Complete Thoughts, Complete Sentences

by esltime on December 12, 2012

in Grammar

What’s an incomplete sentenceSubjects In The English Sentence: Visible, Invisible. Read more ... »? It’s the moment in the television show just beforeCheck It Out Before you Hand in your Essay. Read more ... » the last commercial. You knowTOEFL - What is the TOEFL process in the examination day and the the TOEFL type of exam?. Read more ... » what I mean. The hero slowly edges the door open a few inches, peeks in, gasps, and . . . FADE TO DANCING DETERGENT BOTTLE. You were planning to changeTranslation Of Proper Names. Read more ... » the channel, but instead you wait to see if the villain’s cobra is going to bite the hero’s nose. You haven’t gotten to the end, and you don’t know what’s happening. A complete sentence is the opposite of that moment in a television show. You have gotten to the end, and you do know what’s happening. In other words, a complete sentence must express a complete thought. (You”ve probably noticed that grammarQ&A: What Grammar software is there out there to help with my law school writing?. Read more ... » terminology is not terribly original; in fact, it’s terribly obvious.)
CheckEnglish Grammar Software? - Check Grammar Like an Expert!. Read more ... » out theseFollow These to Learn to Speak English. Read more ... » complete sentencesProper Nouns And Sentences - Free Tip !. Read more ... ». NoticeGrammar Rules For Nouns ? - Special Notice !. Read more ... » how theyHow come alot of Hispanics dont learn English while they live in America?. Read more ... » express complete thoughts:
Despite Eggworthy’s fragile appearance, he proved to be a tough opponent.
Ms. Drydock will sail solo aroundPronunciation: Helping Ourselves in Another Language. Read more ... » the worldThe Trouble with Real World Grammar Rules. Read more ... », as soon as her boat stops leaking.
I can’t imagine why anyoneHelpful Tips for Learning Correct English Grammar. Read more ... » would wantSoftware for Grammar: Your Ultimate Solution!. Read more ... » to ride on top of a Zamboni.
Did Lola apply for a job as a Zamboni driver?
For comparison, here are a few incomplete thoughts:
The reasonWhy Chinese (Mandarin) Is One of the Easiest Languages to Learn - Reason 1. Read more ... » I wanted a divorce was.
Because I said so.
I can guess what you’re thinking. Both of those incomplete thoughts may be partDoes the position of German adverbs correspond to the five positions allowed in English?. Read more ... » of a longer conversationLearn Spanish Language Secrets. Read more ... ». Yes, in context those incomplete thoughts may indeed express a complete thought:
Sydney: So the topic of conversation was the Rangers’ season opener?
Alice: NoHow To Use Presuppositions To Get What You Want. Read more ... »! “The reason I wanted a divorce” was!
and
Sydney: Why do I have to do thisSkyrocket Your TOEFL Test Success With This Secret Technique!. Read more ... » dumb homework?
Alice: Because I said so.
Fair enoughPronunciation: Helping Ourselves in Another Language. Read more ... ». You can pull a complete thought out of the examplesTENSES. Read more ... ». However, the context of a conversation is not enough to satisfy the complete thought/ complete sentence ruleDoes the position of German adverbs correspond to the five positions allowed in English?. Read more ... ». To be “legal,” your sentence must express a complete thought.

Check out these examples:
The reason I wanted a divorce was what we discussed, evenWhat is good grammar, and why is it important? Should you be concerned about your grammar usage even around fa?. Read more ... » though his real5 Common Grammar Errors in Blogs. Read more ... » interest was the Rangers’ season opener.
You have to do this dumb homework because I said so.
Final answer: Every complete sentence has at least oneLearn to Speak and Read English. Read more ... » subject–verbSpeaking English Effectively with Grammar. Read more ... » pair and must express a complete thought.
In deciding whetherPARTS OF SPEECH-CONJUNCTION-CONJUNCTIONAL IDIOMS. Read more ... » you have a complete sentence or not, you may be led astray by words that resemble questionsTOEFL - What is the TOEFL process in the examination day and the the TOEFL type of exam?. Read more ... ». Consider"Make" vs "Do" in English. Read more ... » these three words: who knits well. A complete thought? Maybe yes, maybe no. Suppose those three words formTENSES. Read more ... » a question:
Who knits well?
This question is understandable and its thought is complete. Verdict: legal. Suppose these three words form a statement:
Who knits well.
Now they don’t make sense. This incomplete sentence needsTOEFL - What is the TOEFL process in the examination day and the the TOEFL type of exam?. Read more ... » moreWord Processing Grammar Checkers Miss More Errors Than They Find. Read more ... » words to make a complete thought:
The honor of making Fido’s sweater will go to the personHow to Use the First Person Pronoun in Your Writing. Read more ... » who knits well.
The moral of the storyAll About Nouns. Read more ... »? Don’t change the meaningTranslation Of Proper Names. Read more ... » of what you’re saying when deciding whether a thought is complete. If you’re questioning, consider your sentence as a question. If you’re stating, consider your sentence as a statement.
Occasionally a complete sentence ends with an ellipsis — three spaced dots. Such sentences show up in dramatic works, to add suspense or to indicate hesitation or confusion. These sentences appear incomplete, but because  they fulfill the author’s purpose, they are complete. For more informationIelts Preparation Guidelines. Read more ... » on ellipses, see “Oh, Mama, Could This ReallyParaprosdokian Sentences. Read more ... » Be the End?” later in this chapter.
Which sentence is complete?
A. Martin sings.
B. Martin, who hopes to sing professionally someSome Basic Tips on Using Verbs - Adverbs and Adjectives. Read more ... » day but can’t get beyondLanguage production activities in the TEFL/ESL classroom; moving beyond gap fills. Read more ... » the do-re-mi level.
Answer: Even though it is shortLearn to Speak and Read English. Read more ... », sentence A is complete. Martin sings is a complete idea and includes the necessary subject–verb pair. In sentence B, one subject is paired with two verbsSome Basic Tips on Using Verbs - Adverbs and Adjectives. Read more ... » (who + hopes, can get), but no complete thought is stated.

 

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