Given these two choices:

  1. I feel it     my duty to [do something].
  2. I feel it is my duty to [do something].

Which is preferred, and why?

Background: I got confused when reading an article in The Telegraph where the first variant is used. I was expecting the second.

  • 1
    This is just normal copular deletion (also called be-deletion) as regularly occurs in things like “I find/think/feel/hope/believe/suspect (that) it [is] better/easier/harder/best/easiest/hardest to do something.” It is by no means limited to this combination alone. See the related questions so tagged. – tchrist May 3 '14 at 20:16
  • @tchrist Thanks. If you think this question is a duplicate, how come you waste all that time and effort updating it? It will be deleted anyway. – user71815 May 3 '14 at 20:30
  • No, duplicates are not deleted. They are retained so that there are more paths to the right answer. And I do not “waste” time. As Dáin, King Under the Mountain, said to the messenger from the Black Land: The time of my own thought is mine to spend. – tchrist May 3 '14 at 20:31
  • I feel it [to be] my duty and I feel [that] it is my duty. With the omitted words put back in, the structure becomes more apparent. – Anonym May 3 '14 at 21:47

In the most literal sense the first is preferred over the second in so far as it is used the most often. However, the second is becoming more popular. I'd guess that the first is generally used when someone is attempting to sound formal while the later is used when someone is attempting to sound more casual in their writing.

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