Skip to main content

Can I drop the dash like <2>?

Is <3> correct?

1 His authority influenced us to accept the theory without question, - thus missing the point of the discussion.

2 His authority influenced us to accept the theory without question, thus missing the point of the discussion.

3 His authority influenced us to accept the theory without question, - thus miss the point of the discussion.

Original Post

Replies sorted oldest to newest

Hi, GBLSU,

@GBLSU posted:

Can I drop the dash like <2>?

Is <3> correct?

1 His authority influenced us to accept the theory without question, - thus missing the point of the discussion.

2 His authority influenced us to accept the theory without question, thus missing the point of the discussion.

3 His authority influenced us to accept the theory without question, - thus miss the point of the discussion.

From the point of view of punctuation, only (2) is correct.

(3) is grammatically wrong. To make it grammatical, you should say:

3'. His authority led us to accept the theory without question and (to) miss the point of the discussion. (I don't think "influenced" works very well with the second part — that's why I changed it to "led." You could also say "made us accept ... and miss...")

"Thus missing the point of the discussion" is a dangling participle — it seems it was his authority that missed the point, not us.

Hi, GBLSU,

From the point of view of punctuation, only (2) is correct.

(3) is grammatically wrong. To make it grammatical, you should say:

3'. His authority led us to accept the theory without question and (to) miss the point of the discussion. (I don't think "influenced" works very well with the second part — that's why I changed it to "led." You could also say "made us accept ... and miss...")

"Thus missing the point of the discussion" is a dangling participle — it seems it was his authority that missed the point, not us.

Thank you for the reply.  Can you tell me why (1) is incorrect?

@GBLSU posted:

You are totally right. If there is no comma, is it correct?

I think I mistakenly put it.

I prefer a comma there. A dash is more like a colon and works better when what follows is a more independent structure, be it a word, a phrase, or a sentence, for example:

- His authority influenced us to accept the theory without question — we missed the point of the discussion.

Last edited by Gustavo, Co-Moderator

You can never find a comma followed by a dash. They are mutually exclusive.

I'd just like to add a footnote to Gustavo's observation, with which I completely agree. Historically (at least in the 1800s, in the United States), a comma was occasionally followed by a dash.

Examples can easily be found in the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson and of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. I'm currently reading Longfellow's novel Hyperion, in which this archaic combination frequently appears (see here).

Last edited by David, Moderator

I'd just like to add a footnote to Gustavo's observation, with which I completely agree. Historically (at least in the 1800s, in the United States), a comma was occasionally followed by a dash.

Examples can easily be found in the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson and of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow. I'm currently reading Longfellow's novel Hyperion, in which this archaic combination frequently appears (see here).

Thank you for the additional explanation.

Add Reply

×
×
×
×
Link copied to your clipboard.
×