What does misplaced modifiers and dangling participles mean, English

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What does Misplaced Modifiers and Dangling Participles mean?

What does "misplaced modifier" mean?

It is important to place modifiers correctly in sentences. If you place them incorrectly, your meaning will be unclear--or worse, you can create unintentional humor which might prove embarrassing.

A modifier is an adverb, adjective, or a phrase working as an adverb or adjective. A misplaced modifier is placed too far away from the word it modifies. It may appear to modify another word in the sentence, and the meaning may be confused.

Example

Maya Lin submitted a design to honor Vietnam Vets in a national contest.

The phrase "in a national contest" appears to describe how she intended to honor the veterans instead of where she submitted her design. The meaning is unclear.

What is a dangling participle?

A dangling participle is a participial phrase that is not placed directly before or directly after the noun it modifies. The misplaced phrase will appear to modify the noun nearest to it and will result in confusion.

Example

Designed with simple lines, she won the contest for her black granite wall.

The phrase "designed with simple lines" appears to describe the artist rather than her work.


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