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Hi. I have a question here.

1. There are two students waiting outside. (Acceptable)

2. There was a sudden bang waking me up (Grammatically wrong)

The grammar book states that the second sentence should be written like this:

- There was a sudden bang that woke me up.

According to the book, it says "We don't use a participle instead of a verb that describes a single or sudden action.

May I know what does "single action" mean? I am so confused. If only a "single action" is allowed, why does the first sentence is acceptable given that it only involves a single action (Two students are waiting outside) as well?

One more question, can I write my sentence like this?

When there is no one cleaning after them, young adults will have to take on the responsibility of housekeeping by themselves. (It is grammatically correct?)

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teal desk 749We don't use a participle instead of a verb that describes a single or sudden action.
There was a sudden bang that woke me up.
teal desk 749why does is the first sentence [is] acceptable

Waiting is just standing or sitting in one place. Nobody is moving much. You have to move more than that to perform an action.

teal desk 749When there is no one cleaning up after them, young adults (will) have to take on the responsibility of housekeeping (by) themselves.

Grammatically correct as shown. Words in parentheses are optional.

CJ

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Hi, Thanks for the reply. However, I am still confused. The active present participle is acceptable in the first sentence because it involves more than one actions, isn't it? For the second sentence, it is not acceptable because it only involves a single and sudden action. How can we identify as to whether or not a sentence involves a single or more than one actions?
teal desk 749The active present participle is acceptable in the first sentence because it involves more than one actions, isn't it?

No. That's not what they're saying. They're saying that the first sentence is acceptable because "waiting outside" is not an action. (Obviously, if it's not an action at all, it's not a single action, and it's not a sudden action.)

teal desk 749For the second sentence, it is not acceptable because it only involves a single and sudden action.

Yes, I believe that they are saying that "waking up" is a sudden action (resulting from the bang, of course).

teal desk 749How can we identify as to whether or not a sentence involves a single or more than one actions?

I am doubtful whether this guideline for the use of a participle is even very reliable. I have never heard of it before, and I don't know exactly what criteria they are using to determine the number of actions, or what it has to do with participle usage. I think you are justified in feeling confused.

As a matter of fact, it's correct to write the following:

The sound of a sudden bang resonated through the room, waking me up.

We can only wonder what your grammar book would say about that.

Personally, from what you've written, and if there is no more to it than that, I would not take their advice too seriously.

CJ

teal desk 749The grammar book states that the second sentence should be written like this:

What grammar book are you quoting from?

Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?

Oxford Practice Grammar (Advanced) by George Yule.

teal desk 749

Oxford Practice Grammar (Advanced) by George Yule.

Interesting.

OK. I downloaded it (it was free), and I found that the rule you are asking about is under the heading "Reduced Relative Clauses", which is what I expected. So the example I gave doesn't enter into it because that's an adverbial participle clause, not a reduced relative clause.

I had never heard of it before, but it seems a valid claim that a verb that represents a single or sudden action (wake up) can't appear in a reduced relative clause, i.e., as a participle. I can't imagine that there are so many examples of this configuration of grammatical factors that it's necessary to mention it at all, but there you go. Emotion: smile

Maybe I don't completely understand what Mr. Yule is saying here. Emotion: thinking

CJ

Alright, thank you so much.

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