The officer stuck a label on my bag ,reading my name.

The officer stuck a label reading my name on my bag.

Preliminary knowledge : I have a label on which I wrote my name. My first question is that in which sentence above is the place of the expression in bold correct?


The Best Practice is to put the participle phrase immediately after the noun it modifies, so there's no ambiguity about what it refers to.

In this case, however, I have to say that both sentences pretty clunky: awkward, wordy, and needlessly formal. I'd say:

The officer stuck a label with my name on the bag.

  • Thank you.In the first example "The officer stuck a label on my bag ,reading my name." I think I detected two things to create ambiguity.First one, It sounds like the officer stuck a label while or by reading my name second one it is like my bag is referred to by "reading my name" which makes no sense.Do you think there are the reasons for ambiguity? – Cihangir Çam Nov 22 '15 at 19:32
  • @CihangirÇam Exactly. – StoneyB on hiatus Nov 22 '15 at 19:33

'Reading my name' is not something I have heard used. I prefer to use 'a label with my name'

  • "› [I or T] How you read a ​piece of writing, or how it reads, is how it ​seems when you read it: The ​letter reads as if it was written in a ​hurry. Her ​latest ​novel reads well (= is written in an ​attractive way)." one of the usages of the word "read" – Cihangir Çam Nov 22 '15 at 20:13
  • 1
    I think OP has in mind constructions like a bottle reading "Poison". – StoneyB on hiatus Nov 22 '15 at 21:36
  • geordie - Perhaps you meant to say, 'Reading my name' is not something I have heard used in this context? – J.R. Nov 22 '15 at 21:55

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