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As far as I know, it's not correct to use two different subjects with participle clauses. Here in the following sentences, two different subjects are used. Could I understand why?


1- I was beginning to get a migraine with the students all talking at the same time.

2- With it being Sunday in Switzerland, we couldn't find any shops open.

3-  There being no money left, we had to start making our way home.

4- It being too late to get a train, we took a taxi.

Thank you in advance.

Last edited by Meriem
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Hi, Meriem,

Where have you taken these sentences from? Please remember sentences should always start with a capital letter. Also, sentence (4) contains a grammatical mistake—it should start with It being too late to get a train.

Before answering your question, have you ever hear about "absolute clauses"?

Note: After writing this post, Meriem seems to have revised hers, adding initial capital letters where needed and "it" to sentence (4), which had originally been written as starting with "being": Being too late to get a train, ...

Last edited by Gustavo, Co-Moderator

As I told you, you transcribed sentence (4) incorrectly. This is what appears in the video:

Absolute clauses actually allow the change of subject. They are formed by a subject, different from that of the main clause, which may be introduced by "with" and is usually followed by a non-finite verb such as a participle. For you to understand how they work, imagine that the sentence above comes from:

- As it was too late to get a train, we took a taxi ⇒ It being too late to get a train, we took a taxi.


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@Meriem posted:

5. Well done, we are very proud of you.

No, Meriem. For there to be an absolute clause, the subject needs to be present, not tacit.

Sentence (5) is a run-on sentence—there should be a period, not a comma, between the two sentences. Actually, I don't think "well done" has a subject, but is an exclamative clause that refers to a noun that is implicit in the context. This would be a sentence containing an absolute clause:

- The job having been well done, they were very proud of it.

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