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Thread: I thought I had

  1. #121
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    Let's let sleeping dogs lie.

    In a democracy? In the free world?



    I almost forgot my flag.

    Last edited by PROESL; 22-Sep-2009 at 20:46.

  2. #122
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by PROESL View Post
    In a democracy? In the free world?



    I almost forgot my flag.


    No not in a democracy. That would not be very American, would it? One has a renewed sense of patriotism since last winter.

  3. #123
    albeit is offline Banned
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by PROESL View Post

    1. She said she wanted to reschedule the appointment. ( she wants to reschedule)
    2. She said she had wanted to reschedule the appointment. (but then changed her mind - but then decided to keep the appointment at the same time)

    It's clear that an ELL could be easily inclined to think that the second sentence of the second pair is what one must say or write to be "more correct" if the same learner believes that the second sentence of the first pair is what one must say or write to be "more correct". Clearly, the meanings of both sentences in the second pair are not the same. This means that one must recognize when the use of the past perfect is, in fact, truly necessitated.
    Numbers 1 and 2 could have the same meaning, Proesl. Reported speech is merely a form change to denote reported speech. It doesn't necessarily address the fact situation.

    ====================

    Jane: I wanted to reschedule the appointment.

    John: Bill, what did Jane say?

    Bill: She said she wanted to reschedule the appointment.

    Bill: She said she had wanted to reschedule the appointment.


    =================

    Bill hasn't necessarily taken on any more responsibility than that of reporting the one sentence he heard Jane utter.

    The fact situation may well be,

    Bill: She said, "i want to reschedule the appointment.

    No one can state categorically that Bill knows more and that he stated further that Jane "then changed her mind - ... then decided to keep the appointment at the same time".

    If this wasn't reported speech and Bill said, "Jane had wanted to reschedule the appointment",

    we could take this as Bill offering something he knows of. We can't make that same assumption when the situation involves reported speech. Why?

    Because the backshifting that occurs in reported speech is NOT an actual shift in tense. We make use of this backshifting for one reason,

    TO MARK THE SPEECH AS REPORTED

    [emphasis, not shouting]


    Quote Originally Posted by PROESL View Post
    I thought I replied. I thought I had replied.

    Both are equally correct.
    I hate to open a new can of worms here, but these two could just as easily be represented by,

    I think/I'm (quite,absolutely) certain I replied.

    If the person thought that and still does then this is a whole new set of circumstances that can affect structure choice.

    But I agree with you. There has never been any requirement for English speakers to automatically make these backshifts. And to categorically state that one form is excluded from certain registers

  4. #124
    albeit is offline Banned
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by lycen View Post
    We do have subpar English standards called Singlish in Singapore and a similar Manglish in Malaysia. Some of the syntaxes we use in sentences are actually wrong in standard English (the one that's taught in grammar books), but their meanings can be easily understood or implicit within a given context.
    Those are not "subpar" English standards, Lycen. Those are standard for the dialects of Singlish and Manglish.

    What you're suggesting is that CdE, AmE, AuE, NzE all have some subpar standards when measured against BrE, it being the "original. That is, of course, simply not true.

    Quote Originally Posted by lycen View Post
    Does that mean that these are grammatically correct too? After all, they are localized colloquial forms of English. Isn't there a colloquial English among natives too? By the way, the first language and language of instruction of Singapore is English.
    There's this notion that exists that colloquial is ungrammatical and incorrect and SWE/SFE is grammatical and correct. It's pure hogwash. Speech doesn't need any artificial standards set for it. It's been tried. They're called prescriptions.

    There are different registers within the language and none of them follow exactly the same rules.
    Last edited by albeit; 23-Sep-2009 at 00:36.

  5. #125
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    Re: I thought I had

    Originally Posted by PROESL

    1. I thought I replied.
    2. I thought I had replied.

    1. She said she wanted to reschedule the appointment. ( she wants to reschedule)
    2. She said she had wanted to reschedule the appointment. (but then changed her mind - but then decided to keep the appointment at the same time)

    It's clear that an ELL could be easily inclined to think that the second sentence of the second pair is what one must say or write to be "more correct" if the same learner believes that the second sentence of the first pair is what one must say or write to be "more correct". Clearly, the meanings of both sentences in the second pair are not the same. (The first pair was not shown here, but I added it.) This means that one must recognize when the use of the past perfect is, in fact, truly necessitated.


    Quote Originally Posted by albeit View Post
    Numbers 1 and 2 could have the same meaning, Proesl. Reported speech is merely a form change to denote reported speech. It doesn't necessarily address the fact situation.

    ====================
    I'm well aware of what reported speech does. However, I don't take the comparison of these two sentences in the context of reported speech. In the context I provided with these two example sentences, one can see how the meaning could be affected through the choice of simple past or past perfect. The second sentence might appear to be a reporting of the first sentence, but that's not how I intended it, and it doesn't have to be taken as a report, necessarily. And though they could have the same meaning, they just as well may not have the same meaning, which was my point in comparing the two sentences without considering reported speech, which, again, was not an intended consideration. In fact, if one considers the context I provided, they really do not have the same meaning, which means, for clarity, the past perfect is better depending on exactly what the speaker wants to say and the context.

    It's good to see that there is agreement on the main point of the discussion, however.

    These things are just laboratory experiments anyway. I asked someone just now about the sentence "I thought I replied" as opposed to "I thought I had replied". This is not the stuff that native speakers of English try to hash out and get to the bottom of, and neither does the typical native speaker consider that "I thought I replied" ought to always be "I thought I had replied", which brings us back to the real question: teaching. Teach using a native speaker model, not a "classroom English model" or an ESL grammar book model. Grammar books are useful, but they have limitations every now and then, as we can see with the two sentences we've been dissecting in this discussion.

    Last edited by PROESL; 23-Sep-2009 at 00:57.

  6. #126
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by albeit View Post
    Those are not "subpar" English standards, Lycen. Those are standard for the dialects of Singlish and Manglish.

    What you're suggesting is that CdE, AmE, AuE, NzE all have some subpar standards when measured against BrE, it being the "original. That is, of course, simply not true.



    There's this notion that exists that colloquial is ungrammatical and incorrect and SWE/SFE is grammatical and correct. It's pure hogwash. Speech doesn't need any artificial standards set for it. It's been tried. They're called prescriptions.

    There are different registers within the language and none of them follow exactly the same rules.
    I don't think dialects are relevant in the general discussion of ESL or EFL. It's not a concern of people who use English for international communication whether they be native speakers or non-native speakers. Anyone who speaks English for international purposes is expected to conform to the general standards of the main standard dialects of English in English-speaking countries, and which native speakers in those countries, in a general and broad way, accept as good, okay, and correct. If the next question is this, "What do you mean by good, okay, and correct?", I would then say to the questioner this: You know what I mean if English is your first language and you come from an English-speaking country whose English is recognized as native speaker English. Some of those countries are New Zealand, Australia, Britain, Canada, Ireland, the U.S - and which country or countries have I left out? Oh yes, there's South Africa.
    Last edited by PROESL; 23-Sep-2009 at 04:44. Reason: spelling

  7. #127
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by albeit View Post
    Those are not "subpar" English standards, Lycen. Those are standard for the dialects of Singlish and Manglish.

    What you're suggesting is that CdE, AmE, AuE, NzE all have some subpar standards when measured against BrE, it being the "original. That is, of course, simply not true.
    I don't think Lycen is suggesting that, but I don't agree with bringing Manglish, Chinglish, or Singlish into such a discussion as this in order to support the argument that the past perfect is necessary, or even simply more correct, in the sentence "I thought I replied", and other such similar grammatical expressions. Context is needed. And just to be clear, I'm not advocating that one not use the past perfect where it is correct and one wants to or chooses to in a natural way. I'm simply saying that given a choice, it's not always necessary to do so in order to be "more correct". Every day around the world millions of native speakers say "I thought I replied" and other such similar sentences. Some use the past perfect to express this thought, and others choose not to.
    Last edited by PROESL; 23-Sep-2009 at 04:27.

  8. #128
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    Re: I thought I had

    I thought we had finished.

  9. #129
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    I thought we had finished.
    I thought we finished as well, but one of the members was not present when the meeting last adjourned. By the way, who are we, anyway?

    Can I step out to get some water, please?

  10. #130
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    Re: I thought I had

    Quote Originally Posted by konungursvia View Post
    I thought we had finished.
    I agree with that. But who am I to agree with that? Only I know what I think. And everyone else knows what they think, don't they?

    We only know what we think. We are Borg. You will assimilate. Resistance is futile.

    elllo #419 Canucks and Yanks - Is it all true? Maybe sometimes, but it depends?

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