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Norma ate in silence.

The word 'ate' is a transitive verb that requires an object to clear its meaning. What is the function of the phrase 'in silence' here? Either it's serving as an adjectival phrase by telling something more about Norma or it is serving as an adverbial phrase by modifying her eating manner.

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ate can be both transitive and intransitive. In this case, it is the latter.

in silence is adverbial here modifying Norma's eating manner.

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    +1 Perfect answer.
    – BillJ
    Jan 3 at 12:19

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