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Is it possible to use 'such as..' and 'for example,' in a sentence like this:

"Device and method for cleaning containers such as for example agricultural crates"

Can we use 'such as..' and 'for example,' together in a sentence?

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    Since they mean the same thing -- pick one or the other, but not both.
    – Andrew
    Commented Sep 13, 2017 at 5:39

2 Answers 2

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"Such as for example" is saying the same thing twice.

When you are saying, "containers such as bottles, pots and jars", what you are doing is providing examples of containers. So saying "for example" is redundant.

You might hear people saying this, but if you were writing an article for a newspaper, your editor would cross out either "such as" or "for example".

M Palmer said, up there in the comments, "It may sometimes, but not always, suggest that the speaker is having difficulty thinking of an example"—and this is precisely because that this implies that someone says, "such as..... er..... um..... for example"—the speaker simply repeats the same thing in different words.

So one of those is completely unnecessary. It's not a language mistake, it's a stylistical mistake called pleonasm.

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It is possible, strictly speaking. However, it would have to be somewhat separated from the sentence:

Device and method for cleaning containers such as, for example, agricultural crates

Keep in mind that this is an informal way of writing, though.

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  • Although it may seem okay, using both of them in one sentence, wouldn't be advisable. It could invoke a hint of confusion, as well as an unwanted repetition for either of the terms.
    – Varun Nair
    Commented Sep 13, 2017 at 11:33
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    I'm a native speaker in the UK, and it doesn't seem at all unusual to me. It may sometimes, but not always, suggest that the speaker is having difficulty thinking of an example, but it will be understood perfectly fine.
    – M Palmer
    Commented Sep 13, 2017 at 11:37
  • Not necessarily. Maybe to a native speaker there isn't anything ambiguous and confusing with the usage of both terms in a single sentence. But to a non-native speaker, it may bring about a doubt of added repetition. The main objective of a language is to keep things simple, so as to convey something with minimum confusion and maximum clarity.
    – Varun Nair
    Commented Sep 13, 2017 at 11:43
  • I'm not saying it is wrong, but isn't it better to use a simpler sentence, especially for people who are non-native to English, in their learning phase.
    – Varun Nair
    Commented Sep 13, 2017 at 11:44
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    I do understand what you mean, but a native speaker is not unlikely to use this phrase. Telling someone that it's wrong will only create confusion when they eventually do hear it.
    – M Palmer
    Commented Sep 13, 2017 at 11:44

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