..., her mind full of...?

andychen

Senior Member
Chinese, Taiwan
Hi, everyone, what do you think of the following?

I saw someone write the following sentence.
She went back to work again, her mind full of confidence this time.
And he explained that "her mind full of confidence this time" is a verbless clause.
Q1: Does this sentence sound fine or awkward?
Q2: Can "her mind full of confidence this time" be viewed as a verbless clause?

Personally, I feel it would be more appropriate to rephrase it as the following.
She went back to work again, with her mind full of confidence this time.
Am I right?

Thanks in advance for your comments.
 
  • kertek

    Senior Member
    UK English
    Gramatically I have no problem with the original sentence. "Her mind full of confidence this time" is an adverbial clause, and as such does not need a verb.

    However, the expression "her mind full of confidence" sounds odd to me in English.

    I would say: "She went back to work again, full of/brimming with confidence this time."
     

    nycphotography

    Senior Member
    American English
    I would say "she went back to work, full of confidence.

    I think, for some reason I can't explain, that PEOPLE are full of confidence more so than minds.

    A mind can be full of doubts. As can a person.

    And I can't really justify this, it's just my impression, so others will have to agree or disagree.
     

    french4beth

    Senior Member
    US-English
    andychen said:
    She went back to work again, her mind full of confidence this time.
    And he explained that "her mind full of confidence this time" is a verbless clause.
    Q1: Does this sentence sound fine or awkward? sounds ok
    Q2: Can "her mind full of confidence this time" be viewed as a verbless clause? yes, there is no verb - a complete sentence would be: "Her mind was full of confidence this time."

    Personally, I feel it would be more appropriate to rephrase it as the following.
    She went back to work again, with her mind full of confidence this time.
    Am I right? sounds ok
    You could rephrase it as: "She returned to her work; this time, she was full of confidence."
    Usually, a person can be described as being full of confidence; a mind can't really be described as 'confident' since it's a thing/object.
     

    mgarizona

    Senior Member
    US - American English
    I believe the problem here is really redundancy. Confidence is a state of mind, so to place it in her mind seems redundant or at least over-obvious.
    If you described a woman as having 'her eyes full of confidence,' 'her smile full of confidence,' 'her laugh full of confidence,' it wouldn't sound awkward at all.
     

    . 1

    Banned
    Australian Australia
    nycphotography said:
    I would say "she went back to work, full of confidence.

    I think, for some reason I can't explain, that PEOPLE are full of confidence more so than minds.

    A mind can be full of doubts. As can a person.

    And I can't really justify this, it's just my impression, so others will have to agree or disagree.
    I agree.
    It seems to me that this difficulty arises quite often for learners of English.
    The 'mind full of confidence' phrase sounds clunky to me because of the obvious repetition. She can not carry confidence in her pocket and it is obviously not in her foot so the English speaker does not state the obvious especially in a reference to higher thought.

    It must be a literal translation thing and sounds like a translation of an idiomatic expression.
    .,,
     
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