[Grammar] "a friend of mine" or "one of my frineds" ?

Status
Not open for further replies.

The French

Senior Member
Joined
Jun 12, 2009
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
French
Home Country
France
Current Location
France
"a friend of mine" or "one of my frineds" ?

Hello,

I think you can use the both, but maybe a context can permit us to choose the best one.

I am neither a teacher nor an English person.

Bye,
 

Rover_KE

Moderator
Staff member
Joined
Jun 20, 2010
Member Type
Retired English Teacher
Native Language
English
Home Country
England
Current Location
England
"a friend of mine" or "one of my friends" ?

You can use either. I can't think of any case where one would be preferred over the other.

Rover
 

TheParser

VIP Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
"a friend of mine" or "one of my frineds" ?

***** NOT A TEACHER *****

Hello, Sh.hazeri.

(1) I checked The Grammar Book by Mesdames Celce-Murcia and

Larsen-Freeman.

(2) If (I repeat "IF") I understand them correctly, there IS a difference

between the two sentences:

* Tom is one of my friends. = I have two or more friends. Tom is one of

them.

* Tom is a friend of mine. = Maybe I have only one friend -- Tom. Or maybe

I have more than one friend. It is not clear. It also PROBABLY means

that Tom has more than one friend.

*****

Martha: Tom is one of my friends. (Martha has more than one friend.)

Joe: Really? Well, Tom is a friend of mine, TOO!!! (Maybe -- maybe!!! --

Tom is Joe's only friend / Really? Well, Tom is one of my friends, too.

(Joe has more than one friend.)

***** Thank you *****
 

TheParser

VIP Member
Joined
Dec 8, 2009
Member Type
Other
Native Language
English
Home Country
United States
Current Location
United States
I don't understand how your source came to the conclusion that Tom only has one friend. I would like to know more about this. This is the way I understand "a" -

A is used to refer to a non-specific or non-particular member of a group. For example, “I would like a beer.” The reference is not to any specific beer. The reference is to any beer. There are many beers, and I want a beer. I don’t care what kind it is. “I want a pen" This refers to any pen. I don't need a specific pen, any pen will do. To say that, "Tom is a friend of mine", is to say that I have more than one friend. The way out of this problem is to write, "Tom is my friend."

***** NOT A TEACHER *****

Hello, Gilnetter.

(1) Thank you for your kind note.

(2) I have reread my post, and I do not think that it contains any

contention that Tom has only one friend. In fact, I think that my post

mentions that Tom probably has more than one friend.

(3) Nevertheless, I think the most important point is that the authors of

that book write: "Some reference grammars ... erroneously state or imply"

that "Philip is one of our friends" and " Philip is a friend of ours" are

synonymous.

(4) The original poster wanted to know whether there was a difference

between such constructions. I tried to explain that there is. Other

people feel there is not.

***** Thank you *****

P. S. If I say, "Tom is one of my friends," then I have more than one friend.

If I say, "Tom is my friend," then it is possible that I have only Tom as

my sole friend. We do not know.

If I say, "Tom is a friend of mine," it is also unclear as to whether I have

other friends.
 

Nightmare85

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
German
Home Country
Germany
Current Location
Germany
**Neither a teacher nor a native speaker.**

I agree with TheParser.

Tom is one of my friends. -> it's absolutely clear that I have more than one friend.

Tom is my friend. -> probably my only friend.

John is my foe. -> probably my only foe.

Tom is a friend of mine. -> a can mean one,but not necessarily seen.
John is a foe of mine. -> the same

Now you probably wonder why I used the "foe sentence".
Let's say know many guys, and you have different relationships to them.
This is Tom, a friend of mine.
That is Marry, a buddy of mine.

John is a foe of mine.

You use "of mine" to emphasize that the person belongs to you (more or less).

This my point of view
:)

Cheers!
 

rhapsomatrics

Junior Member
Joined
Sep 30, 2005
Member Type
Academic
Native Language
Yoruba
Home Country
Nigeria
Current Location
Nigeria
I don't understand how your source came to the conclusion that Tom only has one friend. I would like to know more about this. This is the way I understand "a" -

A is used to refer to a non-specific or non-particular member of a group. For example, “I would like a beer.” The reference is not to any specific beer. The reference is to any beer. There are many beers, and I want a beer. I don’t care what kind it is. “I want a pen" This refers to any pen. I don't need a specific pen, any pen will do. To say that, "Tom is a friend of mine", is to say that I have more than one friend. The way out of this problem is to write, "Tom is my friend."


First of all,I do not think that the indefinite article A has the same meaning as ANY.Much as I love your flow of thought,I think you were a little too quick to conclude.The article A is sometimes used to mean ONE...A boy.A book etc.However,saying,for example,that I need a book may not necessarily mean ANY book.It does not mean that I would accept just ANYthing.Saying that I need a book means that what I need must fulfill all the reasonable conditions of a book.If it is torn,for example,it is no longer just A BOOK but a TORN BOOK.Therefore,it may be safe to say that anytime A is used,there is always a silent REAL.A school means a (REAL) school with classrooms,teachers and other school essentials-where these essentials are absent,it is not a school,even if it is called one.
ONE OF MY FRIENDS clearly suggests multiplicity.I probably have many friends,JOHN DOE is one of them.A FRIEND OF MINE suggests that,even if I have many of them,only the one in reference is my focus.
 

Nightmare85

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
German
Home Country
Germany
Current Location
Germany
My friends, please use the standard font+size!
It hurts to read your posts :shock:

P.S. Please don't see my post as an attack! :-|

Cheers!
 

euncu

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Member Type
Other
Native Language
Turkish
Home Country
Turkey
Current Location
Turkey
P.S. Please don't see my post as an attack! :-|

In light of a recent macho showdown between some of our members, I can understand why you felt obliged to add such a PS. :-(
 

Nightmare85

Senior Member
Joined
Jul 17, 2009
Member Type
Interested in Language
Native Language
German
Home Country
Germany
Current Location
Germany
Yes.
UsingEnglish are very peaceful forums, and I really hope this will always be the case!

Cheers!
 

euncu

Senior Member
Joined
Aug 22, 2009
Member Type
Other
Native Language
Turkish
Home Country
Turkey
Current Location
Turkey
Yes.
UsingEnglish are very peaceful forums, and I really hope this will always be the case!

Cheers!

Within limits, some adrenaline is OK. But when insults are traded, no, it is not exceptable. So when things come down to this, I agree.
 

crazYgeeK

Member
Joined
Jun 9, 2010
Member Type
Student or Learner
Native Language
Vietnamese
Home Country
Vietnam
Current Location
Vietnam
I agree with Gillnetter.
If Tom is my only friend, the sentence "Tom is a friend of mine" should be "Tom is my friend" or "Tom is the only friend of mine"
However, I think there is a slight difference between "a friend of mine" and "one of my friends":
"a friend of mine" is used when the speaker want to focus on the friend, for example, Tom in the sentence "Tom is a friend of mine" and Tom has no specials to talk about (Tom has no same points to other friends of mine except Tom is my friend)
"one of my friends" is used when the speaker want to focus on expressing that he or she has many friends and ,I think, these friends have some same points excluding that they also are friends of the speaker.
That's my own opinion. I'm a real English beginer at all.
Thank you!
 
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top