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  1. Member
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    #1

    Omitting a verb when it appears the second time

    For the context, please assume that someone researched how many students of a university have experience in donating their blood, by year and by blood type.

    Sheet 1 of the attached file shows the data on the male students and Sheet 2 (shows) those of the female students.
    Can I omit the second “shows” in this case? (I think I sometimes see expressions like that.)

    Would the sentence be better if I omit it because I can avoid the redundancy of repeating the same verb twice in that way?
    Or, would it be better not to omit it because the meaning of the sentence would be clearer in that way?
    Which is better? Thank you.

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    #2

    Re: Omitting a verb when it appears the second time

    You can omit it. You could even go further and say "... and Sheet 2 the female students."

  2. FreeToyInside's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Omitting a verb when it appears the second time

    You can omit it, but it sounds better to me when omitting the repeating verb if it said 'sheet 1 shows the data on the male students and sheet 2 the data on the female students,' rather than 'those of'. But I think this is just a matter of personal writing style.

    **and I just now noticed SoothingDave's entry, his suggestion is even more concise.

    (not a teacher, just a language lover)

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    #4

    Re: Omitting a verb when it appears the second time

    "Those of" sounds odd because it is treating "data" as plural, where most of the time nowadays we would consider it as singular. So it would need to be "that of" if you were writing it that way.

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    #5

    Re: Omitting a verb when it appears the second time

    I would add that in any kind of scientific, analytical, statistical or legal text, clarity of meaning must override stylistic considerations of concision or brevity, even if it means repeating redundant words and phrases.

    You don't want to have your readers struggling to understand what you are intending to say, when a few extra words would make it crystal clear.

    For that reason, I would recommend leaving the original sentence as is:


    Sheet 1 of the attached file shows the data on the male students and Sheet 2 shows those (or 'that') of the female students.

    Rover
    Last edited by Rover_KE; 09-May-2012 at 18:38.

  3. Member
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    #6

    Re: Omitting a verb when it appears the second time

    I see. Thank you so much.

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