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What is two and/add five?

Discussion in 'English Only' started by hboo, Jan 29, 2013.

  1. hboo Senior Member

    Chinese
    Hello,

    Would you ask a kid a question:"What is two and five?" or "What is two add five?"?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Hau Ruck

    Hau Ruck Senior Member

    United States - Midwest
    English - U.S.
    Seven. :) Oh, sorry. Wrong answer. ;)

    I would say, "What is two plus five?".

    "What is two and five?" might be ok. I would never say, "Two add five."
     
  3. Beryl from Northallerton Moderator

    British English
    I share Filsmith's usage, though I'm surprised as I thought that 'two add five' was an American English staple.
     
  4. JustKate

    JustKate Moderate Mod

    Oh, I agree with Filsmith - "two add five" is odd. I could presumably construct a sentence or scenario in which it's possible, but I'd have to work at it.
     
  5. Parla Senior Member

    New York City
    English - US
    "Two add five" would be very strange and is not a substitute for the normal "two and five" or "two plus five". We might say to a six- or seven-year-old child learning arithmetic, "Start with two, add five to that, and what's the answer you get?" (Made up just to see how we might use those three words in sequence.)
     
  6. RM1(SS)

    RM1(SS) Senior Member

    Connecticut
    English - US (Midwest)
    Definitely agree with Filsmith. I've never heard anyone say "two add five."
     
  7. hboo Senior Member

    Chinese
    Thanks for all your help. How about "Two and five, what does it add up?". Does it sound natural now? Thanks.
     
  8. Myridon

    Myridon Senior Member

    Texas
    English - US
    No.
    Two and five are two things so they can't be a singular "it".

    What do two and five add up to?
    Two and five add up to seven.
     
  9. Hau Ruck

    Hau Ruck Senior Member

    United States - Midwest
    English - U.S.
    "Two and five, what do they add up?"

    ;)
     
  10. Parla Senior Member

    New York City
    English - US
    Uh, I think perhaps it would be: "Two and five, what do they add up to?"
     
  11. Enquiring Mind Senior Member

    UK/Česká republika
    English - the Queen's
    I think the "add up to" is unnecessarily complicated in a question to a child. We'd normally say "what do two plus five make?" Two plus five (or "two and five") make seven.
     
  12. Istarion Senior Member

    Paris, France
    British English
    As a British English speaker I've always said "one add one is two" etc. Seems we have an AE/BE difference? For me, "what is two add five" is correct, or maybe "what are two and five" (though I personally don't like that one). "What is two plus five" sounds fine to me too.
    -I
     
  13. Myridon

    Myridon Senior Member

    Texas
    English - US
    It's not complicated at all. Any American five-year-old can handle it with ease. :)
     
  14. Hau Ruck

    Hau Ruck Senior Member

    United States - Midwest
    English - U.S.
    Oh my, how did I forget that! :) Completely correct, Parla. Thanks. :)
     
  15. JustKate

    JustKate Moderate Mod

    I don't think it's as simple as AmE vs. BE, Istarion. Note that Beryl, a BE speaker, thought this was an AmE expression.
     

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