A spritual accessory

What I noticed first about the language in this television ad for the Prayer Cross (from Montebello Collections) — viewable here — was the reference to the cross as a “spiritual accessory”. Then I noticed a modifier in the ad:

When held up to the light, the entire Lord’s Prayer becomes instantly and almost miraculously visible.

That is, when the cross is held up to the light, the entire Lord’s Prayer etc. etc. The cross is mentioned in the previous context, of course, and it’s obviously topical in the context. So though the subjectless predicative adjunct would be labeled a “dangling modifier” by many people (because it doesn’t pick up the referent for the missing subject in the default way, from the subject of the main clause), it’s likely to escape most people’s notice (as it did mine for some time), because it’s so easily interpretable.

2 Responses to “A spritual accessory”

  1. Chris Waigl Says:

    Just after reading your post, I came across this on the site of the airline FlyBe, in the text about Shetland, which is one of their destinations:

    Famous for its knitwear, it’s not surprising sheep outnumber people by eight to one, and although famed for its miniature ponies also, it is birds that dominate Shetland.

  2. arnoldzwicky Says:

    On Chris W’s dangler: This one might not be so notable, given that it occurs in a text about Shetland and that the subject of the main clause is a dummy pronoun.

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