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Hello everyone,

Is "when the soldiers were walking..." correct in the following question?

What did Joe do when the soldiers were walking quickly?

- He picked up Pip and carried him on his back.

Should it be "while"?

Regards,

Joseph

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Joseph A

What did Joe do when the soldiers were walking quickly?

- He picked up Pip and carried him on his back.

Should it be "while"?

According to the text you posted later in the thread, it seems to me that it should be "because". (Note the connector "so" in that sentence of the original text.)

What did Joe do because the soldiers were walking quickly?

But this might be better phrased as

What did the quick pace of the soldiers prompt Joe to do?

CJ

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Was there a time when the soldiers were standing around or walking slowly?

We usually use the word "march" not "walk" for soldiers.

This seems more realistic:

What did Joe do when the soldiers were marching quickly by?

- He picked up Pip up and carried him on his back.

Maybe he did this:

- He picked Pip up and lifted him up to his shoulders.

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AlpheccaStarsWas there a time when the soldiers were standing around or walking slowly?We usually use the word "march" not "walk" for soldiers.This seems more realistic:What did Joe do when the soldiers were marching quickly by?- He picked up Pip up and carried him on his back.Maybe he did this:- He picked Pip up and lifted him up to his shoulders.

Thanks a lot, AlpheccaStars.

I made that question myself, but I got thr context from "Great Expectations/Episode 2: Christmas Day".

Here is the origional context:

Pip tells the story as follows:

When Joe had finished his work, he suggested that he and I might follow the soldiers while they looked for the prisoners.

All my sister could say was, "If they shoot his head off, don't ask me to put it back on again.

We followed the soldiers out into the cold. It was getting dark now and it started to rain as we we got near the Old Fort. The soldiers were walking quickly, so Joe picked me up and carried me on his back. For the first time, I considered what might happen if one of the prisoners saw me.

AlpheccaStarsHe picked up Pip up and carried him on his back.

A. AlpheccaStars, why is "He picked up Pip.." wrong? Here I used a proper noun, not a pronoun.

But the following are correct:

He turned off the TV.

He picked up the passengers

He tidied up the room.

He put out the fire.

AlpheccaStarsWhat did Joe do when the soldiers were marching quickly by?

B. Now, could you please tell me if the following question is correct?

What did Joe do when the soldiers were walking quickly?

- He picked up Pip and carried him on his back.

Regards,

Joseph

Joseph AWhat did Joe do when the soldiers were walking quickly?

Yes.

The phrasal verb "pick up" is separable.

You can say: "I picked up the dry cleaning on the way home."

or "I picked the dry cleaning up on the way home."

For inanimate objects, the first is more common. For children, the second one is.

Yours is not incorrect. It just seems less natural.

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AlpheccaStarsYes. The phrasal verb "pick up" is separable.You can say: "I picked up the dry cleaning on the way home."or "I picked the dry cleaning up on the way home."For inanimate objects, the first is more common. For children, the second one is. Yours is not incorrect. It just seems less natural.
Thanks a lot, AlpheccaStars.
 CalifJim's reply was promoted to an answer.
CalifJimAccording to the text you posted later in the thread, it seems to me that it should be "because". (Note the connector "so" in that sentence of the original text.)

Thanks a lot, CalifJim.

CalifJimit seems to me that it should be "because".

CalifJim, don't you think "because" is wrong instead of "so"?

The soldiers were walking quickly, so Joe picked me up and carried me on his back.👍

The original text shows that "Pip was a child and couldn't walk quickly as the soldiers did, so Joe Picked him up..."


The soldiers were walking quickly because Joe picked me up and carried me on his back.👎😲

But here, this meaning is the opposite of the meaning of the original text.

I hope I understood your explanation well.

CalifJimWhat did Joe do because the soldiers were walking quickly?But this might be better phrased asWhat did the quick pace of the soldiers prompt Joe to do?

I'm sorry CalifJim. I don't want to talk about "cause and effect". I just want to make a question in which a short action (picking Pip up and carrying him...) has interrupted an ongoing action (were walking). I don't know why making the question and the answer is wrong as follows:

What did Joe do when the soldiers were walking quickly?

He picked up Pip and carried him on his back.

PS. I know that "Joe decided to pick up Pip and carry him on his back because the soldiers were walking quickly.". But I want to make my question in a different way as my original post.

Regards,

Joseph

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Joseph A

The soldiers were walking quickly because Joe picked me up and carried me on his back.👎😲

But here, this meaning is the opposite of the meaning of the original text.

I hope I understood your explanation well.

I'm not sure you understood. With 'because' you have to invert the order of the clauses.

The soldiers were walking quickly so Joe picked me up and carried me on his back.
=
Joe picked me up and carried me on his back because the soldiers were walking quickly.

Joseph A

I don't know why making the question and the answer is wrong as follows:

What did Joe do when the soldiers were walking quickly?

He picked up Pip and carried him on his back.

That's OK too. That's probably how you want to ask it for your students, but I just wanted to show you another way to phrase the ideas as a way you could improve your own English. And you could use the new phrasing I gave you for more advanced students, too. OK?

CJ

CalifJimI'm not sure you understood. With 'because' you have to invert the order of the clauses.The soldiers were walking quickly so Joe picked me up and carried me on his back.=Joe picked me up and carried me on his back because the soldiers were walking quickly.

Thank you so much, CalifJim.

I have understood now.

CalifJimThat's OK too. That's probably how you want to ask it for your students,...

Yes, that's how I want to ask that question because I printed the handout seven years ago for the first time. Since then, we have been using it. In the handout, I asked the question as the OP.

CalifJim

...but I just wanted to show you another way to phrase the ideas as a way you could improve your own English.

I appreciate your help. I know that you usually teach me new things and help me improve my English.

CalifJimAnd you could use the new phrasing I gave you for more advanced students, too.

God willing, I'll try to edit my handout at the beginning of the school year next year and and add your version and remove mine. I always like to give information to my students in the best way.

CalifJimOK?

Okay, CalifJim. Thank you so much.

Best wishes,

Joseph