and so on/and the like/etc.

flowersophy

Senior Member
Chinese-China
Hi,

In the sentence "I like to eat vegetables such as celery, cucumber, turnip, eggplant __." There are three choices: A. and the like B. and so on. C.etc. In my view, all the choices are right. Am I right?

Thanks very much!
 
  • flowersophy

    Senior Member
    Chinese-China
    Is the question too simple or too stupid? I never doubted the correctness of these expressions until a friend of mine showed me the question yesterday.
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    The sentence is: "I like to eat vegetables such as celery, cucumber, turnip, eggplant, __."
    There are three choices:
    A. and the like.
    B. and so on.
    C. etc.
    In my view, all the choices are right. Am I right?
    No, but you are right in thinking that there is no single correct answer. Since the vegetables listed don't have much in common aside from being vegetables, I wouldn't use (A). But "and so on" simply means "and other vegetables", and "etc." means the same as "and so on"—so both answers (B) and (C) are correct.

    If this was on a test and you were asked to choose the one correct answer, it was a very poor question, since there is no one correct answer.
     

    velisarius

    Senior Member
    British English (Sussex)
    In my view none of the choices are good.

    I would reject A. for the same reason Parla did.
    As for B. C. - If you start a list with an introductory phrase like "such as" or "for example", it isn't advisable to add "and so on" or "etc."

    The reason is that the introductory phrase already indicates that there are other items; "and so on/etc." are redundant.
     
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