Is this sentence correct, which I want to express that all praising expressions were spoken in a fast way.

Praising expressions were spoken with a relatively fast speaking rate.
  • I've added the technical tag to the question; @Ping Tang: it would be a good idea to use that tag in the future whenever the question relates to measurements of the acoustic parameters of speech. That will make the context clearer.
    – TimR
    Oct 15, 2014 at 14:06
  • Oh I see, you are right, thank u for ur sincere advisement
    – Ping Tang
    Oct 15, 2014 at 14:21

1 Answer 1


Although your sentence is not idiomatic, it is grammatically correct. The modifying clause with a relatively fast speaking rate is adverbial, and the question of agreement-in-number with the verb does not arise.

  • So how to rephrase this sentence to be more idiomatic? As: Praising expressions were spoken with relatively fast speaking rates. ?
    – Ping Tang
    Oct 15, 2014 at 12:30
  • I'm not sure exactly what you're trying to convey with "relatively fast speaking rates". Also, I'm no fan of passive constructions in general; I find them usually unclear in one way or another. Here are some possibilities: Praise was effusive or People were quick to praise. The first means that praise (from various sources) was heaped upon or lavished upon {someone} and the second means that people instantly perceived that some act|deed or some person was praiseworthy, and they praised it or him|her.
    – TimR
    Oct 15, 2014 at 12:48
  • @TRomano Well, the poster's intended meaning appears to me to be that the words of praise were spoken rapidly, not that they said many words of praise or that the delay before they began praising whomever was short. I'd suggest, "Expressions of praise were spoken rapidly" or "... at a rapid-fire rate".
    – Jay
    Oct 15, 2014 at 13:24
  • When this question is understood in conjunction with his other question about acoustic measurements, I'm inclined to agree with you, Jay, but I did not see that question until after I'd left my comment above.
    – TimR
    Oct 15, 2014 at 13:38
  • Expressions of praise were spoken rapidly. is good.
    – TimR
    Oct 15, 2014 at 13:39

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