HomeQ&AShe sometimes likes changing her image

She sometimes likes changing her image

5
votes

I would like to know if "sometimes" can change the order in the sentence.

She sometimes likes changing her image.

Sometimes, she likes changing her image.

1678 views
updated DIC 15, 2009
posted by nila45

11 Answers

8
votes

Sometimes she likes changing her image. She likes changing her image sometimes. She sometimes likes to change her image.

These are the most common three places where you would see that adverb in the sentence you gave. All of them are fine and I don't feel like their meaning is different at all.

updated DIC 15, 2009
posted by 003487d6
I agree. - --Mariana--, DIC 12, 2009
I agree too - Izanoni1, DIC 12, 2009
I agree tres - nate12332, DIC 14, 2009
4
votes

Then "usually", "generally", "often", "never", "always" only go before the main verb. Is that right?

You're right...most of those words go before the main verb. However, "often" appears to be different because both of the following sentences make sense:

She likes to change her image often.

She often likes to change her image.

updated DIC 14, 2009
posted by --Mariana--
3
votes

He often goes accompanied by his bodyguard.
He goes accompanied by his bodyguard often
Often, he goes accompanied by his bodyguard.

Of the three, the 2nd is, in my opinion, the least likely (least likely but not weird).

English (especially when contrasted with Spanish) has a reputation for more rigid word order. As a generalization, I agree with this but English (like most/all languages) is following a path toward simplification/regularization. Because we do not have (have almost eliminated) inflectional endings we become more dependent on word order to illuminate grammatical relationships.This, however, is a process.

In my formative years, I was exposed to a fair amount of 17th century English literature and a lot of 18th-19th century writings. In those times, a considerably greater flexibility of word order was tolerated/frequent. Since those times, much of the flexibility of English has been lost. When someone says "That sounds weird." or "I would never say that.", that may simply be a reflection of his limited language experience (if I wished to satirize the statement, I might recast it as "In the sitcoms and "reality" shows that I watch, I have never heard such an expression.")

In the long run, Gresham's Law applies to language (just as it does to economics). This is, of course, a value judgment on my part.

updated DIC 15, 2009
posted by samdie
3
votes

"never" before the verb but "usually, "generally" and "often" work like "sometimes" (as above).

updated DIC 14, 2009
posted by samdie
2
votes

Then "usually", "generally", "often", "never", "always" only go before the main verb. Is that right?. I am not talking about "to be".

updated DIC 14, 2009
posted by nila45
1
vote

She likes to change her image often.

She often likes to change her image.

These can be slightly different in meaning!
In the first, 'often' applies to 'change her image'. What she likes is to keep changing her image.

In the second 'often' applies to 'likes'. A strict interpretation is that she likes to change her image a lot of the time but sometimes she doesn't like to change it. That is, there are times when she changes her image and she doesn't like doing it.

I freely accept that the second will normally be interpreted like the first because it makes more sense. However, the other example above has a more obvious difference in meaning;

He often goes accompanied by his bodyguard.

He goes accompanied by his bodyguard often

The first means he goes often and is accompanied by his bodyguard. (Always accompanied is likely but not definite)
The second means that when he goes he is often (i.e. definitely not always) accompanied by his bodyguard.

updated DIC 15, 2009
posted by Jespa
1
vote

He goes accompanied by his bodyguard often

I just want to point out one more thing that was bothering me about your second sentence.

Normally a participle phrase such as "accompanied by his bodyguard" should (with a few exceptions) be set off by one or more commas from the word that it modifies - in this case, the modified word is "he."

I think what is troubling to me is the fact that the second sentence is somewhat ambiguous due to the placement of the adverb "often" at the end of the participle phrase "accompanied by his bodyguard."

Placing the adverb here makes it difficult to tell if you meant to say that, "He often goes" or if you are emphasizing that "(He is) often accompanied by a bodyguard." Out of your three sentences, this only one that troubled me when I read it.

"Often, he goes accompanied by his bodyguard" sounds weird.

By using a comma after "often" you actually add emphasis to what you are trying to say. In this construct, you are emphasizing not that he goes out but that when he does go out, he is often accompanied by his bodyguard.

Here are a few other ideas that you might consider:

• He goes often, accompanied by his bodyguard [emphasis on the fact that he goes]

• He, accompanied by his bodyguard, goes often.

• He goes, often accompanied by his bodyguard.

• Often he goes accompanied by his bodyguard

Hopefully, I have not simply confounded the issue. What do you think? Does this make sense to you?

updated DIC 15, 2009
posted by Izanoni1
0
votes

In Enlgish, sometimes can be put in many different places. For example: "I sometimes go to the park." Or: "Sometimes I go to the park" Or: "I go to the park sometimes." English is the hardest language to learn (at least I think!). In English, words can sound the same, but sound different or whatever the case is. Good question by the way!

updated DIC 14, 2009
posted by Austinman14
0
votes

In Spanish, the three sentences are possible and it does not change the meaning.

I think that in English it should be the same.

He often goes accompanied by his bodyguard.

He goes accompanied by his bodyguard often

"Often, he goes accompanied by his bodyguard" sounds weird.

What do you think?

I don't think that this sounds strange or weird at all. Each of these three would be possible, but by shifting the position of the word often, I think that you do subtly shift the emphasis of the sentence around (I wonder does this shifting of emphasis also occur in Spanish).

updated DIC 14, 2009
posted by Izanoni1
0
votes

She likes to change her image often.

She often likes to change her image.

"A menudo el va acompañado de su guardaespalda"

"El va acompañado de su guardaespalda a menudo"

"El va a menudo acompañado de su guardaespalda"

In Spanish, the three sentences are possible and it does not change the meaning.

I think that in English it should be the same.

He often goes accompanied by his bodyguard.

He goes accompanied by his bodyguard often

"Often, he goes accompanied by his bodyguard" sounds weird.

What do you think?

updated DIC 14, 2009
posted by nila45
0
votes

"never" before the verb but "usually, "generally" and "often" work like "sometimes" (as above).

Yes, I was trying to contrast that information. I think to remember that a few years ago, I saw something similar to what Samdie says. But, now I have seen another different information because "sometimes" is the only one that appears in this other grammar book and I was having that doubt.

I see the rules are there. And we have to learn the grammar this way. But, in practice, these rules can be broken.

updated DIC 12, 2009
edited by nila45
posted by nila45
....these rules can be broken. - --Mariana--, DIC 12, 2009
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