Clarification with prepositional phrases

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Clarification with prepositional phrases

Postby dovrar » Tue Apr 23, 2013 9:06 pm

"When at last came Bessanio, and Portia would have delayed him from making his choice from very fear of his choosing wrong."

Dd and I are having trouble imitating the highlighted phrase in the previous sentence because we can't understand how it is being used. From what I see in the core a prepositional phrase can act as an adverb and "modify verbs with extra information about when, where, why, and how." The trouble is that I can't see how "from making his choice" answers any of those questions. It seems to me that the question it would answer is "what"---delayed what.

Help please.

Thanks,
Debbie
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Re: Clarification with prepositional phrases

Postby admin » Wed Apr 24, 2013 6:00 am

That is indeed a challenge.

"She delayed his choice" - that's definitely a 'what.' But we have that preposition stuck in there, taking away that option. Of the possibilities for adverbial prepositional phrases, manner and result are both so-so fits. She delayed him in such a manner that he couldn't make his choice, or she delayed him why? so that he couldn't make his choice. You could use either idea for your imitation.

Carolyn
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Re: Clarification with prepositional phrases

Postby dovrar » Wed Apr 24, 2013 9:15 am

Thanks so much Carolyn! It's simple, but amazing how much it helps to think of the "how" and "why" options as "manner" and "cause" instead.

Debbie
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