Gerunds

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Tenacious Learner

Senior Member
Spanish
Hi teachers,
I know that "gerunds can be used as a subject of a sentence".

In the example below walking is the subject of the sentence.
Examples:
1. What is good for your health?
Walking is good for my health.

But in these two "the gerund" is part of the subject not just the subject. That said, then the rule "gerunds can be used as a subject of a sentence" is not completely right, isn't it? Maybe I'm being thick this morning.

2. What has become more difficult since I moved to a new city?
Making friends has become more difficult since I moved to a new city.
3. What is a dream of many young people today?
Becoming a millionaire is a dream of many young people today.

Thanks in advance.
 
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    But in these two "the gerund" is part of the subject not just the subject.
    Making friends has become
    Becoming a millionaire
    The bolded phrases are called gerund phrases - a phrase that, by use of a gerund, describes the doing of one action, etc.

    Compare
    [Man] evolved from the same ancestor as apes.
    [noun]

    [The man] sat down
    [noun phrase]

    [The man with the hat] sat down
    [.......noun phrase.....]

    The man who was wearing a hat sat down.
    [...............noun clause............]
     

    Uncle Jack

    Senior Member
    British English
    "Walking" is really a noun in its own right in sentence (1), not a gerund.

    PaulQ has done a far better job of explaining gerund phrases than I would have done, except that I would add that when you read "gerund" in a 'rule', it usually also included gerund phrases, just as "noun" usually includes noun phrases.
     

    Tenacious Learner

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    The bolded phrases are called gerund phrases - a phrase that, by use of a gerund, describes the doing of one action, etc.
    Crystal clear, Paul. :) Then the explanation should be "A gerund or a gerund phrase can be used as a subject of a sentence". The whole bunch of explanations that I've seen on the net didn't say that.

    TL
     
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    Tenacious Learner

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    "Walking" is really a noun in its own right in sentence (1), not a gerund.

    PaulQ has done a far better job of explaining gerund phrases than I would have done, except that I would add that when you read "gerund" in a 'rule', it usually also included gerund phrases, just as "noun" usually includes noun phrases.
    Every reply is more than welcome, Uncle Jack. Thanks for your interest as well. :)

    TL
     

    Piyush toplani

    Senior Member
    Hindi
    Well, everything which is necessary is said by paulq and uncle jack bit one more thing that I think would be helpful to you is that " gerund is a noun but a gerund can also be used as a nonfinite verb as in the subject of your sentence and when gerund is used as a nonfinite verb the phrase so formed is called gerund phrase as explaind in post # 2 and 3." That's all. Okay...:)
     
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    Tenacious Learner

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    Well, everything which is necessary is said by paulq and uncle jack bit one more thing that I think would be helpful to you is that " gerund is a noun but a gerund can also be used as a adjective as in the subject of your sentence and when gerund is used as a adjective the phrase so formed is called gerund phrase as explaind in post # 2 and 3." That's all. Okay...:)
    Thank you so much for your additional explanations. They are really helpful. ;)

    TL
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    Well, everything which is necessary is said by paulq and uncle jack bit one more thing that I think would be helpful to you is that " gerund is a noun but a gerund can also be used as a adjective as in the subject of your sentence and when gerund is used as a adjective the phrase so formed is called gerund phrase as explaind in post # 2 and 3." That's all. Okay...:)
    Perhaps I'm misunderstanding you, but I don't see a gerund being used as an adjective here. An example of gerund as adjective might be "swimming costume", where "swimming" modifies "costume".
     

    e2efour

    Senior Member
    UK English
    But in these two "the gerund" is part of the subject not just the subject.
    Perhaps you should revise what you understand by subject, since I find the above a strange statement.
    Are you saying that the person who is doing what is in the -ing form is the subject? The -ing form you used is an activity and, as pointed out above, a noun in its own right.

    In other words, in Parking the car is a problem you are implying that parking is not a noun.
    Someone must park the car, of course, but this has nothing to do with the -ing form being the subject. I don't know what you think the subject is in That such a thing could happen is a problem, but no person is involved.
     
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    Piyush toplani

    Senior Member
    Hindi
    Perhaps I'm misunderstanding you, but I don't see a gerund being used as an adjective here. An example of gerund as adjective might be "swimming costume", where "swimming" modifies "costume".
    Sorry I have mistakenly written "adjective." Actually, I wanted to write "nonfinite verb.":)
     
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