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I want to give some examples of a special type of clause.

1) Too tall to enter the room, he remained standing at the door.

2) Whether successful or unsuccessful, he always puts his best efforts in his work.

3) To nervous to move, she stood on the floor, trembling.

4) Laughed at, they lose heart.

5) He declares the meeting open.

This are the some examples of verbless clause. I want to know more about verbless clause. I searched in net a lot, but unfortunately what I found were not sufficient. Those were not enriched with proper description. I want to know the ways used to express verbless clauses into other way. I want to learn how these clauses are being formed. Please mention some useful links/PDF files that are related to this topic and able to fulfill my demand.

marked as duplicate by Edwin Ashworth, Drew, Misti, tchrist, Centaurus Mar 12 '15 at 23:17

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  • I don't see any "verbless clause" in example #5. Why have you included it? – FumbleFingers Mar 11 '15 at 15:53
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The five examples that you provide are all omitting the verb to be.

1) [Because he is] too tall to enter the room, he remained standing at the door.

2) Whether [he is] successful or unsuccessful, he always puts his best efforts in his work.

3) [She is] too nervous to move, she stood on the floor, trembling.

4) [When they are] laughed at, they lose heart.

5) He declares the meeting [to be] open.

I found this text on the first hit of a Google search for verbless clause:

A verbless clause . . . is considered a clause because it is dealing with a separate piece of information in relation to the main clause. For example, in the sentence,

In the interests of the local children, the council should reconsider its decision.

there are two separate pieces of information: the main clause—the council should reconsider its decision; and a dependent clause that deals with issues that interest local children. In this clause, however, the verb has been nominalised resulting in a verbless clause. Verbless clauses are different from adverbial phrases. The latter provide some information to do with the time, place, or manner in which something happens within an existing clause. Verbless clauses, on the other hand, provide a separate piece of information outside of an existing clause.

(Peter Knapp and Megan Watkins, Genre, Text, Grammar: Technologies for Teaching and Assessing Writing. UNSW Press, 2005) [formatting mine]

  • 1
    What a bizarre example to give for verbless clauses—it’s just a prepositional phrase with a simple noun, not a nominalised verb leading to any kind of verbless clause. The rest of the page seems relatively sound, but the paragraph you quoted is quite nonsensical. I wonder if they’re quoting straight from the book they reference, or if they’re paraphrasing (and in doing so, making the whole thing quite incorrect)… – Janus Bahs Jacquet Mar 11 '15 at 16:38
  • Hard to say; I didn't read the book. – Ian MacDonald Mar 11 '15 at 16:56
  • The second hit was much better. Perhaps you should use it in stead? – Morgan Horse Mar 12 '15 at 19:24
  • Incidentally I would write your 1st phrase « The five examples that you provide are all ELUDING the verb "to be" ». Because, in French at least (sorry I don't know enough English for that), "éluder" is (or was, up to the 1960s) employed as often, if not more, for eschewing unnecessary words in a well-written phrase, hence by politeness and elegance, than for concealing or deceiving; while "omettre" bends too much on the bad side. Versailles, Sat 18 Mar 2017 17:40:30 +0100 – Michel Merlin Mar 18 '17 at 16:40

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