I am learning English grammar. And I was doing exercises of replacing adverbial phrase with adverbial clause. And I am unable to replace adverbial phrase with adverbial clause in the following sentence:

"with a view to early retirement he saved his money."

First of all please explain what this sentence is saying. And what can be adverbial clause of this sentence.?



With a view to is an adverbial phrase and means:

a. with the aim or intention of;

b with the expectation or hope of.

Your adverbial (prepositional) phrase

With a view to early retirement he saved his money.

can be transformed into an adverbial clause in this way:

With a view to retire early he saved his money.

On the above example the subject is omitted: with a view ... [that he] retire early.

  • With a view to retire early is still just a phrase, not a clause. – Damkerng T. May 25 '15 at 2:24

The sentence:

With a view to early retirement he saved his money.

Means that He saved his money. Why? He saved his money with the hope of (being able to have) early retirement. (See also: with a view to (doing) something in Macmillan Dictionary)

This exercise was taken from High School English Grammar & Composition by Wren & Martin (Book II. Composition. Part I. Analysis, Transformation and Synthesis. Chapter 3 Clauses. 1. Adverb Clauses. page 152).

Let's discuss a little what the book means by "Adverb Clauses". From the same page:

Def.--An Adverb Clause is a group of words which contains a Subject and a Predicate of its own, and does the work of an Adverb.

Being first published in 1935, the terminology used in the book is somewhat different from what we generally use today, particularly the fact that they would consider With a view to early retirement an Adverb Phrase. (The book discusses Adverb Phrase in BOOK II. Chapter 2. II. Adverb Phrases.) It's now more common to call With a view to early retirement either a prepositional phrase when we think of the part of speech of with or an adverbial (or adverbial phrase) when we think of its function.

Having said that, the book uses the terms clause and phrase pretty much the same way we use nowadays. Here is a quick recap from KS3 Bitesite English:

Words - Words are the smallest meaningful bits of sense.
Phrases - A phrase is a short, single piece of information: the big dog
Clauses - A clause is a larger word group that includes a little more information. It consists at least two phrases - one is a noun phrase known as the subject, and the other is the verb. the big dog barked
Sentences - A sentence is made up of words put together to do a certain job. If we put a capital letter at the beginning of the clause we've used, and a full stop at the end, we have a sentence. The big dog barked.

What is called Adverb Clause in the book is now commonly known as adverbial clause (or subordinate clause).

Being clear about what a clause is and what a phrase is, we can now discuss the transformation, which is the main purpose of the exercise. The exercise wants you to paraphrase sentences by replacing (what they call) an Adverb Phrase with (what they call) an Adverb Clause. In other words, you are expected to replace a phrase with a clause while the result sentence still has the same or a similar meaning.

How can we do that?

The most basic way is to use a conjunction and turn the noun phrase in the prepositional phrase (i.e. Adverb Phrase in the book) into a clause.

Because With a view to early retirement states the purpose of his saving money, the most obvious choices are because and so (that).

Original (with a preposition phrase/Adverb Phrase):

With a view to early retirement he saved his money.

Paraphrase (with an adverbial clause/Adverb Clause):

He saved his money so (that) he could retire early.
He saved his money because he wanted/hoped to retire early.

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