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    #1

    both / neither work/s

    1. Both of them don’t work, I'm afraid.

    2. Neither of them works, I'm afraid.

    #1 allows for the possibility that one of them works; #2 does not.
    Is my interpretation correct?

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    #2

    Re: both / neither work/s

    Not to me- in both cases you have two broken machines IMO.

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    #3

    Re: both / neither work/s

    Hello Tdol

    Thanks for your reply. I agree,

    Which is the correct sentence? Or are both correct?
    IMO, "Neither of them works, I'm afraid" is correct.
    "Both of them don't work, I'm afraid" is, to me, grammatically wrong.

    I say that because "All the students are absent" is correct, but
    "All the pupils are not present" is incorrect.

    Do you agree with me? Thanks in advance.


    Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by kohyoongliat; 07-Mar-2007 at 15:16.

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    #4

    Re: both / neither work/s

    There's nothing wrong grammatically; they may sound strange because they are less common. We would be more likely to say 'both machines were out of order' or something like that, but I see nothing wrong with the grammar. 'All the students were not present' is more weird than ungrammatical.

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    #5

    Re: both / neither work/s

    Thanks for your reply.

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    #6

    Re: both / neither work/s

    Reminds me of this semantic problem:
    Two coins make 30 cents. One is not a nickle.

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