The Printable KISS Grammar Workbooks The Theodore Dreiser Page
(Code and Color Key)

From “The Lost Phoebe,” by Theodore Dreiser
Appositives Ex # 2
Analysis Key

1. Phoebe Ann was thin (PA) and shapeless (PA), a very umbrella [#1] {of a 

woman}, clad [#2] {in shabby black}, and {with a black bonnet} {for her best wear}. |
 

2. [Adv. to "resolved" As he drew near], however, the apparition resolved itself

(DO) {into its primal content} – his old coat [#3] {over the high backed chair}, the lamp [#3]

{by the paper}, the half-open door [#3]. |
 

3. Moonlight and shadows combined to give it [#4] a strange form and a stranger

reality [#4], this fluttering [#5] {of bogfire} or dancing [#5] {of wandering fire-flies}. |
 

4. “Wall [Inj], I'll swan, Henry [DirA], | [#6] yuh ain't jokin', [Inj [#6] are yuh?]” 

[Inj [#6] said the solid Dodge, a pursy man [#7], {with a smooth, hard, red face}]. |
 

5. It was one (PN) {of those little wisps} {of mist}, one [#8] {of those faint exhalations}

{of the earth} [Adj. to "exhalations" that rise {in a cool night} {after a warm day}, and

flicker {like small white cypresses} {of fog} [Adv. to "flicker" before they disappear]]. |


Notes
1. "Umbrella" is an appositive to "Phoebe Ann."
2. "Clad" is a gerundive to "Phoebe Ann."
3. "Coat," "lamp," and "door" are appositives to "content."
4. "Form" and "reality" are direct objects of the infinitive "to give." "It" is its indirect object. The infinitive phrase functions as an adverb (of result) to "combined."
5. "Fluttering" and "dancing" are appositives to "it." Most grammarians would probably not consider them to be gerunds because they are modified by the adjective "this." (Here we get into one of those endless terminological problems.)
6. Here we run into a set of clauses about which grammarians will almost certainly offer different explanations. One could take the entire quotation as the direct object of "said," but the normal KISS explanation considers the first clauses as main and the "said" clause as an interjection. See "Interjection or DO?" Within the quotation, some grammarians may consider "I'll swan" to be an interjection, but it is also definitely an S/V pattern. Thus the comma after "henry" creates a comma-splice. Modern linguists call constructions like "are yuh?" tag questions. You can teach that, if you want to, but KISS considers them to be another form of interjection. See "Interjection or DO?"
7. "Man" is an appositive to "Dodge."
8. This "one" is an appositive to the preceding "one."