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  1. #1
    peppy_man is offline Member
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    Default the second of two children

    'He was born the second of five children.'
    I think this is correct, but how about the following expression?
    'He was born the second of two children.'
    I guess 'the second of two children' sounds strange.
    Is the form OK?

  2. #2
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
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    Default Re: the second of two children

    Hello Peppy

    Both sentences are grammatically correct. However, it would be much more idiomatic to say:

    1. He was the second of five children.
    2. He was the second of two children.

    (The "being born" is implicit.)

    All the best,

    MrP

  3. #3
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    curmudgeon is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: the second of two children

    He was the younger of two children.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: the second of two children

    And why not of the two children?

  5. #5
    curmudgeon's Avatar
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    Default Re: the second of two children

    Quote Originally Posted by Humble View Post
    And why not of the two children?
    No reason why you can't say that.

  6. #6
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    Default Re: the second of two children

    Either is correct in the same contexts?

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    Default Re: the second of two children

    Quote Originally Posted by Humble View Post
    Either is correct in the same contexts?
    [1] He is the second of two children.
    [1] He is the second of the two children (that) we spoke about earlier.

    The determiner the is a definer. It defines 'two children". That is,

    A: Which two children?
    B: The two children we spoke about earlier.

    Hope that helps.

    Happy New Year!

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    Default Re: the second of two children

    Thank you, Cas,
    (In my mind I can't help saying mama Cass and I visualise a large lady with a kind round face )
    Somehow it seemed to me the phrase implied they had been spoken of before.
    OK, that's clear enough.
    Best wishes for 2007!

  9. #9
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    Default Re: the second of two children

    You're most welcome, and you're very kind. Thank you.

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