International Association of Young Linguists Forum

Scientific Board => Semantics => Topic started by: hossein18 on July 17, 2007, 17:59:54

Title: Ambiguity
Post by: hossein18 on July 17, 2007, 17:59:54
Dear firends
Dr. MacCawaly's in his ''Everything that Linguists....'' claims that the following sentence is ambiguous and gives  two meanings for that. The sentence doesn’t seem to me ambiguous and the two meanings is also the same for me:
'' Many Politicians admire most crooks, it can mean either (i)that the number of politicians who admire most crooks is large, or(ii) that the crook whom many politicians admire are a majority of all crooks''
Could you please base on the domain of quantifiers explain the ambiguity

Title: Re: Ambiguity
Post by: Hossein Kassaie on July 17, 2007, 21:06:43
     Dear Hossein,
     Thanks for your email to IAYL,Please send us the complete attachment of that text and our experts try to answer you as soon as they receive...   
     Faithfully Yours

Title: Re: Ambiguity
Post by: M. Shadmani on July 17, 2007, 21:11:27
Both of them are seems to be correct!

But the first one seems to be correct in my point of view. Because at the second sentence the word "majority" makes it difference. We can not exactly say that they are pertaining to or characterized by a majority.

So the first one seems to be accurate

Title: Re: Ambiguity
Post by: majkull on January 28, 2009, 20:26:09
The source of ambiguity is the fact that there are two independent quantifiers within this sentence. Each of them refers to a different word.