Are any of these grammatically incorrect?

  1. ‡The wallet which was stolen is mine.

  2. ‡The stolen wallet is mine.

  3. ‡‡The wallet stolen is mine.

the one I quoted with ‡‡ is the sentence that my university teacher stated was grammatically correct ... but I still have my doubts.


2 Answers 2


All three are correct.

  1. The wallet which was stolen is mine.
  2. The stolen wallet is mine.
  3. The wallet stolen is mine.

Number 1 is a bit long-winded, but is fine. Number 2 is the usual everyday way of saying it. Number 3 is using what's called a postpositive adjective, an adjective that comes after its noun. In English they are usually confined to poetic use, but they are still grammatical. I would expand it to:

The wallet that was stolen is mine.

This is almost identical to sentence number 1.

In The men injured were taken to hospital, you can replace injured with injured in the accident, at which point you can't put it before the noun.

*The injured in the accident men were taken to hospital is wrong

The men injured in the accident were taken to hospital is right

In *The many boys angry refused to stay, angry is not a past participle, whereas both stolen and injured are. We could also say:

The wallet stolen by the monkey is mine.

but not:

*The stolen by the monkey wallet is mine.

Other examples:

time wasted

document attached

  • I've asked for clarification on the POS of say 'injured' in 'The men injured were taken to hospital'. A strong argument against it being a postpositive adjective is that 'The men injured were taken to hospital' and 'The injured men were taken to hospital' are far from being exact synonyms. Certainly prenominal 'injured' modifies the noun ('The unfortunate / sick / injured / wounded / ... men were taken to hospital'), but in 'The men injured were taken to hospital' there is (probably by association with 'The men who were / had been injured were taken to hospital') a (perhaps ... May 25, 2018 at 10:24
  • not completely overt) referencing of the act/s or accident/s causing the injuries. Lone adjectives typically can't remain after the noun after whiz-deletion ('The many boys who were angry refused to stay.' / *'The many boys angry refused to stay.') May 25, 2018 at 10:30

" the wallet stolen is mine" is grammatically incorrect you can write- "the wallet which was stolen is mine"

  • 1
    Is 'The men injured were all taken to hospital' grammatically incorrect? May 25, 2018 at 9:50
  • If you provided some rationale and evidence your answer might be comprehensible (though still mistaken); as it is it will probably be deleted as worthless personal opinion.
    – TimLymington
    May 25, 2018 at 17:09
  • If you think it's incorrect, please explain sentences like "...the girls abducted...were returned to their families."
    – stangdon
    May 25, 2018 at 17:24
  • @stangdon: How do you explain the grammaticality of “Me is” in the sentence “Me is a pronoun”?   My point is, you’re cheating.   The sentence you linked to says “the girls abducted on 19 February 2018 from a school in Dapchi, Yobe state, northeast Nigeria were returned to their families.” (I added emphasis to the part you elided.)   As John Lawler explains, this is an example of Whiz-Deletion (short for “the girls who were abducted …”)   … (Cont’d) May 25, 2018 at 19:13
  • (Cont’d) … and in such cases “phrases can't appear in front of the noun, but must follow it” (e.g., “Bill is a man happy to see you.” is OK but “*Bill is a happy to see you man.” is not). So, arguably, “the girls abducted on 19 February 2018” is not the same construct as “the girls abducted”. Besides, the fact that a sentence is posted somewhere on the Internet does not prove that it is grammatically correct. May 25, 2018 at 19:13

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .