There are three types of participle clauses:
– Present participle clause
eg. Pretending not to care that she was alone, she walked confidently into the room.
– Past participle clause
eg. Massaged into the scalp gently, the treatment revitalises lifeless hair.
– Perfect participle clause
Having been ill for so long, she had grown weak and deathly pale.
Participle clauses can replace connecting words such as ‘so’, ‘while’, ‘because’, ‘if’, ‘after’, etc. When we use participles instead of connecting words, we usually leave out the subject and sometimes the auxiliary. We also change the verb to the present, past or perfect forms of the participle.
eg. While you drive along the southern coast, you get a feel for the vastness of the country.
—> Driving along the southern coast, you get a feel for the vastness of the country.
Participle clauses often give information about the causes, results, conditions or time of the events described.
eg. Massaged into the scalp gently, the treatment revitalises lifeless hair. (cause)
Having been ill for so long, she had grown weak and deathly pale. (time)
NB: The subject of a participle clause is usually the same as the subject of the main clause.
eg. Looking at herself in the mirror, she decided she needed a new look.
We use a perfect participle instead of a present participle if the action in the main clause is the result of the events in the participle clause.
eg. Having realised they had won the game with the last goal, the team started congratulating each other.
We can use prepositions with a present or perfect participle to make the meaning clearer.
By exercising everyday and counting calories, she managed to lose weight.