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Removing Redundancies

Meaning of Redundancy
Redundancy means superfluity or using words unnecessarily or using words for a
second time.
• If all of us cooperate together, we will succeed.
In this sentence the words cooperate and together have !een used. "ut !oth these words
convey the same meaning.
#ne of the two words should !e dropped in order to ma$e the sentence a correct one.
• If all of us cooperate we will succeed.
• If all of us wor$ together we will succeed.
"oth these sentences are correct ones.
• The accused was guilty of false misstatement.
&his sentence uses false and misstatement whereas !oth these words convey the same meaning.
&he correct sentence is:
• &he accused was guilty of misstatement.
• It was the general consensus of opinion that we must go to the movie.
&he two words which convey the same meaning are consensus and opinion.
#ne word should !e removed to ma$e this sentence correct one.
&he correct sentence is:
• It was the general opinion that we must go to the movie.
• The three !rothers had nothing in common with each other.
'ere also two phrases in common and with each other have !een used to convey the same
&he correct sentence is:
• &he three !rothers had nothing in common.
&hese examples might have made it clear for you how to avoid Redundancy in your sentences.
• I am enclosing herewith my !io-data.
Enclosing and herewith are the two words which convey the same meaning.
&he correct sentence is:
• I am enclosing my !io-data.
There will sometimes !e a strong tendency for most of us to clutter up our writing, with a host of
unnecessary words or phrases in the text. This is especially true when writing to a set word count perhaps,
in which sometimes a little #padding# will assist. It doesn$t change the negati%e impact that the clutter of
redundant words and phrases are li&ely to ha%e on the 'uality of our writing.
Redundancy, defined in the dictionary as the #superfluous repetition or o%erlapping of words#, is !est
a%oided in any line of communication !etween writer and reader, whate%er the form of writing.
Em!ellishing one$s wor& with words can add a literary 'uality to a text, !ut trying too hard may !e a&in to
#not seeing the wood !ecause of the trees#. (on$t pay an excessi%e amount of attention to unnecessary
details. )ocus on the su!stance of what you$re trying to say through writing, first and foremost of all.
(voiding redundancy
Repetition, unnecessary words, use of meaningless *argon, and use of pompous or o%er-the-top sentences
and phrases are the main culprits !ehind redundancy in writing. +elow are some examples, with clean
%ersions that #tighten# the writing and con%ey the same information more clearly and concisely:
• Redundant: There were three astronauts that went on each and e%ery ,pollo space mission to the
• )lear and concise: There were three astronauts on e%ery ,pollo moon mission.
• Redundant: ,ll things !eing e'ual, the leaders of the -tudents .nion ,ssociation will consider
the argument, and ma&e their final decision !y %ote on /ednesday next wee& at an open meeting.
• )lear and concise: The -tudents .nion will announce the results of the %ote at next /ednesday$s
open meeting.
0lear and concise writing sa%es !oth the writer and his1her readers a great deal of time 2and patience3. It
ma&es the document more #palata!le# and straight to the point.
There are commonly used phrases that do nothing !ut clutter up a sentence 4 and su!se'uently, the entire
text. .nless necessary, a%oid phrases li&e:
• ,s I was trying to say...
• ,t this point in time...
• )or the most part...
• )or the purpose of...
• In a manner of spea&ing...
• In the final analysis...
• ,s far as I am concerned...
• +e that as it may...
5articularly in the area of academic or research paper writing, the a!o%e phrases are !est a%oided. They
con%olute your sentences. They may !e tempting, yes6 they may sound fancy6 !ut stri%e to achie%e
#snappy# and concise writing !y doing away with them. ,lways &eep the writing simple.
,lways chec& and dou!le-chec& to see if there is needless repetition, or if there are any redundant words,
phrases, or expressions that can !e remo%ed. 7ess is more, and don$t say in three sentences what you can
say in one.
Ta&e a loo& at the following paragraph, and note that the words and characters in !old are words and
characters that can !e easily remo%ed from the text without changing the meaning and flow of the
#-he$d fit, for the most part, in a shoe!ox, so it$s hard enough to recall a time when ,llison, our -hih
T8u, was noticea!ly smaller. +ut, !e that as it may, when we for the first time !rought her into our
house a!out six years ago, she was positi%ely microscopic. ,llison, for the most part, li&ed to hide in
impossi!le spaces 2if only !ecause she could3: !etween the fridge and the china ca!inet, !ehind the open
front door and entrance 2flan&ing the um!rellas3, under the coffee ta!le, !ehind the sofa, her hairs ruining
the !e *esus out of the li%ing room carpet.#
(elete those words and characters in !old and you ha%e a passage that reads more swiftly and gracefully.
,nother common mista&e is to resort to repetition as a means of emphasi8ing a point. /ords of emphasis
sure are essential, !ut don$t #o%er-emphasi8e# in such a way that you are underestimating your readers$
comprehension and a!ility.
#(!ove all, there is, of course a!solutely no need indeed to decorate your sentence with words and
phrases of emphasis if, without them, the sentence undenia!ly is indeed e'ually capa!le of stressing your