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Can I omit the "are" in this sentence?

Instead, a linear combination of these two priors gives the maximum success rate, the optimal weightings for which [are] given by the values of lambda at the maxima in figure 2 in each regime.

It sounds kind of OK to me, but I'm not sure what the rules are here. Can anyone explain them or provide a link to them?

  • 3
    No, you can't omit "are". The clause after the comma needs a verb. – user16269 May 31 '12 at 8:04
  • @DavidWallace: The verb can be implied. For example: "Through the door walked two deputies, their guns drawn." – David Schwartz May 31 '12 at 11:21
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This form is OK (without "for which are"):

Instead, a linear combination of these two priors gives the maximum success rate, the optimal weightings given by the values of lambda at the maxima in figure 2 in each regime

and so is this form (with "for which are")

Instead, a linear combination of these two priors gives the maximum success rate, the optimal weightings for which are given by the values of lambda at the maxima in figure 2 in each regime

but this form is ungrammatical in formal writing (removing only "are"):

*Instead, a linear combination of these two priors gives the maximum success rate, the optimal weightings for which given by the values of lambda at the maxima in figure 2 in each regime

  • Thanks – this is what I was after. I'd clearly gotten confused and tried to combine the two forms! – Will Vousden May 31 '12 at 15:47
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No, without the "are" the sentence makes no sense.

As David commented, the clause after the comma needs the verb in order to work correctly.

Read this fragment:

... the optimal weightings for which given by the values ...

You can see that makes no sense, as there is no verb you can apply to the clause. With the verb, the fragment is readable:

... the optimal weightings for which are given by the values ...

  • Thanks – it sounded OK to me when I read it to myself. Not sure where I got that idea! – Will Vousden May 31 '12 at 8:49
  • I don't see why you need the verb. Forms of "to be" can be implied. See my comment to the question -- "Through the door walked two deputies, their guns drawn." – David Schwartz May 31 '12 at 11:24
  • @David: This is what I thought – can anyone else comment on this? – Will Vousden May 31 '12 at 11:38
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    @DavidSchwartz You can delete the form of "to be" but the you also need to drop the "for which". – Mark Beadles May 31 '12 at 14:18

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