In everyday practice I often encounter tasks which would benefit from being able to define aliases for chunks of regular expressions to reuse them later. Typical examples include: parsing a floating point number, a zip code or a telephone number. (Zip code may become particularly unwieldy).
Suppose you could define a grammar for parsing floating point numbers, and then give it an alias, once defined you would be able to reuse this in regular expressions you use afterwards. In some fictional language this could look like this:
float := /[+-]?(\d+|\d*\.d+)(e\d+)?/ sum := /(?R<float>)+(?R<float>)/
This, in principle, wouldn't change anything in terms of expressive power (unless you allow self-reference), but it seems like it could make the practical implementations of regular expressions more concise?
So, my question is: has any language implemented anything like that? Or, and if not, then what would be the reason for not doing so?