[Active participle phrases] not used for a single completed action?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by High on grammar, Jul 26, 2015.

  1. High on grammar Senior Member

    Hello everyone:

    According to Longman Advanced Learner’s English:

    In defining phrases, we only use an active participle phrase (-ing form) when we are describing a continuing action or situation. We can’t use an -ing form for a single completed action:

    WRONG: The thief taking her bag has been arrested.

    CORRECT: The thief who took her bag has been arrested. (Single completed action)

    I found the following on Googlebooks:

    I believe in justice – ever since the guy stealing my tyres was run over by the man stealing my car.

    Source: The Mammoth Book of One-Liners


    According the Longman grammar book, it should be: I believe in justice – ever since the guy who stole my tyres was run over by the man who stole my car.

    Do you guys agree with the grammar book?

    Last edited: Jul 26, 2015
  2. DonnyB

    DonnyB Sixties Mod

    Coventry, UK
    English UK Southern Standard English
    That works, because it's an interrupted action and not a completed one.

    The way I interpret it, the first guy was in the middle of taking off the tyres when the second one jumped into the car and drove off, running him over. :)

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