  The conspirators, having been watched,
            were found guilty.

Observe that in each instance the participle modifies a
noun or a pronoun.  A participle is a form of the verb
used as an adjective.

A participle, being dependent, must refer to a noun
or pronoun.  The noun or pronoun should be within
the sentence which contains the participle, and
should be so conspicuous that the participle will
be associated with it instantly and without
confusion.

To be continued.

Good luck with your writing.      jt
Words are Weapons of Demons and Saints

Offline heartsongjt

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Re: Dangling Participle or Gerund
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2018, 01:18:18 PM »
(continued)Dangling Participle or Gerund


A participle, being dependent, must refer to a noun
or pronoun.  The noun or pronoun should be within
the sentence which contains the participle, and
should be so conspicuous that the participle will
be associated with it instantly and without
confusion.

Wrong:  Coming in on the train, the high school building is
       seen. [Is the building coming in?  If not, who is?]
Right:  Coming in on the train, one sees the high school
       building.

Faulty:  Watched constantly, the chemist prevented the boiling
        of the mixture.  [For a moment the reader thinks that
        the chemist is being watched.]
Right:  Watched constantly, the mixture is prevented from
       boiling.  [or] Watching constantly, the chemist is able to
       prevent the mixture from boiling.

            A sentence containing a dangling participle may be
       corrected (1) by giving the word to which the participle
       refers a conspicuous position in the sentence, or (2)
       by replacing the participial phase with some other
       construction.
 
To be continued.

Good luck with your writing.      jt
Words are Weapons of Demons and Saints

Offline heartsongjt

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Re: Dangling Participle or Gerund
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2018, 12:30:52 PM »
Wrong:  Having taken our seats, the umpire announced the
             batteries.

Right:  Having taken our seats, we heard the umpire
           announce the batteries.  [or]  When we had taken
           our seats, the umpire announced the batteries.
 
          Note that most errors occur when the participle
       precedes its antecedent. But sometimes a participle
       dangles even when placed near the end of a sentence,
       particularly in phases expressing cause or result.

Wrong:  The horse had only one good eye, caused by an
             encounter with a wire fence. [The good eye was not
             caused by the encounter.]

Right:  One eye of the horse was blind from an accident
           caused by an encounter with a wire fence.

           Note-  When a gerund phase implies the action of a
           special agent, indicate what the agent is.  Otherwise
           the phase will dangle.  The method of correction is the
           same as that used for the dangling participle.


To be continued......   

jt
       
Words are Weapons of Demons and Saints

Offline heartsongjt

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Re: Dangling Participle or Gerund
« Reply #3 on: November 30, 2018, 08:13:41 PM »
   A  gerund is in form a verb, but in use a noun.  In
form it cannot be distinguished from a participle; but
it is sometimes the object, as a participle never is, of
a preposition(in, by, from, or the like),and it is never
an adjective in use, as the participle is never a noun.
The use of the gerund is indicated by these sentences:
"The remedy is watching"; "After having long watched
through telescopes, we know many things about the
moon";  "By being watched the conspiracy was
thwarted"; "The child was made self-conscious through
having been watched".

Dangling gerund:  After thinking about it for a few minutes,
   his finger pressed the button.  [Was the finger thinking?]
Right: After thinking about it for a few minutes, he pressed
   the button with his finger.

Faulty gerund:  By following close behind the plow, the
   worms fall an easy prey to the robins.  [The word to which
   the gerund refers, robins, should be made conspicuous
   in grammatical rank and position; that is, it should be the
   subject of the sentence, and should be placed near the
   gerund phase.]
Right:   By following close behind the plow, the robins easily
   catch the worms.
Faulty:   The address was concluded by reciting a passage
   from Wordsworth.
Better:   The speaker concluded his address by reciting a passage
   from Wordsworth.  [Or]  The address was concluded by the
   recitation of a passage from Wordsworth.

Good luck with your writing.     jt
Words are Weapons of Demons and Saints