He was afraid...

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azuki

Senior Member
Japanese
Hello there,

I would like to confirm if the following sentences imply that he got in the house.

1)He was afraid to enter the house.
2)He was afraid that he enters the house.

1)says that he didn’t get in the house, but 2) doesn’t say if he did. Am I right?

Thank you.
 
  • azuki

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    1) is grammatically correct. It does not tell us whether he entered the house.
    2) is grammatically incorrect and meaningless, I'm afraid!
    Thank you for your reply, sound shift.
    In my grammar book, the translation of 1) is that he was so afraid that he wasn't able to enter the house. Is the translation correct?

    I have rewritten 2). If it’s still wrong, could you please correct?

    He was afraid that he would enter the house.

    Thank you.:)
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    I have rewritten 2). If it’s still wrong, could you please correct?

    He was afraid that he would enter the house.

    Thank you.:)
    Good morning, azuki.
    This sentence is grammatically correct, but its meaning is ambiguous. In your mind, is the second "he" the same person as the first "he"? Can you give us some idea of the context?
     

    azuki

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    Good morning, azuki.
    This sentence is grammatically correct, but its meaning is ambiguous. In your mind, is the second "he" the same person as the first "he"? Can you give us some idea of the context?
    Hi, sound shift.

    Yes, both he are the same person. 1) was quoted from my grammar book. I am still not clear about the meaning of 1). 2) is the sentence I composed in the process to understand 1).

    Thanks for your help.:)
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    1.) "He was afraid to enter the house." He didn't want to enter the house, because he was afraid of the possible consequences. Perhaps he had heard that the house was unsafe or perhaps he thought his mother would punish him if she later found out that he had entered the house. What does your grammar book say about this sentence? Does it give a context?

    2.) "He was afraid that he would enter the house." If the first "he" is the same person as the second "he", this sentence is unlikely, but possible. It means two things:
    a) He didn't want to enter the house; and
    b) He thought that there was a possibility that he would enter the house against his will. Perhaps there was a crowd of people pushing him into the house.

    If there is no context with these sentences, we can only speculate about the meaning.
     

    azuki

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    1.) "He was afraid to enter the house." He didn't want to enter the house, because he was afraid of the possible consequences. Perhaps he had heard that the house was unsafe or perhaps he thought his mother would punish him if she later found out that he had entered the house. What does your grammar book say about this sentence? Does it give a context?

    2.) "He was afraid that he would enter the house." If the first "he" is the same person as the second "he", this sentence is unlikely, but possible. It means two things:
    a) He didn't want to enter the house; and
    b) He thought that there was a possibility that he would enter the house against his will. Perhaps there was a crowd of people pushing him into the house.

    If there is no context with these sentences, we can only speculate about the meaning.
    Thank you for your comment, sound shift.

    1.) "He was afraid to enter the house."
    I am afraid that the sentence doesn’t have a context. Does it state that he was afraid of entering the house, or consequently he was not able to enter the house because of his fearing? The translation in the grammar book is the latter. It tells, in other words, he didn’t have the courage to enter the house. Is the latter translation appropriate?

    2.) "He was afraid that he would enter the house." I understand 2.) Thanks for your explanation again!
     

    sound shift

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Be careful with 1), azuki: this sentence does not tell us whether he entered the house. It all depends on what follows. For example, "He was afraid to enter the house, but his elder brother said there was nothing to be afraid of, and persuaded him to step inside."
     

    azuki

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    Be careful with 1), azuki: this sentence does not tell us whether he entered the house. It all depends on what follows. For example, "He was afraid to enter the house, but his elder brother said there was nothing to be afraid of, and persuaded him to step inside."
    Thanks for your comment, sound shift.
    If 1) doesn’t tell us whether he entered the house, would the following two sentences become almost same meaning?

    a)He was afraid to enter the house.

    b)He was afraid of entering the house.

    My understanding is that a) says he didn’t enter the house, and b) is that it doesn’t tell us whether he entered the house. Am I misinterpreting?

    Thank you.
     

    Aidanriley

    Senior Member
    English
    Thanks for your comment, sound shift.
    If 1) doesn’t tell us whether he entered the house, would the following two sentences become almost same meaning?

    a)He was afraid to enter the house.
    b)He was afraid of entering the house.


    My understanding is that a) says he didn’t enter the house, and b) is that it doesn’t tell us whether he entered the house. Am I misinterpreting?




    Thank you.
    Yes, neither of them say whether or not he entered the house.
     

    azuki

    Senior Member
    Japanese
    Good morning.

    I can't see any difference in meaning between a) and b) in post no. 9. I agree with Aidanriley that neither sentence says whether he went into the house.
    Thanks for your replies, sound shift and Aidanriley.
    Although the grammar book points out that there is a difference between the two sentences, I found it wrong.
    I appreciate your help! :)
     
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