Find the adjective phrases

« previous post | next post »

Now for another piece of evidence (I gave one here) that even if you have no clue about grammar you can write grammar textbooks or reference handbooks and make good money by doing so. Here is an exercise set in Pupil Book 4 in the Nelson Grammar series (published by Thomas Nelson, now Nelson Thornes Ltd in the UK; ISBN 0-17-424706-0):

Three of the examples below are adjective phrases and three are sentences. Find the three adjective phrases. Add a verb and any other words you need to make each one into a sentence. Find the three sentences and write them with their correct punctuation.

  1. thank you said Jim
  2. Janet ran home
  3. the poor injured duck
  4. a shivering and frightened
  5. give me that
  6. with a heavy bag

Can you do this homework, Language Log readers? It appears to be aimed at children in elementary school, not older than 8 or 9. You will need the definition of "phrase", which is given on the previous page: "A phrase is a group of words that does not contain a verb" [sic; I swear I am not making this up]. I will now leave you to do the exercise (comments are open). Later I will come back to this and discuss it.

Share:



65 Comments »

  1. derek balsam said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 1:45 pm

    Don't feel too singled out. Textbook writers do the same thing to mathematicians too.

  2. Carl said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 1:58 pm

    If I get your point, the problem is "the poor injured duck". Which is a complete sentence (with a period added to the end), but probably not the one that the book intended.

    My guess is that the textbook is confused about the difference between an adjective and an object. Like, when I say "I ate the candy", they think "the candy" is an adjective.

  3. Ryan Denzer-King said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:05 pm

    I assume 3 (a DP), 4 (a non-constituent grouping, presumably a DP with the N chopped off) and 6 (a PP) are the answers he wants. How these three are meant to form a natural class of APs is beyond me. If you hadn't given the ISBN number I would prefer to think that you're making this up.

  4. Yev said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:06 pm

    I am not a native speaker of English, so I am simply curious what exactly "adjective phrase" is? There is a Wikipedia version http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Adjectival_phrase and there is Wiktionary one http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/adjective_phrase.

  5. dwmacg said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:08 pm

    Ryan beat me to the punch, so I'll just add this: the smart ass in me can find several ways to puctuate 3 that would reveal it as a sentence. For example:

    The poor, injured, duck.

  6. Carl said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:13 pm

    My favorite approach to 3 is to make it a cruel, unfounded insult to the less-fortunate with the addition of a single letter:

    The poor injured ducks.

  7. Sam Ley said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:14 pm

    Can I have my good grades?

    1. "Thank," you said, "Jim."

  8. Catanea said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:25 pm

    But surely many of us have found "English" examinations to be opportunities for assessing – sometimes it seems psychically – the precise prejudices & peeves of the examiner/examining body? We may not know Thomas Nelson and his associates; but I bet everybody who pops into LL and reads this can guess the "right" answers. "English" classes are (apparently) precisely aimed at teaching us this skill. They just don't want us to know that. [Would that be the right answer?]

  9. Ray Girvan said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:31 pm

    The poor (adj) injured (noun) duck (verb).

    This terrified me, by the way. A shivering "and" frightened.

  10. greg said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:50 pm

    "With a heavy bag." works as a sentence too, if you read it as a response to a question. Q: "Should I work with focus mitts or a heavy bag?" A: "With a heavy bag."

  11. MJ said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:54 pm

    I've got it. (4) is easy: it's a determiner followed by an adjective phrase. But determiners are article adjectives (to English teachers). Therefore the whole thing's an adjective phrase.

    (6), equally easy. Prepositional phrases modify nouns (sometimes). But adjectives modify nouns. Ergo prepositional phrases are noun phrases. Good.

    The really hard one is (3). Ain't it a DP? No! 'duck' is being used as a modifier. As in:

    3'. The poor injured duck hunter sat down to rest.

    Since nouns don't modify nouns (remember, that's the job of adjectives), then 'duck' is an adjective. And 'the' is too– article adjective.

    Do I win?

  12. MJ said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:55 pm

    Ack, I meant "Ergo prepositional phrases are *adjective* phrases"

  13. dwmacg said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 2:56 pm

    The beauty of context is that it can turn so many seemingly incomplete or nonsensical strings of words into complete utterances.

    "How did you get here?" "A-shivering and frightened."

  14. Tonio said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:19 pm

    I can only find one that comes close to being an adjective phrase, "a shivering and frightened", though "with a heavy bag" can also modify a noun and so could maybe function adjectivally. I have no idea what they think the third one is. The idea that phrase does not contain a verb probably comes from the traditional distinction between a phrase and a clause, where a clause does contain a (finite) verb.

  15. Steve F said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:22 pm

    Well, I suppose it's not too difficult to pick out the three sentences – 1, 2 and 5 – though, as others have noted, 3 could be a sentence if 'duck' is a verb, and could be turned into one by giving 'duck' an indefinite article or making it plural. So, by a process of elimination, 3, 4 and 6 are intended to be 'adjective phrases', and I would presumably get 6 out of 6 for my homework. Except, of course, that they're not – 3 is surely a noun phrase, and 6 a prepositional phrase. As MJ says, prepositional phrases modify nouns, but I assume he is being humourous in claiming 'duck' as part of a compound noun.

  16. Skullturf Q. Beavispants said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:25 pm

    It's perhaps a tad redundant to say this now, but I, too, guess that the intended answer is that 3, 4, and 6 are "adjective phrases" and the other three are complete sentences.

    There's probably a case to be made that the grammar we teach children should be a simplified and hence slightly technically inaccurate version of the grammar we study as academics, but too much inaccuracy makes it become silly. Informally speaking, 4 and 6 are fairly "adjective-like", but surely it's intuitive to most readers that 3 is a lot more "noun-like".

  17. John Lawler said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:36 pm

    My guess, given the ridiculosity of the medium, is that Adjective Phrase in this context (though in no other that I'm familiar with) is intended only to mean "a phrase (def. v. sup.) which contains an adjective", which makes 3, 4, and 6 the APs, while 1, 2, and 5, the ones not containing adjectives, are therefore (again, given this context) the sentences.

  18. jguenter said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:37 pm

    Q: Should I work the register or bag today?

    A: If you're partnered with a lightweight, you can work the register. With a heavy, bag.

  19. Christopher said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:38 pm

    3. The poor injured duck wrote a grammar textbook, which contained erroneous information about the nature of "phrases."
    4. A shivering and frightened bonobo might be able to write a better textbook, given an infinite number of typewriters and an infinite number of peers.

    6. The author ought to be hit with a heavy bag of hammers.

    A+?

  20. Sili said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:38 pm

    MJ, how much rest do you need after hunting poor, injured ducks? Now deer, on the other hand! That's where the schweiss dogs come in.

    Ray, more like "A, shivering and frightened."

  21. Steve F said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:48 pm

    Just returning to point out that while prepositional phrases can modify nouns, they don't necessarily do so – "He hit me with a heavy bag". Does that make it an 'adverb phrase'?

    Oh, and 'humorous' is not spelt like that even in my native British English.

  22. Terry Collmann said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:54 pm

    Of course, you could make all six examples into one single sentence, for example:

    A shivering and frightened Janet ran home with a heavy bag, the poor injured duck: ‘Give me that “thank you”,’ said Jim.

  23. Karl Hagen said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 3:56 pm

    That is some world-class stupid.

    In order of the ease with which I think I can explain what the author was thinking:

    6. This PP would be called an adjective phrase if you're following a traditional book like Warriner's and if it functioned as a noun modifier, e.g., in "the woman with the heavy bag". Of course it could just as easily be adverbial, so out of context, it's neither and adjective phrase nor an adverb phrase even if you accept Warriner's classification.

    4. This one looks like the author has no clue about constituency and is reasoning from the lame definition of phrase that you quoted. The author is probably taking the complete string of prenominal modifiers to constitute a single adjective phrase, since he would call undoubtedly call the indefinite article an adjective.

    3. WTF. Perhaps the author got sloppy and intended to delete "duck" but didn't or perhaps we could fill out the phrase as "the poor, injured duck fancier" (In either case, they wouldn't be real adjective phrases, but the mistake would be parallel to that in 4.) Or, more likely, the exercise was written by someone in the textbook company's bowels without even the most rudimentary knowledge of grammar, traditional or otherwise.

  24. Alan Palmer said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 4:07 pm

    Perhaps the poor injured duck to avoid being hit on the head by a ball?

  25. Emily said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 4:08 pm

    That Nelson tripe! I was given that in primary school! (~10 years ago.) I can't say I remember that particular question, but I do remember thinking the Nelson books were tripe, even if I couldn't have known exactly in what ways back then.

  26. Emily said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 4:13 pm

    Incidentally, I don't remember that definition of "phrase" either, but I do remember one that one of my teachers gave. It amounted to taking a sentence and chopping out whichever words you pleased until you no longer had a sentence. There was your "phrase".

    Another time, we got asked to give examples of verbs. "Skipping" – yes. "Talking" – yes. "Doing" – yes. "Eat" – no. Verbs must end in "ing" to be accepted as examples.

    This wasn't actually a bad school at all. I think it was among the best-performing state schools in the area. But the grammar we learned was, as far as I can remember, absolute nonsense. I remember unlearning quite a lot of it through a book called "Better English". It was very prescriptivist and probably had some rather silly things in, but I think it got the basic facts about nouns and verbs more or less right.

  27. Mabon said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 5:27 pm

    I feel like I'm a relic. I'm only 53, and yet all of my elementary school ("grammar school") textbooks and teachers taught grammar correctly, at least regarding the parts of speech. [I went to public school in a Boston, MA suburb.]
    How was it possible for so many to become so uneducated in so little time?

  28. Lazar said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 5:29 pm

    What is it about linguistics that allows uninformed nonsense to be so widely tolerated, whether it's in textbooks, journalism or popular writing?

  29. Spell Me Jeff said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 5:30 pm

    Part of the problem of course is the idea that words and phrases can always be identified independent of context. Identify the noun:

    fish
    breakfast
    cook

    Well, of course, all three can function as nouns and verbs, just as "black" can function as noun, verb, and adjective, and "leeward" can be just about any damned thing you want it to be (sailors being verbally creative people, viz Melville et Conrad).

    If you absolutely must have children identifying kinds of phrases (but why?) at least show them operating in context.

  30. Faldone said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 5:48 pm

    I got thinking about what Emily said about being taught grammatical nonsense. Apparently she survived and went on to some level (unknown to me) of competence in linguistic matters. I would submit that this nonsense they are teaching is a carefully considered plot to weed out those who really don't care much about language and are willing to accept whatever is being taught long enough to get some kind of grade on the next test. Students like Emily, on the other hand, seeing it for the nonsense that it is, go on to seek out reliable sources and even go on to become respected linguists.

  31. Emily said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 6:01 pm

    >Apparently she survived and went on to some level (unknown to me) of competence in linguistic matters.

    I did indeed survive and hopefully should be graduating from Cambridge uni with an undergrad degree in linguistics in a couple of years' time. :) Maybe you're right about the plot. That's almost a more comforting thought than the unbelievable incompetence scenario…

  32. John Lawler said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 6:08 pm

    @Faldone:
    That's also how mathematics is taught in the USA. Most people get fed up and quit learning somewhere in grade school because it's not taught at all well, and what is taught is often silly. And the kids who persevere and learn anyway, even though they're badly taught, become mathematicians. The only problem is that math isn't supposed to be a gatekeeper course — it's supposed to be universal, like literacy; but in fact we pick it up on the street.

    @Lazar:
    >What is it about linguistics that allows uninformed nonsense to be so widely tolerated, whether it's in textbooks, journalism or popular writing?
    Good question. I'm fond of telling my students (or anybody else who'll listen) that linguistics is the best-kept secret in America. Part of the reason is that people quit taking Latin some time ago in Anglophone ed systems, and that was the only place where grammar was actually learned. After learning Latin, one could look back at English and make some sense of what one found (not very good sense, but often serviceable) — this is the origin of the "Traditional" Latinate grammar. But without Latin, it makes no sense at all. And here we are.

  33. derek balsam said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 6:28 pm

    @John Lawler: math nowadays isn't even a good gatekeeper course. I'm having to teach my fifth grader proper long division since the school won't do it. The thing is, if you learn long division the traditional way, this will help you tremendously when you go to learn synthetic division of polynomials, and in fact, is quite useful in higher algebra. But that's not the goal. It's not clear what the goal is. Perhaps counting change.

    I've found the best tool to combat poor teaching of English grammar is to make sure my children also learn foreign languages. The exposure to different ways of putting words together instills an understanding of how language works much better than garbage like the example in the main post.

  34. Sandra Wilde said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 6:54 pm

    These exercises are typically farmed out to contractors to produce according to a formula or specifications. So they're never going to be any good.

  35. marie-lucie said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 7:24 pm

    There is a useful series of short books titled "English grammar for students of [add language name]" where students are given workable definitions and examples of parts of speech and other useful grammatical terms that they will encounter in the relevant language courses. These books are directed at university students, who often have never heard the terms, or if they have, use them inaccurately. In syntax courses most students tend to identify parts of speech as "describing" another part of speech.

  36. John Lawler said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 9:18 pm

    @derek balsam:
    >I've found the best tool to combat poor teaching of English grammar is to make sure my children also learn foreign languages.

    Exactly. In fact, over 40+ years of teaching linguistics (especially English grammar) at US colleges, I"ve found that the only American college students who understood English grammar at all were either (a) students who'd learned English as non-native speakers, (b) students who'd spent time abroad learning languages, or (c) students who took Latin in high school. No matter how smart (and Michigan undergraduates are smart), they just didn't have a clue.

  37. Ellen said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 9:40 pm

    John Lawler, I'm puzzled. You seem to be disagreeing with what you quote. You say only students who spent time abroad learning a foreign language or learned Latin (of native English speakers) understand grammar, whereas Derek mentioned learning foreign languages in general.

  38. Adrian Morgan said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 9:56 pm

    One thing that I remember from my school days is how badly the concept of "phrase" was taught.

    In junior classes we were told that sentences contain phrases and phrases contain words, but not what a phrase actually was.

    In seventh grade we were taught that a phrase is a group of words that can "almost be left out" of the sentence.

    I don't remember any further clarification.

  39. Faldone said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 10:25 pm

    @derek balsam

    But that's not the goal. It's not clear what the goal is. Perhaps counting change.

    They have Point Of Sale terminals1 to do that for them. And even that doesn't seem to work. My wife paid for a $8.54 bill with a ten and a nickel. The sales clerk looked at the money with an expression of total bewilderment. This despite the fact that the POS terminal was perfectly capable of telling her the change was $1.51

    1. Formerly known as a cash register.

  40. Faldone said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 10:27 pm

    Well, the superscript worked in preview. Just picture that 1 after 'terminal' being up a half line.

  41. Waffles said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 10:41 pm

    One thing that nobody has mentioned is how open-ended these are.

    The poor, injured duck wandered off.
    The poor, injured duck sat on a landmine.
    Later on, I married the poor injured duck.

    You have to add an awful lot to those to make them into complete sentences. As a little kid I would have done better with a slightly more specific goal to work towards.

    Also, "a shivering and frightened" is clearly not a sentence but it still has a verb in it, which means that according to the book it can't be a phrase, either.

  42. Rich said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 11:32 pm

    This is nonsense. There are four complete sentences.

    Of course 3 is a full sentence as it stands. We don't know who Duck is, nor why a group of economically disadvantaged individuals hurt him, but how does that turn the sentence into an adjective phrase?

    The poor injured Duck.

    The thief kissed Mary.

    The homework defies analysis!

  43. John Lawler said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 11:43 pm

    @Ellen:

    In the US, generally the only students who learn foreign languages are those who either know them already, who travel and learn them by coping, or who study Latin successfully (because you have to learn the grammar — there's no native speakers). The usual HS classes in modern languages are a total waste; only Latin works. Of course, if Derek can get his kids to learn a language properly, they should be golden; but it's not simple at all.

  44. Lazar said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 11:46 pm

    @Waffles: Here's a perfectly grammatical English sentence:

    Buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo buffalo buffalo Buffalo buffalo.

    That is, bison from Buffalo whom bison from Buffalo swindle, swindle bison from Buffalo. In fact, any repetition of the word buffalo, from "Buffalo." to "Buffalo buffalo*1,000,000." can be a valid sentence.

  45. Rich said,

    November 3, 2009 @ 11:49 pm

    Hey, I just noticed that you can play the same name game with 6. If you replace bag with some individual named Bag, a declare "With a heavy" to be an excalmative-with construction (?), we can sneak it through as a sentence:

    "With a heavy, Bag!"

    Throw in dwmacg's comment about 4, and they're all perfectly formed sentences.

  46. J. Goard said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 1:38 am

    "Thank," you said, "Jim."

    The poor, injured, duck. [When I throw the second brick at each of them.]

    With a heavy, bag. [Using a large-caliber gun, kill something.] Bad message to teach kids so young.

    Still working on the second part of the assignment, teacher.

  47. Lazar said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 2:03 am

    - Could you tell me who it is?
    - Only if you thank me.
    - Okay, thank you.
    - 'Thank you' said, Jim.

  48. GAC said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 5:58 am

    I see no adjective phrases. And I'm gonna forget the "definition"

    1) sentence (including reported speech)
    2) sentence
    3) noun phrase
    4) non-constituent (a + AP — no head noun to justify the determiner)
    5) sentence (using imperative implied "you")
    6) prepositional phrase

    Yay for linguistics practice. Now where the hell did the writer of this exercise learn about phrase structure?

  49. Ray Girvan said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 7:39 am

    John Lawler: That's also how mathematics is taught in the USA

    LL: pardon the sidetrack. I've suspected this, having dabbled with Yahoo! Answers, where there's a constant stream of troubles with what the enquirers call "word problems". A large number of students are completely incapable of converting verbal descriptions into mathematical formulation (as in "an apple and a pear together cost a dollar" to "a + p = 1").

    On the verbal side, it seems just as bad. Someone in the US educational system is obsessed with quotations. Students are constantly being asked to write essays about what some (e.g.) Emerson quotation means to them. If they want to write any kind of presentation or application, first thing they want is some quotation to build it around. And the further problem is, they're expected to be obsessive about the correct bibliographic form for the citation, but aren't taught to put in the least critical thought about where the citation came from, quotation context, or if it's a reliable attribution.

  50. Edwin said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 8:21 am

    A group of rich people and a group of poor people were cooking, but they left the food in the oven too long. The rich burned beef. The poor injured duck.

  51. Sili said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 8:47 am

    Hmmm – now that I think about it a bit, I suspect that Nelson must be behind that recent 'meme': "I accidentally the whole bottle of coke!"

  52. Aaron Davies said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 9:04 am

    i had one standardized test with a "pick the grammatically correct sentence" question in which the most correct one had a fronted preposition but a "misused" "who" (e.g., "Are you the person to who this book belongs.") most bizarre.

    nevertheless, perhaps my schooling was better than i thought it was–i went to a normal public school system in a small town in kentucky (a state desperately struggling to make it up to 48th in the nation in education rankings at the time), had only some mediocre french classes for foreign language education, and yet i'm pretty sure i had a thorough grounding in (at least the traditional version of) English grammar well before i was even out of high school.

  53. dwmacg said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 9:19 am

    3 could also work as a vocative followed by an imperative. Works best if you imagine someone with a megaphone addressing a large crowd:

    The poor injured: Duck!

  54. Stuart F said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 1:21 pm

    This link may refer to a later version of the book, but it says Pupil Book 4 is for US 5th Grade/UK Primary 6, which would be aged 10-11, not at most 8 or 9. Adjective phrases do seem a bit much for an 8 year old to know. Otherwise, thanks for the fun.

    http://www.nelsonthornes.com/nelson_primary/new_html/nelgrammar_comps_description.htm

  55. Greg Morrow said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 7:34 pm

    Aaron Davies' second paragraph is eerily similar to my own schooling. Small town public school with French, there can't be too many of those! Elizabethtown, by any chance?

    In any case, by using the "a phrase has no verb" rule, the exercise is trivial. It is, of couse, strange and almost unrecognizable nonsense. How does one get into textbook-writing? Surely there must be some underemployed linguistics Ph.D. who could start writing accurate textbooks!

  56. Lazar said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 7:55 pm

    To make another use of the absolute:

    A: The poor are bringing us beef, and the rich are bringing us duck. What, then, should we eat?
    B: 'Tis truly a difficult question.
    C: Ahoy, I bring terrible news! The poor have fallen into a great hole and sprained their ankles.
    A: I ask you again sir, what should we eat?
    B: The poor injured, duck.

  57. Joshua said,

    November 4, 2009 @ 11:16 pm

    Greg: I don't think your example (Q: "Should I work with focus mitts or a heavy bag?" A: "With a heavy bag.") establishes "with a heavy bag" as being a sentence. It's a meaningful utterance in your example, but not a complete sentence.

    Otherwise, in the following exchange, "Dave" would be a complete sentence:
    Q: "Who ate the last donut?"
    A: "Dave."

    If you believe that "Dave" in this example is a complete sentence (with the predicate "ate the last donut" being understood), then I won't necessarily be able to convince you otherwise. But if you agree that "Dave" is not a complete sentence in this example, then it should be clear that "With a heavy bag" is not one in your example either.

  58. Aaron Davies said,

    November 5, 2009 @ 1:04 am

    @Greg Morrow: no, Bowling Green. The high school offered French, German, and Spanish. (I actually started French in junior high, and I'm not sure what other languages were available there, if any.)

  59. Levi Montgomery said,

    November 5, 2009 @ 9:34 am

    I seem to have a penchant for coming in late and throwing in a near-non-sequitur, but here goes:

    When I was in school, we studied sentence diagramming. Time passes, and I send my own chilluns off to school. Lo and behold, sentence diagramming has been declared useless. So useless that I never was able to find an intact book that covered it, and had to teach it to them from memory.

    So my question is "Wouldn't this solve a lot of the problems in current English education?"

  60. Tom said,

    November 5, 2009 @ 4:58 pm

    Rich is correct about the poor injuring duck but only if you assume "duck" is the name of a poet who doesn't believe in capitalizing his name.

  61. dr pepper said,

    November 5, 2009 @ 11:33 pm

    A shivering and frightened Janet held the poor injured duck close. The storage basement of the Museum of Medieval Boxing was dark, perhaps Jim wouldn't be able to find her. Her heart pounded. She could hear his footsteps coming closer. She willed the duck not to quack. It was no use, she was suddenly caught in the beam of a flashlight. "Fool!", Jim spat. "Your wet footprints gave you away. Now give me that!"

    "I was just trying to save the duck", whimpered Jane. "It's not hunting season!"

    "Oh, i won't kill the duck unless i have to. That duck is a clue to the hiding place of the recipe for the Fortior Ferox potion, the world's first and greatest performance enhancing drug!"

    So. He was one of them. No use feigning ignorance any further. "That recipe must never see the light of day!" she remonstrated. I've seen the records of Pope Irrationo VII's private gladiator pit– people who used that drug became monsters! It's where the werewolf legend comes from!"

    "No stalling. The recipe was last seen in 1134, shortly before one of the trainers left the Vatican carrying a heavy bag. We believe the recipe was in the bag and that the trainer hid it. There is a map, but to use the map correctly we need a pound of feathers from a particular breed of duck, that one, as a counterweight for the plumb line." There was the sound of a click. "Now give me the duck or i'll shoot!"

    She had no choice. She put the duck on the floor in front of her. He gathered it up and walked away.

    After waiting another hour, Jane ran home.

  62. dr pepper said,

    November 5, 2009 @ 11:35 pm

    Hmm, the editor seemed to have eaten my Dan Brown Mode tags.

  63. Trevor Stone said,

    November 26, 2009 @ 7:43 pm

    The poor injured duck. The rich roasted pork.
    The poor injured Duck. Duck jumped in his limousine and called for security.

    A shivering and frightened. A quivering or confused. An imposing not loomed. Johnny realized dropping acid before a logic exam was a bad idea.

    "My son is looking for a bride," the visiting nobleman said. "Give me, that I may help end this family feud," whispered the host's daughter in her father's ear.

  64. Christina said,

    March 31, 2010 @ 2:35 pm

    what is the adjective phrase in the sentence : I remember Grandmother when I smell freshly baked bread with butter.

  65. Joshua said,

    April 6, 2010 @ 5:53 pm

    Assuming I understand the definition of "adjective phrase", there would be two of them: "freshly baked" and "with butter", both of which modify the noun "bread".

    "With butter" is also a prepositional phrase, but it is being used here to modify a noun, so it should count as an adjective phrase here as well.

RSS feed for comments on this post

Leave a Comment