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    #1

    the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    In the sense of "being not dead, alive", is there any difference between "live" and "living" in daily use?
    Below are the examples taken from the Oxford dictionary. I can't tell their differences.
    live=living; not dead
    • live animals
    • the number of live births (= babies born alive)
    • We saw a real live rattlesnake!
    • I need to talk to a live person (= not a recording or computer).
    • living=alive now
      • all living things
      • living organisms
      • the finest living pianist
      • The elephant is the biggest living land animal.

  2. Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    #2

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Take the pianist example= you are thinking about that pianist compared to all the other pianists who are alive now. If you said the greatest live pianist, you would probably mean that they give the best concerts, which doesn't exclude the possibility of pianists who are greater in the studio. It is unlikely that you would want to say the greatest not dead pianist.

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    #3

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    Take the pianist example= you are thinking about that pianist compared to all the other pianists who are alive now. If you said the greatest live pianist, you would probably mean that they give the best concerts, which doesn't exclude the possibility of pianists who are greater in the studio. It is unlikely that you would want to say the greatest not dead pianist.
    But 'live' means 'not dead' here. If by sayng'the greatest live pianst', I do not mean 'the greatest not dead panist', what does 'live' mean here? Why would I use 'live' in this phrase? Sorry, I still can't get it.

  4. probus's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    If you want to say that the pianist is not dead, you must use living not live. Although the dictionary definitions seem to permit live it is precluded here because in the context of piano-playing live would be presumed to refer to a recital or concert.
    Last edited by probus; 29-Mar-2020 at 03:40. Reason: Fix italics

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    #5

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Quote Originally Posted by 嘟嘟嘟嘟 View Post
    But 'live' means 'not dead' here. If by sayng'the greatest live pianst', I do not mean 'the greatest not dead panist', what does 'live' mean here?Why would I use 'live' in this phrase? Sorry, I still don't get it.
    Only you know what you want to say. If it doesn't mean what you want it to mean, don't use it.
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    #6

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    If you want to say that the pianist is not dead, you must use living not live. Although the dictionary definitions seem to permit live it is precluded here because in the context of piano-playing live would be presumed to refer to a recital or concert.
    Ok, though I still don't quite get it. I've found another one in the examples above from the Oxford dictionary.

    • 'I need to talk to a live person (= not a recording or computer).'
    • If I say: 'I need to talk to a living person', does it mean I want to speak to a not dead person? But with 'live' here, it means not an artificial person.
    • However, with the examples of 'live aninmals/rattlesnake', 'living' can replace 'live' without changing the meaning, right?
    Last edited by 嘟嘟嘟嘟; 30-Mar-2020 at 00:59.

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    #7

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Quote Originally Posted by 嘟嘟嘟嘟 View Post
    With the example of 'the greatest live pianist', are you in fact referring to another meaning of 'live'?
    =(of a performance)given or made when people are watching, not recorded
    • The club has live music most nights.
    • the magic of a live performance
    • They're still one of the best live bands (= best at performing) around.
    • It was the first interview I'd done in front of a live audience (= with people watching).
    So is it true that when 'live' means 'not dead', it is only used in animals not human beings?

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    #8

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Quote Originally Posted by 嘟嘟嘟嘟 View Post
    So is it true that when 'live' means 'not dead', it is only used in animals not human beings?
    No. "I don't want a machine answering my phone calls. I want to speak to a live person" is both correct and natural.

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    #9

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Quote Originally Posted by probus View Post
    No. "I don't want a machine answering my phone calls. I want to speak to a live person" is both correct and natural.
    But I think the 'live' in the example you give means 'not artificial'.It doesn't mean 'not dead'.

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    #10

    Re: the difference between 'living' and 'live'?

    Do 'living animals' and 'live animmals' have the same meaning? Are they both natural? What about 'a living person' and 'a live person'? Very thankful for your patient replies!

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