以前のブログでもご紹介していますが、弊社ではQuality Reviewという英文ライティングで役立つ情報を配信しています。このQuality Reviewでは日本人がついやってしまいがちな書き方など、身近なTopicを、ライティング講座の講師Bobさんが、わかりやすく噛み砕いて説明してくれます。
How to avoid overusing sentence adverbials
The term sentence adverbial refers to a word or phrase that modifies the whole sentence in which it appears, and is often (although not always) found at the beginning of the sentence. A sentence adverbial functions either to reveal the attitude of the writer toward the information given in the sentence (e.g., “Fortunately, . . . .), or to link the sentence to the preceding one (e.g., “Hence, . . . .”).
Examples often seen in scientific texts are words or phrases such as However, Therefore, On the other hand, In contrast, Thus, As a result, and so on.
Sentence adverbials are a very useful means of maintaining the smooth flow of information from one sentence to the next. However, care should be taken not to create a succession of sentences each starting with one of these expressions: For example:
First, we AAA. Next, we BBB. As a result, we found that CCC. However, DDD. On the other hand, EEE. Therefore, FFF.
Such repetitive usage can quickly create a feeling of boredom in the reader. Overuse of sentence adverbials in this way is, in fact, quite common in English texts written by Japanese researchers.
As a solution to this problem, if you find that you are using too many adverbials at the beginning of sentences, try to place some of them inside the sentence, rather than at the beginning, or else rewrite the sentence so as to eliminate them. For example:
First, we AAA. We then BBB. The results showed that CCC. It was found, however, that DDD. On the other hand, EEE. It was therefore concluded that FFF.
The key point here is to avoid becoming stuck in a pattern of beginning one sentence after another with an adverbial expression. If you find yourself in such a pattern, try to add a little variety to your sentence style.
（— SUMMER 2010—より）