#EngClass: Dangling Modifier

Fellas! Last Sunday we received a question from @iki_chica about Dangling Modifier. We will discuss it today in our #EngClass session!

We have mentioned it briefly in this post (https://englishtips4u.com/2013/09/03/engtrivia-common-grammar-mistakes/ …) but let’s discuss it further today!

The definition of a Modifier: Word/phrase/clause which functions as adjective/adverb to describe/give specific meaning to a word.

A Dangling Modifier is an error that makes a modifier has nothing to modify :D

It’s unclear who/what the sentence is focusing on with this Dangling Modifier. Let’s see this example:

“Having read the letters, the dog will stay indoor until it is being given proper toilet training.”

Now, the question is: In this sentence, who do you think read the letters? The dog, or the person who owns the dog?

@AnandaHafizhah: the dog

Logically, it’d be the owner of the dog. (I’ve never heard of anyone who had successfully taught a dog to read)

The sentence makes it sounds like it was the dog. Because ‘the owner’ is somehow missing. Here’s how to fix it:

“Having read the letters, we will keep the dog indoor until it is being given proper toilet training.”

Another example: “Having seen ‘Annabelle’, ‘The Conjuring’ is more impressive as a horror film.”

This time, the one that is missing is the real subject of the sentence. Unless movies can criticize themselves, which I doubt.

We can make it better by doing this: “Having seen ‘Annabelle’, Iwan thinks ‘The Conjuring’ is more impressive as a horror film.”

Always try to be clear and detailed to avoid confusion, esp. in written English.

To avoid Dangling Modifier, always re-read your sentence to make sure it has no double meaning.

Source: Grammar Monster

Compiled by @animenur for @EnglishTips4U on Sunday, 5 October 2014.

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2 responses to “#EngClass: Dangling Modifier

  1. Pingback: #EngTrivia: See, Look, Watch | @EnglishTips4U·

  2. Pingback: #EngTrivia: ‘Staring’ vs ‘Gazing’ | @EnglishTips4U·

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