Grammar in EAP

Introductory "There"

Exercises 2

An English sentence such as "A discrepancy was in the experimental results." is possible but unusual. The conventional academic way of putting it is to begin the sentence with "there" and postpone the indefinite subject, which is then expanded by post-modification or an adverbial group: "There was a discrepancy in the experimental results".

For example:

  • There were several people in favour of the proposal.

  • There is no single issue in contemporary human affairs that is of greater importance...

  • In the late thirteenth century, there were repeated efforts to drive back the counter-offensive.

  • There was a large amount of work for the team to carry out.

  • But in the Zaire basin there are only 38 million people occupying an area of 3 million km2.

  • There are no constraints placed upon the timing of the volunteer's activities.

  • There were many citizens who believed that ...

Rewrite the highlighted section of the following sentences, starting with "There".

  1. Quite a few animal species are in danger of extinction. 

  2. A person stays indoors because he was misled into believing that poisonous fumes are outside.

  3. Before continuing with our main theme a few points may need clarifying.

  4. An exception arises only where concomitant changes confer an advantage on the rarer types.

  5. Deliberate attemptswere made to develop elements of both high and popular culture in music, poetry, dance, and games.

  6. Before the Act there a grey area of uncertainty surrounding these problems existed.

  7. No evidence bears on this suggestion and the matter must remain unresolved for the time being.

  8. This is because, as I said earlier, so many different constituencies are involved in the process.

  9. Very few people are at present at their full potential for good health and good looks.

  10. Four types of social organization exist: isolated animals with mother, monogamous pairs, groups or bands with their parents, and colonial animals living in burrow systems.


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