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Modifiers. Most information from Rude , Carolyn. Technical Editing, 4 th ed. http://www.flickr.com/photos/22891069@N00/1333075494. Modifiers are adjectives, adverbs and modifying phrases. The red car. The happy puppy. The quick fox. The feasibility report. The rapidly bouncing ball.

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Modifiers

Modifiers

Most information from Rude, Carolyn. Technical Editing, 4th ed.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/22891069@N00/1333075494


Modifiers are adjectives adverbs and modifying phrases
Modifiers are adjectives, adverbs and modifying phrases.

  • The red car.

  • The happy puppy.

  • The quick fox.

  • The feasibility report.

  • The rapidly bouncing ball.

Modifiers “modify” the meaning of the subject, verb, or complement by describing and limiting.


Modifiers may be phrases
Modifiers may be phrases:

  • Prepositional phrase:

    The package arrived from Amazon.com.

  • Noun phrase:

    We obtained the required papers.

  • Infinitive phrase:

    We will try to complete the diagnostic today.

  • Participle Phrase:

    The technician taking readings discovered a fault.

  • Appostive Phrase:

    H20, pure water, is good to drink.

A “phrase” never contains both subject and verb. A group with both is a “clause.”


Modifiers

“Modifiers should come, if possible, next to the words they modify. If several expressions modify the same word, they should be arranged so that no wrong relation is suggested.”

When fried, I like okra.

This summer, I stood knee-deep in the river and caught a fish without waders.

Strunk, W. Jr., & White, E. B. (2000). The Elements of Style, 50th Anniversary ed. New York: Pearson/Longman

Examples from http://jpicforum.info/articles-database/misplaced-modifiers-5037.html


Modifiers
A modifier attaches to something. Simple rearrangement of a dangling modifier will not fix the problem.

Changing the oil, a worn radiator hose was discovered.

A worn radiator hose was discovered changing the oil.


One way to fix dangling modifiers is to insert the implied subject into the sentence
One way to fix dangling modifiers is to insert the implied subject into the sentence.

The mechanic discovered a worn radiator hose while changing the oil.