# Thread: The women built a doghouse.

1. ## The women built a doghouse.

Please look at the sentence below:

The women built a doghouse.

How many doghouses were built under the assumption that "The women" consisted of three people?

One? Three? Or does the answer depend on the context?

Thank you.

2. ## Re: The women built a doghouse.

All we can infer from 'The women built a doghouse' is that an unspecified number of women built a [one] dog kennel.

3. ## Re: The women built a doghouse.

Originally Posted by Rover_KE
All we can infer from 'The women built a doghouse' is that an unspecified number of women built a [one] dog kennel.
To be honest, I don't understand your reply. (My English is at a beginner level. I am currently studying basic English grammar.)
I should have been more precise in my question. A better question might be:
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(A) "The women built a doghouse" implies "Each of the women built one doghouse".
(B) "The women built a doghouse" implies "The women cooperated to build a doghouse". (Only one doghouse was built.)
Which is correct?
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Thank you.

4. ## Re: The women built a doghouse.

We can only assume that B is correct.

Three women built a doghouse = Three women cooperated to build one doghouse.
Three women each built a doghouse = Three women built a total of three doghouses.

5. ## Re: The women built a doghouse.

(A) "The women built a doghouse" implies "Each of the women built one doghouse".
If it were important to tell us this, then it would have been made clearer. Where things are potentially unclear, the most obvious meaning is usually the natural interpretation. Where a less natural interpretation is intended, it would be made clear unless the person is lying or unaware of the possible ambiguity. Your sentence could possibly imply that, but it doesn't imply that. A stretch of the imagination is not a natural interpretation. Go for the most obvious- it's what native speakers do.

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