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Please check my sentences (2)

Discussion in '英語勉強フォーラム - Learning English' started by hirashin, Apr 19, 2017.

  1. hirashin

    hirashin 先輩

    Would you please check some more sentences?
    1 I take pride in my own country.
    2 We have a high opinion of the movie.
    3 What do you dislike about your own country?
    4 He is admired by everyone.
    5 Her grandfather seems to live in Britain.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. johnnyG

    johnnyG 先輩

    #1-4 are fine. In 1 and 3, the use of own is not necessary (redundant). Using own in those two sentences--it shows emphasis, or contrastive stress (which is a kind of emphasis).

    #5 is fine grammatically, but it reflects a tentative conclusion that feels unusual without some context, for example:

    > Given his accent, I'd say that her grandfather seems to live in Britain. (in Liverpool, not in ~ ) (...in Britain, not Australia)
    > Well, when you look at the boots he's wearing, I'd say that her grandfather seems to live in the country (on a farm, ranch, etc.).
  3. SomeCallMeChris

    The more 'generic' of (5) that doesn't require any particular context but has roughly the same meaning would be,
    'Apparently her grandfather lives in England.'

    You wouldn't actually ever say 'lives in Britain'. If someone lives in Britain, then you would be more specific, 'lives in England', 'lives in Wales', 'lives in Cornwall', or 'lives in Scotland'... or technically maybe possibly, 'lives in Northern Ireland'; if someone did use the unnatural 'lives in Britain', you would assume England. Countries outside of the British Isles wouldn't even be 'Britain' as such but 'British Commonwealth Nations' and are even less likely to have 'Britain' mentioned in connection with them in anything other than a very technical political conversation.
  4. hirashin

    hirashin 先輩

    Thanks for the help, johnnyG and SomeCallMeChris.
    Is it that British people would never say, "I'm British" or "I'm from Britain"?
  5. johnnyG

    johnnyG 先輩

    (I'm american, and so completely ignorant of all things over there.)
  6. joadbres

    joadbres Kouhai

    #6 joadbres, Apr 29, 2017 at 13:11
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2017 at 13:18
    Sorry for the late reply.

    Translating the Japanese そう (either the direct observation version or the hearsay version) as "seems" often does not produce natural-sounding English.

    In English, "seems" is usually not used when discussing simple facts, such as where somebody lives, how old they are, etc., whether it is based on your own observation or based on something you heard. "Seems" is usually used when stating one's impression of something more intangible. Example: "He seems like a nice guy."

    For a simple matter of fact, such as where somebody lives, or how old they are, a more natural way to express it would be to use the word "think" or "believe".
    "I believe he lives in England."
    "I think he lives in England."
    "I believe he is about 25 years old."
    "I think he is about 25 years old."

    Note that the above examples could be used for translating either type of Japanese そう: the one based on direct observation, or the one based on hearsay.

    There are special cases, though. For direct observation of the weather, for example, we often use the expression "it looks like" ("It looks like it is going to rain.")
  7. SomeCallMeChris

    I'm American too so, I'm not entirely sure on all the details, but I can give some impressions.

    "I'm British" is certainly a statement people make sometimes, I can say that for certain having heard it. "We're British" is perhaps more common, especially since it lets a mixed group of Welsh, Scottish, and English refer to themselves by the larger grouping. I don't think a Scot or a purely Scottish group would ever call themselves British (at least not any of the Scots I've met!) but maybe people from England and Wales might call themselves British.

    "I'm from Britain" sounds unusual and I feel like it's similar to 'lives in Britain' in that the specific British nation would be the preferred term.

    Although Cornwall is in a weird state of being technically just a county in England but historically its own country and people, so I can imagine there might be some reluctance for the Cornish (especially those with nationalist leanings) to call themselves English or from England. I couldn't really say when they'd use Cornish/Cornwall or British/Britain though. That alone makes me reluctant to say that "I'm from Britain" would never be used even though I feel like I never hear it.

    The people of Northern Ireland are probably just Irish or Northern Irish, since Northern Ireland is specifically called out as separate from Britain in 'The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland'.

    To be really sure though, you should really check with some people from the various British nations. As Americans we're for the most part just going to call them however we hear them call themselves.

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