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Help with Grammar?  I need the main verbs, helping verbs, and the tense of...

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hannahbannna | Student, Grade 10 | (Level 3) eNoter

Posted April 7, 2011 at 1:30 PM via web

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Help with Grammar?

 

I need the main verbs, helping verbs, and the tense of these three sentences.

Before the sun came up that day, tens of thousands of sleeping people had been killed by the giant quake- a 7.4 on the Richer scale. Is the North Anatolian Fault in Turkey similar to the San Andreas Fault in California? Scientists have found them to be similar in size and have found movement in the tectonic plates to be similar.

I think for the first sentence the main verbs are: sleeping killed, and the helping verb is: before.

For the second: Similar-main and Is-helping

Third- Found- main

Am I right so far? Could you please help me with the parts I don’t have yet. My grammar test it tomorrow and I am freaking out because grammar is really not my thing. Thank you so much for your help!

2 Answers | Add Yours

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lmetcalf | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

Posted April 7, 2011 at 2:08 PM (Answer #1)

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The main verb is the action that is done by the subject.  The helping verbs are used along with the main verbs to clarify tense.  In the sentences above the correct answers are as follows:

subject -- sun -- main verb -- came (past tense)

subject -- tens of thousands -- helping verbs -- had, been -- main verb -- killed (past perfect tense)

Main verb -- is -- subject-- North Anatolian Fault (present tense)

subject -- scientists -- helping verb -- have -- main verb -- found (present perfect)  (This verb construction is repeated later in the same sentence.)

To explain your errors:  in the first sentence, the word "sleeping" is not a verb because the subject of the sentence isn't doing the sleeping.  It is a verbal that is being used as an adjective to describe which people were killed.  The word "before" is never a verb because you can't do it.  You can't say:  I am going to before today.  The word before is used as a subordinating conjunction to introduce a dependent clause.  That entire clause is telling when something happened, so it is providing adverb information to the sentence as a whole.

In the second sentence, the only verb is "is."  "Similar" is an adjective, not a verb.  You can't similar.  The verb "is" expresses a state of being, and this sentence is talking about the state of being of a fault.

In the third sentence you missed the helping verb "have."  You labled the main verb correctly.

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pammyteacher-rocks | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 1) Honors

Posted April 10, 2011 at 1:08 PM (Answer #2)

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Sentence 1: Before the sun came up that day, tens of thousands of sleeping people had been killed by the giant quake- a 7.4 on the Richer scale.= had (helping verb) been (helping verb) killed- main verb.

 Is the North Anatolian Fault in Turkey similar to the San Andreas Fault in California? helping verb- is, main verb- similiar

Scientists have found them to be similar in size and have found movement in the tectonic plates to be similar.- helping verb-  have, main- found

 

Hope this helps you:)

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