What’s the FUNCTIONAL difference between a supplement and an adjunct/modifier?

I’m trying to understand the difference between supplements and adjuncts/modifiers. In my search for enlightenment, I’ve come across a number of entries and posts, of which I think this one summarises the issue most clearly. However, nowhere have I found a clear explanation as to what the actual functional difference is. In fact, it seems … Read more

Can I use a noun with a posessive determiner as adjunct?

For example: “Your level English” (Your level = adjunct)? Does it have the same meaning as “English of your level”? Answer At the very least you’d need to hyphenate, like this: your-level English. This would arguably be understood by most native speakers to mean English of your level. But I doubt any native speaker would … Read more

Disambiguating the noun phrase “a pretty egg box”

Does “a pretty egg box” always mean “a pretty box of eggs” rather than “a box of pretty eggs”? More precisely, is “adjective adjunct-noun head-noun” always interpreted as “adjective (adjunct-noun head-noun)” rather than “(adjective adjunct-noun) head-noun”? If so, can “a pretty egg box” be punctuated so as to mean “a box of pretty eggs”? Answer … Read more

Is this prepositional phrase a ‘predicative adjunct’?

The class was composed of thirty students, including Jonathan and Kelly. In this sentence, the prepositional phrase ‘including Jonathan and Kelly’ is a non-restrictive element in the clause structure (a supplementary adjunct). It does not modify ‘thirty students’ but provides additional information about them. Can we call this a predicative adjunct? I am familiar with … Read more

Can prepositional phrases modify copular verbs?

Cassandra was a natural fit for the role because of her well-refined combat skills. In the above quote (from a piece I wrote for my job), I have used the prepositional phrase ‘because of her well-refined combat skills’. Ordinarily, I would categorise this prepositional phrase as an adjunct, modifying the main verb of the clause … Read more

Argument vs. adjunct

I have a problem identifying certain structures of the sentence; sometimes it is hard to tell whether I’m dealing with an argument or adjunct. Adjunct is said to be optional;, that is, its omission will not change the meaning of the predicate. At the same time, the argument of the sentence is a mandatory syntactic … Read more

That-clause (content clause) as an adjunct?

According to CGEL, that-clause can function as an adjunct. The following sentence is an example from page 952 of CGEL. He appealed to us to bring his case to the attention of the authorities that justice might be done. But I can not find any explanation about that-clause as an adjunct. What is the semantic … Read more

Omitting “by” preposition and the resulted phrase

Consider the following examples: I paid for it by using my credit card. I was in contact with my friends by sending letters. I learned how to dance by watching online videos if I remove the preposition "by", one of them sound fine (the first one), but the others sound different: I paid for it … Read more

Does a comma go there?

I’m having a hard time figuring out whether or not to use a comma in the type of situation shown in the examples below: Jane was concerned that running by herself she might get mugged. Jane was concerned that running by herself, she might get mugged. Jane was concerned that, running by herself, she might … Read more

Verb-Subject Order

Is it optional to front the verb in sentences like the one below when an adverbial precedes? In the film, appear two more girls who think that Dallas is quite rude. I have already checked the answers to a similar thread but they do not exactly address my question. Answer Short answer If the phrase … Read more