Misplaced modifiers

If we use a modifier, a word or phrase that describes something else, it should go next to the thing it modifies.

  • Conrad phoned a statue wearing a blue shirt.
    (Here it reads as if the statue was wearing the blue shirt.)
  • Wearing a blue shirt, Conrad ate a sandwich.
    (Now we know Conrad was wearing the blue shirt.)
  • The teacher on the blackboard drew a circle.
    (The teacher wasn’t on the blackboard.)
  • The teacher drew a circle on the blackboard.
    (The circle was on the blackboard.)