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Thread: bad thing

  1. #1
    navi tasan is offline Key Member
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    Default bad thing

    Are these sentences all correct and if they are, do they mean exactly the same thing:
    1-You did a bad thing to talk to him.
    2-You did a bad thing talking to him.
    3-You did a bad thing by talking to him.

    4-You made a mistake to talk to him.
    5-You made a mistake talking to him.
    6-You made a mistake by talking to him.

  2. #2
    RonBee's Avatar
    RonBee is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: bad thing

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan
    Are these sentences all correct and if they are, do they mean exactly the same thing:
    1-You did a bad thing to talk to him.
    2-You did a bad thing talking to him.
    3-You did a bad thing by talking to him..
    1. No.
    2. No.
    3. No.
    Try: "Talking to him was a bad idea."

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan
    4-You made a mistake to talk to him.
    5-You made a mistake talking to him.
    6-You made a mistake by talking to him.
    4. No.
    5. No.
    6. No.

    Try: "It was a mistake to talk to him."
    Or: "Talking to him was a mistake."

    While I may have made a mistake, to disagree with me would probably be a bad idea. :)

    Cordially,
    RonBee

    8)

  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: bad thing

    I don't know if this is a BE\AE things, but I feel differently about these sentences, although Ron's examples are more natural.
    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan
    Are these sentences all correct and if they are, do they mean exactly the same thing:
    1-You did a bad thing to talk to him. NO
    2-You did a bad thing talking to him. YES (you could add IN)
    3-You did a bad thing by talking to him. YES

    4-You made a mistake to talk to him. NO
    5-You made a mistake talking to him. YES (you could add IN)
    6-You made a mistake by talking to him. YES
    Given that our answers are so different, I would like to see what other AE & BE speakers feel .

  4. #4
    Daruma is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: bad thing

    Sentence 6 may be good.

    http://edition.cnn.com/2009/POLITICS/04/23/afghan.war.stories/
    One retired Marine corporal said the United States had made a mistake by sending troops to solve what is ultimately a political problem in Afghanistan.

    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/tennis/news/2002/10/23/becker_trial/
    MUNICH, Germany (Reuters) - German prosecutors asked a court on Wednesday to jail Boris Becker for tax evasion after the former tennis great confessed he had made a mistake by failing to pay $3 million in taxes during his career.

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