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There are two sentences. They need to be combined. The second one should be the noun clause. However, I do not know how should I place the phrase "this morning" in the sentence. What is the rule for this?

Sentences:

The doctor ordered this morning.
His patient is released before noon

Actually, my main concern is whether I can place this morning between ordered and this morning as in 1. sentence. I thought it would seem like "that" modifies the morning in that case.

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    What did the doctor order?
    – TimR
    Commented Jan 28, 2017 at 15:07
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    You have three choices: This morning the doctor ordered that ...; The doctor ordered this morning that...; The doctor this morning ordered that .... All of them are possible, depending on context.
    – BillJ
    Commented Jan 28, 2017 at 15:16

1 Answer 1

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There is no set rule, but there are stylistic differences.

Your sentence may be formulated as either

The doctor ordered this morning that his patient be released before noon.
This morning, the doctor ordered his patient be released before noon.
The doctor this morning ordered his patient be released before noon.
The doctor ordered his patient be released this morning before noon.
The doctor ordered his patient be released before noon this morning.

The doctor ordered his patient to be released before noon this morning.

all have the same meaning.

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  • I basically agree with this. The trick is of course using be released.
    – Lambie
    Commented Jan 28, 2017 at 16:13
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    The third one is very poor construction.
    – Catija
    Commented Jan 28, 2017 at 17:03
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    You omitted "The doctor this morning ordered that ..."
    – BillJ
    Commented Jan 28, 2017 at 17:32
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    Those actually don't all have the same meaning. In the first 3, this morning refers to when the doctor gave the order. In the last 2, this morning attaches to before noon, describing when the patient is to be released, saying nothing about when the doctor gave the order. Or at least they could mean that.
    – Rob K
    Commented Mar 7, 2017 at 19:33
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    You omitted versions including the explicit infinitive marker in "subjunctive" constructions: ...ordered the patient to be released..., which I suspect would probably be the more common phrasing today (particularly in conversational contexts). Commented May 10, 2017 at 15:52

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