Diagramming Sentences: Preamble to the Constitution

In my vain effort to “get me more smartness” I find myself in Comprehensive Greek trying to remember how to diagram sentences. While trying to learn how to do this (I never had to do this in school), I’ve come across this sentence diagram of the Preamble to the Constitution. It looks almost like Greek to me!


14 responses to “Diagramming Sentences: Preamble to the Constitution

  1. Two books for you: one for Greek and one for English
    1. Greek to Me (Lyle Story)
    2. Woe is I (Patricia O’Conner)

    Great books. As a product of the SC Public School System, I ain’t never diagrammed no sentence neither.

  2. This is very important, because many advocates of big, intrusive government use the “in order that” statement of the preamble to justify all manner of unconstitutional programs, when that statement is one of intention, not authorization.

  3. typo in the diagram, should be “ensure”, not “insure”

  4. The word Order isn’t capitalized in your diagram… why not?

  5. Richard,

    1. I didn’t make the diagram! That’s why!
    2. It appears that this diagram maintains capitals for nouns and that it doesn’t interpret order (as a part of this prepositional phrase) to be a noun.
    3. It appears that the writers of the preamble either had different grammatical conventions or they wanted to emphasize these capitalized words.

  6. 1. k.
    2. Nouns or not, changing capitalizations reinterprets sentence intent.
    3. All words carry emphasis, so to British words.

    a. Why, in as much, did the framers write ‘the U.S.’ vs ‘the U.S.A’ (as diagrammed by someone), …two different institutions?

    b. And, it was interesting that ‘the’ wasn’t treated the same as the other ‘the’s’ above (again, as diagrammed by someone).

    just a thought

  7. You should un-capitalize British–it’s not proper! πŸ™‚

    We run into this in Biblical diagramming and interpretation, too. Changing the words is not a good practice.

    a. this is an interesting point. Also note that the people “OF” the United States ordain and establish the constitution “FOR” the United States of America. This may point to a change in condition because of the Constitution. This may indicate that because they are already of the U.S., that it is fitting that they write this for land that is theirs. It may be that kind of statement.

    As for the use of USA at th end, it is either a dramatic closing or, like I said above, a change in condition. I’m not exactly sure.

    b. It is interesting and I’m not sure why it is diagrammed that way. Any thoughts?

  8. Pingback: Diagramming the Preamble « The Greatest Story Ever Told

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  10. Kenyonna Carter

    what are the dummest term can you put thr preamle in

  11. Pingback: Punctuality Rules! » Blog Archive » Punctuation is Not Grammar

  12. I have a strange request.

    I have an impossible sentence to diagram. And I was wondering if you could help.

    “Once I am sure there’s nothing going on I step inside, letting the door thud shut.”

    I’m pretty sure there should be a comma after “on,” but there wasn’t one.

  13. I think you are wrong the sentence SVO is We establish ordain constitution compound verb

    “in order…” is a verbal, it is a participle followed by the infinitive “to form.” I think your diagram is wrong. I am not trying to disrespect your work i am just saying take another look.

  14. This would have come out beautifully by using a software like CREATELY – http://creately.com/ But, nevertheless, great job!

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