Subject-verb agreement is an essential component of proper grammar. It refers to the correct matching of a sentence`s subject to its corresponding verb. However, when a prepositional phrase interrupts a sentence, it can lead to confusion, making it challenging to determine the correct agreement of the subject and verb. In this article, we will explore the subject-verb agreement when interrupted by a prepositional phrase.
Firstly, what is a prepositional phrase? A prepositional phrase is a group of words that starts with a preposition and ends with a noun or pronoun. This phrase usually acts as an adjective or adverb in a sentence. Here is an example:
– The book is on the table.
In this sentence, the prepositional phrase is „on the table,” while the subject is „the book,” and the verb is „is.”
When a prepositional phrase interrupts a sentence, it should not affect the subject-verb agreement. The subject and verb must still match in number. For instance:
– The boy with the red hat is running to the store.
In this sentence, the subject is „the boy,” and the verb is „is running.” Even though the prepositional phrase „with the red hat” interrupts the sentence, it does not affect the subject-verb agreement. The verb „is running” matches the singular subject „the boy.”
However, when a prepositional phrase contains a noun or pronoun that can act as the sentence`s subject, it can lead to incorrect subject-verb agreement. Here is an example:
– The students, along with the teacher, are leaving for the field trip.
In this sentence, the subject is „the students,” and the verb is „are leaving.” However, the prepositional phrase „along with the teacher” can lead one to believe that „the teacher” is also part of the subject. Therefore, one may be tempted to use „is” instead of „are” since „the teacher” is a singular noun. Nevertheless, the correct subject-verb agreement is „are leaving” since the primary subject is „the students.”
In conclusion, it is essential to maintain proper subject-verb agreement when a prepositional phrase interrupts a sentence. The subject and verb must match in number regardless of the prepositional phrase. As a copy editor with experience in SEO, it is crucial to ensure that your content is free from grammatical errors and adheres to the rules of good grammar. By following the guidelines discussed in this article, you can write clear and concise content that is easy to read and understand.