A singing woman is my friend Lisa.

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  • Exp

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    If it were "The singing woman...." or "That singing woman...," then it would sound better to me, though I'm not so sure.
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    No, it doesn't work to mean she's a singer, or habitually sings, nor does it mean she is singing now (unlike 'a crying baby').

    cross-posted

    'The woman who is singing' can identify the one we can hear now, or the one who is scheduled in a concert. But this can't be reduced to 'the singing woman'.
     

    Exp

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    So "A singing woman is my friend Lisa." is a weird sentence anyway?
    • The woman singing is Lisa.
    • The woman who is singing is Lisa.
     

    entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    Those are both correct. And they can mean she's singing now, or singing (scheduled to sing) in an upcoming concert.

    It can be used for a habitual characteristic: 'the singing postman' could be the nickname for a postman who's well known for singing as he walks; and there is a breed of wild dog called the New Guinea singing dog, because of its unusual voice.

    It could be used for the temporary and current state of a kettle ('singing' is the sound it makes through the spout when it boils): The singing kettle reminded me to make a cup of tea.
     

    Exp

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    'singing woman' is a bit obscure, as entangled just said. You might consider, OP#: "A slender woman is my friend, Lisa." This is passable in grammar and clarity, in my opinion, though the inverted order may sound odd in many contexts.
    "A slender woman is my friend, Lisa." is an OK sentence?
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    My friend Lisa is a slender woman. :tick: A slender woman is my friend Lisa. :mad: You'd need a really good reason and context for doing this.
    The barn is red. :tick: Red is the barn. :mad: You'd need a really good reason and context for doing this.
     

    Enquiring Mind

    Senior Member
    English - the Queen's
    This kind of inversion can be used in poetry and prose in literary style, but not in normal parlance.
    A wonderful bird is the pelican.
    His beak can hold more than his belly can.
    He can hold in his beak
    Enough food for a week
    But I'm darned if I know how the hellican!

    A wonderful athlete is Lisa,
    She can run up the Tower of Pisa
    Twenty times in one hour
    And abseil down the tower -
    That's nineteen times more than Teresa.
     
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