The Elliptical Adverb Clauses

Adverbial clauses, as well as other adverbials, answers the questions: where? when? to what degree? under what condition? why? how? They usually start with subordinating conjunctions.

Let's look at the sentence that Susan Hill wrote in 'Woman in Black':

As I crossed the long entrance hall of Monk’s Piece on my way from the dining room, where we had just enjoyed the first of the happy, festive meals, towards the drawing room and the fire around which my family were now assembled, I paused and then, as I often do in the course of an evening, went to the front door, opened it and stepped outside.

As I crossed the long entrance hall of Monk’s Piece on my way from the dining room towards the drawing room and the fire // adverbial clause (when? under which condition?)

around which my family were now assembled // adjectival clause (what kind of room?)

where we had just enjoyed the first of the happy, festive meals // adjectival clause (what kind of room, at which room?)

I paused // and then went to the front door, // opened it // and stepped outside. // the independent clauses

as I often do in the course of an evening // adverbial clause (how?)

In informal English, a 'LIKE' may replace the conjunction 'as if'' and, therefore, introduce a subordinate clause. This is possible because 'LIKE' has several meanings and grammar functions, and some of them are:
like - adverb
You look angry. (how does he look? // adjective
Mary seems to look like she was an angry crocodile. // informal

Mary seems to look as if she was an angry crocodile. // formal/ standard English


Elliptical adverb clauses
There is a special case of an adverbial clause used in comparisons and begins with THAN or AS and often has words left out. Those are known as elliptical adverb clauses. In these clauses a word or more than one is omitted as understood, or implied.

Mary is taller than I (am).
John can jump higher than I (can).
Peter worried more about himself than (he worried about) his mission.

People respected books more than the writers.

It may be a potentially misunderstanding problem. As

People respected books more than they respected writers.  or
People respected books more than writers respected books.

Mary likes Peter more than I. (like Peter)
Mary likes Peter more than (she likes) me.

But: He likes me more than Mary. (likes me?)
Or: He likes me more than (he likes) Mary. ?

While (I am) gardening, I always take time to enjoy flowers fragrance.

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