The basic unit of English grammar is the clause:

[An unlucky student almost lost a 17th century violin worth almost £200,000]

[when he left it in the waiting room of a London station.]

[William Brown inherited the 1698 Stradivarius violin from his mother]

[and had just had it valued by a London dealer at £180,000.]

Clauses are made up of phrases:

[An unlucky student] + [almost lost] + [a 17th century violin worth almost £200,000]

[when] + [he] + [left] + [it] + [in the waiting room of a London station.]

[William Brown] + [inherited] + [the 1698 Stradivarius violin] + [from his mother]

[and] [had just had it valued] + [by a London dealer] + [at £180,000.]

We can join two or more clauses together to make sentences.

An unlucky student almost lost a 17th century violin worth almost £200,000 when he left it in the waiting room of a London station.

William Brown inherited the 1698 Stradivarius violin from his mother and had just had it valued by a London dealer at £180,000.


 

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Comments

Hello.

When you finish the assignments, come to see me.

I wish to know whether these two clauses in reported speech are changed by the tense pattern.

''She told me to come when I finished(which tense should I use?) the assignments.''

Is this reported speech: ''She asked when the train would leave''? Why ''would'' can be used there?

Thank you.

Hello MCWSL,

Several forms are possible, depending on the context. It is not clear from just the sentence if at the time of reporting the sentence the assignments have already been finished (in which case 'finished' is the most likely) or are still not finished (in which case 'finish' is most likely). It would also be possible to say 'had finished', but this is only likely if the original sentence is 'have finished' rather than 'finish'. As you can see, there is no single answer - the context is key.

In your second example 'would' is used because the original sentence contained 'will': When will the train leave?

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello.

I have read that ''will'' cannot be used with time questions, such as until, before, after, so why can it be used in this case? (I would say '' when does the train leave'').

Thank you.

Hello MCWSL,

I have never heard anyone claim that 'will' cannot be used with time questions - it does not appear to be a rule which has anything to do with how English is spoken.

When will the train leave?   asks for a prediction or expectation.

 

When does the train leave?   asks for information about a repeating regular event.

Both are correct sentences. Which the speaker uses depends on how they see the event and what they choose the emphasise.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Hello MCWSL,

I think I see the confusion now. The lesson you refer to is talking about 'will' is future time clauses, which is different from future time questions.

As Peter mentions, 'will' is quite common in questions, but in time clauses, it is not used. I think you'll find that our time clauses page and the explanation in the lesson you refer to say the same thing. Though if you have any more questions about it, please don't hesitate to ask them.

All the best,
Kirk
The LearnEnglish Team

Hello Sir! Which of the following expressions is grammatically correct: 'my evaluated answer sheet for Science exam' or 'my evaluated answer sheet of Science exam' ? My confusion is related to the use of preposition. Since the speaker is referring to a particular exam, is he/she required to use 'the' before 'Science exam'? Thank you.

Hello raj.kumar123,

We would not use 'of' here, so 'for' is the better option. As you suggest, we would say 'the science exam' here as presumably the listener knows which exam is being discussed.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

Thank you dear Peter. Is it correct to say: "Give me a certified copy of my answer sheet/ script for the Science exam." ?

Hello raj.kumar123,

Yes, that sentence is grammatically correct.

 

Best wishes,

Peter

The LearnEnglish Team

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