(the) custodian of

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"Pursued by the Empire's sinister agents, Princess Leia races home aboard her starship, custodian of the stolen plans that can save her people and restore freedom to the galaxy."
Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, film

Why is there no article before "custodian" — it's a countable noun:confused:...

Thank you.
  • Copyright

    Senior Member
    American English
    It's a description:

    Princess Leia, custodian of the stolen plans.
    Sgt. Lafferty, cook for the third brigade.
    Matt Dillon, sheriff of Dodge City.
    VicNicSor, member of WordReference.


    Senior Member
    English - South-East England
    In that sentence it could be in apposition, so it's possible with any role. If the role is unique, the article can be left out in other positions:

    Princess Leia became (the) custodian of the stolen plans.
    :tick:VicNicSor became a member of WordReference.
    :cross:VicNicSor became member of WordReference. [not a unique role]
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