A sentence written on a parcel:

The box has one side opening and secured by shipping label.

Shouldn't we use an auxiliary verb is before secured by...?

Or could it be left out without affecting the sentence?

Thanks in advance.

  • 1
    Both "opening on (shipping label)" and "secured by shipping label" are participial phrases postmodifying "one side". They are reduced forms of: "... one side that opens on (the shipping label) and is secured by the shipping label".
    – Gustavson
    Commented Nov 4, 2019 at 0:39
  • @Gustavson I'm extremely sorry! The "on" was a mistake before the "and".
    – user100323
    Commented Nov 4, 2019 at 2:37

2 Answers 2


If the sentence means "The box has one side that is opening and is secured by shipping label", then it is acceptable to drop the "is". "opening" and "secured" are both participles, and they participles are allowed to be placed after the noun they are modifying without a copula.

There does seem to be a missing "a" before "shipping label", however.


There should be and "is" before "secured by ...", just as you 've guessed. Since "has" doesn't collocate with "secured by", we need to have an "is".

However, for most (native) speakers of English, it sounds pretty normal even without the "is" since we don't always pay very much attention to all grammar in everyday situations (except grammar nazis) and our brains tend to just fill in the gap to make it sound correct.

  • You seem to be analyzing the two phrases as modifying "the box". But if it modifies "one side", then your logic does not hold. Commented Nov 4, 2019 at 5:55
  • Here, the subject is "The box", and there are 2 verb (phrases): "has one side opening" and "is secured by shipping label". Commented Nov 4, 2019 at 6:48

You must log in to answer this question.

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