+0
Question 1] ..............................................................................

Please look at the sentences below:

(1) On which bed did he sleep?

(2) Which bed did he sleep on?

The preposition "on" can be put on both places, but I'm not sure why some of the sentences below are ungrammatical, while others grammatical. How can I explain this? I need your help.

1.

(a) Until what time are you staying? (grammatical)

(b) What time are you staying until? (NOT grammatical)

2.

(a) Like what is he? (NOT grammatical)

(b) What is he like? (grammatical)

3.

Book and what did you buy? (NOT grammatical)

4.

Who and who came? (NOT grammatical))

5.

When and where were you born? (grammatical)

6.

Who said what to whom? (grammatical)

Question 2]

..............................................................................

a. They could have canceled their trip.

b. They were able to cancel their trip.

According to the textbook,

"According to both sentences, they had the opportunity to cancel their trip. According to the second sentence, they did not cancel; according to the first sentence, they did."

Is this true? I thought the opposite is true.

Question 3]

..............................................................................

Why are (b) and (c) ungrammatical while (a) is grammatical?

(a) What John preferred was for Mary to leave early.

(b) *What John believed was for Mary to leave early.

(c) *What John persuaded was for Mary to leave early.

but (e) and (f) is grammatically correct.

(e) What the colonists wanted was to be free from external taxation.

(f) What the colonists believed was that they should be freed from external taxation.

Any insight?

Thanks in advance.

Jay from ROK
+0
Hello Dcomest

I'll do a couple, and maybe someone else will do the rest:

1. (a) Until what time are you staying? (grammatical)/(b) What time are you staying until? (NOT grammatical)

– I don't find sentence 1b ungrammatical; though I would be more likely to say "what time are you staying till?"

2a. They could have canceled their trip./b. They were able to cancel their trip.

I disagree with your textbook. Sentence 2a can mean, depending on context and intonation:

i) It is possible that they cancelled their trip (we don't know).

ii) It was possible for them to cancel their trip, but they didn't.

iii) It would have been more reasonable for them to cancel their trip. ("They could have...trip!")

Sentence 2b can mean:

iv) It was possible for them to cancel their trip, and they did.

v) It was possible for them to cancel their trip, though they didn't.

vi) I insist that it was possible for them to cancel their trip. ("They were able...trip!")

(Other members may find other possibilities.)

MrP
+0
Why are (b) and (c) ungrammatical while (a) is grammatical?

(a) What John preferred was for Mary to leave early.
(b) *What John believed was for Mary to leave early.

(c) *What John persuaded was for Mary to leave early.

but (e) and (f) is grammatically correct.

(e) What the colonists wanted was to be free from external taxation.

(f) What the colonists believed was that they should be freed from external taxation.
The grammaticality of a pseudo-cleft construction is related to the grammaticality of the underlying kernel sentence.

John preferred for Mary to leave early.
*John believed for Mary to leave early.
*John persuaded for Mary to leave early.

The colonists wanted to be free from external taxation.
The colonists believed that they should be freed from external taxation.

I'm not sure what other insight you might be asking for. The catenative verbs are a complex topic in themselves, as are pseudo-cleft structures. An examination of the two in combination would require quite a long treatise!

CJ