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Quick grammar question

Discussion in 'English' started by elijahboo1, Sep 8, 2020.

  1. elijahboo1

    elijahboo1 New commenter

    Is the phrase "confusedly heaped" (from the description of Miss Havisham in Great Expectations) an adverbial phrase or a noun phrase? Or is it something else? Is it an adjectival phrase? I've told a student it's an adverbial phrase but now I'm questioning myself.

    Thanks
     
  2. gruoch

    gruoch Established commenter

    Why would they need to know?
     
    Lidnod likes this.
  3. tb9605

    tb9605 Established commenter

    Well, we need to whole sentence to tell if "heaped" is being used as a verb or adjective (I suspect the latter) or if there is a noun in the phrase.

    However, like Gruoch.... why do they need to know? Surely the effect of the imagery is way more important than parsing the grammar?
     
  4. foroff2233

    foroff2233 Occasional commenter

    If the phrase 'confusedly heaped' qualifies a noun, I'd plump for calling it an adjectival phrase. But the whole sentence would be useful in case your phrase is modifying a verb......
     
  5. gruoch

    gruoch Established commenter

    Word classes are movable feasts - context is all.
     
  6. roamingteacher

    roamingteacher Established commenter Forum guide

    I'm guessing you're teaching A Level Language, possibly alongside literature. Here is the context:

    "She had not quite finished dressing, for she had but one shoe on - the other was on the table near her hand - her veil was but half arranged, her watch and chain were not put on, and some lace for her bosom lay with those trinkets, and with her handkerchief, and gloves, and some flowers, and a prayer-book, all confusedly heaped about the looking-glass."

    I'd go with adverbial rather than adjectival. Disclaimer: I'm a bit rusty in this area.
     
  7. tb9605

    tb9605 Established commenter

    Yes, as it appears to be modifying the verb "lay".

    Great Expectations is a GCSE set text...
     
  8. roamingteacher

    roamingteacher Established commenter Forum guide

  9. gruoch

    gruoch Established commenter

    And as a GCSE text, this level of analysis is not required. (I mark this paper.)
     
  10. foroff2233

    foroff2233 Occasional commenter

    Thanks for the whole sentence. I'd say that your original phrase is adjectival since it refers to'all' the items described.
     
  11. jg9588727

    jg9588727 New commenter

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