Hi Teachers,

I have two questions:

1. Is it absolutely necessary the underlined 'her' in the following sentence?

2. Baking is a gerund, but does it behave like a 'verb' or 'noun' here? How can I know when it is a noun or a verb.

This Sunday morning, Susan's husband, Tom, is going to surprise her by baking her a chocolate cake while she is at her parents' house.

Thanks in advance
1 2
Thinking SpainHi Teachers,
I have two questions:
1. Is it absolutely necessary the underlined 'her' in the following sentence? NO
2. Baking is a gerund, but does it behave like a 'verb' or 'noun' here? How can I know when it is a noun or a verb.because of by.

This Sunday morning, Susan's husband, Tom, is going to surprise her by baking her a chocolate cake while she is at her parents' house.

Thanks in advance
Hi imantaghavi,

Thank you for your reply.

Is it a verb because of by?

How can I know when a gerund is a noun or a verb?

TS
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Hi imantaghavi,Hi imantaghavi,
Thank you for your reply.
Is it a verb because of by?NO.It's gerund(as a noun)
How can I know when a gerund is a noun or a verb?When it's preceded by an auxilliary it's a verb.E.g:I'm going to school.

TS

In this sentence the "her" is necessary, because that is the whole point of the situation: the cake is for her, and it's a surprise for her - he's not just baking it to show that he can bake a cake. Without the "her" the sentence is still grammatical, but the essence of the meaning is lost.

The word "baking" has its origins in the verb "to bake," but here it functions, not as a verb, but as a noun (although it still retains some aspects of a verb here, as do all verbals): the group of words "baking her a chocolate cake while she is at her parents' house" has a noun function. You could use that group of words as the subject of a sentence: "Baking her a chocolate cake while she is at her parents' house is what her husband is doing to surprise her." And as a noun that group of words can also function as the object of a preposition, "by", in the sentence. The prepositional phrase "by baking....house" has an adverb function and modifies the verb "is going to (is going to = will) surprise."
Hi imantaghavi,

Thank you very much for your reply.

Best,

TS
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Thinking Spain1. Is it absolutely necessary the underlined 'her' in the following sentence?
Her can be omitted (it is the indirect object), but if you omit it, the meaning will change.

For example, both of these are grammatically correct, but have a different meaning.

John sent him a package.

John sent a package.
Thinking Spain2. Baking is a gerund, but does it behave like a 'verb' or 'noun' here? How can I know when it is a noun or a verb.
A verbal is a hybrid. A gerund, for instance, has the position of a noun in a sentence, but can have objects and adverb modifiers, like normal verbs.

In your example, it is the object of the proposition by.

However, it has an indirect object (her), a direct object Emotion: cake, and an adverb clause modifier (while she is at her parent's house).

An -ing word is a gerund if it is the subject or an object in a sentence.

It is a main verb if it is part of a verb phrase with "be"

She is baking a cake. (main verb)

Baking a cake can take many hours. (gerund, subject)

I like baking and decorating cakes. (gerund, object)

By baking it slowly and at a low temperature, the meat will not be dry, but juicy.(gerund, object of preposition)

I checked the cake baking in the oven. (adjective)
Hi Anonymous,

Thank you so much for your answer. It is quite an answer. I really appreciate your time and explanation.

Is it true that a gerund behaves like a verb when it has an auxiliary verb before it?

Best,

TS
Hi AlpheccaStars,

Thank you so much for your detailed reply. I really appreciate it. Now I understand very well when it is a noun, a verb, and even an adjective.Emotion: smile

Best,

TS
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