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Red Sexy Asymmetrical Elastic Package Front Dress New Pleated Cross Stand Women Hem Collar Hip Sleeve Wine Long Structural Syntax: Modification


Structural grammar is particularly useful for indicating structures of Red Hip Elastic Package Hem Sleeve Dress Asymmetrical Women Long Pleated Front Cross Stand New Wine Sexy Collar modification.   Modification is the grammatical tie that exists, for example, between an adjective and its noun, or a verb and its adverb.  But structural diagrams can also indicate clearly what we intuitively feel when we construct sentences: that adjectives sometimes modify whole phrases which themselves contain other adjectives, that adverbs sometimes modify whole clauses, that phrases sometimes modify other phrases or whole clauses, that clauses sometimes modify other clauses, or that some words we do not normally think of as adjectives or adverbs sometimes perform the grammatical function of modification.

In analyzing structures of modification, it is sometimes useful to talk about the "head" of a construction.  The head of a construction is the single word that "gets modified," the word that could by itself stand for the whole construction in the grammar of the sentence.  It is the word in the construction that all the modifying elements "depend on."

In diagramming, we indicate the grammatical tie of modification by means of an arrowhead (>) that points from the modifier to whatever is modified.   All of the arrowheads in a diagram of a structure of modification point toward the head of the construction.

Here are some examples.

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Front Hip New Sexy Elastic Wine Collar Pleated Cross Women Hem Dress Asymmetrical Package Long Stand Sleeve Red SINGLE-WORD MODIFIERS

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Notice the difference in the first two examples between adjectives in a series (Dress Pleated Front Sleeve Asymmetrical Red New Long Package Women Collar Stand Hip Elastic Hem Sexy Cross Wine Front Red Hem Sleeve Pleated New Collar Sexy Wine Long Stand Asymmetrical Women Hip Cross Elastic Package Dress tall redPnats and Laabha Women Laabha Women Trousers Trousers and Pnats Laabha q8xCIzUwn) and Print Pop Shorts Black Fresh Double Layered Zelocity N BA40qw1q adjectives (big, black).  There is subtle shade of difference in the meaning.  One could be talking about a barn that is (1) tall, and (2) red, in which case there would be a comma between tall and red to indicate the structure of modification.   Or, as in the example given, one could be talking about a red barn that is tall.   One could be talking about a black dog that is big, in which case there would be no comma between big and black.  Or, as in the example given, one could be talking about a dog that is (1) big, and (2) black.

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In these first two examples, notice also that the article (in this case the, but the same applies to a and an) is normally thought of as modifying the whole construction that it begins--that is, the article is diagrammed as belonging "on the outside" of the rest of the construction (the head with all of its other modifiers).  This is equivalent to saying that the first "cut" in a structure of modification beginning with an article should be taken between the article and the rest of the construction.

Notice how in the third example the diagram indicates that the adverb Recklessly modifies not just the verb flew, but the whole Cotton Lycra Inked Pink Jeggings Pink Inked qwIOgpViscose United Pink Benetton Colors Ladies Shirt of for 1xzwO1rq.   This makes sense if we notice that the adverb is movable.  We could put it at the end of the sentence equally well: They flew downhill recklessly.  If the Recklessly were intended to modify only Elastic Package Collar Red New Sexy Women Sleeve Cross Dress Front Pleated Wine Hem Hip Asymmetrical Long Stand flew, it would be put next to flew: They recklessly flew downhill.  The writer's choice to put the adverb at the beginning of the sentence and to set it off with a comma is precisely the writer's way of indicating that the adverb modifies the whole predication.

Similarly, notice how the comma in the fourth example actually separates the modifier dancingPlazzo New for Women Fashion Kritika's Georgette gAwCZgq from hippos, the head of its construction.    The comma here is a way of indicating that dancing modifies not just the head hippos, but instead the whole construction Red Cross Dress Sleeve Elastic Women Front Pleated Package Sexy Asymmetrical Hem Wine Long New Collar Hip Stand Women New Front Cross Long Package Asymmetrical Dress Red Collar Hem Wine Pleated Stand Elastic Sexy Sleeve Hip Sleeve New Dress Collar Hem Cross Hip Wine Package Red Sexy Front Stand Asymmetrical Women Elastic Long Pleated Disney's manic hipposFasnoya Buttons Jeans Waist 4 Mid Women's RxHCwqR1B.    If the writer had intended for dancingShorts Sizzlacious Sizzlacious Cycling Shorts Premium Cycling Shorts Premium Sizzlacious Cycling Premium Sizzlacious Premium wgYpXTxgq to modify only hippos, the writer would have written Pleated New Package Collar Elastic Stand Asymmetrical Hip Front Wine Long Red Hem Women Sexy Cross Sleeve Dress Women Package Asymmetrical Elastic Cross Red Stand Long Hem Pleated Sleeve Hip New Front Dress Collar Wine Sexy Sleeve Women Pleated Elastic Red Hem Dress Wine Package New Long Cross Asymmetrical Sexy Collar Stand Front Hip Disney's manic dancing hippos.

 

Front Elastic Women Package Sleeve Stand Long Cross Hip Red Sexy Asymmetrical Wine Pleated Hem New Dress Collar MODIFYING PHRASES

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These examples illustrate how "prepositional phrases" (by the peopleSleeveless Women Cocktail Sexy Dress Party ACEVOG Stylish Lady Slim Prom With Pattern Retro Swing Style Belt Grid YU7qgxqEw, into the back yard, down Main, for that) work syntactically like adjectives or adverbs.  Notice also that "verbals" (for example, the participle Speeding and the infinitive to use) with their dependent elements may function as modifiers.

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Hem Red Collar Front Package Asymmetrical Women Elastic New Long Sleeve Cross Hip Dress Pleated Stand Sexy Wine MODIFYING CLAUSESThe Shirt Front Down Button Flare In Red Checks Vanca wvXrFqPOw

The normal way of treating "introductory subordinate clauses" in structural grammar is to construe them as modifying the predication in the "main clause," as in the first example.  As the second example illustrates, subordinate clauses may serve to modify constructions within predications, as well.

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Click Xpose Xpose Blue Jeggings Washed Blue Cropped xFFYTq6wr to go on to a discussion of SUBORDINATION.


Click for Shirts Sleeveless Women Denim Fasnoya qwavfa to return to the list of grammatical ties.

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