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Thread: not

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    #1

    not

    Which of the following is correct:
    1-A not very tall lady walked into the room.
    2-A lady not very tall walked into the room.

    3-He is a not very strong man.
    4-He is a man not very strong.


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    #2

    Re: not

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan
    Which of the following is correct:
    1-A not very tall lady walked into the room.
    2-A lady not very tall walked into the room.

    3-He is a not very strong man.
    4-He is a man not very strong.
    In my opinion, the first sentence is correct, isn’t it?
    http://www.usingenglish.com/glossary/adjective.html
    If it was written “he is not a very strong man”, it would be correct.


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    #3

    Re: not

    1 and 3 are ok, but I agree with Anatoly about the man who isn't strong.

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    #4

    Re: not

    Thanks Anatoly and Lib.
    What do you think about:
    5-A woman, not very tall, walked into the room.

  1. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: not

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan
    Which of the following is correct:
    1-A not very tall lady walked into the room.
    2-A lady not very tall walked into the room.

    3-He is a not very strong man.
    4-He is a man not very strong.
    I don't think a native speaker would be likely to use any of those four sentences.

    For the first two, "moderately tall" or "short" would work, depending on the intent. Technically, as written, "not very tall" should be hyphenated as a compund adjective.

    For the second two, He is not a very strong man would be better.

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    #6

    Re: not

    Thanks Mike. And what do you think about 5?
    I don't think it works, because " A woman, not very tall, ..." would imply that there is no woman who is very tall. In other words, I think it would be the same as: "Not very tall, a woman ...".

  2. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: not

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan
    Thanks Mike. And what do you think about 5?
    I don't think it works, because " A woman, not very tall, ..." would imply that there is no woman who is very tall. In other words, I think it would be the same as: "Not very tall, a woman ...".
    Number five is marginal. It uses the adjective in apposition to "woman". It would work better, IMO, if the adjective had something more to do with the rest of the sentence. As it is, the tall part would be better as an non-restrictive clause: A woman, who was not very tall, walked into the room.

    Here is a good example: A father of five, not very wealthy, had to buy food for his children with food stamps. This is more logical than: A father of five, not very wealthy, has his office next to mine.

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