Swayed


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  1. #1

    Swayed

    Hello All,

    This is driving me mad.

    Would you write that something swayed sideways?

    Example: The girl swayed sideways.

    It would be a standalone sentence.

    It seems that if something sways, it just sways, but adding sideways hits my beat. Its not a darling, but I was comfortable with it. I'm willing kill it if I have to.

    Any input welcome.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Hi Fools. Sometimes that just happens. Doesn't/does look right and you just can't leave it alone. I can't say what's right or wrong, but to me - just my opinion here - a direction gives more of a visual. She swayed sideways makes you feel she could fall or perhaps bump into something. Is she on a train or a boat? And of course it seems that sideways is the only way she can go. But, of course, in deference to those who may disagree, she doesn't HAVE to sway in any direction. But yes, I would write she swayed sideways. Maybe if she was ill and was swaying not because of anything external and there is not follow-up action like bumping into a fellow passenger, swayed might be appropriate too. LOL! Don't you love answers that don't really answer your questions?
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  3. #3
    Member technicalbob's Avatar
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    Hi there.

    My initial thought was the word 'sway' implies a sideways motion by definition, making the latter word redundant. However, looking it up tells me that to sway is to move to one side, or in a particular direction. So I would say it's fine to write your sentence as is, you're just clarifying a direction.

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  4. #4
    It sounds a little awkward to me. But if you can't think of a better way to put it, it's not awful or anything.

  5. #5
    To me there's something vaguely humorous about describing "The girl swayed sideways" as a "standalone sentence" - almost like the swaying was a punishment that wouldn't have happened if she were standing with someone

    I'm thinking along the same lines as technicalbob that "sideways" is redundant. It's not possible to say for sure without seeing the surrounding text but might it be better to describe something that goes with the swaying? "The girl swayed, and made a grab for ..." or something like that.


  6. #6
    Member technicalbob's Avatar
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    Context is key. If she is drunk maybe she 'swayed chaotically' or if she was at a school disco; 'swayed awkwardly'.

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  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by technicalbob View Post
    Context is key. If she is drunk maybe she 'swayed chaotically' or if she was at a school disco; 'swayed awkwardly'.

    Sent from my SM-N960F using Tapatalk
    "She swayed, and made a grab for the nearest adverb."


  8. #8
    You mean that she swayed from side to side? Swaying is a slow, back and forth motion, right? I am jarred by She swayed sidewise​ and I wouldn't know what motion was meant.
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  9. #9
    A person can sway in one direction or sway back-and-forth. It simply implies a slow, sinuous movement, like grass moving to a light breeze.
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  10. #10
    The grass actually stays in one location. So if you see it moving to the right, it has to be also moving to the left.

    The grass swayed sideways.
    I would be confused by that also. I think you need a different example. A definition from a dictionary?
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