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omitting ''as to'' Options
Posted: Saturday, January 12, 2019 3:18:53 AM
Rank: Member

Joined: 10/19/2018
Posts: 61
Neurons: 420
in some sentences it is possible to omit ''As to''

For example;
A1)He was uncertain as to which road to take.

But , in some sentences it can not be omitted

B1)There's no decision as to when the work might start.

How can I tell which ''As to'' I cam omit , which one I can't?
Posted: Saturday, January 12, 2019 9:37:30 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 6/14/2009
Posts: 15,401
Neurons: 48,400
Location: Brighton, England, United Kingdom

Why do you want to omit it?

"As to" is used as an alternative way of saying "about", "concerning", "when it comes to...."

Thus it's an integral part of what one is saying:

"I'm good at Art; concerning Geography however, I'm a dunce." = ..."as to Geography I'm a dunce." "when it comes to Geography I'm a dunce..."

If you were to omit "as to" in both your sentences it would have to be replaced by "about". "He was uncertain about which road to take." "There's no decision about when the work might start."

That's why I asked WHY you want to omit it? Is it just because sometimes, in some contexts, we can? Or because you think, perhaps, native speakers usually omit it?

Native speakers may not use "as to" very often: but when they don't, they use "about" (informally) or "concerning" (formal).

Unfortunately, there's no rule which dictates usage here - it's one of those things which gets picked up the more one hears the language spoken. Until or unless you are confident about when it might be acceptable to leave it out it might be better to leave it in? That way you know you are not making an error! (and also, of course, it leaves you free to concentrate on some of the much more confusing aspects of English which might confuse people if not used correctly!!)
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