By N. F. Blake (auth.)
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Extra resources for An Introduction to the Language of Literature
She went to London. 48 AN INTRODUCrION TO THE LANGUAGE OF LITERATURE The meaning of 2b and 3b are not identical with those of 2 and 3, though most readers will probably assume they are. It is, therefore, important when examining a text to see how many adjuncts are introduced into each sentence. A plain style will have fewer adjuncts than an elaborate one, because adjuncts lead to subordination and introduce qualification. Most adjuncts qualify the predicator; they introduce qualifications as to how, when or where an action took place.
Thus if one says 'The man died', there is no object because the verb is intransitive. Equally the fact that the man died is one of those actions for which no cause is implied and certainly no sense of deliberateness or intention is suggested. In some ways intransitives resemble passives because the action may have no agent expressed. It may also shift the point of view of the action. If one contrasts 'She opened the door' with 'The door opened', the point of view in the first is focused on the 'She' who is opening the door.
Alternatively one could take each element in these lines as a separate complement, though that might seem a little fussy. The organisation of the second sentence is somewhat different as we saw in the previous chapter. The first four and a half lines Group Structure: The Noun Group 29 of this sentence constitute the object to the verb knowes, and this object stands as a mirror image to the complement which concludes the first sentence. This object consists of a noun group, as all objects must, whose head is this which is its final word.
An Introduction to the Language of Literature by N. F. Blake (auth.)