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I saw this phrase while I was reading an example of the usage of an adjective on Cambridge dictionary online i.e. included. This is the provided link: included. The complete sentence is:

The trip cost a total of £250, insurance included.

Why is it not:

The trip cost a total of £250, insurance is included.

Again, another example:

The fee covers everything, babysitter included.

Why again is it not:

The fee covers everything, babysitter is included.

Insurance and babysitter are nouns and included is an adjective, so why is this allowed? What I'm familiar with is adjective+noun and I've never seen noun+adjective before.

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    The is is understood. This is a standard usage when referring to prices in this way. Sep 10, 2021 at 13:47
  • To expand on Kate's comment: the meaning of "is" is understood. To actually have "is" there, as in your examples, would require forming a complete clause with an article ("the/a/an") and either a conjunction, a semicolon, or a separate sentence.
    – gotube
    Sep 10, 2021 at 17:04
  • This is similar to, if not directly related to, a construct in Latin called the ablative absolute. This involved a noun and a participle put in the ablative case to express a circumstance under which the sentence occurred. It could literally be translated as "with ...", which would make sense here as well: "The trip cost a total of £250, with insurance included", "The fee covers everything, with babysitter included."
    – chepner
    Sep 10, 2021 at 22:55
  • If you added "is", you would also have to add a determiner for singular count nouns. "insurance" is a non-count noun, so "insurance is included" is fine. "babysitter" is a count noun, so you'd need something like "a babysitter is included" or "this babysitter is included".
    – CJ Dennis
    Sep 11, 2021 at 1:34
  • 'Babysitter' is no more a count noun than insurance, in this context, and both can validly be treated in the same way. Any reference to price as a total (in whatever terms) implies the presence of multiple elements in arriving at that total, so it's unnecessary to explicitly provide for that: it must be so, by definition.
    – Ed999
    Sep 11, 2021 at 8:11

2 Answers 2

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I would say "insurance included" or "babysitter included" are examples of participial phrases: they use a participle to describe something about the main sentence. Participial phrases are very common in English. For example,

He sat down, weakened by hunger.
Hugging the dog, she felt a flood of relief.

You can see how the participial phrase is not the main action of the sentence, but it tells us something about the main action.

In contrast, insurance is included or babysitter is included are complete sentences, because they have a subject (insurance/babysitter) and a main verb (to be). You can't just ram two sentences together with a comma between them; this is an error in English called a comma splice. You could join them with a conjunction, like

The trip costs $250, and insurance is included.

or

The trip costs $250, but insurance is included.

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Technically, "included" is the past participle of "include". Past participles act much like adjectives, but there are difference. One of them, as this example shows, is that noun+participle is more allowable than noun+adjective (however, there are cases where noun+adjective is allowed).

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