absolute constructs

English grammar questions, answered by Alan

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absolute constructs

Post by navi » Mon Oct 01, 2012 3:25 am

Are these sentences correct:

1-He kicked the box over, its contents scattering on the floor.
(He kicked the box over, and as a result, its contents scattered on the floor.)

2-Don kissed Penny in front of everybody, Penny blushing.
(Don kissed Penny in front of everybody, and as a result, Penny blushed.)


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Re: absolute constructs

Post by Alan » Mon Oct 01, 2012 6:27 am

Provided you amended it to "...scattering its contents", I would accept the first.

If, however, you wished to retain a true absolute construction, you might say e.g. 'its contents spilling all over...'.

As regards the second, obviously it is grammatically possible and meaningful (although not particularly natural).