I was might given the right Or I was might give the right ?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by honghong_m, May 5, 2014.

  1. honghong_m New Member

    chinese
    I was might given the right. Or I was might give the right ? Which sentence is correct grammatically?
     
  2. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    Penang
    American English
    Neither is correct, I'm afraid. What are you trying to say? What is the situation? Thank you.

    Welcome to the forum. :)
     
  3. honghong_m New Member

    chinese
    Appreciate for your responding, could you tell me why? I am not trying say some meaningful sentence, I just care about the grammar. Look forward your reply
     
  4. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    Penang
    American English
    Well, you should be trying to say something meaningful. :)

    It's the "might" that throws the sentence off initially, so let's leave that out.

    I was given the right. :tick:
    I was give the right. :cross:

    One of our members who is stronger in grammar than I am can explain this.
     
  5. honghong_m New Member

    chinese
    Thank you, Sir. May be I should clarify my question. What I wonder is ,in the passive tense, the "verb " following by "might" should be in the base form or be in the past tense?

    like, A was might given away B. or, A was might give away B. which one is correct grammatically?
     
  6. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    Penang
    American English
    I'm still struggling, but here's something that's grammatical, although it may not be what you mean:

    Name something that might be given away as the grand prize in our writing contest.
     
  7. honghong_m New Member

    chinese
    I suddenly figure out what my problem is. Do you mind tell me the exact meaning of this sentence? I mean, does it mean "name will replace grand prize", or the opposite?
     
  8. Copyright

    Copyright Senior Member

    Penang
    American English
    Name something that might be given away as the grand prize in our writing contest.

    This would be a request to a group of people, perhaps ... it means "think of something that we can give away to the winner of the grand prize in our writing context."

    Name something means tell us the name of something: a gold watch, a fountain pen, $500, etc.
     
  9. bennymix

    bennymix Senior Member

    Ontario, Canada. I grew up in US.
    English (American).
    It's hard to see what you're asking. Perhaps your sentences are trying to say,"A might have given away B," or "B might have been given away by A."
    (past tense, passive).

    Neither of you sentences [1 and 2, below] sentence is correct in grammar or structure, and the meanings are not clear to me. I'm guessing only.


     
    Last edited: May 6, 2014
  10. velisarius

    velisarius Senior Member

    Greece
    British English (Sussex)
    These sentences can't be understood, so we can't comment on the grammar. (For instance we can't tell whether "might" is a noun or a verb here.) Please tell us in different words what you mean; I can't imagine you are asking people to give answers based on guesswork.
     
  11. honghong_m New Member

    chinese
    Thanks all of you, even though now I am totally confused . my English is not good enough to describe my question. So now I post the original question .

    "A desire to throw over reality a light that never was might give away abruptly to the desire on the part of what we might consider a novelist-scientist to record exactly and concretely the structure and texture of a flower."

    This sentence comes from GRE test. what I know is, in inversion, the word "was" was brought forward before "might". What I wonder are ,why "was" not "be?" why "give" not "given?" and does the whole sentence mean that former desire-"to throw over reality a light" replace the later desire?
     
  12. cando Senior Member

    English - British
    This looks like a very complex and difficult sentence. I could perhaps make some sense of it if I slightly changed it and added a virtual comma as follows:

    "A desire to throw over reality a light that never was, might give way abruptly to the desire on the part of what we might consider a novelist-scientist to record exactly and concretely the structure and texture of a flower."

    Without context it would be very hard to paraphrase the sense adequately, but the "was" here is nothing to do with the word "might". It belongs to the opening phrase which could be rewritten as : 'a desire to shed a light-that-never-was on reality ' (perhaps this means an illusory frame of mind or imaginary and poetic frame of reference). The rest of the sentence says that this mindset might then 'give way' (be replaced by) 'the desire to record the structure and texture of a flower' in an 'exact and concrete' way by someone whom we might consider to be a scientifically minded novelist.

    I think the lack of clarity in the original writing has confused you.
     
  13. bennymix

    bennymix Senior Member

    Ontario, Canada. I grew up in US.
    English (American).
    It's a complicated sentence, but in simple terms it says that one sort of desire might be replaced by (give way to) another.* The first desire is to show reality with amazing clarity, perhaps in spirititual, metaphysical or otherwordly terms; to show underlying essence. The second desire is for description in detail of what we actually and normally in everyday life can see is there, the example being the exact texture of a flower.

    Perhaps this might illustrate the first; Van Gogh still life:http://uploads3.wikipaintings.org/i...ill-life-with-basket-and-six-oranges-1888.jpg

    This might illustrate the second: Hyperrealist painting (still life) by Campos.
    http://www.zillamag.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/Hyperrealistic-Paintings-by-Pedro-Campos-22.jpg

    *I note that you said something like this, honghong. You were on the right track.
     
  14. honghong_m New Member

    chinese
    Thanks all of you ,you are so nice.I think I should take time to work on my English reading.
     
  15. Cagey post mod

    California
    English - US
    Yes, honghong_m. :)
    People are happy to be helpful when they can be.

    You can see in this thread how important it is to give a complete sentence in your first post. People who wanted to help couldn't help you until you did gave the sentence in post #11. Before they saw the sentence, people couldn't understand your question.
     
    Last edited: May 7, 2014

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