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    #1

    Question Stress and meaning

    I have a question regarding the changing meaning of a sentence by changing which words are stressed.
    e.g. "You might have a few problems, but you won't have many."
    If the words "few" and "many" are stressed, how would the meaning change if any other words are stressed instead?

    Other examples I'm looking at include:

    1. You should always be punctual, but you dont have to be formal.
    2. You don't have to wear a suit, but you must weat a tie.
    3. You have to get permission first, but the managers don't.
    4. The Japanese may think you rude, but the Italians won't.
    5. It's important to be serious at work, but not when you're at a party.

    Many thanks.

  1. 5jj's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Stress and meaning

    Let's just look at one:

    2. You don't have to wear a suit, but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, (because you are not speaking at the meeting) but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, (despite the fact that you thought you did) but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, (although it would be a good idea if you did) but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, but you must wear a tie. (even though one conventionally important item of clothing is not obligatory, another one is.)

    You don't have to wear a suit, but you must wear a tie. (it really is obligatory).

    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
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    #3

    Re: Stress and meaning

    Thanks a bunch fivejedjon,
    I really appreciate your help with that!



    Quote Originally Posted by fivejedjon View Post
    Let's just look at one:

    2. You don't have to wear a suit, but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, (because you are not speaking at the meeting) but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, (despite the fact that you thought you did) but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, (although it would be a good idea if you did) but you must wear a tie.

    You don't have to wear a suit, but you must wear a tie. (even though one conventionally important item of clothing is not obligatory, another one is.)

    You don't have to wear a suit, but you must wear a tie. (it really is obligatory).

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