7

Frequently, when editing/reviewing SE posts, I see the following:

as you can see in the below image.

Now, to me, below image, just sounds wrong and I reverse the order, changing it to:

as you can see in the image below.

However, in my own posts, I will often write:

as the above image shows

en lieu of

as you can see in the image above

because it sounds, to me, to be a bit more in keeping with formal documentation. The phrase ... image above is, obviously, correct also, and sounds fine, just not so technical.

TL;DR

  • Why does above image sound ok, but below image does not?
  • Am I wrong, and the only one who thinks this sounds odd?
  • Why isn't the antonym of above (which is an adjective), not an adjective itself? It seems rather asymmetrical.

Update:

I hadn't realised that this had already been asked on SE ELU: Which is correct: “the below information” or “the information below”?. I should have checked, apologies

1

The below image and the above image are writing conventions used to refer to a figure in terms of its relative position in the text.

In the three-dimensional world of things, we say

Noise was coming from the apartment above.

You can put that book on the shelf below.

P.S. I suppose above and below would be so-called "small clauses" here.

  • I believe that you may have missed my point. I am not talking about spoken English, per se. As a technical writer, I would use the above image, but I would never use the below image. I would say it, however, if I was reviewing a technical document with a peer, face-to-face. – Greenonline Jun 13 '17 at 15:32
  • That's just a stylistic preference, IMO. The below figure and the below diagram are quite well attested, even if "the below image" is not. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jun 13 '17 at 15:51

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.