1) They are only/but/all too pleased to help you.

What does this sentence mean? "They are too pleased, so they won't help you." or " They are too pleased ,so they help you"?

2)I am not/never too busy to come.

It mean "I can come or not?

3)He intended to have gone abroad last year ,but his mother suddenly fell ill.

Why the answer is not "to go"?

4)She is so foolish as to cry over a novel.

i just know the struture S+ is/are + so -clause , it the above sentence right?

5)You had better have seen the doctor earlier.

What is the meaning of this sentence and can we replace "have seen" with see?

6) Student should form the good habit to consullt dictionary.

Student should form the good habit of consulting dictionary.

What are the meanings of these two sentence above?


1)"Tom 's coming" or "Tom coming " is correct?

"chickens coming" or "chickens' coming" is correct?

2)The surroundings is/are beautiful?

This surroundings is/are beautiful?

The findings is/are useful?

3)Battleing the desert is the only chance to avoid starvation.

Battleing the desert is the only chance avoiding starvation

What is the difference in meaning between these two sentences?

4)Trees are cut for firewood, leaving the soil against wind and rain.

Trees are cut for firewood. Trees leave the soil against wing and rain << It is quite strange? Then what is the simples form of the sentence above?

5) I hope you don't mind my looking at your newspaper.

What is the nature of the word "looking" ? Is it a gerund used as a noun and "my" is used to modifies "looking"?

6)We don't understanf why you object to with us.

A. his coming (answer)

B him coming << but i think it is correct too because "We don't understande why you object to him (who is) coming with us" .Is it correct?

7)They are discussing the problem of to the moon.

A. a man's flying

B. men's flying

What is the answer and why?

8) There is no royal road to learn/learning ? and why?

9)We found the baby on the floor .

A.sleep << why it is wrong?

B. sleeping(answer)

C.alseep (answer)


1)She had her house .

A.destroyed << why it is wrong? Isn't "have something destroyed" equal to "something was destroyed"?

B.to be destroyed. (answer)

2)The editoral will appear in tomorrow's newspaper.

A. writing.<< why it is wrong. Can't i refer "editoral" as an adjective and "writing" as a noun?

B. being writen (answer)

3)During the battle some soilder were wound and some missing.

What is the original/simplest form of the sentence above?

sorry for asking so many questions.

Thank a lots.
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Comments  (Page 3) 

.5)You had better have seen the doctor earlier. The tone and tense are rather odd. I would say “You had better” does not go with this context. If I guess correctly, do you mean to say” you should have seen the doctor earlier” ?

I don't know what does this sentence mean too because those question are copied from my grammar exercise book.

Initially , i guess this context (You had better (see) the doctor earily.) mean " You should go and see the doctor now earily= the earier , the better. " In chinese is "你應該早d去睇醫生".So can i say " You had better see the doctor earily." ? I don't now how to express my view on it. I hope you can understand what i want to say^^.


5) I hope you don't mind my looking at your newspaper. This type o structure is very common. I hope you don't mind- this part is a complete sentence. My looking at your newspaper is a participle clause describing the action.

More i.e….

* I caught him just in time, [saving the trouble to call him again].

* She woke up early, [expecting her mother to arrive]

The bracketed segments are clauses which modify the preceding contents.

Do you mean the bracketed segments are used to modify the whole meaning of the preceding sentence? Or just modify the action that subject(She) does?As my teacher tell me participle phrase is formed as following:

I catch him just in time. I save the troble to call him again. <<Then we can combine this two sentence by omitting the Subject (I) and changing the verb(catch) to present participle (catching). That's why i think that the segments are no connection with the preceding sentence.

Thank for your help . It is very useful .

And can someone tell me how to use participle phrase?
Goodman5)You had better have seen the doctor earlier. The tone and tense are rather odd. I would say “You had better” does not go with this context. If I guess correctly, do you mean to say” you should have seen the doctor earlier” ?

I'm interested in Goodman's discussion that "had better have seen the doctor earlier" is odd in the tone and tense. Frankly I myself had never come across this construct until when I saw it in the question of Anon's. It might be true "had better have done" is of rare use. For example, any article in the online sites of New York Times and CNN does not use this construct. "Had better have seen", for example, is used only by 145 people on all Google. So we should conclude "had better have done" is a wrong structure at least in current English.

But there is evidence that the use of this construct was popular at least up to the beginning of the 20th centuries. The Gutenberg project online provides some 3,000 pages in the books of classic literature where the structure "had better have done" is used. The below are some examples for those.
They know now that they had better have relied on the sword of the spirit (Bernard Shaw)
You had better have said at first (Henry James)
I had better have stopped at home with my mamma and sisters (W. Thackeray)
You had better have told her all before (M. M. Sherwood)
After all, you had better have gone for the apples yourself (Nathaniel Hawthorne).

It is a bit subtle question how to evaluate this kind of archaic expression in this sort of forum. Native speakers would feel they are odd because they don't use them in everyday conversation. But in some countries, students are taught English not only to have English speaking fluency but also to have abilities to read English writing including classic novels. I sometimes feel this sort of gap between the native speakers' views about learning English and the situations in which non-native learners are taught English in schools.

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Hello Paco,

Very interesting thought indeed! My English learning and usage have not gone this far back. So I can only speak in terms of what is learned from recent years. Because of my ELS background and the “all-most-zero” knowledge of English, I had to focus on building my vocabulary and grammar in the early going. I had the fortune of having an English teacher who came back to the US from a contract with Beijing University in my ESL class for 2 years. Her name is Mrs. Milton. She was part of the reason why I can read and write! Anyway, I am not an expert of English, oh no! not even close. But I love English and I am still working at refining it. This forum gives me the opportunity not only to share but also learn from the real teachers. One or two of you in this forum may have already know me, so please bare with my boring you. Sometimes, I can be a bit too long-winded with my threads. For that, I apologize. But I am open to comments and discussions.
Hello Goodman,

You are really a non native from Beijing! I never imagined so before because of your proficiency in writing English. It's really a kind of surprise. Please don't apologize. We learners all are puzzeld at the gap between spoken English and the English we are taught in schools.

Have a good day!

Paco2004Hello Goodman,

You are really a non native from Beijing!

Hi Paco,

It must be good morning there in Japan. If you don't mind I am curious...Are you American or Brit ?

I am not from Beijing. I am a Hong Kong-born Chinese immigrated to the US with my family some years ago. The teacher I had was returning from Beijing after she completed her teaching contract with BJU. Thanks for your comment. I am far from fluent but trying to be .......

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Hi, Goodman

I'm a pure Japanese to 100 % of my blood. I'm now typing on my desk in Tokyo! Furthermore I don't know much about English because I spent half of my life as an engineer. You can easily see it if you see why I have repeatedly editted what I wrote here.

We happen to have quite a lot of non-native speakers who are very fluent in English. They are from all over the world.

PS I'm just a learner who is still trying to improve.