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Thread: Is it right?

  1. #1
    Cut!e P!e is offline Junior Member
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    Exclamation Is it right?

    ".When a wise man argues at length with a fool, it becomes difficult to distinguish who is the fool"

    Should I use "who the fool is"?

  2. #2
    Teia is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Is it right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Cut!e P!e View Post
    ".When a wise man argues at length with a fool, it becomes difficult to distinguish who is the fool"

    Should I use "who the fool is"?
    Yes!
    ....who the fool is - the best choice and the correct word order in an English sentence of this type.
    If it were an interrogative sentence, then the word order should be the one written in your sentence.

  3. #3
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
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    Default Re: Is it right?

    I am going to disagree - as a sentence it is fine, if somewhat "poetic" or rhetorical.

    In fact, if you say both alternatives aloud (within the sentence), you will very likely find that "who is the fool" sounds better.

  4. #4
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Is it right?

    I agree with Anglika; we can deliberately flout the word order rule for effect.

  5. #5
    Cut!e P!e is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: Is it right?

    Thank you very much!

    So is this rule only for all verbs?

    Thanks

  6. #6
    Teia is offline Key Member
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    Default Re: Is it right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    I am going to disagree - as a sentence it is fine, if somewhat "poetic" or rhetorical.

    In fact, if you say both alternatives aloud (within the sentence), you will very likely find that "who is the fool" sounds better.
    I agree that 'who is the fool" sounds better, especially for foreign learners, which is my case, as well ; but, I understand that, in an exam, [say, FCE], one is supposed to know the correct order in English sentences. Moreover, if students who take a Baccalaureat examination [written exam] write the answer "who is the fool", it [the answer] will be marked as wrong.

    I`d appreciate any comments on this.

    Thank you.

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