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I have heard the sentence

Qual seu trabalho?

Why am I allowed to omit the verb ser here? I already know that you are allowed to leave out the definite article, but why the verb?

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  • 6
    Does this answer your question?
    – tchrist
    Sep 13, 2015 at 21:13
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    I agree that we should translate that other question and mark this one as a duplicate.
    – E_net4
    Sep 14, 2015 at 7:58

2 Answers 2

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TL;DR: The phrase Qual seu trabalho? is allowed because there is no loss of meaning by the verb omission but implies a spoken context.


In a more formal context, the verb has to be added. The article o also can be omitted because of the casual context, but in some regions may sound odd.

It is permitted under colloquial language. The verb is implied in the phrase. Under formal grammar, the verb would have to be added. Some authors

If it is a narrative text, the colloquial use would be accepted as is.

On a more formal context, like an interview transcript, if the speaker said such phrase it would be redacted as either:

Qual [o seu] trabalho?

or

Qual o seu trabalho? (sic)? [1]

The editors would add the verb under brackets or the (sic) indicator, to dispel any suspicion of an error in the transcription.

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In terms of grammar, you're not allowed, but portuguese speakers omite some words in their everyday communication and this is an example. This can be done in a everyday communication, but you can't write like that in an essay.

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    Allan Neves, Welcome to the site! Here, we work with references or arguments, which must use references. But thank you for the answer either way.
    – Schilive
    Jan 17, 2022 at 22:25

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