Results 1 to 4 of 4
  1. #1
    naomi_126 is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Japanese
      • Home Country:
      • Japan
      • Current Location:
      • Japan
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    2
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Can "by" be omitted?

    Hello, I have a question about "by". When it is used to describe as a method of doing something, the "by" can be omitted?
    I have an example line.

    *Poeple tried to get rid of the sealions using firecrakers.
    I took this as : People tried to get rid of the sealions by using firecrakers. so that I could take this "using" as a nounverb. But could this "using" be present participle? However, in that case, I'm not sure what "using" is modifying.


    I have no problem understanding it, but when I see this from grammatical perspective, I don't quite see it.

    Thank you.
    Last edited by naomi_126; 07-May-2013 at 13:43.

  2. #2
    SoothingDave is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • American English
      • Home Country:
      • United States
      • Current Location:
      • United States
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    9,799
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Can "by" be omitted?

    Yes, a "by" is understood.

    You could read the sentence as saying that the sea lions were using firecrackers, but common sense tells us that isn't what is meant.

  3. #3
    naomi_126 is offline Newbie
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • Japanese
      • Home Country:
      • Japan
      • Current Location:
      • Japan
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    2
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Can "by" be omitted?

    Quote Originally Posted by SoothingDave View Post
    Yes, a "by" is understood.

    You could read the sentence as saying that the sea lions were using firecrackers, but common sense tells us that isn't what is meant.


    Thank you for your reply. I'm glad to know I was in the right page.
    But I need to explain to my student grammatically..
    Is it like an idiom of "get rid of noun ..ing" that means "get rid of something by doing ...?"
    Thanks

  4. #4
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    19,736
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Can "by" be omitted?

    Quote Originally Posted by naomi_126 View Post
    Thank you for your reply. I'm glad to know I was in the right page.
    But I need to explain to my student grammatically..
    Is it like an idiom of "get rid of noun ..ing" that means "get rid of something by doing ...?"
    Thanks
    No, it's not an idiom. 'by' means 'by using the technique/manner of', or something like that. But that is often understood.
    "He earned extra money working on weekends" = "He earned money by working on weekends." There's no difference in meaning for most purposes.
    "She became famous making movies." = "She became famous by making movies."

Similar Threads

  1. [Grammar] Can "that" be omitted in this sentence
    By hkgoddess in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 19-Apr-2013, 07:58
  2. [Grammar] Can "that" be omitted in this sentence
    By hkgoddess in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 18-Apr-2013, 19:03
  3. [Grammar] Is "when you are" omitted in this sentence?
    By eggcracker in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 15-Jun-2012, 19:52
  4. "the" omitted - correct, but...
    By joeoct in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 19-Jun-2011, 00:38
  5. Replies: 3
    Last Post: 06-May-2010, 14:19

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •