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  1. #1
    nyggus is offline Key Member
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    Question Theoretically solved

    Hi, look at the sentences:

    1. "Smith solved theoretically the problem of..."
    2. "Smith theoretically solved the problem of..."
    3. "The problem of... was solved by Smith theoretically."

    I want to say that Smith solved the problem using theoretical means, but I am not sure whether all three sentences mean it. For instance, doesn't the second sentence mean that he "theoreticall" solved it, which might suggest that he didn't solve it? We have such sentence structure in Polish and I don't know if it applies to English, too.

    Thanks in advance,
    Nyggus

  2. #2
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    Re: Theoretically solved

    Your analysis of the second sentence is correct. It would imply the meaning you say. The third sentence is the most natural way of expressing your meaning, in my opinion.

  3. #3
    nyggus is offline Key Member
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    Re: Theoretically solved

    Thanks, Coffa. Consider, however, the following construction: "Smith studied the issue of ... He solved theoretically the problem of..."

    Here the third sentence from my first email wouldn't sound good, would it? It would be something like that then: "Smith studied the issue of ... The problem of... was solved by him theoretically." For me, it sounds awkward.

    So, may it be "solved theoretically"?

    Thanks,
    Nyggus

  4. #4
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    Re: Theoretically solved

    Yes, it may be "solved theoretically", of course. These are essentially matters of taste and opinion. Personally, I would always put the adverb at the end of the sentence, and it does not sound awkward to me. Others may disagree.

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