Chinese athletes had a disappointing 2018-19 season, with the country's only gold medal coming courtesy Sui Wenjing and Han Cong in the pairs competition at the World Figure Skating Championships.

This is a sentence excerpted from a report on XinHuaNet, an official news website.

My confusion is, since "with the country's only gld coming courtesy" is already a complete accompanying adverbial, meaning that it's quite a pity for China to obtain such few gold medals, how to understand the "objective" after, which is the "Sui Wenjing and Han Cong"?

  • 2
    The article you quote from contains a grammatical error: the preposition "of" has been omitted after "courtesy". In Standard English, it should be "... coming courtesy of Sui Wenjing and Han Cong ..."
    – BillJ
    Jul 29, 2023 at 8:07
  • Is it a common omit or a pure grammatical error? Jul 29, 2023 at 8:18
  • 1
    I've never encountered it before. I'd say it's an error.
    – BillJ
    Jul 29, 2023 at 8:20
  • To answer your initial question, the "with" PP is an adjunct (your adverbial).
    – BillJ
    Jul 29, 2023 at 8:23
  • The alternative 'with the Chinese athletes winning only one gold medal' shows the same 'PP + absolute' structure, to address what is perhaps the other slightly unusual grammatical point here. The 'with' is often omitted from such strings. Jul 29, 2023 at 11:06

1 Answer 1


The phrase “with the country's only gold coming courtesy" is incomplete. The usual phrase is “courtesy of X”.

“Courtesy of X” is a formula for giving credit to someone or some organization for permission to print a photo, literary selection, or whatever, usually without charge.

Because space is often limited, the formula is often shortened to “Courtesy X.” You can find via Google “Courtesy MoMA” (Metropolitan Museum of Art) and “Courtesy RRL” (Ronald Reagan Library).


MoMA staff will put on a dance performance for visitors. Photo: courtesy MoMA, New York.


Although this is common in photo credits in books (search “courtesy DOD/NASA/NARA), I have not seen it in full text, although I have heard it in speeches, often with a touch of sarcasm. For example, one might hear: “The disaster relief budget will be further stressed, courtesy the hurricane season.”

A quick reading of the article from which you quote is that it’s wholly idiomatic, fluent English—nothing awkward or off.

  • Is it possible that you offer an link including "Courtest XXX"? Jul 29, 2023 at 8:19
  • Done. ;-) . . .
    – Xanne
    Jul 29, 2023 at 9:02

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