a lion, which is ....

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azz

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Can one say:

a. That is a lion, which is a dangerous animal.

The speaker means to say that that is a lion and the lion is a dangerous animal. So there is a general statement following a particular one. I think the sentence is fine as it is, but then again, we can have:

b. That is a lion, which is in a cage.

Here the clause defines a certain lion. In the first case, the clause (claws?!!) tells us something about all lions.

Many thanks.
 

SlickVic9000

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They're both acceptable though 'b' sounds like something you'd hear on a zoo tour tram driven by the world's most boring tour guide with a charming penchant for saying incredibly obvious things.
 

philo2009

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Yes, both are acceptable as written: a nonrestrictive clause may refer equally to the generic (a) and specific (b) senses of the indefinite article.
 

azz

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Thank you very much.

But what about these:

c. That is a lion, which can tear you apart.
d. That is a lion, which is capable of killing people.
e. That is a lion, which eats meat.

I don't think they would work if the generic meaning was intended. Am I wrong?

Many thanks.
 

5jj

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