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The Story of Modifiers

PLACE MATTERS. A STORY OF MODIFIERS. MISPLACED MODIFIERS ONLY ALMOST JUST SCARCELY EXACTLY EVEN HARDLY SIMPLY It is safest to place these words immediately before the word they modify. She only eats fruit. (she doesn't grow, cook, or juice it) She eats only fruit. (she eats nothing else) DANGLING MODIFIERS WRONG WORD MODIFIED Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the crowd cheered as Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the acrobat began his routine as the crowd cheered. the acrobat began his routine. Early in the morning I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree in my pyjamas. Early in the morning, in my pyjamas, I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct MODIFIER'S SUBJECT IS Looking toward the west, I saw clouds scud across the darkening sky. MISSING: WHO? WHAT? Looking toward the west, clouds scudded across the darkening sky. Being only five, the physician was reluctant to perform surgery. The physician was reluctant to perform surgery on the child, being only five. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct CHECK-LIST Follow Us Grammarnet to prevent misplaced and dangling modifiers from sneaking by: V Find a modifier Make sure the modifier is as close as possible the word or phrase it is modifying. V Find the word it's modifying. Grammar.net Read over your finished work All rights reserved © 2011 Grammar.net PLACE MATTERS. A STORY OF MODIFIERS. MISPLACED MODIFIERS ONLY ALMOST JUST SCARCELY EXACTLY EVEN HARDLY SIMPLY It is safest to place these words immediately before the word they modify. She only eats fruit. (she doesn't grow, cook, or juice it) She eats only fruit. (she eats nothing else) DANGLING MODIFIERS WRONG WORD MODIFIED Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the crowd cheered as Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the acrobat began his routine as the crowd cheered. the acrobat began his routine. Early in the morning I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree in my pyjamas. Early in the morning, in my pyjamas, I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct MODIFIER'S SUBJECT IS Looking toward the west, I saw clouds scud across the darkening sky. MISSING: WHO? WHAT? Looking toward the west, clouds scudded across the darkening sky. Being only five, the physician was reluctant to perform surgery. The physician was reluctant to perform surgery on the child, being only five. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct CHECK-LIST Follow Us Grammarnet to prevent misplaced and dangling modifiers from sneaking by: V Find a modifier Make sure the modifier is as close as possible the word or phrase it is modifying. V Find the word it's modifying. Grammar.net Read over your finished work All rights reserved © 2011 Grammar.net PLACE MATTERS. A STORY OF MODIFIERS. MISPLACED MODIFIERS ONLY ALMOST JUST SCARCELY EXACTLY EVEN HARDLY SIMPLY It is safest to place these words immediately before the word they modify. She only eats fruit. (she doesn't grow, cook, or juice it) She eats only fruit. (she eats nothing else) DANGLING MODIFIERS WRONG WORD MODIFIED Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the crowd cheered as Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the acrobat began his routine as the crowd cheered. the acrobat began his routine. Early in the morning I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree in my pyjamas. Early in the morning, in my pyjamas, I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct MODIFIER'S SUBJECT IS Looking toward the west, I saw clouds scud across the darkening sky. MISSING: WHO? WHAT? Looking toward the west, clouds scudded across the darkening sky. Being only five, the physician was reluctant to perform surgery. The physician was reluctant to perform surgery on the child, being only five. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct CHECK-LIST Follow Us Grammarnet to prevent misplaced and dangling modifiers from sneaking by: V Find a modifier Make sure the modifier is as close as possible the word or phrase it is modifying. V Find the word it's modifying. Grammar.net Read over your finished work All rights reserved © 2011 Grammar.net PLACE MATTERS. A STORY OF MODIFIERS. MISPLACED MODIFIERS ONLY ALMOST JUST SCARCELY EXACTLY EVEN HARDLY SIMPLY It is safest to place these words immediately before the word they modify. She only eats fruit. (she doesn't grow, cook, or juice it) She eats only fruit. (she eats nothing else) DANGLING MODIFIERS WRONG WORD MODIFIED Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the crowd cheered as Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the acrobat began his routine as the crowd cheered. the acrobat began his routine. Early in the morning I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree in my pyjamas. Early in the morning, in my pyjamas, I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct MODIFIER'S SUBJECT IS Looking toward the west, I saw clouds scud across the darkening sky. MISSING: WHO? WHAT? Looking toward the west, clouds scudded across the darkening sky. Being only five, the physician was reluctant to perform surgery. The physician was reluctant to perform surgery on the child, being only five. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct CHECK-LIST Follow Us Grammarnet to prevent misplaced and dangling modifiers from sneaking by: V Find a modifier Make sure the modifier is as close as possible the word or phrase it is modifying. V Find the word it's modifying. Grammar.net Read over your finished work All rights reserved © 2011 Grammar.net PLACE MATTERS. A STORY OF MODIFIERS. MISPLACED MODIFIERS ONLY ALMOST JUST SCARCELY EXACTLY EVEN HARDLY SIMPLY It is safest to place these words immediately before the word they modify. She only eats fruit. (she doesn't grow, cook, or juice it) She eats only fruit. (she eats nothing else) DANGLING MODIFIERS WRONG WORD MODIFIED Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the crowd cheered as Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the acrobat began his routine as the crowd cheered. the acrobat began his routine. Early in the morning I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree in my pyjamas. Early in the morning, in my pyjamas, I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct MODIFIER'S SUBJECT IS Looking toward the west, I saw clouds scud across the darkening sky. MISSING: WHO? WHAT? Looking toward the west, clouds scudded across the darkening sky. Being only five, the physician was reluctant to perform surgery. The physician was reluctant to perform surgery on the child, being only five. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct CHECK-LIST Follow Us Grammarnet to prevent misplaced and dangling modifiers from sneaking by: V Find a modifier Make sure the modifier is as close as possible the word or phrase it is modifying. V Find the word it's modifying. Grammar.net Read over your finished work All rights reserved © 2011 Grammar.net PLACE MATTERS. A STORY OF MODIFIERS. MISPLACED MODIFIERS ONLY ALMOST JUST SCARCELY EXACTLY EVEN HARDLY SIMPLY It is safest to place these words immediately before the word they modify. She only eats fruit. (she doesn't grow, cook, or juice it) She eats only fruit. (she eats nothing else) DANGLING MODIFIERS WRONG WORD MODIFIED Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the crowd cheered as Hanging precariously from a trapeze, the acrobat began his routine as the crowd cheered. the acrobat began his routine. Early in the morning I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree in my pyjamas. Early in the morning, in my pyjamas, I watched the squirrel scramble up the tree. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct MODIFIER'S SUBJECT IS Looking toward the west, I saw clouds scud across the darkening sky. MISSING: WHO? WHAT? Looking toward the west, clouds scudded across the darkening sky. Being only five, the physician was reluctant to perform surgery. The physician was reluctant to perform surgery on the child, being only five. Mr.Incorrect Mr.Correct CHECK-LIST Follow Us Grammarnet to prevent misplaced and dangling modifiers from sneaking by: V Find a modifier Make sure the modifier is as close as possible the word or phrase it is modifying. V Find the word it's modifying. Grammar.net Read over your finished work All rights reserved © 2011 Grammar.net

The Story of Modifiers

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Misplace your keys, and you may miss an appointment. Misplace your cell phone, and you will miss some calls. But — misplace or dangle your modifiers, and readers will wonder what in the world you’...

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