Absolute construction

High on grammar

Senior Member
Farsi
Hello everyone:

The following sentence is an example of absolute construction, which I found on Googlebooks:

I being interested to meet my fellow brothers in Christ, went over to introduce myself. Source: “The Jesus Equation”

I was wondering about the type of verbs that cannot be used in this kind of structures:

For instance, why can’t I write the same sentence, using "Liking" instead of " being interested?

I liking to meet my fellow brothers in Christ, went over to introduce myself


Thanks
 
  • velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    That isn't an absolute construction, and it's an odd way of expressing the thought.

    Your suggestion with "liking" is not correct, but it could work with "wanting". Wanting to meet my fellow brothers in Christ, I went over to introduce myself. It is a participle phrase, modifying "I".

    Edit: The book is not written by a competent writer, in my opinion.
    https://books.google.gr/books?id=YatT6GmxZgMC&pg=PA76&lpg=PA76&dq=I+being+interested+to+meet+my+fellow+brothers+in+Christ,+went+over+to+introduce+myself.&source=bl&ots=Ij2_6XKULw&sig=yDxXFeioTkG2jeDSxpVmL5p9oQE&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CCAQ6AEwAGoVChMIpd6qy_fNxwIViW8UCh3HGAB9#v=onepage&q=I being interested to meet my fellow brothers in Christ, went over to introduce myself.&f=false
     
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    High on grammar

    Senior Member
    Farsi
    That isn't an absolute construction, and it's an odd way of expressing the thought.

    Your suggestion with "liking" is not correct, but it could work with "wanting". Wanting to meet my fellow brothers in Christ, I went over to introduce myself. It is a participle phrase, modifying "I".

    Edit: The book is not written by a competent writer, in my opinion.
    https://books.google.gr/books?id=YatT6GmxZgMC&pg=PA76&lpg=PA76&dq=I+being+interested+to+meet+my+fellow+brothers+in+Christ,+went+over+to+introduce+myself.&source=bl&ots=Ij2_6XKULw&sig=yDxXFeioTkG2jeDSxpVmL5p9oQE&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CCAQ6AEwAGoVChMIpd6qy_fNxwIViW8UCh3HGAB9#v=onepage&q=I being interested to meet my fellow brothers in Christ, went over to introduce myself.&f=false

    But what is the explanation? why doesn't a verb like "like" work in such constructions?
     

    PaulQ

    Banned
    UK
    English - England
    As I understand it, an absolute construction is separate from the main sentence and modifies it as a whole. The tests are,
    "Can you remove it and leave a complete sentence?"
    "If the verb is changed from an infinite to a finite, a conjunction would be required to join what becomes a new sentence."
    "The absolute construction does not refer specifically to anything within the main sentence."
    And an interesting one from "The Grammar Exchange" http://thegrammarexchange.infopop.cc/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/340600179/m/6511075454?r=6151056454

    "2)Absolutes often have a non-finite form of a verb"”for example, a present or past participle. When there is a present or past participle, you can often (not always) add a "with," to turn the phrase into a prepositional phrase that acts as an adverbial. Google examples ("with" added, in brackets)"

    For example , "”[With] Our hopes dashed, we continued south.

    Here are some absolute constructions from "Using English.com" - http://www.usingenglish.com/forum/threads/153258-What-is-an-absolute-construction

    The dance being over, we left. -> the dance was over and we left.

    The teacher being absent, we had no school yesterday. -> Because the teacher was absent, we had no school yesterday.

    Weather permitting, we shall go tomorrow. -> We shall go tomorrow, if the weather permits1.

    What makes you think that there are verbs that cannot be used?

    1 The last example is interesting as it has another absolute construction. The second is “If the weather permits.” It should be “If the weather permits it/our going.” because to permit is a transitive verb and must have an object but, here, it is understood.
     
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