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    relatively small

    Hi, Please compare the two sentences below. (1) The creature I saw was no bigger than a dog (not a horse). (2) The creature I saw was no bigger than a dog (not a mouse). My bet is: (1) works but (2) doesn't. Do you agree? Thank you in advance Seiichi MYOGA The intended meaning is that the...
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    Is it "it" or "one"?

    Hi, Please take a look at this: (i) The kit [=The portable fly tying kit] should be no bigger than a briefcase. Any larger, you'll never bring it along; any smaller, it won't hold the necessary materials.         (Field & Stream Apr. 1994) Imagine...
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    "Big" is also possible?

    Hi, Let me ask about the part in red below: (1) Sometimes it is convenient to have a notation that means that a is no larger than b. The notation used for this is a≦b (read: a is less than or equal to b). (L.J. Goldstein et al, Finite Mathematics and Its Applications) "Large" and "big" are...
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    when "and no smaller" is added

    Hi, Do you think (1) is OK? (1) We expected their house to be very big, but it's no bigger and no smaller than ours. Thank you in advance Seiichi MYOGA I added the "and no smaller" part to the original sentence. It seems to me that with or withour that part, the sentence means the same...
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    the relative positions of "as small as" and "no bigger than"

    Hi, Please compare the two sentences below ("Eohippus" was the first horse): (1) The first camel was as small as Eohippus (no bigger than a cat). (2) The first camel was no bigger than Eohippus (as small as a cat). Do you think (2) sounds strange (or doesn't work)? Thank you in advance...
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    the position of "no bigger than"

    Hi, Please look at the two sentences below: (1) Will it be no bigger than a jet plane or as big as a parasite? (2) The star is probably of about one tenth of the sun's diameter – as small as Jupiter, and perhaps no bigger than Saturn. (You might want to remember that the diameters of the sun...
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    how to put it in English

    Hi, Please take a look at the part in red: (1) Only one small bag per person please. The bag must be no bigger than the hand-luggage normally allowed on a plane. (T. Pyle, An Exclusive Affair) I'd like you to help us put the idea of the part in question in English. I think...
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    the triplet of horse, whale and sea

    Hi, Which two of the three (horse, whale and sea) are most closely related? Specifically, do you put together the horse and the whale, or the whale and the sea? Thank you in advance Seiichi MYOGA Do not read this before you give your answer. Suppose that you are asked, "Which two of the...
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    replacement of "when" with "if"

    Hi, I think we can replace "when" in (1) with "if." (1) Well is an adjective when it means health. Thank you in advance Seiichi MYOGA
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    "do you?" and "will he?"

    Hi, I think both (1) and (2) are fine. (1) I don't think Bill will arrive until 8:00, do you? (2) I don't think Bill will arrive until 8:00, will he? Do you agree? Thank you in advance Seiichi MYOGA
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    otherwise=except if (or when)

    Hi, Let's say you ask a student about the meaning of the word "otherwise" in (1). (1) A conditional sentence is false if the antecedent is true and the consequent is false; otherwise it is true. (2) except if (or when) the antecedent is true and the consequent is false. If the student says...
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    the meaning of "otherwise"

    Hi, Imagine you ask two students, "What does the word "otherwise" mean in (1)?" and that one student says it is (2a) and the other says it is (2b). (1) If the light is red, stop. Otherwise, go straight on. (2) a. If the light is other than red b.Except if (or when) the light is red Do you...
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    otherwise=without

    It seems that "otherwise" in (1) refers only to "The program" and means "without / if it had not been for it" (1) The program has saved thousands of children who would otherwise have died. (MED) My question is about what (1) virtually means. (2) It is the program but not anything else that...
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    "as many as" and capacity

    Do you think we can also use "as many as" instead of "no more than" without making any significant difference in meaning? (1) There is room for no more than three cars. (OALD) The sentence is talking about capacity or the upper limit for cars that the space can accommodate. But "three" seems...
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    Exports have risen by no less than 80% in the last ten years.

    According to MED (Macmillan English Dictionary), "no less than" in (1) should mean "as much as." (1) used before a number or amount for showing that it is large and surprising: Exports have risen by no less than 80% in the last ten years. Some native speakers of English, however, seem to...
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    no less than/as much as

    This time, imagine you're reading a book for pleasure. Just three more pages and you're done! I'm wondering how to say it (a) when you positively think that there are still three pages you can enjoy and conversely (b) when you think negatively that there are only three pages you can...
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    [only/still] 3 pages to go

    Let's suppose you're reading a book for work. Just three more pages and you're done! Could you tell us how to say it (a) when you positively think there are only three pages to go and (b) when you negatively think there are still three pages to go? I think (1) works for (a) and that...
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    no more than

    Have a look at this: (1) There is room for no more than three cars. (OALD) I know that "no more than" here refers to the largest possible number of cars that the space can accommodate, but what else can work in the sense conveyed by "no more than"? Instead of "no more than," we can use (a)...
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    as much as

    I'd like you to help us with the interpretation of "as much as" in the sentence below. (1) The painting was expected to fetch as much as £5 million. I know that "as much as" in (2) means "the surprisingly large number of" and is equivalent in meaning to "no less than." (2) The painting...
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    passing score

    Actually, the interpretation of "as few as" in (1) is bothering me. (1) You can pass with as few as 25 points. (OALD) But first, I'd like to know what points is the general passing score in your country (probably because "common sense," which can be different from country to country, is a...
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