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Thread: prepositions

  1. #1
    navi tasan is offline Key Member
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    Default prepositions

    You and I met a hefty man in the supermarket together a while ago. Today I met that man again somewhere else, say, in the park. Which of the following sentences could I use:

    1-I ran into the hefty man from the supermarket today.

    2-I ran into the hefty man in the supermarket today.
    3-I ran into the hefty man of the train station today.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: prepositions

    1
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  3. #3
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: prepositions

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan View Post
    You and I met a hefty man in the supermarket together a while ago. Today I met that man again somewhere else, say, in the park. Which of the following sentences could I use:

    1-I ran into the hefty man from the supermarket today.
    If he worked there.
    2-I ran into the hefty man in the supermarket today. No man in particular, but you recognized him because of his size/weight.
    3-I ran into the hefty man of the train station today. No.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.
    And you would seldom hear/read the term "hefty" in modern day English.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: prepositions

    Why, in sentence #3, did he suddenly have something to do with the train station? Shouldn't it still say "supermarket"?
    Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.

  5. #5
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    Default Re: prepositions

    Sorry, but I see #2 as saying you met him in the supermarket, not in the park.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  6. #6
    navi tasan is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: prepositions

    Thank you all very much,

    I am sorry. I changed horses in midstream so to speak and messed up. "Train station" has nothing to do there. It has to be supermarket.

    I think that native speakers have different takes on "1' and "2'.
    For some:

    1-I ran into the hefty man from the supermarket today.


    necessarily implies that the man worked there. I customer could not be referred to as "the man from the supermarket". If the man was a customer than

    2-I ran into the hefty man in the supermarket today

    Should be used. For the others "2" can only mean that I ran into him in the supermarket.

    That is a very tentative conclusion I have come to.
    I am not sure that this thread confirms that although I suspect it does. I don't quite see what Bill means by "No man in particular".

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

  7. #7
    billmcd is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: prepositions

    By "no man in particular" I meant that he was not a personal acquaintance, but that you recognized him as having seen him on previous occasions at the supermarket.

  8. #8
    navi tasan is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: prepositions

    Thanks Bill.

  9. #9
    CharlieN is offline Newbie
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    Default Re: prepositions

    These 3 sentences have slightly different meanings.

    1. The hefty man you ran into works at the supermarket or goes to that particular supermarket
    2. You ran into the hefty man at the supermarket. This sentence sounds like you've met him somewhere else before, but you met him again today.
    3. This sounds a bit inaccurate to me. I think it should be "I ran into the hefty man at/in the train station today."

  10. #10
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    Default Re: prepositions

    Again I disagree. If you and I met this guy, or at least saw him, at place X, then for us he is the guy from place X. It doesn't matter if he works there, was a customer, or stopped walking past only long enough to tie his shoe. Our common shared reference for him is place X so he will be the guy from place X when we talk about him.

    If you say you met the guy in place X, then that is where the encounter took place.

    Don't use of.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

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