grammar - Redundancy of words

17
2014-04
  • paritto6
    • I always have doubts about sentences such as:

      The subway is not so far from the restaurant and from the hotel where I decided to stay for a couple of days.

    • Is it feasible to write instead:

      The subway is not so far from the restaurant and the hotel where I decided to stay for a couple of days.

    • What about:

      The subway is not so far from restaurant and hotel where I decided to stay for a couple of days.

  • Answers
  • Kaz

    Grammatically, you can do this. With one exception: you cannot drop the article "the" from both words. A single "the" will distribute over both:

    The subway is not so far from (((the (restaurant and hotel)) where I decided to stay) for a couple of days).

    Don't put in the parentheses: they are my annotation. Its purpose is to show the semantic problem. The sentence implies that the restaurant and hotel are a unit. There is a single distance from the restaurant-plus-hotel combo to the subway. Moreover, your sentence says that you stayed in the restaurant-plus-hotel combo for a few days.

    The original sentence does not imply that the hotel and the restaurant are the same building. Its structure is roughly like this:

    The subway is not so far (from the restaurant) and (from the (hotel where I decided to stay for a couple of days)).

    [ The subway is not so far from the restaurant. It is also not so far from the hotel where I decided to stay for a couple of days. ]

    If we distribute the article the, it helps to at least clear up that you did not stay in the restaurant and hotel, but just in the hotel. The interpretation also now steers toward that of the original sentence: that the restaurant and hotel are separate.

    The subway is not so far from (the restaurant) and (((the hotel) where I decided to stay) for a couple of days).

    This actually illustrates an important syntactic/semantic power of English articles that doesn't seem to receive a lot of attention.

  • Preetie Sekhon

    The subway is not too from either the restaurant or the hotel, that I stayed at for a couple of days.

    Not so sure about brevity, but this makes it a little less ambiguous and better structured.

  • NickelMonster

    Of course you can. You are just starting the list, restaurant and hotel after "far" in the first revised sentence. But, in the second revised sentence, the wording is grammatically incorrect.


  • Related Question

    grammar - Is using "both of you" along with "each other" redundant?
  • Anderson Silva

    OK, things are going well, both of you are enjoying each other's company, and both of you are attracted to each other.

    Is the usage of "both of you" correct? Sounds a bit off to me.

    BTW what part of the language "both of you"?


  • Related Answers
  • Marthaª

    Your sentence is correct in the sense of being understandable, but you're right that it sounds awkward. I think it's because "both of" is unnecessary:

    OK, things are going well: you are enjoying each other's company, and you are attracted to each other...

    ('Both of you' is a noun phrase, I think.)

  • Colin Fine

    "Both of" is a determiner (specifically a quantifier) used in noun phrases. It is syntactically equivalent to "all of", "most of", "some of" etc. (The 'of' can sometimes be omitted from all (of) these phrases, but that depends on the definiteness and specificity of what follows: it is required here).

    I find "both of" awkward here not just because of the repetition, but also because of "each other": to me, that already implies both, so it is redundant in both cases. It is nevertheless grammatical.