Re : What is the function of the "as"?

English grammar questions, answered by Alan

Moderator: Alan

Gold Member
Posts: 472
Joined: Sun Feb 22, 2004 5:02 am

Re : What is the function of the "as"?

Post by pdh0224 » Wed Sep 15, 2004 6:02 am

Dear Alan,

Reasons already explained: the phrases that it introduces have an implicit agency that the true prepositional phrase can never have. Simply to label it a 'preposition' (which, admittedly, some reference works do) is, to my mind, sacrificing accuracy for the sake of simplicity!

There are so many dictionaries considering "AS" as one of functions of "AS".


preposition 1 used to refer to the function or character of someone or something: it came as a shock. 2 during the time of being.


preposition time when: used to indicate a stage in somebody’s life
As a teenager I was quite shy.
- ... 1861587033


Definition as (FOR THIS PURPOSE) [Show phonetics]
used to describe the purpose or quality of someone or something:
She works as a waitress.
It could be used as evidence against him.
The news came as quite a shock to us.
I meant it as a joke. ... &dict=CALD


Definition 1. in the function or position of.
Example He is serving as temporary director ... 2CPHR#POS7


in the role, function, or status of: to act as leader.



as (BEING)
[Show phonetics]
appearing to be, or being
He went to the Halloween party dressed as a banana.
As a child, Miriam had lived in India.
The news came as no surprise ... 2+0&dict=A

and so on....

What do you think?

User avatar
EC Teacher
EC Teacher
Posts: 12886
Joined: Mon Dec 29, 2003 7:56 pm
Status: English Teacher
Location: Japan

Post by Alan » Thu Sep 16, 2004 2:42 am

You have to remember that these are dictionaries, not specialist grammar reference books: they are likely to be very reliable for the most part, but, in respect of certain more subtle areas, especially those where even among grammarians some disagreement may exist, a certain degree of simplification is not entirely unexpected.

I think that we've probably explored this point about as far as is likely to be useful, so I'm closing this thread.

Let's move on to another topic!