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Posted by on Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 11:33am.

I need to make sure I understand this. I need to rewrite each sentence twice, once as a periodic sentence and once as a cumulative sentence. To me, both look like cumulative sentences though, so I am a little confused. If someone could check my work I will be very grateful.

1)Obviously not understanding reporters, the politician did not know their names, did not answer their questions, and did not read their stories.

(periodic)The politician did not know their names, did not answer their questions, or read their stories obviously not understanding reporters.

(cumulative)The politician did not understand reporters; he did not know their names, answer any questions or read their stories.

2)Able to think only of my mother’s surgery the next morning, I could not even eat my dinner, much less get any sleep, nor could I do my homework.

(periodic)I could do nothing else; not eat dinner, complete my homework or even sleep while thinking of my mother’s surgery the next morning.

(cumulative)I was only able to think of my mother’s surgery the next morning; I could not eat, sleep or do my homework.

  • English - , Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 11:36am

    Please define "periodic" and "cumulative" for me; then I can understand this better.

  • ENGLISH - , Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 11:45am

    periodic - postpone the main idea until the very end of the sentence. They build tension for the end.

    cumulative - begin with an independent clause, then add in details. They provide immediate understanding of the main idea and supporting detail.

  • English - , Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 11:55am

    Thank you.

    --------------------

    1)Obviously not understanding reporters, the politician did not know their names, did not answer their questions, and did not read their stories.

    (periodic)The politician did not know their names, did not answer their questions, or read their stories obviously not understanding reporters. This has many problems, but overall, it's not a periodic sentence. This sentence starts with the main clause. Try again.

    (cumulative)The politician did not understand reporters; he did not know their names, answer any questions or read their stories. good

    2)Able to think only of my mother’s surgery the next morning, I could not even eat my dinner, much less get any sleep, nor could I do my homework.

    (periodic)I could do nothing else; not eat dinner, complete my homework or even sleep while thinking of my mother’s surgery the next morning. Also not periodic. Try again.

    (cumulative)I was only able to think of my mother’s surgery the next morning; I could not eat, sleep or do my homework. so-so -- in a compound sentence, both "halves" are equal, so there's no building of tension here.

  • English - , Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 11:59am

    I'll underline each sentence's main idea (main clause, independent clause) below:

    1) Obviously not understanding reporters, the politician did not know their names, did not answer their questions, and did not read their stories.

    2) Able to think only of my mother’s surgery the next morning, I could not even eat my dinner, much less get any sleep, nor could I do my homework.

    As you should be able to see, both sentences are already written as periodic sentences.

  • ENGLISH - , Wednesday, December 28, 2011 at 3:43pm

    I had the main idea in both completly wrong. I thought the main idea was the half you did not underline. I am going back to figure out where I am going wrong. Thank you so much for the help.

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