Either, neither , any

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toloue_man

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Please confirm my understanding of the following sentences. THANKS IN ADVANCE.

1) Either of the students is willing to do that chore.
My understanding: There are two students. One of them is willing to do that chore.

2) Neither of the students is willing to do that chore.
My understanding: There are two students. None of them is willing to do that chore.

3) Any of the students is willing to do that chore.
My understanding: The number of students is unknown but one of the students is willing to do that chore.
 

emsr2d2

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Please confirm my understanding of the following sentences. [strike]THANKS IN ADVANCE.[/strike] Unnecessary statement and certainly didn't need to be all in capital letters.

1) Either of the students is willing to do that chore. Unnatural sentence in English. I suggest "Either one of the students would be willing to do that chore". It doesn't matter which one you ask, they will say yes.
My understanding: There are two students. One of them is willing to do that chore.

2) Neither of the students is willing to do that chore.
My understanding: There are two students. None of them is willing to do that chore. :tick:

3) Any of the students is willing to do that chore. Unnatural sentence in English. I suggest "Any one of the students would be willing to do that chore". However, that doesn't mean that only one of them is willing to do it. It means that they are all willing and it doesn't matter which one of the students you choose, they will say "Yes".
My understanding: The number of students is unknown but one of the students is willing to do that chore.
If you want it to mean that, you have to say "Only one of the students is willing to do that chore".


See above.
 
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toloue_man

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It seems strange. I mentioned the first sentence exactly from Marcella Frank book that is Modern English. It is mentioned on page 32 that (Exactly duplicated from his book, even punctuation and bold words are the same as his book):

Either, neither, and any, when they express a choice, require singular verbs in formal English (the word one being understood after them): Either (or neither, any) of the students is willing to do that chore. In informal English these words often take plural verbs.

That's why I said regarding the third sentence that "one student is willing to do that chore"
 

5jj

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It seems strange. I mentioned the first sentence exactly from Marcella Frank book that is Modern English. It is mentioned on page 32 that (Exactly duplicated from his book, even punctuation and bold words are the same as his book):

Either, neither, and any, when they express a choice, require singular verbs in formal English (the word one being understood after them): Either (or neither, any) of the students is willing to do that chore. In informal English these words often take plural verbs.
Well, Marcella Frank has not chosen the most natural of sentences to make this point. There are no COCA citations for 'Either of the [plural noun] [modal/singular verb] as subject of a sentence.
 

toloue_man

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So he has also made some mistakes such as the last one, hasn't he?
 

SoothingDave

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For sentence one, both students are willing to do it, not just one of them.
 

toloue_man

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It seems even native speakers of English have problem understanding the meaning of these sentences let alone me!!!
 

SoothingDave

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I suggest you to read the thread from the beginning to the end carefully.

I suggest you read post #2. Both are willing, but only one will actually have to do it.
 

5jj

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It seems even native speakers of English have problem understanding the meaning of these sentences let alone me!!!
No. Dave understands them in the same way as I do and, I imagine, as ems does. ems and I said merely that at least one of the original sentence was unnatural.By the absence of COCA citations for similar sentences, it seems we are not alone.

I see that you have just asked the same question in another forum. I suppose that if you try enough forums, you'll eventually find answers that suit you.
 

toloue_man

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No. Dave understands them in the same way as I do and, I imagine, as ems does. ems and I said merely that at least one of the original sentence was unnatural.By the absence of COCA citations for similar sentences, it seems we are not alone.

I see that you have just asked the same question in another forum. I suppose that if you try enough forums, you'll eventually find answers that suit you.


Thanks for your attention. I always try my best to understand everything in very great details. Although you say that the first sentence is unnatural but it is grammatically correct. And, we have no problem with the second sentence. The problem arises from the last one. I think that Marcella Frank is correct. By saying that word "one" is understood after them, he means that "Ali is willing to do that, Steve is willing to do that, John is willing to do that and so on. "

What do you think?
 

5jj

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The problem arises from the last one. I think that Marcella Frank is correct. By saying that word "one" is understood after them, he means that "Ali is willing to do that, Steve is willing to do that, John is willing to do that and so on. "

What do you think?
That's fine, but that was not your original interpretation. ems explained to you what you would have to say if you wanted to convey that meaning.

By the way, I think that Marcella Frank is woman.
 

toloue_man

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Really! Once I googled her name! I didn't find any her picture!! As you said, it's not my original interpretation. What do you mean by ems?
 

SoothingDave

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Names that end in "a" are generally female.
 
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