Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Let's Debate Grammar

Is the following a complete sentence? Why or why not?


Brian said.



Go.

14 comments:

Casey McCormick said...

I'm going to say no. It's a dependent clause. While it has a subject and verb, it's not a complete thought.

Anita said...

It depends on what goes in front of it. It's OK with me, if it went something like this:

Brian was the boss of Margie. There was no way around that fact. And in the past, it hadn't bothered her. But Jen wasn't in the past. She was in the present and she knew the power Brian had over Margie.

"Why should I give you the gun?" Margie asked.

"Brian said," Jen answered. And she was smiling.

Amy said...

Hmm...have to agree w/Casey, but I appreciate Anita's vignette!

Paul Michael Murphy said...

Casey and her fancy knowledge.

Said is an interesting verb. Replace it with most synonyms (spoke, whispered, shouted) and Casey's so-called "dependent clause" becomes a sentence.

So since Casey is right, I'm changing the question.

Name other verbs that create dependent clauses when paired with a subject.

I'll start: climbs

Kelly said...

hung or hangs

I was going to say it was a complete sentence due to the interchangable synonyms. Guess I need to look at the ole grammar book before I teach it again!

Anita said...

I still get points, though. Right?

Tracy Edward Wymer said...

Agree with Casey. Dependent clauses kill me. They're so needy.

"corrects"

As in, "He corrects...

... papers until the wee hours of the morning."

Kelly said...

What a bunch of master debaters!

Jonathon Arntson said...

Uh...Kelly...

Tracy Edward Wymer said...

LOL... I love the comments section at Murphblog. Kudos to Master Debaters.

Casey McCormick said...

Took or takes would be another two, I beleive.

Casey McCormick said...

Master debaters. LOL. So fabulous.

Paul Michael Murphy said...

Once I started thinking of verbs, I realized there are a ton. So I'm tempted to just take the post down because it bruises my ego.

But I have a strict policy against deleting anything as awesome as master debaters.

Elliot Grace said...

I'm late but salivating...(love these inquiries:) My two cents, which are actually worth no more than half that, believe Casey to be correct, but in an odd way, Anita's point draws a thumb's up as well. A dependent clause it is, but that being said, I've run across those lines countless times in novels armed with "rave reviews," on the back cover. I think it all comes down to the writer's style of voice. The line breaks the law at every turn of a page, but if it flows with a voice that can sing, I say, why not?