Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 11
  1. learning54's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Spanish
      • Home Country:
      • Spain
      • Current Location:
      • Spain

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 1,125
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #1

    Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Hi teachers,
    Is there any difference between these two sentences?
    a) They feed and dress themselves.
    b) They can feed and dress by themselves.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 34,299
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #2

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by learning54 View Post
    Hi teachers,
    Is there any difference between these two sentences?
    a) They feed and dress themselves.
    b) They can feed and dress by themselves.

    Thanks in advance.
    Yes, b) is incorrect. With the construction "by themselves", we would say "They can eat and dress by themselves".

    In addition, a) says that they actually do it and b) only says they can do it.

  3. learning54's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Spanish
      • Home Country:
      • Spain
      • Current Location:
      • Spain

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 1,125
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #3

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    Yes, b) is incorrect. With the construction "by themselves", we would say "They can eat and dress by themselves".
    Hi,
    Thank you so much for your reply.
    Woow! Very interesting! Is it because when you use the verb 'feed' it is understood that it is by, in this case, themselves. That's why you don't need the preposition.

  4. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 23,264
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #4

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by learning54 View Post
    Hi,
    Thank you so much for your reply.
    Woow! Very interesting! Is it because when you use the verb 'feed' it is understood that it is by, in this case, themselves. That's why you don't need the preposition.
    No, your explanation can't be right, because it's 'by' that is omitted, not "themselves". Both sentences have 'themselves' in them, so it not 'understood.'

    Consider the following:
    1. The children feed the cats themselves. (The children, themselves, feed the cats. We don't)
    2. The children feed the cats by themselves. (The children don't need our help to feed the cats.)
    3. The children eat by themselves. (The children don't need our help to eat or to feed themselves.)
    4. The children eat themselves. (The children are autophagous).

    Do you understand these sentences?

    PS: The addition of "can" makes another change. If you want to know the difference between two sentences, you should keep the difference to one variable - unless you have two actual sentences that you can't tell apart.

  5. moonlike's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Persian
      • Home Country:
      • Iran
      • Current Location:
      • Iran

    • Join Date: Mar 2012
    • Posts: 463
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #5

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by learning54 View Post
    Hi,
    Thank you so much for your reply.
    Woow! Very interesting! Is it because when you use the verb 'feed' it is understood that it is by, in this case, themselves. That's why you don't need the preposition.
    Hi
    I do agree with what is mentioned above. Also you can use feed in these patterns:
    To feed a person or animal : Did you feed the dog?
    To feed something to a person or animal : We fed the scraps to the pig.
    To feed yourself/themselves/herself... : She was too weak to feed herself.
    Of course, it's got other uses as well.
    Good luck
    You can use

  6. learning54's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Spanish
      • Home Country:
      • Spain
      • Current Location:
      • Spain

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 1,125
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #6

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    No, your explanation can't be right, because it's 'by' that is omitted, not "themselves". Both sentences have 'themselves' in them, so it not 'understood.'

    Consider the following:
    1. The children feed the cats themselves. (The children, themselves, feed the cats. We don't)
    2. The children feed the cats by themselves. (The children don't need our help to feed the cats.)
    3. The children eat by themselves. (The children don't need our help to eat or to feed themselves.)
    4. The children eat themselves. (The children are autophagous).

    Do you understand these sentences? Yes, I do. Very well.

    PS: The addition of "can" makes another change. If you want to know the difference between two sentences, you should keep the difference to one variable - unless you have two actual sentences that you can't tell apart.
    Hi Raymott,
    Thank you very much for your explanation. What I wish is another sentence that has the same meaning as this one: 'They feed and dress themselves'. Could they be these ones, 'They feed and dress without any help.' or 'They feed and dress alone'?
    Is there a better one?

    Thanks
    L54
    Last edited by learning54; 06-Apr-2012 at 11:22.

  7. learning54's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Spanish
      • Home Country:
      • Spain
      • Current Location:
      • Spain

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 1,125
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #7

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by moonlike View Post
    Hi
    I do agree with what is mentioned above. Also you can use feed in these patterns:
    To feed a person or animal : Did you feed the dog?
    To feed something to a person or animal : We fed the scraps to the pig.
    To feed yourself/themselves/herself... : She was too weak to feed herself.
    Of course, it's got other uses as well.
    Good luck
    You can use
    Hi moonlike,
    Thank you very much for your examples.

    Best,
    L54

  8. Raymott's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • Australia
      • Current Location:
      • Australia

    • Join Date: Jun 2008
    • Posts: 23,264
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #8

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by learning54 View Post
    Hi Raymott,
    Thank you very much for your explanation. What I wish is another sentence that has the same meaning as this one: 'They feed and dress themselves'. Could they be these ones, 'They feed and dress without any help.' or 'They feed and dress alone'?
    Is there a better one?

    Thanks
    L54
    Yes, that's what it means.

  9. emsr2d2's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK

    • Join Date: Jul 2009
    • Posts: 34,299
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #9

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by learning54 View Post
    Hi Raymott,
    Thank you very much for your explanation. What I wish is another sentence that has the same meaning as this one: 'They feed and dress themselves'. Could they be these ones, 'They feed and dress without any help.' or 'They feed and dress alone'?
    Is there a better one?

    Thanks
    L54
    As far as I'm concerned, you need to specifiy "themselves" in any of these examples unless you are prepared to have some ambiguity.

    They feed and dress themselves without any help.
    They feed and dress themselves on their own.
    They feed and dress themselves alone.

    "They feed and dress without any help" might elicit the question "Who/what do they feed and dress?"

  10. learning54's Avatar
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • Spanish
      • Home Country:
      • Spain
      • Current Location:
      • Spain

    • Join Date: Oct 2011
    • Posts: 1,125
    • Post Thanks / Like
    #10

    Re: Is there any difference between these two sentences?

    Quote Originally Posted by Raymott View Post
    Yes, that's what it means.
    Hi Raymott,
    Thank you once again for your reply.

    Best,
    L54

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. What’s the difference between these sentences?
    By blissful in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 28-Jan-2012, 15:54
  2. [General] Is there any difference among these sentences?
    By Tramper in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 26-Apr-2011, 06:19
  3. [Grammar] Any difference in these 2 sentences?
    By GTXDyle in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 10-Jan-2011, 23:16
  4. any difference between these sentences?
    By HUFS1999 in forum General Language Discussions
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 25-Jun-2008, 15:52
  5. The difference between these two sentences
    By zoobinshid in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-Sep-2005, 11:34

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

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