Which is the best choice?

cheshire

Senior Member
Japanese
(1) All larger kinds of whale are threatened with extinction.
(2) All larger kinds of whales are threatened with extinction.
(3) All larger kinds of the whale are threatened with extinction.
Which is the best sentence?
 
  • GEmatt

    Senior Member
    English/BE, Français/CH, Deutsch/CH (rustier & rustier)
    (1) All larger kinds of whale are threatened with extinction.:)

    (2) All larger kinds of whales are threatened with extinction.:eek:

    (3) All larger kinds of the whale are threatened with extinction.:eek:
    Which is the best sentence?

    Hope it helps.
    GEm
     

    GEmatt

    Senior Member
    English/BE, Français/CH, Deutsch/CH (rustier & rustier)
    Interesting, ok. (2) is preferable/correct in this case, but could (1) ever be used, at all? Or is it actually wrong?
     

    Thomas1

    Senior Member
    polszczyzna warszawska
    Interesting, ok. (2) is preferable/correct in this case, but could (1) ever be used, at all? Or is it actually wrong?
    IMHO, you are more likely to hear whale in everyday language (maybe because people use it similarly to fish) but I'd like to see what other native forer@s say. To tell the truth you could use both here. :) Here's how I think all the options could be acconted for:

    (1) All larger kinds of whale are threatened with extinction.
    whale in general (collectively)
    (2) All larger kinds of whales are threatened with extinction.
    literally all whales
    (3) All larger kinds of the whale are threatened with extinction.
    the whale = a certain species of whale, e.g. all kinds of humpback whale, this is, however, most unlikely statement (my opinion, of course)

    If you add the in front of it you can use it to represent a class of animals, as in:
    The whale is in great danger of extinction.

    Tom
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    (1) All larger kinds of whale are threatened with extinction.​

    (2) All larger kinds of whales are threatened with extinction.​

    (3) All larger kinds of the whale are threatened with extinction.​
    Which is the best sentence?
    I expect the question is about the usage, not necessarily how best to express this meaning. That's a pity, because I would have a suggestion:
    All large whale species are threatened with extinction :p

    (3) definitely sounds wrong. The "the" is the problem.
    (2) is dubious because I think I expect to hear "... kinds of XXX " with XXX being singular. How many kinds of bird can you think of? Think of kinds = varieties or species. Others disagree :)
    (1) just sounds right.
     

    Vikorr

    Senior Member
    Australia, English
    Look at it this way :

    1. There are several species of bird life in the area

    but

    2. There are serveral species of birds in the area (bird would be wrong)


    The reason 'whale' seems correct to people in the Original Posters context, is because many people see 'whales' as a single entity, divided up into types. They are different species of the same genus (if I remember the terminology right - it's been 20 years or so)

    That said, I'm almost certain that it is 'several species of whales' not 'several species of whale'
     

    gaer

    Senior Member
    US-English
    I expect the question is about the usage, not necessarily how best to express this meaning. That's a pity, because I would have a suggestion:
    All large whale species are threatened with extinction :p
    I think your suggestion is very on topic because I find all threee choices given in the first post clumsy. My first thought was:

    "This sentence should be rewritten." :)

    And my suggestion would have been the same as yours, word for word!

    Gaer
     
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