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Thread: not credible

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    Academic
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    #1

    not credible

    Which are correct:

    1) Her strange behavior made her account of the event not credible.
    2) Her strange behavior made her account of the event not be credible.
    3) Her strange behavior made her account of the event be not credible.

    Gratefully,
    Navi.

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    English Teacher
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    #2

    Re: not credible

    1) is better than the other two but still a bit awkward (to my ear).

    In 1) you're using the structure: make + object + adjective phrase
    In 2) and 3) you're using: make + object + verb phrase

    I see what you're trying to compare, but I think with these structures, it's more natural to avoid using not and the linking verb be, and instead use a different final phrase. For example, it sounds better to me to say something like ...made her account seem less than credible.

    In any case, if you are going to use not, it's more effective to place it directly before the word that is being negated. In this case, it is the adjective credible that is being negated, so for this reason 3) is better than 2) logically speaking, in my opinion.

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