Friday, April 26, 2013

A what?

As strange as it seems, that is an actual sentence.


  1. It's a sentence!? I have no idea which word is verb, could you explain to me?

    A ship, shipping ship, ---> noun
    shipping ---> verb?
    shipping ships ---> object

  2. That's right Anon,

    A ship shipping ship (subject/noun) as in a ship that ships ships. (like a "water carrying truck")

    Shipping (verb) present continuous.

    shipping ships (noun/object) the smaller ships being carried by the larger ship, that are also used for shipping, but on a smaller scale.

    Make sense?


  3. Mmm... but if you say it's present continuous,
    the sentence should be "A ship shipping ship IS shipping shipping ships.", I think.
    "IS" is hiding somewhere?

  4. Ahhh very good point.

    Normally yes, but in this situation no.
    'is' is often omitted for brevity,
    particularly in photograph captions
    (like in newspapers and magazines).
    Imagine "Firefighter saving children
    from school fire" or "Factory staff
    making Valentine's Day chocolate"
    in both cases we have omitted "is/are"
    for although the photo 'is' showing
    what 'is' happening at the moment it
    was taken, we want to keep the
    sentence short, and as the picture
    accompanies the text it 'fills in
    the blanks' so to speak.

    Hope that helps.

  5. Thank you for explaining it cleary.
    It's very very helpful for me to learn English.
    I've never noticed that before. Maybe I should read English newspapers or magazines, not only textbooks. Thank you again! Eriya^^

  6. You're most welcome Eriya.
    I'm glad to know that you
    still read the blog sometimes :P
    Take care