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  1. keannu's Avatar
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    #1

    A wrestler and a cartoonist came to the party?

    For 1,2, I definitely bet they are a single person, but in 3, is it one person or two people? Isn't it confusing?

    1. I want to be a wrestler and a cartoonist.
    2. I am a wrestler and a cartoonist.
    3. A wrestler and a cartoonist came to the party.

  2. freezeframe's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: A wrestler and a cartoonist came to the party?

    Quote Originally Posted by keannu View Post
    For 1,2, I definitely bet they are a single person, but in 3, is it one person or two people? Isn't it confusing?

    1. I want to be a wrestler and a cartoonist.
    2. I am a wrestler and a cartoonist.
    3. A wrestler and a cartoonist came to the party.
    It's two people and it's not ambiguous at all.

    If it was the same person, this would be somehow indicated:

    So, this guy, who's a wrestler and a cartoonist, came to the party...

  3. keannu's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: A wrestler and a cartoonist came to the party?

    Quote Originally Posted by freezeframe View Post
    It's two people and it's not ambiguous at all.

    If it was the same person, this would be somehow indicated:

    So, this guy, who's a wrestler and a cartoonist, came to the party...
    Do you mean when it's a subject, unlike the other two cases, it's an exceptional case?

  4. freezeframe's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: A wrestler and a cartoonist came to the party?

    I suppose there's a structural ambiguity. But, I assume* that aside from people who enjoy turning sentences into diagrams for work and/or pleasure, most people would understand 3. as involving two people.

    If someone is a wrestler and a cartoonist, we'd call them "a wrestler cartoonist" or "a cartoonist wrestler": A wrestler cartoonist came to the party....**


    *not scientifically tested
    **although these two options themselves contain ambiguity; the plot thickens
    Last edited by freezeframe; 04-Apr-2011 at 00:01.

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