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    • Join Date: Mar 2005
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    #1

    "Where is there?" "There is school." --- Can I use "there" like that???

    Dear Teachers,

    "there" can mean "that place", so can we make a queston sentance like "Where is there?" mean "Where is that place?"

    And please look at the following conversation:

    "Please look at the picture."
    "Where is there?"
    "There is a school."

    Dose this conversation sound right? In this case, does "there" mean "that place" or as an introductory subject?


    • Join Date: Jul 2005
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    #2

    Re: "Where is there?" "There is school." --- Can I use "there" like that???

    "Please look at the picture."
    "Where is there?"
    "There is a school."
    "Please take a look at the picture."
    "Where/what is that place?"
    "It's a picture of a school (e.g. in a foreign land)."

    Another example:
    A. "Can you please point out where the school is in the map?"
    B. "You can find it there (pointing to a big area on the map)"
    A. "Where exactly is "there" please?

  1. Casiopea's Avatar

    • Join Date: Sep 2003
    • Posts: 12,970
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    #3

    Re: "Where is there?" "There is school." --- Can I use "there" like that???

    Sula, the conversation does not sound right as is. More context is needed. Consider, Max and Sam are looking specifically for a picture of a school.

    Max: Please look at the picture, there.
    Sam: Where is "there"?
    Max: There is a school. (this is not in reply to Sam's question, but it works if Max is trying to express, "We are looking for a picture of a school and I found one. (pointing) There is a school, right here.

    Here's another way of expressing the first two sentences:

    Max: Please look at the picture, (over) there.
    Sam: Where is (over) "there"? (Sam is asking where the picture is located.)
    Max: There is a school.

    Note, quotation marks (". . .") tell us that Sam is repeating Max's word. So both underlined words are the same; they refer to a location.

    The last utterance, Max's "There is a school" doesn't fit the conversation. Sam is asking where the school is located, and Max replies with something very odd indeed; it's not even related to the topic, which is 'the picture'. It should be,

    Max: Please look at the picture, (over) there.
    Sam: Where is "there"?
    Max: On the wall in front of you. (Max gives a location, on the wall . . . .)

    The phrase 'On the wall in front of you' represents 'there'.

    Here's the grammar:

    Max: Please look at the picture, there (adverb of location).
    Max: There is a school, right here. (existential there subject)

    'there' and 'There' do not refer to the same thing. The first one is an adverb and the second one is an empty subject.

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