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  1. #21
    Glizdka is offline Senior Member
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    Re: No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom

    Quote Originally Posted by Tarheel View Post
    I know what sentence we're discussing. I also know it's rather unnatural. If somebody wants to say Tom is the best player on the team they will usually say exactly that. "Tom is the best player on the team" leaves no doubt about what is meant, and it is the normal way to say it. Since this is an ESL website, I would encourage people to say it that way.

    I completely agree with Tarheel. I'm sorry to all the unfortunate learners who found their way into this post. This post is an exercise in pure theory, and should not be used as a model for learning any practical English.

  2. #22
    Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
    Charlie Bernstein is offline VIP Member
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    Re: No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom

    Quote Originally Posted by Glizdka View Post
    I've reworked post#14. It was unreadable. I hope it's clearer now.

    Are these true?

    One is.


    A) "No other boy is a better player than Tom" means every other boy is worse than Tom" and "Tom is the best boy in the team.

    Again, no.


    B) "No other boy is a better player than Tom" means every other boy is either worse than or as good as Tom, but it doesn't imply that Tom is the best boy on the team, because there may be a boy in the team who is as good as Tom.

    Again, yes.


    C) "Tom is the best boy in the team" implies that no other boy in the team is a better player than Tom.

    Again, no. It means they're all worse.
    Now you know!
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

  3. #23
    Glizdka is offline Senior Member
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    Re: No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    C) "Tom is the best boy in the team" implies that no other boy in the team is a better player than Tom.

    Again, no. It means they're all worse.
    I think there is a difference in what conclusions you can make if you start with "Tom is the best" and "No one is better than Tom". It's not symmetrical.



    If you know that Tom is the best, you can be sure that no one else is better.

    Tom is the best → No one else is better



    But if you know that no one else is better than Tom, you cannot be sure that he's the best. There may be someone just as good.

    No one else is better ↛ Tom is the best
    Last edited by Glizdka; 17-Dec-2020 at 20:57.

  4. #24
    jutfrank's Avatar
    jutfrank is online now VIP Member
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    Re: No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom

    Quote Originally Posted by Glizdka View Post
    I've changed imply to entail. Are these true?

    C1) "Tom is the best boy in the team" entails "No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom".
    a>x → x≯ a

    C2) "No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom" doesn't entail "Tom is the best boy in the team".
    x≯ a ↛ a>x
    Yes. You've already made the point that there may be boys equally good as Tom.

    Running the risk of stretching this thread out any longer, I'll point out that best boy and best player don't seem equivalent, but let's ignore that.

  5. #25
    Tarheel's Avatar
    Tarheel is offline VIP Member
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    Re: No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom

    Quote Originally Posted by Glizdka View Post
    I completely agree with Tarheel. I'm sorry to all the unfortunate learners who found their way into this thread. This thread is an exercise in pure theory, and should not be used as a model for learning any practical English.
    I agree.

    Please note that the discussion is a thread. Each individual contribution is a post. (This is post #26 in this thread.)
    Not a professional teacher

  6. #26
    Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
    Charlie Bernstein is offline VIP Member
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    Re: No other boy in the team is a better player than Tom

    Quote Originally Posted by Glizdka View Post
    I think there is a difference in what conclusions you can make if you start with "Tom is the best" and "No one is better than Tom". It's not symmetrical. . . .
    My point exactly.
    I'm not a teacher. I speak American English. I've tutored writing at the University of Southern Maine and have done a good deal of copy editing and writing, occasionally for publication.

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