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    #1

    Tree diagram for abiguous sentences

    Hello! I have a doubt. This sentece "They found him a good secretary" is ambiguous and I need to analyze it into two different ways. Could you please help me? Thank you

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    #2

    Re: Tree diagram for abiguous sentences

    I don't really know if this will help because the only ambiguity I could find lies in its elliptical construction

    thus you could either take

    "They found him a good secretary"

    in the sense of "They found a good secretary for him "
    or
    implying that "They found him to be a good secretary"


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    #3

    Re: Tree diagram for abiguous sentences

    Yes, but how can we analyze these sentences?


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    #4

    Re: Tree diagram for abiguous sentences

    Don't know whether you'll see this but my thinking on the ambiguity is this.

    For the meaning of 'the secretary they found for him was a good one', I wondered if 'him' is the indirect object with 'a good secretary' being the direct Object.


    For the meaning 'he was a good secretary' I thought perhaps 'him' is the Object with 'a good secretary' being an NP functioning as a Complement.

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    #5

    Re: Tree diagram for abiguous sentences

    Quote Originally Posted by triki View Post
    Hello! I have a doubt. This sentece "They found him a good secretary" is ambiguous and I need to analyze it into two different ways. Could you please help me? Thank you
    ***NOT A TEACHER***triki, good morning. Your question is very interesting. May I give you my input? (1) They (subject) + found + him (indirect object) + a good secretary (direct object). *** (2) They (subject) + found + him to be a good secretary (infinitive phrase used as object of the verb; "him" is so-called subject of the infinitive). = We discovered (that) he was a good secretary. Thank you.

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