Finising combing her hair,she headed to the bathroom.

Nesa_nesa234

Senior Member
Spanish
Finishing combing her hair,she headed to the bathroom.
Is this sentence grammatically correct?
 
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  • Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    What sense do you want your sentence to have?
    Your first sentence might mean "After she finished combing her hair, she headed to the bathroom."
    Your new sentence suggests that she was walking to the bathroom and combing her hair at the same time.
     

    pops91710

    Senior Member
    English, AE
    To say after finishing is not needed. I suggest just saying, After combing her hair, she headed to the bathroom. You were on the right track in #3, but left out the word after. Naturally, I am assuming that is the order of events you want to state.
     

    I realize it sounds terrible, the two 'ing' words. Are we agreed that just one would be OK.?

    a) Combing her hair, she headed for the bathroom. {Combing while heading, in other words.

    b) Finishing (with) her hair, she headed for the bathroom. {Meaning she was doing something, e.g giving herself a perm., then finished and headed.}

    What rule is involved that says putting the two together is wrong? E.g. Ben: "After 4 hrs practice, finishing singing was all the choir members wanted to do." {I don't think there is a grammar problem, here.}

    The second word, 'singing' would be a noun, so the sentence is not unlike "After 4 hrs practice, finishing the session was all the ...."

    ADDED: Note that the gerund vs infinitive choice doesn't help 'fix' Ben, if it needs fixing:

    Ben*: "After 4 hrs practice, finishing to sing was all the choir members wanted to do." :confused:
     
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    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    The two 'ing' words do sound awkward together, but I wouldn't call the sentence wrong.
    Omitting either of them would fail to convey the full meaning, which is that she had started combing her hair somewhere, presumably in her bedroom, but had not yet finished before she started walking to the bathroom. She was still finishing off the combing operation as she walked.
     
    The two 'ing' words do sound awkward together, but I wouldn't call the sentence wrong.
    Omitting either of them would fail to convey the full meaning, which is that she had started combing her hair somewhere, presumably in her bedroom, but had not yet finished before she started walking to the bathroom. She was still finishing off the combing operation as she walked.
    Interesting analysis, as usual, Ed. Consider this expansion. She started combing in the bedroom; while she was finishing up the combing, she walked towards the bathroom.

    We are tangled in the question, what was meant to be said. This influences our choice as we consider what's grammatical.
     
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    Edinburgher

    Senior Member
    German/English bilingual
    while she was finishing up the combing
    Even though it still contains both ing-words, this looks and sounds much more attractive than the original.

    I'm not sure why that is. Is there something inherently clumsy in participial clauses? I guess they must be used with care (as they must in any case, given that careless use often results in "dangling participles").

    As it is, though, I see nothing actually grammatically incorrect in the original, it is "only" unatttractive and hence unidiomatic.
     
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