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Full quotation: "I love the president and it's an honour to be here", said Anthony Scaramucci, President Trump's new White House communications director.

Example 1 (ellipsis): "...it's an honour to be here", said Anthony Scaramucci, President Trump's new White House communications director.

Example 2 (no ellipsis): "It's an honour to be here", said Anthony Scaramucci, President Trump's new White House communications director.

Which is correct? Thanks in advance.

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The Chicago Manual of Style recommends against the use of ellipses to begin a quotation in running text (as opposed to block text). Because this is a style issue rather than a grammar one, you may receive several "correct" answers.

However, the importance of syntax should be made. Quoted material, especially in news reports, should be consistent with the message so the reader doesn't take things out of context.

Here are a few potential solutions:

"[I love the president, and] it's an honour to be here," said Anthony Scaramucci.

All General Jackson heard was "It's an honour to be here." But later, Colonel Stone said, "You missed the part where Anthony said he loved Trump."

However, given your example, there is no confusion Anthony supports and admires Trump in both his clauses, so you could legitimately use your second example without raising any hairs with an editor in an (American) publication. Why the writer would only include half the quote I don't really understand without more information from the OP.

"It's an honour to be here," said Anthony Scaramucci, President Trump's new White House communications director.

  • Yes but it's not relevant whether Anthony supports or admires Trump in both his clauses, unless you're talking about semantics. You could not legitimately use your second example without raising any hairs with a competent editor in any publication. Why the writer would only include half the quote you don't really understand because you haven't been a writer or editor with both a particular brief to fill and a specific space in which to do that. – Robbie Goodwin Jul 22 '17 at 23:27
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Example 2 (no ellipsis): It's an honour to be here is not what he said.

Example 1 (ellipsis): … it's an honour to be here is correct.

Even if the quoted passage had started a new sentence, as for instance I love the president. It's an honour to be here, the quote should still, strictly, use the ellipsis. It often wouldn't and that's a different question.

  • Do you have any references supporting this? Several style guides disagree. – Peter Shor Jul 21 '17 at 23:22
  • If you’re really suggesting nothing should take an initial ellipsis then how would you indicate partial quotation? You're welcome to follow or ignore what rules you choose and why would I need references for something pretty-much axiomatic? Please look at your own definitions of everything involved here… quotation… purpose of ellipsis… sentence… passage… guide… style? – Robbie Goodwin Jul 22 '17 at 23:40
  • I'm suggesting nothing of the kind. If for some reason you need to indicate a partial quotation, you should use an initial ellipsis. But most of the time (including the quote the OP is asking about), there's no reason to do it. The web page I linked to says "it is rarely necessary to use an ellipsis at the beginning of a quote." But it doesn't say that it is never necessary, so one presumes there are times when they think you need it. – Peter Shor Jul 23 '17 at 0:07
  • You seem to think that it is always necessary. Are there any authorities who agree? – Peter Shor Jul 23 '17 at 0:09
  • Peter, please. The first example was and the second was not accurate. If you want there to be separate rules for what the writer needs rather than wants, or just couldn't be bothered with, how will you communicate those rules to the readers, please? In the particular example, it irrelevantly happens that the omission doesn't change the context. Can you find an example where your ideas still work when it matters? Why could he not have said I hate the president but still, it's an honour to be here, please? – Robbie Goodwin Jul 23 '17 at 0:10

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