Author Topic: anticipatory there  (Read 5457 times)

Stella

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anticipatory there
« on: March 11, 2012, 08:11:35 AM »
Dear all,
is it possible this sentence?
Thre it is a cat
I mean: there is a cat there
There it is the MP3.
meaning
the mp3 is there
thanks a lot
STella
stellagentile@gmail.com

Joe Carillo

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Re: anticipatory there
« Reply #1 on: March 11, 2012, 11:19:41 AM »
Yes, the two sentences below that you presented are grammatically possible:

(1) “There is a cat there.”
(2) “There it is the MP3,” in the sense of “The MP3 is there.”

Sentence 1 actually uses two senses of “there”—the first the so-called anticipatory “there,” and the second, the pointing “there.” By definition, the anticipatory “there” is a pronoun that carries little or no independent meaning but simply points forward to the notional subject that’s placed later in the sentence for reasons of end weight or emphasis. In the sentence “There is a cat there,” the notional subject of the anticipatory “there” is the noun “cat.” On the other hand, the second “there” in that sentence is the pointing “there”—an adjective used for directional emphasis.

Although grammatically possible, Sentence 2 is actually a run-on sentence that strict grammarians are likely to sneer at. To make it grammatically aboveboard, it needs to be punctuated in any of the following ways:

“There it is, the MP3.”
“There it is: the MP3,”
“There it is—the MP3.”

All three punctuations work but the third—the double dash—is preferable stylistically because it delivers just the right sense of pause needed by the statement.

RELATED READING:
The wisdom of routinely avoiding anticipatory “there is/are” clauses
« Last Edit: March 11, 2012, 02:03:56 PM by Joe Carillo »

Greta Mascarena

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Re: anticipatory there
« Reply #2 on: April 02, 2012, 02:30:59 AM »
I think you should point out also that the placement of the comma makes all the difference as well.  For example, "There, it is a cat," would be someone demonstratively stating a point.  "There it is, a cat," is just someone pointing out a creature and then making it more specific at the end.

-- Greta