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I frequently see people write "all this", instead of "all of this". Is this a grammatically correct phrase? My intuition tells me that it's wrong (the spoken phrase "all this" is really a contraction of "all of this"); but I'm having a hard time finding any evidence to support the claim.

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

Yes, it is correct.

This is an example of what linguists call ellipsis, or elliptical construction. Wikipedia defines it as "the omission from a clause of one or more words that would otherwise be required by the remaining elements."

It's fine to omit words in this manner so long as your audience understands what you're saying.

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Thanks! It looks sloppy, IMHO; but, I'll live with it. =) –  RMorrisey Nov 11 '10 at 0:48

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