A complex clause using article

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jmka

New Member
English
Hi all,

First time poster; glad to have found helpful posts here.


Is there a neater way to write the following description? Also, is there any "article" ('a' or 'the') required or not before Mid-atlantic?


Sentence: "John lived in Chesapeake, (a/the) Mid-atlantic region bordering New England in USA, a decade ago"


Thanks in advance.
 
Last edited:
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    Welcome to the forum. :)

    Actually, I'm glad you didn't include the phrase, because we don't do rewriting. (Rule) You can get a lot out of us when you know the rules. Why don't you have a look before you jump in? (Complete rules) The Quick Guide in the first post in that link should be enough to get you on the right track. Enjoy your time here.
     

    jmka

    New Member
    English
    Sorry I wasn't sure if I could include the full sentence (too long) in the subject line.

    I can post in a new thread with sentence in the subject should that be preferable.

    Thanks,
    -jmka
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    As I said, we don't rewrite for you. But we can answer the article question -- I would use "the" ... it's a specific region.

    In the future, you should know what we don't answer multiple-choice questions without your own answer and reason first. We're more focused than many language forums, so I would again like to push you in the direction of the rules. It will make your time on the forum much more enjoyable and useful.
     

    jmka

    New Member
    English
    I have rewritten the original sentence to the following form to mitigate geographical concern with its meaning.

    Sentence: "John lived in Chesapeake, Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in USA, a decade ago"

    Following are the options all of which can be grammatically correct but they may have different meanings.

    Option1: ...Chesapeake, a Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in USA,... (Meaning: The sentence is defining where Chesapeake is. Chesapeake is one of the many regions in mid-atlantic area. Chesapeake borders Delaware)

    Option2: ...Chesapeake, the Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in USA,... (Meaning: The sentence doesn't define Chesapeake, but simply reinforces where Chesapeake is. Chesapeake is in mid-atlantic region. Chesapeake borders Delaware)

    Option3: ...Chesapeake, Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in USA,... (Meaning: Similar to option1, But in this phrasing the complete clause with two commas "Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in USA" defines Chesapeake, unlike the case with option1)


    thanks
    -jmka
     

    Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    I'll repeat that I like "the" -- in fact, I'll go so far as to say it must be "the." You must have an article -- you can't leave it bare.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    There is still a problem with the sentence. There is a town called Chesapeake and there is also Chesapeake Bay, but I've never heard of the bay being called a region. If he lives in Chesapeake, I would think he was in the town, which is not a region. If he lived on The Chesapeake, I would think he lived somewhere along the waters of the Chesapeake Bay. The bay is huge and borders six states.

    It's difficult to help you with the sentence when it doesn't make sense to me.

    ("The" makes the most sense, setting aside the confusion of the location. You also need "the" before "USA". "In USA" doesn't make sense.)
     

    Fabulist

    Banned
    American English
    Chesapeake, Virginia, is a large city, not merely a "town," with a population of about 225,000. It borders North Carolina, but not Delaware.

    None of the rewritten sentences have enough articles.

    Chesapeake Bay is sometimes called "the Chesapeake" (with an article), but it's not a "region," it's a body of water. Geographers call it an "estuary." Anyone who lived in the Chesapeake would have to be a fish or other aquatic creature. If one live on the Chesapeake, one could live on a boat or live someone along the very long shore of the bay. The bay doesn't border on the state of Delaware, either.

    Now, the Chesapeake region is a possible set of words that would describe the land all around the bay. I don't think it has an agreed definition. In discussions of American colonial history, Virginia and Maryland are sometimes referred to as the "Chesapeake colonies." I can imagine an article in a journal discussing some common institution in those two colonies titled, say, "Governors' Councils in the Chesapeake Region, 1700–1775." One might include the colony or state of Delaware in the Chesapeake region, but Delaware in the colonial period was an offshoot of Pennsylvania, and it borders on a bay of its own, Delaware Bay. A region consisting of the colonies or states of Maryland and Virginia would border on the colony or state of Delaware, since Maryland shares most of Delware's land border.

    New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey are commonly called the "Mid-Atlantic" states, and are called by historians the "Mid-Atlantic" colonies.

    And that might be more than I can get away with.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Reading this again, I think you might need some more clarification:

    Option1: ...Chesapeake, a Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in the USA,... (Meaning: The sentence is defining where Chesapeake is. Chesapeake is one of the many regions in mid-atlantic area. Chesapeake borders Delaware)
    Yes, this is the meaning.

    Option2: ...Chesapeake, the Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in the USA,... (Meaning: The sentence doesn't define Chesapeake, but simply reinforces where Chesapeake is. Chesapeake is in mid-atlantic region. Chesapeake borders Delaware)
    No, this does definie Chesapeake as the mid-Atlantic region that borders Delaware.


    Option3: ...Chesapeake, Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in the USA,... (Meaning: Similar to option1, But in this phrasing the complete clause with two commas "Mid-atlantic region bordering Delaware in USA" defines Chesapeake, unlike the case with option1)
    This doesn't work at all.
     
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