Effective Sentences (Lesson #3: Elliptical Construction)

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Effective Sentences Lesson #3: Elliptical Constructions

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Elliptical Constructions An elliptical construction leaves out (for conciseness) words that are unnecessary but clearly understood by readers. John can play something, but I don’t know what.

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Elliptical Constructions An elliptical construction leaves out (for conciseness) words that are unnecessary but clearly understood by readers. John can play something, but I don’t know what John can play.

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Elliptical Constructions An elliptical construction leaves out (for conciseness) words that are unnecessary but clearly understood by readers. John can play the guitar; Mary can, too.

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Elliptical Constructions An elliptical construction leaves out (for conciseness) words that are unnecessary but clearly understood by readers. John can play the guitar; Mary can play the guitar, too.

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Elliptical Constructions An elliptical construction leaves out (for conciseness) words that are unnecessary but clearly understood by readers. John can play five instruments, and Mary can play six.

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Elliptical Constructions An elliptical construction leaves out (for conciseness) words that are unnecessary but clearly understood by readers. John can play five instruments, and Mary can play six instruments.

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1. When you eliminate repetition, keep all the words essential for clarity. Incomplete: How can I date her, seeing that she is a senior, I a mere freshman? Complete: How can I date her, seeing that she is a senior and I am a mere freshman?

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1. When you eliminate repetition, keep all the words essential for clarity. Incomplete: The train neither goes nor returns from Middletown. Complete: The train neither goes to nor returns from Middletown. 

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2. In a compound predicate, leave out only verb forms that have already been stated. Incomplete: The mayor never has and never will vote to raise taxes. Complete: The mayor never has voted and never will vote to raise taxes. 

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3. If you mix comparisons using as and than, include both words. Incomplete: The White House is smaller but just as beautiful as Buckingham Palace. Complete: The White House is smaller than but just as beautiful as Buckingham Palace.

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3. If you mix comparisons using as and than, include both words. Incomplete: Some elegant homes are as large and no less grand than the White House. Complete: Some elegant homes are as large as and no less grand than the White House. 

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Practice: 1. Eighteenth-century China was as civilized and in many respects more sophisticated than the Western world. Pembroke was never contacted, much less involved with, the election committee. I haven’t yet but soon will finish my research paper. 4. Ron likes his popcorn with butter, Linda with parmesan cheese. 5. George Washington always has been and will be regarded as the father of this country. 

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Practice: 1. Eighteenth-century China was as civilized as and in many respects more sophisticated than the Western world. Pembroke was never contacted, much less involved with, the election committee. I haven’t yet but soon will finish my research paper. 4. Ron likes his popcorn with butter, Linda with parmesan cheese. 5. George Washington always has been and will be regarded as the father of this country. 

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Practice: 1. Eighteenth-century China was as civilized as and in many respects more sophisticated than the Western world. Pembroke was never contacted by, much less involved with, the election committee. I haven’t yet but soon will finish my research paper. 4. Ron likes his popcorn with butter, Linda with parmesan cheese. 5. George Washington always has been and will be regarded as the father of this country. 

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Practice: 1. Eighteenth-century China was as civilized as and in many respects more sophisticated than the Western world. Pembroke was never contacted by, much less involved with, the election committee. I haven’t yet finished but soon will finish my research paper. 4. Ron likes his popcorn with butter, Linda with parmesan cheese. 5. George Washington always has been and will be regarded as the father of this country. 

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Practice: 1. Eighteenth-century China was as civilized as and in many respects more sophisticated than the Western world. Pembroke was never contacted by, much less involved with, the election committee. I haven’t yet finished but soon will finish my research paper. 4. Ron likes his popcorn with butter, Linda likes hers with parmesan cheese. 5. George Washington always has been and will be regarded as the father of this country. 

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Practice: 1. Eighteenth-century China was as civilized as and in many respects more sophisticated than the Western world. Pembroke was never contacted by, much less involved with, the election committee. I haven’t yet finished but soon will finish my research paper. 4. Ron likes his popcorn with butter, Linda likes hers with parmesan cheese. 5. George Washington always has been and will be regarded as the father of this country.  CAI

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