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"My dear Professor, surely a sensible person like yourself can call him by his name? All this 'You-Know-Who' nonsense - for eleven years I have been trying to persuade people to call him by his proper name: Voldemort." Professor McGonagall flinched, but Dumbledore, who was unsticking two lemon drops, seemed not to notice. "It all gets so confusing if we keep saying 'You-Know-Who.' I have never seen any reason to be frightened of saying Voldemort's name. (Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone)

It seems ‘all this ‘You-Know-Who’ nonsense’ make a main clause in the semantic aspect, and for-clause subordinate one showing the reason for the main clause. But there’s no verb in the seeming-main clause. What do we call this kind of clause or phrase? Is there just omitting of verb? Or can a noun phrase make a clause semantically like an absolute phrase?

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This could be construed as metanoia or anacoluthon. –  Robusto Feb 26 '13 at 12:53
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2 Answers

up vote 5 down vote accepted

"All this 'You-Know-Who' nonsense" is a noun phrase and a type of parenthetical phrase called an interjection.

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Okay, I don't know the formalities of grammar well, but it seems to me, that we could restate the "All this 'You-Know-Who' nonsense - for 11 years..." as one of these, without changing the meaning terribly:

"All this nonsense - for 11 years..."

"All of this ado - for 11 years..."

"This situation - for 11 years..."

Does rephrasing it like that suggest a proper name for it?

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This does not answer the question. –  Matt Эллен Feb 26 '13 at 21:49
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