Homer B Week 11 The Ugly Duckling

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Homer B Week 11 The Ugly Duckling

Postby ccinIdaho » Sat Feb 23, 2013 6:42 pm


I'm wondering why "there" in the first diagrammed sentence isn't in the diagram. Is it not a predicate adverb coming off of "was"?

Also, in the first parsed sentenced, is the prepositional phrase "of her task" a direct object of the verbal "to get tired"?

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Re: Homer B Week 11 The Ugly Duckling

Postby admin » Sat Feb 23, 2013 7:42 pm

The word 'There' isn't serving as an adverb telling where, but rather it's a curious category called 'expletive'. Other languages use passive constructions to express this idea. English tosses in 'there' or 'it'. Consider the difference between 'A great disturbance was there in the farmyard' and 'There was a great disturbance when they reached the farmyard.' In one sentence, you know just WHERE the disturbance. In the other, you just know that a disturbance existed and you know when it happened ... but not where. Maybe the Blue Angels just flew overhead, or a car squealed to a stop on front of the house. Without context, the latter phrasing just doesn't tell us 'where.'

Regarding "of her task" ... I don't believe that prepositional phrases can function as direct objects. The most likely role for it is modifying 'to get tired.' Some dictionaries consider 'tired of' to be an adjective -- but then you'd be in the position of having an adjective taking a direct object. It's an interesting construction, to say the least!

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