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Consider these two lines:

  1. A list of your rejected friend requests
  2. A list of your friend requests rejected

What I want to say is a list of friend requests that you have requested but got rejected by others.

Are those two lines the same?

I also have a list of friend requests from others that I rejected.

Can either line 1 or line 2 be interpreted as either "a list of friend requests that you have requested but got rejected by others" or "a list of friend requests from others that I rejected"?

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3 Answers 3

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"A list of your rejected friend requests" is better. In general, adjective phrases or participial phrases only sound good after the noun phrase when they are composed of multiple words. E.g. "the running child" vs. "The child running in the garden". Since "rejected" is a single word, it sounds better before the noun phrase "friend requests".

However, I can think of an exception that seems to me to be due to a kind of ellipsis. On a page displaying statistics for a particular user, it would be natural to use the word order "friend requests rejected" (although "rejected friend requests" also sounds OK to me). I would say this is because "friend requests rejected" in this context is taken to be short for something like ""friend requests rejected by you" or ""friend requests rejected by this user".

But it's impossible for "your friend requests rejected " to be short for anything like this, since *"your friend requests rejected by you" is invalid.

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  • Your explanation confirmed my original thought. Thanks.
    – EmilyJ
    Jan 11, 2017 at 13:48
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The first is more grammatical, but for a less ambiguous meaning I would tend to go with "friend requests that have been rejected."

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My rejected friends list plural because I have so many of them. Friends list rejected sounds like the entire list was rejected at the same time and I hope your not getting rejected by a list of potential friends that would be depressing

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