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§ 401. Depending on their relation to the members of the predication the words of a sentence usually fall into two groups — the group of the subject and the group of the pred­icate 1.

Sometimes thefe is a third group, of parenthetical words, which mostly belongs to the sentence as a whole. In the sentence below the subject group is separated from the pre­dicate group by the parenthetical group.

That last thing of yours, dear Flora, was really remarkable.

§ 402. As already mentioned (§ 54), the distribution and the function of a word-combination in a sentence are usually determined by its head-word: by the noun in noun word-combinations, by the verb in verb word-combinations, etc.

The ^adjuncts of word-combinations in the sentence are added to their head-words in accordance with their combina-bility, to develop the sentence, to form its secondary parts which may be classified with regard to their head-words. 2

All the adjuncts of noun word-combinations in the sentence can be united under one name, attributes. All the adjuncts of verb (finite or non-finite) word-combinations may be termed complements. In the sentence below the attributes are spaced out and the complements are in heavy type

He often took Irene to the theatre, instinctively choosing the modern Society plays with the modern Society conjugal problems. (Galsworthy).

The adjuncts of all other word-combinations in the sen­tence may be called extensions. In the sentences below the extensions are spaced out.

You will never be free from dozing and dreams. (Shaw).

1 These groups are regarded as the immediate constituents of a sentence L Bloomfield says: "Any English-speaking person, who concerns himself with this matter, is sure to tell us that the immediate consti­ tuents of Poor John ran away are the two forms poor John and ran away "

2 See Л С. Бархударов, Д. А. Штелинг, op cit., §461.


She was ever silent, passive, gracefully averse. (Gals-worhty).

The distribution of semi-notional words in the sentence is determined by their functions — to connect notional words or to specify them. ' Accordingly they will be called connec­tives or specifiers. Conjunctions and prepositions are typical connectives 2 Particles are typical specifiers.

The peculiarities of all these words and combinations of words as parts of the sentence will be discussed in the corres­ponding chapters of this book.


A. As to Their Structure

§ 403. Sentences with only one predication are called simple sentences. Those with more than one predication have usually no general name 3. We shall call them composite sentences.

In a composite sentence each predication together with the words attached is called a clause.

Composite sentences with coordinated clauses are com­pound sentences.

She's a very faithful creature and I trust her. (Cronin).

Composite sentences containing subordinated clauses are complex sentences.

// / let this chance slip, I'm a fool. (Cronin).

In a complex sentence we distinguish the principal clause (I'm a fool) and the subordinate clause (If I let this chance slip) or clauses.

1 See A. Martinet A Functional View of Language Oxford, 1962, p. 52: "If in a phrase such as with a smile, smile is considered the centre of the phrase . . a is centripetal . with centrifugal: a is connected with the rest of the sentence only through smile, which it helps to specify, with connects smile with the rest of the sentence^.

2 In his book Connectives of English speech f Fernald deals chiefly with prepositions and conjunctions

3 Sometimes they are called periods, but as the opposite of simple sentences the term does not seem to fit H Poutsma names them compo­ site sentences, a term we adopt heie.


We may also differentiate compound-complex (He seems a decent chap, and he thinks Ferse at the moment is as sane as himself. Galsworthy), and complex-compound (When that long holocaust of sincerity was over and the bride had gone, she subsided into a chair. Galsworthy) sentences.

There may be several degrees of subordination in a complex sentence.^,

It was almost nine o'clock before he reached the club, where he found Lord Henry sitting alone. (Wilde).

The clause where he found Lord Henry sitting alone is subordinated to the subordinate clause before he reached the. club and is therefore of the second degree of subordination.

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