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Sentence Structure Summary

Complete Thought

Complete Thought

Why are 20% of Americans unable to find the U.S. on a map?

"I personally believe that U.S. Americans are unable to do so (find the U.S. on a map) because, uh, some people out there in our nation don't have maps and, uh, I believe that our, uh, education like such as in, uh, South Africa and, uh, the Iraq and everywhere like such as, and I believe that they should, uh, our education over here in the U.S. should help the U.S., uh, should help South Africa and should help Iraq and the Asian countries, so we will be able to build up our future for our children."

Sentence Elements

 

subject

Charlie raised his hand.
Feeling confident, Charlie raised his hand.
Clever Charlie, my good friend, raised his hand.

Charlie raised his hand in the air.
Charlie enthusiastically raised his hand.
Charlie raised his hand hoping to answer.

 

Charlie dislikes sitting all day

Charlie raised his hand.  (tensed verb)
Raise your hand.  (imperative)
I suggest you raise your hand before speaking. (subjunctive)

Charlie wants to raise his hand.
Charlie likes raising his hand.
Charlie, annoyed, raised his hand.

Jack remembered leaving the door unlocked.

Jack remembered having left the door unlocked.

He remembered being distracted.

Jack remembered having been distracted.

 

Diagram: Charlie hates sitting all day.

Charlie hasn't raised his hand. (negation)
Has Charlie raised his hand. (inversion)
Charlie has raised his hand and I have too. (code)
They don't think he raised his hand, but he has. (emphasis)

Charlie was raising his hand.
The question has been raised.

Sentence Parts (clauses)

 

luggage

*Each year, millions of people travel to the U.S. In fact, eighty-six million.   (fragment)

*Put your suitcase down.  Over there. (fragment)
How about a visa? (fragment)

 

*error in sentence  

 

football

*My friend and I blogged and read over his shoulder.
My friend blogged, and I read over his shoulder.

 

energy!

His energy amazed me

What amazed me was his energy.

His energy was what amazed me.

It amazed me that he had so much energy.

Sentence Diagrams

because

Justin wore his winter pants because it was snowing.

present

The wind blows. / The wind blows leaves / The wind is strong. / The wind blows in the winter.

pres. progressive

Isabela is working tonight. / Helen is jogging around the track.

gerund-participle

Starting a sentence with a gerund is common.

gerund-participle

Charlie dislikes sitting all day.  (nonfinite clause)

if clause

We take an umbrella if it is raining (prep + clause)

infinitive clause

To start a sentence with an infinitive is awkward

It / an extraposed subject

It is hard for him to sit all day.   (gerund clause with a subject) 

verb + infinitive

Ed needs to get some help.

verb + object + infinitive

Ed persuaded Frida to do the painting Ed intended Frida to do the painting.

auxiliary verbs

Charlie was raising his hand.

modals

Charlie will raise his hand.

subject

Clever Charlie next to you raised his hand.

predicate

Charlie suddenly raised his hand high in the air.

rather than

We walked home rather than drove home.  / We walked home rather than get stuck in traffic.

so that / such that

The meteor was so beautiful that we watched it all night. /  It was such a beautiful meteor storm that we watched it all night.

because

Justin wore his winter pants because it was snowing.

dative verbs
(w/ indirect object)

You bought me a gift. / You bought a gift for me. / Thank you for the gift.

participle clause / adjunct modifier
clause)

The man who is seated beside the host is the guest.  The man seated beside the host is the guest.

participle clause
 (nonfinite clause)

Congress which consists of two houses in on a break. / Congress consisting of two houses is on a break.

participle clause 
(nonfinite clauses as modifiers)

The federal agency locating the prison on Alcatraz preferred the isolated location.

participle clause 
(nonfinite clauses as modifiers)

The Golden Gate Bridge located in SF Bay was designed by Strauss.