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For many people in the United States, undergoing a medical procedure can be a stressful, confusing, and sometimes overwhelming ordeal.

Is the following the correct way to describe the parts of this sentence:

The dependent clause:

For many people in the United States

The independent clause:

undergoing a medical procedure can be a stressful, confusing, and sometimes overwhelming ordeal.

Verb in independent clause:

Can be

Subject:

Undergoing a medical procedure

Object:

stressful, confusing, and sometimes overwhelming ordeal.

Im not sure what is the verb, subject, and object in the independent clause. To be honest I think the object is adjective but if so, is the sentence structure subject, verb, adjective?

Thanks!

  • For many people in the United States is not a dependent clause. Right? I think it is the object in the sentence. And, stressful, confusing, and sometimes overwhelming ordeal is a subject complement. – Marah Jan 18 '17 at 14:33
  • I see, that makes sense cause it doesn't have a verb in it – dngr193 Jan 18 '17 at 23:58
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    It is a phrase :) – Marah Jan 19 '17 at 0:33
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Be does not take an object but a predicate complement (PC), which may be either nominal or adjectival.

He is a man. The PC is the noun phrase a man.
He is good. The PC is the adjective good.

In your sentence the PC is a noun phrase a stressful, confusing and sometimes overwhelming ordeal; its head is the noun ordeal, which is determined by a and modified by the conjunct phrase composed of and conjoining the adjectives stressful and confusing and the adjective phrase sometimes overwhelming.

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(That's not quite how I'd represent the conjunct phrase, but it's what the software I could find would allow, and it's close enough.)

  • I see, so is the predicate complement the same as object? – dngr193 Jan 18 '17 at 5:52
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    @dngr193 No -- an Object is acted on by the Subject, a Predicate Complement describes or identifies the Subject. – StoneyB Jan 18 '17 at 8:25
  • +1 'Predicate complement' <-- is that the same as a predicative complement? – Araucaria Jan 18 '17 at 14:00
  • @Araucaria Ayup. I can never decide which term I like less. – StoneyB Jan 18 '17 at 14:04
  • @StoneyB Yep, they're both pants, in the BE sense of the term ... – Araucaria Jan 18 '17 at 14:05

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