" . . . The Book of Disquiet, an astonishing work that, in George Steiner's words, . . . "

In this, I think I may see an adjective phrase, then, what may you call this phrase, in grammar?

" . . . Part intimate diary, part prose poetry, part descriptive narrative, The Book of Disquiet is one of the . . . "

What may you, in grammar, call these phrases(?)?

2 Answers 2


We would call this anaphora, a type of rhetoric in discourse.

Anaphora is the repetition of words at the beginning of clauses:

Part intimate diary, part prose poetry, part descriptive narrative


Epistrophe is the opposite where there is repetition at the end of clauses:

When everybody talks during the lesson, The rebel does’ n say a word. When nobody talks during the lesson


Anaphoric references are ideas which is referred from the beginning of the text:

For example:

‘I went out with Jo on Sunday. She looked awful.'


The proper noun 'Jo' is introduced at the beginning, before her appearance is described. We call these anaphoric references.

Cataphoric references are "phrases/ideas/people" which are referred later in the text, causing the reader to look back:

'When he arrived, John noticed that the door was open'.


In this case the pronoun 'he' is used at the beginning and the proper noun 'John' is used later. Also the fact that John noticing the door was open later, makes the reader look back to the subordinate clause (When "he" arrived). The cataphoric reference is used to show that they're not different people, but the same person.


The dog is part sheepdog and part pointer.

Part sheepdog, part pointer, the dog sometimes chases the wayward lamb and sometimes stands and points at it.

I parse them as reduced participle phrases set in apposition.

(Being) part sheepdog, (being) part pointer...

I take part to play an adverbial role, qualifying the implied predicate.

  • I thank you, TRomano. May the first one seem like, maybe, a prepositional phrase(?)? And, so, I guess, the second three may not seem, maybe, like adjectival phrases?
    – saySay
    Commented May 31, 2016 at 19:38
  • part x, part y do not seem like prepositional phrases to me though perhaps a contemporary grammarian would categorize part..part as circumpositions. They are comparable to "half sheepdog, half pointer" where half is traditionally understood to play an adverbial role expressing the extent or degree to which something is what it is. I don't know what you are referring to by "the second three". Please clarify.
    – TimR
    Commented May 31, 2016 at 19:47
  • I don’t think I have, maybe, seen circumposition. Interesting. I think I, may, see. I think, I meant, for the first one, in George Steiner's words. May that seem like, maybe, a prepositional phrase? And for the second three, I think I meant Part intimate diary, part prose poetry, part descriptive narrative, . . .. I guess these may not seem like, maybe, adjectival phrases?
    – saySay
    Commented May 31, 2016 at 20:03

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