Thom Harrison's Grammar Review Page
Thomas C. Harrison © 2009
The inspiration for this page comes from sentence-combining grammars that were developed from the concepts of sentence embedding in transformational grammar, and from such traditional grammars as Randolph Quirk and Sydney Greenbaum, A Concise Grammar of Contemporary English (New York: Harcourt, 1973), the workbook designed to accompany it, John Algeo, Exercises in Contemporary English (New York: Harcourt, 1974), and more recent books like Martha Kolln's Understanding English Grammar (New York: Macmillan, 1986).
These exercises were developed for classes in composition and writing where a ready grasp of the way sentences are constructed is desirable. The list of kinds of sentences is far from exhaustive; in fact it barely stratches the surface. But practice with these kinds of sentences and embedding will help the novice writer of English to cope with some of the varieties of writing style in English.
Click on a category below for exercises, with or without answers:
Active and Passive Sentences, with or without answers
Adverbial Clauses and Phrases, with or without answers
While I was walking to school, I found a
Walking to school, I found a dollar.
Adjectival Clauses and Phrases, with or without answers
The child who is making the most noise
is my daughter.
The child making the most noise is my daughter.
Noun Clauses, with or without answers
He told me that he knew Robert Redford.
Abstract Noun Phrases, with or without answers
I can't understand their rejection of the proposal.
Gerund Phrases, with or without answers
I don't like his dating my daughter.
Infinitive Phrases, with or without answers
I want for you to see a counsellor.
Cleft and Pseudo-Cleft Sentences, with or without answers
Drive the car into the ocean was what he did.
Click on Answer Page for the exercises with answers.
Click on Question Page for the exercises without answers.
You might want to see "44 Ways to Say George Gave Mary a Kiss."
For those who need it, an essay on "How to Make Your Writing Hard to Read."
Send comments or suggestions to Thom Harrison: firstname.lastname@example.org