a guard sat at the end of the wall

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VicNicSor

Banned
Russian
Later, dressed in a plain white blouse and skirt and picking up her gloves from the dresser, she peers out the door of the bedchambers. She sees a guard sat at the end of the wall stir in his semi-sleep.
'Roman Holiday', script.

A question similar to that I asked yesterday.

1. "Sat" means that someone, perhaps superior, "sat" him at the end of the wall. Is this right?

2. Would "sitting" work here as well? If we say "She sees a guard sitting at the end of the wall stir in his semi-sleep", we'll get the complex object with two verbs in different forms - the progressive and a bare-infinitive. So, I'm not sure if it'd be correct.
Thanks.
 
Last edited:
  • pob14

    Senior Member
    American English
    To me, "sitting" works much better. I assume this is the script to Roman Holiday mentioned in your previous post; if you found it at Drew's Script-O-Rama, I note that it is not a script at all, but a transcription:
    Transcribed by Graham (hepburn@unforgettable.com)
    I think it was just a poor word choice by "Graham."
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    To me, "sitting" works much better. I assume this is the script to Roman Holiday mentioned in your previous post; if you found it at Drew's Script-O-Rama, I note that it is not a script at all, but a transcription:


    I think it was just a poor word choice by "Graham."
    But wouldn't it be better to use a particle in the second part of the sentence as well?:
    She sees a guard sitting at the end of the wall stirring in his semi-sleep
    or
    She sees a guard sit at the end of the wall stir in his semi-sleep
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    There's a complex predicate in 'she sees a guard stir in his sleep' - that's a standard way of complementing 'see', an object/subject and a plain verb. In addition, the object/subject has a relative clause attached: what she sees is 'a guard seated/sat/sitting at the end of the wall', where all three forms work. That verb form is not parallel to 'stir'. 'Sat' is to some extent regional - not everyone can say it here.
     

    VicNicSor

    Banned
    Russian
    There's a complex predicate in 'she sees a guard stir in his sleep' - that's a standard way of complementing 'see', an object/subject and a plain verb. In addition, the object/subject has a relative clause attached: what she sees is 'a guard seated/sat/sitting at the end of the wall', where all three forms work. That verb form is not parallel to 'stir'. 'Sat' is to some extent regional - not everyone can say it here.
    "She sees a guard stir in his sleep" -- in the same way we can say "she sees a guard stirring in his sleep". Then, adding the relative clause "sitting at the end of the wall", we have:
    She sees a guard sitting at the end of the wall stirring in his semi-sleep - is this possible?
     
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