"aside from being", "aside from it being"

Discussion in 'English Only' started by King Crimson, Feb 11, 2010.

  1. King Crimson

    King Crimson Modus in fabula

    Milano, Italia
    I wonder whether both these expressions are correct (possibly in different contexts), or one only is correct.
    I guessed initially that "aside from it being" must be used at the beginning of a sentence, when the subject is not yet specified, whereas "aside from being" should/could be used in all other cases.
    However, googling a bit it seems that either expression shows up everywhere, regardless of the structure of the sentence, so I concluded that this is not the deciding factor.
  2. entangledbank

    entangledbank Senior Member

    English - South-East England
    'It' can look either forward or backward: it might refer to something in the previous sentence, or it might be a dummy that refers to a later clause, or it might even (less commonly) introduce a thing that will be named later.

    (1) We had to abandon our plan. Aside from (it) being expensive, it would have taken too long. [reference backwards]
    (2) Aside from (it) being expensive, it would take too long to implement our plan. [dummy and clause]
    (3) Aside from (it) being expensive, our plan would also take too long. [reference forward]

    We probably could find differences between the phrases with and without 'it', but the position of the antecedent (the referent) doesn't seem to affect it much.
  3. King Crimson

    King Crimson Modus in fabula

    Milano, Italia
    Thank you entangledbank, comprehensive and clear explanation. I gather, then, that both expressions can be considered correct.

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