Lecture 16 Substitution and Ellipsis 1. substitution 2.
grammatical devices for avoiding repetition and achieving
textual cohesion In speech or writing Substitution: the replacement
of an identical item by a substitute Ellipsis: the omission of the
item or replacement of the item by a zero substitute (leaving out)
Mary left at about the same time as Jane left. Mary left at about
the same time as Jane did. Mary left at about the same time as
1.Substitution Substitution consists of replacing one word or
phrase with another. 1.1 nominal substitution 1.2 verbal
substitution 1.3 clausal substitution
1. Nominal substitution If you want a typewriter, they will
provide you with one. Nominal substitutes include such items as
one, ones, the same, the kind, the sort, and some indefinite
pronouns, such as all, both, some, any enough, several, none, many,
much, (a) few, (a) little, the other, others, another, either,
neither, etc. Slang disappears quickly, especially the juvenile
sort. Can you get me some nails? I need some. I don t want any more
food. I ve had enough.
The best skiing is not found at big resorts but at small
resorts. The boys went out night after night and some of the boys
didn t return. It is possible to respect both your opinions and the
opinions of other people. Chinese food is not the same as the
Uses of one/ ones as substitutes a. to replace a count noun or
a countable noun phrase, for personal as well as non-personal
reference, eg: The new design is much better than the old one.
There were a few young people with some old ones in the house. ? I
really like sweet sherry but my husband prefer dry one. b.
Determiner + a pre modifier + one Can I have a melon? I d like a
big one. Your car isn t fast enough. Let s take his new one. I
prefer red roses to white ones, but my wife likes both. If there s
any difficulty about cars, we can bring our own.
Uses of one/ ones as substitutes Compare: I need this
dictionary, but I can t afford that. I need this dictionary, but I
can t afford it. I need a good dictionary, but I can t afford one.
(generic reference) The weather is hotter here than ___ in Dalian.
Your answer to the question is better than ___ of hers. He likes
this coat better than the ___ you showed him before. d. ones can
only replace the headword of a noun phrase, and therefore is always
preceded by determiner + pre modifier , eg: I have a new dictionary
and several old ones.
Judy broke the coffee-pot, so she has to buy another (one).
Some of your answers were correct, but I can t remember which
(ones). I prefer the large bottle to the small (one). One should be
careful in talking to one s colleagues. You re a right one, losing
Verbal substitution: the replacement of a verb element by a
verbal substitute- do or do so. A: We all hate hypocrisy. B: Yes,
everybody does. (does = hates hypocrisy) A: Have they moved the
furniture? B: They have done (=moved) the desks, but that s all so
far. A: Does Peter speak French? B: Yes, he does (= speaks French).
No, he doesn t (speak French).
At the time, they lived very near to where I lived. Mary sent
him a text message and I sent him a text message too. Dad never
learnt to speak any other languages and Mum never learnt to speak
any other languages either. A: Why don t you just lie to him? B:
Oh, I couldn t lie to him. Anyone wishing to interrupt with
questions should feel free to interrupt with questions.
Uses of verbal substitutes Substitute do can also combine with
so to form two patterns of short-response: So + do + subject and So
+ subject + do , eg: A: I like playing football. B: So do I. So
does my brother. So did my father. Negative form: neither/nor do +
subject A : The students all work hard. B: So they do.
Mary works hard. Sally works hard too. I didn t have enough
money. My husband didn t have enough money either. A:I saw Jane
yesterday. B: _____. She told me not to forget the cake in the
oven, but I forgot the cake in the oven. He promised to learned me
some money, and he lent it.
1.3 Clausal substitution: the replacement of a clause by a
clausal substitute- so or not, representing a belief, an assumption
or an emotion with a tone of uncertainty or tentativeness. eg: A:
Do you think he ll come tomorrow? B: Yes, I think so. No, I think
not. They say he will come tonight. If so, the meeting will be held
tomorrow. If not, there won t be any meeting tomorrow. A: Are the
girls coming to the party? B: I m sure they are / I m sure of it. I
doubt if they are / I doubt it. A: Is your brother going with you?
B: Perhaps not / Possibly not / Surely not. A: I didn t stop him.
B: Why not?
Is it going to rain? ________. Will they soon get married?
(doubt) ________. Will they be able to arrive in time? (seem)
________. I wonder if the Brazilians will win the championship in
the world cup. (sure) _______.
2. Ellipsis Ellipsis means omission of the item or replacement
of the item by a zero substitute. a grammatical device for avoiding
repetition and achieving textual cohesion A: Which do you prefer,
the red or the green scarf? B: I d like the red (scarf). I d like
the red one.
Lucy went up to the bar and she asked for a coffee. We were
totally exhausted but we felt satisfied with our day s work. Some
books are to be tasted, others are to be swallowed, and some few
are to be chewed and digested. George will take the course and Bob
may take the course.
2.1 nominal ellipsis: the head word is left out. There are four
flights to New York today. Let s take the earliest. Why give me two
cups of coffee? I only asked for one.
2.2 verbal ellipsis: omission of the main verb, the auxiliary
or even the whole phrase. Have you seen him before? Yes, I have.
What have you been doing in the garden? Whitewashing the fence. Who
else is coming to the party? Peter.
2.3 Clausal ellipsis: omission of the whole clause. Are you
felling well? Yes. He promised to be here on time. Yes, I know. I
finished the task ahead of time. How? Will it rain tomorrow?
Ellipsis: Especially common in dialogue Resulting in incomplete
Ellipsis is most frequently found in coordinate
constructions-in compound sentences, coordinate noun phrase, and
coordinate prepositional phrase. Mary washed the dishes, Mary dried
them and Mary put them in the cupboard. John was the winner in
1989, and Bob was the winner in 1990. John will meet my family
tonight and John will meet my family again tomorrow. This is his
latest book; I hope it is not his last book. Revolution means a
moral change as well as a material change. A government of the
exploiting class, and by the exploiting class, and for the
exploiting class cannot possibly survive.
In complex sentences, ellipsis commonly occurs in subordinate
clauses, while in main clauses only the initial elements are likely
to be ellipted. (I m) Sorry I ve kept you waiting so long. (It is)
No/ Small wonder they all loved the boy dearly. John will play the
guitar if Mary will (pay the guitar). If I can find the letter and
(if) you are interested in it, I ll let you have it. I am prepared
to meet them when (they like) and where they like. They will be
arriving before the show begins or after (the show begins). While
(I was) waiting, I was reading some old magazines.
A: Will it rain today? B: I hope (that it will) not (rain).
Tell him that I will call to see him and (that I will) have lunch
with him. The cup was broken by someone, but I wonder by whom (the
cup was broken). I noticed how Mary talked to them and (how) they
answered her. I don t know when (I shall meet him) and where I
shall meet him.
I am happy if you are happy. Chinese food has to be served in
small pieces, it has to be picked up little by little with
chopsticks, and it has to be eaten slowly. Fat is used for cooking
in northern Europe, but oil is used for cooking in China. The young
animal is playing a game which can be very dangerous and often is
very dangerous. Jane is dusting the furniture because Bob won t
dust it. He remained a great lover of sport, as he had been a great
lover of sport in his youth. Although he was told to sop, John kept
on working till late at night. The relationship between two
countries is essentially good, even if it has been progressing
Advice is like snow: the softer it falls, the longer it will
dwell upon, and the deeper it will be sinking into the mind. He is
neither interested nor concerned about the problem. The students
must learn to read extensively, to analyze what he reads and
summarize the main points presented. Mr. li has been away for a
week because very ill.