I think a participle clause and main clause having different subjects is exception to the rule of participles. I found the following sentences in a grammar book and in some internet resources which I suppose to have different subjects:

  1. The weather being nice, we decided to go for a picnic.
  2. It being a cloudy night, I couldn't see the moon.
  3. Saroj being late, I couldn't catch the bus.

All of them contain "being". It would seem that we can use different subjects in participle clause and in main clause with the help of being. Are they correct sentences to use? Are there any other conditions when we can use different subjects in a participle clause and in main clause, or in subbordinate clause and main clause? I've read this source too: https://english.lingolia.com/en/grammar/sentences/participle-clauses

  • He having no money on his person, we decided not to rob him. They wearing such large hats, we couldn't see the stage. The smell of the burst sewer lines filling the school, they opted to evacuate.
    – TimR
    Commented Oct 4, 2016 at 21:12
  • There is nothing specific to the verb form "being" that makes these present participle clauses different than clauses that use the participles of other verbs. The weather feeling nice... or It looking like a cloudy night or Sanjo running late are all similarly present participle clauses. Commented Oct 4, 2016 at 21:34
  • Notice that all the phrases you mentioned include a subject to avoid a dangling structure. If you remove the subject of the phrase then you'll have a dangling phrase.
    – Yuri
    Commented Oct 4, 2016 at 21:39
  • 1
    Yes... with a few corrections: "Being employed in teaching at a school, I hardly have time for painting." (Note: _painting is singular.) Commented Oct 5, 2016 at 4:33
  • 1
    See also: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Absolute_construction Commented Oct 5, 2016 at 10:27

2 Answers 2


Based on Longman English Grammar, page 32, you can use participle constructions after there and it. However, it occurs in formal style.

It being a bank holiday all the shops were shut. (i.e. As it was ...)

There being no further business I declared the meeting closed. (i.e. As there is ...)

That remains true with subjects other than it and there, too. In other words it's going to be very formal to use participle clauses with different subjects as in

(With) Mrs Jones going to New York, Mr Smith took up her position.

Source: English Grammar Online

As P. E. Dant well pointed out, there is nothing specific to the verb form "being". you can use other verb forms in your participle which do not share the same subject as the one of your independent clause although it's not common use. It's simply very formal.

(By the way, I didn't know that. Thanks for asking this question. It made me learn something new)


These are called Absolute phrases, which are noun phrases (usually a noun plus a participle phrase ) working as adverbs modifyingthe the verbs of tha main clauses like any other adverbs.

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