I hear this announcement often at the train-station. Is this grammatically correct, without an 'is' after the word 'train'?

  • 2
    I'm guessing it's similar to other announcement-style messages like "Door locked" or "Prices reduced".
    – tenfour
    Jun 22, 2011 at 0:37
  • 4
    This space intentionally left blank.
    – MT_Head
    Jun 22, 2011 at 0:41
  • I can understand the point of ellipsis in the case of a sign/poster (e.g. to save space on the board), but what would someone lose if they uttered an extra 'is'?
    – Citizen
    Jun 22, 2011 at 4:48

1 Answer 1


It's fine for train-station announcements and the like. A form of ellipsis. Means dropping some syntax. Got it?

ellipsis |iˈlipsis| noun ( pl. -ses |-sēz|) the omission from speech or writing of a word or words that are superfluous or able to be understood from contextual [NOAD]

Just don't use this particular form of ellipsis in formal writing and you should be fine.

  • 1
    Hmm. Sounds to me like the station announcer doesn't have a very good command of English. Jun 22, 2011 at 1:17
  • @Fumble: Really? Were you confused by the announcement, or by any part of my response?
    – Robusto
    Jun 22, 2011 at 1:32
  • 1
    @Fumble: Not everyone needs to talk like an English professor 100% of the time.
    – Robusto
    Jun 22, 2011 at 1:51
  • 2
    I'd go further-- I think this particular example would be rare even in a spoken announcement, but as you say would be quite normal on a written notice. Jun 22, 2011 at 2:45
  • 1
    @Robusto: If we differ, it's probably in our definition of competent speaker. You seem to imply that means able to communicate sufficiently well to be understood, whereas for me it means fully conversant with the grammar of the language in question. I don't think it's a formal linguistic term, but I'm accustomed to using it in that way. And to repeat - it doesn't fluster me at all. I live in a town with a very high Asian immigrant population; I don't think I'm prejudiced against them, but I do notice these types of errors simply because the 'natives' don't make them. Jun 23, 2011 at 2:12

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