I stopped only when I was face to face with the dark pit; its feverish breath, overwhelming.

In this case, I wrote "its feverish breath, overwhelming" instead of "its feverish breath was overwhelming" in order to create a stronger impact on the reader. Is this gramatically correct?

Thank you.

  • 1
    Also: " ... with the dark pit, its feverish breath overwhelming. Jan 24 at 17:57
  • 1
    I like yours because there is a nice ellipsis of the was provided by the comma! :)
    – Lambie
    Jan 24 at 18:10
  • 1
    @YosefBaskin While that will no doubt be understood, it feels a little odd, probably because "dark pit" is not a subject here. See my comment on brp7's answer. Jan 24 at 19:08

1 Answer 1


That looks like a wrong sentence as we don't have a finite verb after the semi-colon (or full stop) part.

You can make it correct by beginning with a prepositional phrase that will stress the 'overwhelming' word.

For example, "With its feverish breath overwhelming, I stopped only when I was face to face with the dark pit."

There might be other ways of writing it.


  • You are welcome!
    – BumbleBee
    Jan 24 at 17:25
  • Here is another one in a similar style. "After riding his bike around the neighborhood twice, Jim felt very exhausted." (The first one has no finite verb and so a phrase. The main clause which starts with Jim has a finite verb)
    – BumbleBee
    Jan 24 at 17:40
  • No, this is not accurate: With its feverish breath overwhelming, I etc. It has to be: With its feverish breath overwhelming, the dark pit etc. And wrong sentence is wrong. An incorrect sentence.
    – Lambie
    Jan 24 at 18:08
  • You could turn the example's semicolon into a comma and delete the later comma, except that it still doesn't work for this example because the pit isn't the subject of the sentence ("I" is). This could work: "Soon the dark pit stood before me, its feverish breath overwhelming." Jan 24 at 18:24
  • @AndyBonner Oh okay. You have made 'dark pit' the subject.
    – BumbleBee
    Jan 24 at 19:05

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