parallel sentences using "and"

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00B00

Senior Member
Cantonese
Hey I am wondering if the following sentences are correct or not,

"I was researching online and stumbled across your website."

or

"I was researching online and stumbling across your website."

I am not sure If the first sentence is correct or not as I am thinking that the word "stumble" needs to follow the structure of "researching online and", but the second sentence sounds a little odd to me. Can someone tell me which one is correct?
 
  • entangledbank

    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    It should be 'stumbled'. You weren't stumbling (doing something continuously), you suddenly stumbled. 'And' can join anything: past and future, real and unreal, question and command; there's no limit.

    In particular, it can join two verb phrases after the same subject:

    I [[was researching online] and [stumbled on your website]].

    Or it can join two verb phrases that are subordinate to the same auxiliary:

    I was [[researching online] and [looking through your website]].
     

    DonnyB

    Sixties Mod
    English UK Southern Standard English
    The second one is odd because that sentence describes an interrupted action: logically, it equates to "While I was researching online, I stumbled across your website."

    You could have said something like "I was researching online and looking for suitable websites." In that sentence, the actions are taking place at the same time, so you can use the past continuous tense for both, simply using "and" to connect the participles of the two verbs.
     
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