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    #1

    one/it

    Are these sentences both correct:

    1-I don't have a computer so I have to keep renting one when I need it.
    2-I don't have a computer so I have to keep renting one when I need one.

    It seems that "1" implies that I am renting the same computer over and over again.
    "2" does not have that implication. It could be the same one, but most probably is not.

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    #2

    Re: one/it

    The surrounding words clarify the meaning.


    Don't worry about it. Either sentence is very clear.

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    #3

    Re: one/it

    Thanks Susiedq,

    But is there a difference in the meanings?

  1. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: one/it

    I suggest rewriting it like this: "I don't have a computer so I have to rent one when I need one."

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    #5

    Re: one/it

    Quote Originally Posted by navi tasan View Post
    Are these sentences both correct:


    "it" is a definite pronoun. Its antecedent, "a computer", is indefinite. A definite pronoun cannot stand proxy for an indefinite pronoun. Choose #2.

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    #6

    Re: one/it

    Quote Originally Posted by bhaisahab View Post
    I suggest rewriting it like this: "I don't have a computer so I have to rent one when I need one."
    (I'm not a teacher.)

    Is this a difference between British and American English? I think I'd be much more likely to use either one and then it or it and then one. I probably wouldn't repeat "one". I'd be more likely to use two "it"s. These are pretty tiny differences though - I don't think any of them sound wrong, and I don't think there's any difference in meaning at all.

    To me, this sounds the best:
    I don't have a computer so I have to rent one when I need it.

    These sound OK:
    I don't have a computer so I have to rent it when I need one.
    I don't have a computer so I have to rent it when I need it.

    Other things that sound fine to me:
    I don't have a computer so I have to rent when I need one.
    I don't have a computer so I have to rent when I need it.

    I think what I'd actually _say_ would be "I don't have a computer, so if I need one, I've gotta rent it." I'd never write "gotta," of course. (As a side note, there's actually a web site called gottarent.com.)

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    #7

    Re: one/it

    Thank you all.

    John has five different telescopes. They are all used for different things. I borrow one from him when I need it.

    That to me would mean I need that particular telescope and I borrow it.
    To me,
    I borrow one if I need one.
    won't work here.

    When I need one, I borrow it=When I need one, I borrow THAT ONE.

    Of course, it is quite possible that
    a-"When I need one, I borrow it"
    could be used instead of "
    b-"When I need one, I borrow one."
    as well. That I don't know. But I don't think that "b" could replace "a" on all occasions.

  2. bhaisahab's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: one/it

    If you want to avoid confusion you could say this: "I don't have a computer so I have to rent one when the need arises."

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