ellipsis

‘Ellipsis’ is leaving out a part of a sentence. We still understand the sentence because the part left out is already known from the context.

phrase ellipsis

Here’s a student example of verb phrase ellipsis: You need to study hard to pass the test unless you don’t want to. PELIC Arabic female level 4 grammar class Although there are a number of grammar points in the English Grammar Profile to do with Ellipsis, there are none that cover the ellipsis of phrases before or after the ‘TO’ infinitive.  Therefore, we turn to Pearson’s GSE …

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if + necessary | any | anything | in doubt (subject and verb ellipsis)

Here are EXPERT EXAMPLES of subject and verb ellipsis after ‘if’: When you speak your character’s words, you can hear whether they sound natural, and fix them if necessary. TED *If necessary = if it is necessary. Unlike the billions of people who have few options, if any, due to war, poverty or illness, you have plentiful opportunities to live decisively. TED *if any = if there are any.     Planet Radio If in doubt, don’t drive. *if in doubt = in you are in doubt. GSE 66 B2 omit …

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MUST (ellipsis of following verb.)

Point 71 in the category of MODALITY: ‘must’ with the following verb ellipted where the previous main verb is understood *Ellipted subject is also B1. EXAMPLE of a following verb ellipted: We can do this because we must. An iWeb search for: * * * must_VM .|! *we have removed incorrectly tagged ‘must’ as a noun. 1 , IF YOU MUST …

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MUST (ellipted subject)

B1 Point 116 in the category of MODALITY is defined: ellipted ‘must’ without a subject *Note the general B2 subject pronoun ellipsis A search in iWeb for: . must _VVI *also note that this grammar is either non-existent in PELIC student writing or very difficult to locate in TLC or on Google.  The example come …

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‘Not sure if it is.’ (NOT + non-finite or ellipted clause)

Let’s look at the most common examples of non-finite or ellipted claused used after ‘not’. Usually, we would say: I am not sure if it is possible. But we can remove the subject and verb to make an ellipted clause: Not sure if it is possible. We can also say: This is a petrol car …

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If so (ellipted)

Point 43 in the category of CLAUSES/conditional is defined as: ELLIPTED ‘IF SO’, CONFIRMING to refer a previous direct or indirect ‘yes-no’ question where the answer might be ‘yes’.   For example: But then I began to wonder whether a game or an app can really change attitudes and behaviors, and if so, can I measure that change?   A search in iWeb for: ? If so * * 1 ? IF SO , …

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ellipted modal – alternative question

Point 30 in the category of QUESTIONS is defined as: alternative questions with two clauses and ellipsis (of the modal) in the second clause, often as a hedging device. *Both of the English Grammar Profile examples contain ‘maybe’ and do not invert as questions usually do.  They both seem like weak suggestions. Maybe you could hand out toys or show a movie? Maybe you will be able …

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anything (ellipsis)

Here are two examples of indefinite pronouns in ellipted conditional clauses: Anything we can do, anything you need, just tell us. listen Anything you want there, anything at all, just take it. Kings Row (1942) *They mean:  “if there is anything that we can do” or “if there is anything that you want” C1 point 100 in PRONOUNS/indefinite is defined as: ‘anything’ in an ellipted clause.   (‘if there is anything …’) When …

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the best + PRONOUN + can | could

Here are 2 examples of post-modifying a superlative adverb phrase with a clause containing an ellipted modal verb: I do the best I can with what I have. I go about my business, make money, help society the best I can and try to promote free trade in this world. listen   You know, I did the best I could with what I had. listen C1 English grammar point 118 in CLAUSES is defined as: ‘the best’ as a superlative adverb + pronoun + ellipted ‘can’ or ‘could’. An iWeb search for: …

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if + past participle

C1 English Grammar Profile point 106 in CLAUSES is defined as: ellipted ‘if’ clauses with ‘if’ + ‘-ed’ form. A search in iWeb for: if _VVN 1 IF NEEDED 103856 If needed, I will speak for you. 2 IF DESIRED 43002 3 IF REQUIRED 42676 4 IF USED 28178 5 IF GIVEN 14680 6 IF …

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listing adjectives + ellipted clauses

There are two similar points at C2 for listing adjectives. Point 76 at C2 in ADJECTIVES/combining is defined as: list of adjectives in ellipted clauses before and after a noun, to give focus. The EGP examples contain: Imaginative_JJ , good-humoured_JJ , friendly_JJ , he_PPHS1 was_VBDZ … The_AT latter_DA fat_JJ ,_, ugly_JJ and_CC sick_JJ blows_VVZ … …

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should (ellipsis)

Point 159 in MODALITY and ELLIPSIS is defined as: ‘should’ and ‘shouldn’t’ without a following verb where the previous main verb is understood *click here for the interactive word tree of this grammar point. A search on iWeb for the cluster: * * * * should . B1 vocabulary: familiar, seriously, B2: efficiently function 1 …

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used to (ellipsis)

Point 143 in MODALITY is defined as: ‘used to’ without a following verb where the previous main verb is understood. Interestingly, this grammar feature is often located with comparative clauses. A search for on NOW corpus for * * * * used to .|, *from these cluster searches we can put to the right the …

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ought to (ellipsis)

Point 145 in the category of MODALITY and ELLIPSIS is defined as: ‘ought to’ without a following verb where the previous main verb is understood. There is an important note in the comments section of the EGP: This is a very low-frequency form in both the learner and native speaker data. A search for collocates …

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‘She’s the best.’ (superlative adjective without a following noun)

Which superlative adjective should we learn at higher levels?