comma plus and

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comma plus and

Post by azz » Tue Nov 19, 2019 11:35 am

a. Tim was playing the bass and Jack was playing the drums driving me crazy.
b. Tim was playing the bass, and Jack was playing the drums driving me crazy.



In which case are they both driving me crazy and in which case only Jack's drumming is driving me crazy? Does the comma change anything?

c. Tom was playing the guitar and Jack was playing the drums very badly.
d. Tom was playing the guitar, and Jack was playing the drums very badly.


In which case are they both playing badly and in which case only Jack is playing badly?


Many thanks.
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Re: comma plus and

Post by Phil White » Sat Nov 23, 2019 4:08 pm

The presence or absence of the comma has no impact on the fundamentally unnatural structure of the sentence. We would find different ways of expressing the intended meaning clearly.

"Tim was playing the bass and Jack was making a dreadful noise on the drums."
"Tim was playing the bass and Jack was playing the drums - and they were driving me crazy."
"Tim was playing the bass and Jack was driving me crazy playing the drums."
"The pair of them were driving me crazy, Tim playing the guitar and Jack the drums."

There are dozens of different ways of doing it.
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Signature: Phil White
Non sum felix lepus

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