using Neither to connect sentences?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by i14d14, Dec 7, 2018 at 10:05 AM.

  1. i14d14 Senior Member

    Chinese
    most of the dictionaries state that neither cannot connect sentences, as in Oxford Dictionary:
    neither | Definition of neither in English by Oxford Dictionaries
    ‘he didn't remember, and neither did I’

    we can see that the writer used another conjunction, namely and to chain the 2 sentences. Therefore the writer thinks the word neither cannot have done the job.

    However, in Cambridge Dictionary English Grammar Today it states that
    He hadn’t done any homework, neither had he brought any of his books to class.
    source: Neither, neither … nor and not … either - 當代英語語法 - 劍橋線上詞典
    In this case, it is apparent that the writer believe the word neither could be used to connect 2 sentences.

    So, in standard English, could the word neither serve this purpose or not?
     
  2. boozer Senior Member

    Bulgaria
    Bulgarian
    I like the first example better.

    In the second one there should be a semi-colon at least to mark them as two separate clauses within a single sentence.
     
  3. dojibear

    dojibear Senior Member

    Fresno CA
    English - Northeast US
    I agree with boozer. In AE, in the second example, I would change one of these things:

    [1] I would use nor instead of neither, or
    [2] I would use a semi-colon instead of a comma.
     
  4. peptidoglycan Senior Member

    Turkey
    Turkish
    I think the following sentences are better.

    He hadn’t done any homework. Neither had he brought any of his books to class.
    He hadn’t done any homework; neither had he brought any of his books to class.
    He hadn’t done any homework, and neither had he brought any of his books to class.
    He hadn’t done any homework, nor had he brought any of his books to class. (Nor is a coordinating conjunction)
     
  5. Keith Bradford

    Keith Bradford Senior Member

    Brittany, NW France
    English (Midlands UK)
    The "neither had he..." construction sounds very old-fashioned to my ear. It's common in the King James Bible. "They toil not, neither do they spin..." Matthew 6:28.
     
  6. dojibear

    dojibear Senior Member

    Fresno CA
    English - Northeast US
    Using "neither" as a conjunction sounds very old-fashioned to me too. Even "nor" is rarely used in modern AE.
     
  7. JulianStuart

    JulianStuart Senior Member

    Sonoma County CA
    English (UK then US)
    :thumbsup:
    Or BE. From over 200 years ago "Water, water, everywhere, nor any drop to drink." (Ancient Mariner, Coleridge)
     

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