Page 1 of 5 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 92

Thread: 42nd President of USA - how to ask a question with an ordinal answer.

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Native language
    Filipino
    Posts
    9

    42nd President of USA - how to ask a question with an ordinal answer.

    Good day everyone!

    Please help me out on this one.

    Ineed to know how to ask the question properly if you want to arrive with an answer that deals with order. samples are:


    1. She is our 13th president.

    2. This is my third time to watch this movie.


    Help guys,
    I badly need it!

    Thanks a lot
    Last edited by ewie; 10th May 2012 at 12:39 AM. Reason: Removing horrendous textspeak.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Native language
    USA
    Posts
    1,395

    Re: how to ask if...

    Quote Originally Posted by elroy
    Hm...Are you sure "what number of presidency is she?" is ok? Does that sound natural to you?

    Admittedly, I can't think of an unambiguously fitting question, but I'm still having trouble with the one you suggest.

    "What number of presidency" just doesn't seem to work, for some reason.

    Googling for "What number of presidency" yields 0 results.

    I will think about some more and come back if I'm inspired.
    You right after I read it it does sound awkward, What number president was she? would be my choice, as for the second I would say I've seen this movie a number of times, but I left the phrases intact for his reference, something I regret now since it did get all this started and at the end the thread was splitted in two, and Panj cut my posts I am sure by mistake, so he says (just kidding Panj ), long story short this is the last time I post message while talking on the phone and answering another email. sorry guys
    Last edited by QUIJOTE; 20th October 2005 at 4:10 PM.
    "No me subo en una balanza por que se que me va pesar" Sofocleto

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Warwick
    Native language
    UK English
    Age
    52
    Posts
    6,328

    Re: how to ask if...

    Quote Originally Posted by QUIJOTE
    what number of presidency is she?
    1. She is our 13th president.
    I know this has been tussled over but here's my two cents:
    To my ears, "What number of presidency" doesn't sound like anything a native English would speaker would say regardless of where they are from.
    A question that would elicit the answer would be something along the lines of: "Is she the twelfth or the fourteenth president?"

    The second response doesn't sound right to me either:
    Quote Originally Posted by QUIJOTE
    2. This is the third time I watch this movie.
    I'd say this is the third time I've watched this movie.

    I hope this clarifies things.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Belfast, Ireland
    Native language
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Age
    67
    Posts
    48,897

    Re: how to ask if...

    This thread was closed temporarily for repair but is now open for business.
    Please try to keep on topic to some extent at least.
    Posts that addressed the structure of the Son-nie's answers, but did not address the question, have been relocated to a thread about watching movies and watching TV programmes.

    Panjandrum...
    ... In mod mood.
    Last edited by panjandrum; 20th October 2005 at 3:29 PM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    Downright Pleasant, USA
    Native language
    USA - English
    Posts
    4,921

    Re: how to ask if...

    How about using "which," as in "Which President is she?"

    "Sometimes the worst evil is done by good people who do not know that they are not good." - Reinhold Niebuhr

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Warwick
    Native language
    UK English
    Age
    52
    Posts
    6,328

    Re: how to ask if...

    But that wouldn't necessarily elicit the answer the thirteenth president: the one with pink teeth, a policy to annexe Cuba could all be possible answers.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Belfast, Ireland
    Native language
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Age
    67
    Posts
    48,897

    Re: how to ask if...

    I suppose we can assume that she is, in fact, the 13th President.
    In that case, I might have asked:
    "Is she the 12th, 13th or 14th President of your country?"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    Strasbourg, France
    Native language
    UK, English
    Posts
    3,749

    Re: how to ask if...

    You could just cheat and say 'Whose 13th president is she?'

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Urbana-Champaign, IL
    Native language
    Am. English, Pal. Arabic (See profile)
    Posts
    22,884

    Re: how to ask if...

    "What is her order of presidency?"

    Not sure at all - just throwing it out there.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Urbana-Champaign, IL
    Native language
    Am. English, Pal. Arabic (See profile)
    Posts
    22,884

    Re: how to ask if...

    Just had some more ideas:

    "Where did/does her presidential term fall in the order of presidency?"
    "Which president was she, in terms of chronological order?"

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    USA
    Native language
    USA/American English
    Age
    52
    Posts
    194

    Re: how to ask if...

    Welcome son-nie!

    I'm with GenJen on this one. I would ask:
    1. Which president is she?
    2. This is which time that you've watched this movie?

    --Smiles!
    Sweet Momma Sue

    If I understand you correctly, you are dealing with ordinal vs. cardinal numbers. So, you need answers that deal with the order of things: first, second, third, fourth, etc.

    I believe that the questions I've posted would cause a person to answer with an ordinal number vice a cardinal or counting one. If I ask "How many times have you seen or watched this movie?" Many folks would answer, "This is my third time." However, many others would also correctly answer, "3," or "three times". So, that is why I structured my questions the way I did. "Which" is a question word that asks for a position in a sequence, in this case.

    Does this help to clarify things a little?
    Last edited by ewie; 10th May 2012 at 12:40 AM. Reason: Removing quote that contained horrendous textspeak ... and which I can't be bothered to re-edit.
    corrections are appreciated
    please, be gentle

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    Ecuador
    Native language
    USA/English
    Age
    31
    Posts
    457

    Re: how to ask if...

    Here are my suggestions:

    1. What number President is/was _____?
    => I tested this on a few people and got the response I was looking for. I use and hear this construction quite frequently.

    Which President is (past tense: was) ______ ?
    => Again, I tested this and got the desired answer. This might not work for more obscure names, but when it is clear that both speakers are familiar with the name, then one assumes that the number is what is being asked. To remove all ambiguity, one could add a guess at the end: Tenth? (Is that cheating?)

    2. How many times does it make now that you're seeing this movie?

    It gets a little simpler to write if we change the tense, but the meaning changes slightly too:

    How many times have you watched this movie now?
    Gracias de antemano por las correciones, así aprendemos.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Native language
    Filipino
    Posts
    9

    Re: how to ask if...

    thanks guys, you really helped a lot!

    thanks so much to all of you.

    may God bless you always.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Istanbul
    Native language
    Turkish
    Age
    25
    Posts
    1,811

    Question forms to inquire ordinal.

    I know it sounds odd to ask such a question like "How manyth..." and I cannot think of any other question forms to inquire ordinals. I suppose there's no standard form for this, right? If there's please tell about that, if there's not, then how to ask such a question expecting an answer like "4th president, 42nd president etc."

    What do you think about these:
    What number in the sequence of Turkish Presidents does Mr. Sezer occupy?
    and
    What place does Mr. Sezer take in the sequence of Turkish Presidents?

    P.S: I'd be glad if you could correct my terrible mistakes.
    «Toyın tapugsak Teñri sepinçsiz.»

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Location
    Connecticut
    Native language
    English/USA
    Posts
    100

    Re: Question forms to inquire ordinal.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chazzwozzer View Post
    I know it sounds odd to ask such a question like such as "How manyth..." and but I cannot think of any other question forms to use to inquire about ordinals. I suppose there's no standard form for this, right? If there is, please tell me about that, it; if there's not, then how to do you ask such a question with expecting an answer like such as "4th president, 42nd president etc."
    Believe it or not, Chazz, we -- or at least I -- say "What number president was he?"

    I think you've hit on something the English language is lacking.

  16. #16
    Join Date
    Aug 2006
    Native language
    Español
    Posts
    7,284

    Re: Question forms to inquire ordinal.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chazzwozzer View Post
    I know it sounds odd to ask such a question like "How manyth..." and I cannot think of any other question forms to inquire ordinals. I suppose there's no standard form for this, right? If there's please tell about that, if there's not, then how to ask such a question expecting an answer like "4th president, 42nd president etc."

    What do you think about these:
    What number in the sequence of Turkish Presidents does Mr. Sezer occupy?
    and
    What place does Mr. Sezer take in the sequence of Turkish Presidents?

    P.S: I'd be glad if you could correct my terrible mistakes.
    What president number was Mr. sezer?

    and I agree with cayuga, I would most likely say what he posted.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Zacatecas, México
    Native language
    English UK
    Posts
    3,714

    Re: Question forms to inquire ordinal.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chazzwozzer View Post
    What do you think about these:
    What number in the sequence of Turkish Presidents does Mr. Sezer occupy?
    and
    What place does Mr. Sezer take in the sequence of Turkish Presidents?
    I think that they are such elegant options that it is a shame that most native speakers wouldn't have come up with them!
    I'm not quite sure what I would say. Perhaps I would say something slightly different and ask:

    How many Presidents were there before Mr. Sezer?

    Cayuga's option sounds very natural.

    This is not the first time that someone has asked this question, look.
    A buen entendedor, pocas palabras.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Istanbul
    Native language
    Turkish
    Age
    25
    Posts
    1,811

    Re: Question forms to inquire ordinal.

    Got it, thank you guys.
    «Toyın tapugsak Teñri sepinçsiz.»

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Native language
    turkish turkey
    Posts
    202

    42nd President of USA

    Hi, I came across a strange problem and I just can not find a proper solution.

    "Bill Clinton is the 42nd President of the United States of America."
    "George W. Bush is the 43rd President of the United States of America."

    Here, my problem is the bold part, the ordinal number. How can I ask an ordinal number in a question? To be the 42nd or the 43rd etc.. is one of the characteristics of the person. How can I ask that characteristic of that person?

    Thanks.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    N49*05'51.92" W0*21'09.88"
    Native language
    France French
    Age
    63
    Posts
    10,713

    Re: 42nd President of USA

    The only solution I can come up with is
    Where does Bill Clinton stand in the order of US presidents?

    I hope someone will find a better option.
    "Those are my principles, and if you don't like them....well, I have others." (Groucho Marx).

Page 1 of 5 123 ... LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •