A misplaced modifier can be a word, phrase, or clause that is mistakenly separated from the word it is likely to describe. As a result, the sentence is definitely awkward, confusing, illogical, and sometimes humorous.

A misplaced modifier could be corrected by moving the modifier to a far more practical place in the sentence, usually next to the term it describes.


1. Misplaced: Mary almost examine every book in the library. (This means she contemplated reading every book but didn’t.)
Correct: Mary read nearly every book in the library. (This means she read most, however, not all, of the books.)

2. Misplaced: Fred kept a black book of all the girls he previously dated in his desk. (This means that Fred dated ladies while in his desk.)
Correct: Fred kept in his desk a dark book of all girls he previously dated. (This implies Fred kept the dark book in his desk.)

3. Misplaced: I demonstrated my dog to the veterinarian with the fleas. (This means the veterinarian has fleas.)
Correct: I showed my dog with the fleas to the veterinarian. (This implies your dog has fleas.)

4. Misplaced: The supporters were told at nighttime the concert would begin. (This implies the announcement came at midnight. The start period of the concert is certainly ambiguous.)
Correct: The followers were told the concert would begin at midnight. (This implies the concert would start at midnight.)

5. Misplaced: Jane just ate bread for dinner. (This implies that all Jane do with the breads was eat it; she did not knead the dough or bake it in the oven.)
Correct: Jane ate just bread for dinner. (This implies Jane ate bread for supper and nothing else.)