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Thread: either or

  1. FW
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    #1

    either or

    A-"He doesn't either drink champagne or eat caviar."
    Could this sentence mean two things:
    A1-He neither drinks champagne nor eats caviar.
    A2-It is not true that he either drinks champagne or eats caviar. He does both.

    B-"He doesn't eat either ham or eggs."
    Could this sentence mean two things:
    B1-He eats neither ham nor eggs.
    B2-He doesn't eat one or the either, he eats both.

  2. Casiopea's Avatar

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    #2

    Re: either or

    B-"He doesn't eat either ham or eggs."

    meaning, he eats neither ham nor eggs. He eats neither of the two.

    :D

  3. FW
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    #3
    Would you say the same of A?

    And how about:
    C-He doesn't drink champagne or eat caviar. He does both.
    D-He doesn't eat ham or eggs. He eats both.

    (I know that these days I have a tendency to follow up a question with another one, but hopefully this is temporary and will go away. I am going through a period of doubtfulness. It's a bit like your Robert Frost quote.)

  4. RonBee's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: either or

    A-"He doesn't either drink champagne or eat caviar."
    Could this sentence mean two things:
    A1-He neither drinks champagne nor eats caviar.
    A2-It is not true that he either drinks champagne or eats caviar. He does both.
    Only the first one applies there. (And you put that well.) Additionally, it would not be normal to use either in that sentence. Say:

    • He doesn't drink champagne or eat caviar.


    Which means the same thing as A1.

    B-"He doesn't eat either ham or eggs."
    Could this sentence mean two things:
    B1-He eats neither ham nor eggs.
    B2-He doesn't eat one or the either, he eats both.
    Only B1 applies. Additionally, either would normally go after the verb. (Thanks for reminding me of that.)

    I once ate green eggs and ham for breakfast. :wink:

    "Would you eat them on a train?
    Would you eat them in the rain?"

    :wink:

  5. Casiopea's Avatar

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    #5
    Quote Originally Posted by FW
    Would you say the same of A?
    Sorry. I couldn't respond to A. I couldn't understand it.

    Quote Originally Posted by FW
    And how about:
    C-He doesn't drink champagne or eat caviar. He does both.
    D-He doesn't eat ham or eggs. He eats both.
    C = he doesn't do this or do that. He doesn't do one or do the other.
    D = He doesn't do this or that. He doesn't do one or the other.

    :D

  6. RonBee's Avatar
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    #6
    C-He doesn't drink champagne or eat caviar. He does both.
    He doesn't drink champagne, and he doesn't eat caviar. He does neither one.


    D-He doesn't eat ham or eggs. He eats both.
    He doesn't eat ham, and he doesn't eat eggs. He eats neither ham nor eggs.

    :D

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