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    #1

    Question people my age

    Consider the sentence...

    People my age enjoy dancing.
    Is "my age" a relative clause? Often the relative pronoun is dropped, however here we have a case where several words are dropped.

    People [who are of] my age enjoy dancing.

    If not, how best to analyse this sentence? Thanks.

  1. keannu's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: people my age

    Not a teacher, but a learner.

    I learned from another website that "people my age" is quite colloquial, and I think your analysis of its relative clause is correct.

    ex)from another website
    ....The way I look it at is
    "people my age" are people that are of similar age to me. ....


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    #3

    Re: people my age

    I wouldn't call it a clause since there is no verb. Instead, I think it might be an apposition.

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    #4

    Re: people my age

    I don't think "People" is same as "[who are of] my age". The latter is just describing the former, hence no apposition. And "people" can't be same as "my age", either. The thread starter FreeZiebel meant the implied clause, not just "my age".

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    #5

    Re: people my age

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    I don't think "People" is same as "[who are of] my age". The latter is just describing the former, hence no apposition. And "people" can't be same as "my age", either. The thread starter FreeZiebel meant the implied clause, not just "my age".
    I wasn't sure if the correct way to analyse this phrase was to assume some words had been omitted or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by miwalko View Post
    I wouldn't call it a clause since there is no verb. Instead, I think it might be an apposition.
    I reckon you are spot on. Thanks for your help.

    I was taking an ESL class on relative clauses with omitted pronouns, and it came up. I couldn't answer that one.

    not a professional teacher...

  3. tzfujimino's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: people my age

    Hello.
    I agree with keannu that "people my age" is quite colloquial.
    In my opinion, it is originally "people of my age". (I personally do not think it is the so-called "reduced relative" or anything similar.) Simply, "of" is missing there. It might be because "of" is pronounced rather weakly, and people don't bother their heads with its existence.
    Well, it's no more than my guess.

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    #7

    Re: people my age

    No, it is a simple postpositive modifier. The original full form is 'OF my age', although the 'of' is generally ellipted in contemporary usage.

    Quote Originally Posted by FreeZiebel View Post
    Consider the sentence...


    Is "my age" a relative clause? Often the relative pronoun is dropped, however here we have a case where several words are dropped.

    People [who are of] my age enjoy dancing.

    If not, how best to analyse this sentence? Thanks.

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    #8

    Re: people my age

    NOT A TEACHER

    Hello, FreeZiebel:


    Thank you so much for your fascinating question. May I add my two bits to the great answers that you have already received?

    When you get time, I think that you would greatly benefit by googling the words "Non-appositive noun phrase" and then clicking on the "books" section. The first result should be A Student's Introduction to English Grammar by two respected grammarians, Rodney Huddleston and Geoffrey Pullum.

    On page 96, they discuss post-head modifiers (modifiers that come after the noun).

    The two scholars say that the following examples are appositive noun phrases:

    the opera "Carmen"
    our friend the mayor
    my wife Lucy

    They then say that the following are non-appositive noun phrases:

    a woman my age
    someone your own size
    a rug this colour

    They explain the BIG difference between the two classes. I shall not try to explain here, for I do not wish to accidentally give inaccurate information. We non-teachers are warned to be very cautious before commenting.

    *****

    Then I found (on the Web) a lesson from Southern Illinois University:

    I stared at a woman.
    The woman was my age.
    Combined into: I stared at a woman who was my age.

    *****

    Then (again on the Web), I got this from Michigan State University:

    He was a young man.
    He was about my age.
    Combined into: He was a young man about my age.

    *****

    I have presented the above information for your consideration. I do not know who is "right" and who is "wrong."


    HAVE A NICE DAY!

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    #9

    Re: people my age

    NOT A TEACHER


    Hello, FreeZiebel:

    I have just found a sentence in an outstanding grammar that really interested me. I think that you will like it, too:

    "My boy played with others who were of about the same age ...."

    Maybe this sentence could be shortened to:

    "My boy played with others about the same age ...."

    *****

    George Oliver Curme, A Grammar of the English Language (Vol. II), page 516.

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    #10

    Re: people my age

    Quote Originally Posted by TheParser View Post
    NOT A TEACHER


    Hello, FreeZiebel:

    I have just found a sentence in an outstanding grammar that really interested me. I think that you will like it, too:

    "My boy played with others who were of about the same age ...."

    Maybe this sentence could be shortened to:

    "My boy played with others about the same age ...."

    *****

    George Oliver Curme, A Grammar of the English Language (Vol. II), page 516.
    That sentence could also be written "My boy played with others who were about the same age" (without "of").
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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