Results 1 to 6 of 6
  1. #1
    LiuJing is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    212

    A superlative question

    Human rights is one of the biggest concerns for our organization.

    My question is if we can rephrase it to with its meaning unchanged as:

    Human rights is a biggest concern for our organization.

    Thank you.

  2. #2
    tedtmc is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Malaysia
      • Current Location:
      • Malaysia
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,108

    Re: A superlative question

    Quote Originally Posted by LiuJing View Post
    Human rights is one of the biggest concerns for our organization.

    Wrong. There should only be one biggest concern of all the concerns.

    My question is if we can rephrase it to with its meaning unchanged as:

    Human rights is athe biggest concern for of our organization.

    Thank you.
    not a teacher

  3. #3
    LiuJing is offline Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • China
      • Current Location:
      • China
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    212

    Re: A superlative question

    Quote Originally Posted by tedtmc View Post

    Wrong. There should only be one biggest concern of all the concerns.


    not a teacher
    I am pretty much sure you can use plural form to follow a superlative adjective.

    The USA is among the largest countries in the world.
    One of my biggest dreams is to take a trip to the moon.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    167

    Re: A superlative question

    Human rights is one of the biggest concerns for our organization.

    Wrong. There should only be one biggest concern of all the concerns.
    Not true. A person or group can have a short list of top concerns, and it is perfectly acceptable to say that something is "one of the biggest concerns," meaning it's in the top five or ten, but not necessarily number one.

    Quote Originally Posted by LiuJing View Post
    My question is if we can rephrase it to with its meaning unchanged as:

    Human rights is a biggest concern for our organization.
    No, that sentence is not grammatically correct. You could say it is "a big concern," but you cannot put an indefinite article before a superlative.

  5. #5
    tedtmc is offline Key Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Interested in Language
      • Native Language:
      • Chinese
      • Home Country:
      • Malaysia
      • Current Location:
      • Malaysia
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Posts
    2,108

    Re: A superlative question

    Quote Originally Posted by LiuJing View Post
    I am pretty much sure you can use plural form to follow a superlative adjective.

    The USA is among the largest countries in the world.
    One of my biggest dreams is to take a trip to the moon.
    OK, fair enough.

    Not true. A person or group can have a short list of top concerns, and it is perfectly acceptable to say that something is "one of the biggest concerns," meaning it's in the top five or ten, but not necessarily number one
    Logically speaking, if there are top five, don't you think there should be a No.1?
    Last edited by tedtmc; 04-Jul-2010 at 06:09.

  6. #6
    Raymott's Avatar
    Raymott is offline VIP Member
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Academic
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    25,679

    Re: A superlative question

    Quote Originally Posted by tedtmc View Post
    Logically speaking, if there are top five, don't you think there should be a No.1?
    Of course. But you might not be able to, or need to, or want to, identify the order of priority.

    Some examples:
    "My three children are the top three priorities in my life."

    A politician might want to identify his top 5 priorities, but not order them. This way, he can retrospectively claim that the three he's fixed where indeed numbers 1, 2 and 3.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •