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"Essos is an immense landmass located to the east of Westeros, extending into the far east of the known world." (Here, "extending" describes the Essos or does it describes the landmass? )

Having seen this sentence above, I question came to my mind.

Can I use participles to modify the subject of the main clause when there is no connection between main clause and participle clause. For example:

1- "He is a bookworm, living in Canada. (He is a bookworm + He lives in Canada, there is no connection between being bookworm and living in Canada)

2- He, living in Canada, is a book worm. (I suppose, this placement would be more correct)

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As easy technique for checking this: Take the original sentence: "Essos is an immense landmass located to the east of Westeros, extending into the far east of the known world."

And make the ing into a subject and verb phrase:

"Essos is an immense landmass located to the east of Westeros and it extends into the far east of the known world."

It describes both, basically, since Essos is a landmass. Technically, it describes landmass.

Check this out:

"Essos, located to the East of Westeros, is an immense landmass extending [or it extends] into the far east of the known world." There it is most easily observed. You can see that it comes right after the antecedent.

These clauses using ing verb forms are a style device used to cut down on the use of another verb, which would make the sentence a compound sentence.

Likewise, with: He is a bookworm, living in Canada.

can be rewritten as: He is a bookworm and he lives in Canada.

But: He, living in Canada, is a bookworm. is not very grammatical.

You could, if you wanted to write something like this:

Living in Canada [as he does], he does not like snow too much.

  • Real thanks. So a participle clause can be used to modify the subject of the main clause as in my example "He is a bookworm, living in Canada". Can we say that this usage is correct only when "two facts" are happening at the same time? (He is a bookworm at present time and he lives in Canada at present time). I am also wondering about why the grammar books or websites don't explain this usage of participle clauses. They always say something like this: Participle clauses give information about condition (with a similar meaning to an if-condition) , result, reason or time – Talha Özden Jun 15 at 16:41
  • And have one more sentence "It is about saving lives, starting with mine." (A line from a tv series) (Context: He talks about time travel to save lives including his life.) Can we say this participle is used to modify the subject "it" as in my example above? "It is about saving lives and ıt starts with mine." – Talha Özden Jun 15 at 16:44
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    @TalhaÖzden Yes, you got it with the "starting" example! :) What I say and what they said are different parts of the same thing. I am showing the transformation to see what it refers to or modifies. They are referring to overall meaning or purpose of using it. :) – Lambie Jun 15 at 16:57
  • Thank you again . :) The thing gnawing my mind right now is that question : Can we say that this usage is correct only when "two facts" are happening at the same time? (He is a bookworm at present time and he lives in Canada at present time) I mean does the tense of participle clause depend on the tense of the main clause? If the main clause's tense is present tense then does the tense of the participle clause(when we rewrite the sentence as you did in your post) have to be present tense too? – Talha Özden Jun 15 at 17:03
  • I mean ıs there a chance to rewrite the sentence like this without extra context: "He is a bookworm and he lived in Canada." – Talha Özden Jun 15 at 17:07

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