Compound and Complex sentences

When the sentence has two or more predicates it is called compound or complex sentence, depending on relation between it's parts (clauses). However one of predicates may be null like omitted verb “to be” = “kul”, or may be expressed by partciples which are treated as separate lexical categories or as special verb forms depending on authors' approach.

Compound sentence consists of two or more independent clauses: “He was going to Gondor but the rock fell on his head and killed kim” ⇒ “Ta ukhuz Gunduzgu ap gundum lûmpuzâ kaztabu agh doguzâtan”. While the second clause refers to the same person as the first one, this compound sentence may be rephrased into two separate simple sentences.

Dependent clause or Subordinate clause is the clause that as a whole belongs to one of the members of main sentence (independent clause).

Complex sentence consists of independent clause and one or more dependent (subordinating) clauses, which take some syntactical role in the main sentence as a whole:

  • Subject: “What he saw was terrible” ⇒ “Amash takinuz kuzâ bhau”;
  • Object: “I saw what you did here” ⇒ “Dahonuz amash fikrampiz zin”;
  • Predicative: “This is what I was trying to say” ⇒ “Za (kulâ) amash datugluz gashnut”;
  • Adverbial: “He was going to Gondor when the rock fell on his head” ⇒ “Ta ukhuz Gunduzgu amil gundum lûmpuzâ kaztabu”;
  • Determiner: “He is the warrior about which I told you before” ⇒ “Ta (kulâ) mauhum gus amai dagashnûzam dok”;

But dependent clause may be analyzed as full senteces, so in “I was told that Uglûk has killed a dragon” the clause “Uglûk has killed a dragon” is part of the predicate as a whole, but individual words may be analyzed as: “Uglûk” – subject of dependent clause, “has killed” – predicate of dependent clause, and “a dragon” is the object.

Sentence may have two or more independent clauses and several dependent clauses, such may be called Complex-Compound sentence: “When he was going to Gondor, the rock fell on his head, but he survived” ⇒ “Amil ta ukhuz Gunduzgu, gundum lûmpuzâ kaztabu, nân takibruz”. The first part is relative adverbial dependent clause, the second one is the main independent clause, the third clause is also syntactically independent.

Clauses may be combined into compound or complex sentence by conjunctions (the article contains a lot of examples for compound and complex sentences). Usually coordinating conjunctions are used in compound sentences, and subordinating conjunctions in complex sentences (but there may be exceptions). Conjunction may be omitted at all, especially in analytical colloquial speech, but this usually means that some was omitted (usually “that” = “zamash”): “I know (that) he was here” ⇒ “Da îst (zamash) takuz zin”.

Tense sequence

Nûrlâm does not have any special rules about tense sequence in dependent clauses. Independent clauses in compound sentence must be in the same grammatical tense. Please, rememeber that English Present Perfect is translated with Past tense of Nûrlâm. Sometimes future events are expressed by Present Simple tense in English (e.g. after such words like “until”, “by the time”, “before” and others), they must be in Future tense in Nûrlâm.

syntax_complex.txt · Last modified: 2023/09/07 19:38 by