Ellipsis (linguistics) - Types of Ellipsis - Verb Phrase Ellipsis

Verb Phrase Ellipsis

Verb phrase ellipsis (also VP-ellipsis or VPE) is a particularly frequent form of ellipsis in English. VP-ellipsis elides a non-finite VP. The ellipsis must be introduced by an auxiliary verb or by the particle to.

John can play the guitar; Mary can play the guitar, too.
He has done it before, which means he will do it again.

An aspect of VP-ellipsis that is unlike gapping and stripping is that it can occur both forwards and backwards. That is, the ellipsis can both precede and follow its antecedent, e.g.

The man who wanted to order the salmon did order the salmon.
The man who wanted to order the salmon did order the salmon.

Of the various ellipsis mechanisms, VP-ellipsis has probably been studied the most and it is therefore relatively well understood.

Read more about this topic:  Ellipsis (linguistics), Types of Ellipsis

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