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Thread: four to one

  1. #1
    jiang is offline Key Member
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    Default four to one

    Dear teachers,

    His uncle brought him four five-pound notes, four to one.

    Could you please explain the meaning of it?

    Looking forward to hearing from you.
    Thank you in advance.

    Jiang

  2. #2
    jamiep is offline Member
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    Default Re: four to one

    Can you add some context?

  3. #3
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    Default Re: four to one

    The first part of your sentence is clear, the 'four to one' part really means nothing to me in this sentence.

    There are two contexts I can think of where I'd expect to hear 'xx to one'. One is reporting scores of competitive sports, as in:

    A: How did your baseball game go?
    B: They beat us four to one/They won four to one. (or any number to any number)

    The other is in the context of how many times more (usually) people there are compared to a different group of people, and is mostly used in conjunction with the verb 'to outnumber', (and most likely 'any number to one') as in:

    "In our class, girls outnumber boys almost three to one." (There are almost three times more girls than boys)
    "They outnumbered us two to one." (Probably talking about a group of people in a fight or battle - there were twice as many people on their side as on our side)


    (not a teacher, just a language lover)

  4. #4
    jiang is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: four to one

    Hi jamiep,

    Thank you very much for your reply. The context is about gamble on horse. When the horse he bet really won his uncle brought him four five-pound notes, four to one.

  5. #5
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    bhaisahab is online now Moderator
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    Default Re: four to one

    Quote Originally Posted by jiang View Post
    Hi jamiep,

    Thank you very much for your reply. The context is about gamble on horse. When the horse he bet really won his uncle brought him four five-pound notes, four to one.
    You should have put the full the context in the first post. It means that the horse won the race at 4 to 1, he bet one five pound note on the horse and he got four five pound notes back.

  6. #6
    jiang is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: four to one

    Hi bhaisahab,

    Thank you very much for your explanation. I do not know anything about horse gambling so I thought it is language issue. Now I know the information of horse gambling is important for you to understand the sentence.

    Jiang

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