A book is on the desk.

Hiden

Senior Member
japanese
What kind of situation do you think (1) can be used in?

(1) A book is on the desk.
 
  • JamesM

    Senior Member
    It is simply a descriptive statement. It implies that the actual title is unknown or unimportant. It would not make sense to say this if someone asked "Where is my book?", for example.
     

    e2efour

    Senior Member
    UK English
    This kind of sentence can only be said in a context.

    It's the kind of unnatural sentence you might get in an English lesson or in a reading book for children learning to read.
     
    Last edited:

    Hiden

    Senior Member
    japanese
    Thank you for your insight, e2efour. Yes, I agree with you that it's the kind of unnatural sentence you might get in an English lesson or in a reading book for children learning to read. That's the reason I asked the context. I want to know what context it can be used in.
     

    Ex-editor

    New Member
    English - Australia
    What kind of situation do you think (1) can be used in?

    (1) A book is on the desk.
    The use of present tense (is) and the indefinite article (a desk) suggest that it could be used to describe a scene. For example:
    He quietly enters the room. There is a desk by the window. A book is on the desk. He picks it up....
     

    Hiden

    Senior Member
    japanese
    Thank you for your insight, Ex-editor-san. Yes, in this context, it makes sence. I hope it is not too much to ask but could you let me ask you one more question. How about this one:
    He quietly enters the room. There is a desk by the window. On the desk is a book. He picks it up....
    Does this verison sound more natural?:
     
    Last edited:

    natkretep

    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    I'm not ex-editor, but I agree that because the desk has been mentioned earlier, it would be more natural to put it at the beginning of the sentence. Old information is usually slotted at the beginning. I might even replace it with a pronoun: 'On it is a book'.
     
    Last edited:

    Hiden

    Senior Member
    japanese
    Thank you for your insight, natkretep-san and Ex-editor-san! You have been helpful.
     
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