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Topic # 243515 15-Dec-2018 14:02
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I recently posted this query on several websites that purport to answer grammar questions.

 

But I've had no answers yet, so maybe the question is more difficult than I thought.

 

BTW, it's not a trick question - just a matter of grammar.

 

And I don't know the answer, though I do have a suspect.

 

Anyone care to chance their arm? 

 

Question:

 

 

Which of the first two are correct?

 

1) ...there are many people who are more influential than I.

 

2) ...there are many people who are more influential than me.

 

Alternatively, if I were to rephrase the sentences, which of the next two would be correct?

 

3) ...there are many people with more influence than I.

 

4) ...there are many people with more influence than me.

 

Additionally, if the answer is 'I', there may be an issue with whether or not 'am' should follow 'I', as in '...more influential than I am'.

 

Personally, I don't think it sounds right.

 

 

 

 

 


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  Reply # 2145765 15-Dec-2018 14:15
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Ain't no expert at grammar, but:

 

1) ...there are many people who are more influential than I am.

 

2) ...there are many people who are more influential than myself.

 

3 definitely doesn't sound grammatically correct.

 

4)...there are many people with more influence than me [or myself].

 

That's my two cents worth.


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  Reply # 2145769 15-Dec-2018 14:27
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I'd have gone with "I" for both of those; as DarthKermit pointed out, if you make it "I am" then "I" is clearly correct. For the rephrased sentence, "I have" also seems correct to me, so again I'd go with "I".


 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 2145772 15-Dec-2018 14:47
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geekIT:

 

I recently posted this query on several websites that purport to answer grammar questions.

 

But I've had no answers yet, so maybe the question is more difficult than I thought.

 

BTW, it's not a trick question - just a matter of grammar.

 

And I don't know the answer, though I do have a suspect.

 

Anyone care to chance their arm? 

 

Question:

 

Which of the first two are correct?

 

1) ...there are many people who are more influential than I.

 

2) ...there are many people who are more influential than me.

 

Alternatively, if I were to rephrase the sentences, which of the next two would be correct?

 

3) ...there are many people with more influence than I.

 

4) ...there are many people with more influence than me.

 

Additionally, if the answer is 'I', there may be an issue with whether or not 'am' should follow 'I', as in '...more influential than I am'.

 

Personally, I don't think it sounds right.

 

 

 

 

 

 

The way to tell is just to complete the sentence with the missing word. As in, "there are many people more influential than I am" (as opposed to "there are many people more influential than me am"). Obviously, the second version is wrong. Likewise, compare "there are many people with more influence than I have" to "there are many people with more influence than me have".

 

The correct version should be obvious.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





I reject your reality and substitute my own. - Adam Savage
 


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  Reply # 2145823 15-Dec-2018 15:14
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There's lots of help on these sort of questions (e.g. https://www.wikihow.com/Choose-Between-%22I%22-and-%22Me%22-Correctly) although you've provided more difficult examples because we don't encounter these issues much in English unlike German and some other languages.

 

There are relatively simple rules around verb-subject-object ordering.

 

Basic rules:

 

A. "I" is the subject/doing e.g. "I love you" or "I like you a lot". It is a nominative pronoun.

 

B. "Me" is the object/receiving e.g. "You love me" or "You like me a lot". It is an accusative pronoun.

 

 

 

Rewrite the sentences:

 

C. Remove any other parties e.g. "They liked Hugo and I" becomes "They liked I" which is better written "They liked me"

 

D. Reverse the sentence and the same pronoun doesn't normally work. See your questions:

 

1. "There are many people who are more influential than I" becomes "I am less influential than many other people" so chances are "I" should not be used in 1.

 

2. "There are many people who are more influential than me." becomes "Me am less influential than many other people." which is wrong so "me" is more likely to be correct in 2.

 

3. "There are many people with more influence than I." becomes "I have less influence than many other people." so chances are "I" should not be used in 3.

 

4. "There are many people with more influence than me." becomes "Me have less influence than many other people." which is wrong so "me" is more likely to be correct in 4.

 

 

 

P.S. Grouped examples in A & B to avoid ambiguity.


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  Reply # 2145827 15-Dec-2018 15:19
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Rikkitic:

 

The way to tell is just to complete the sentence with the missing word. As in, "there are many people more influential than I am" (as opposed to "there are many people more influential than me am"). Obviously, the second version is wrong. Likewise, compare "there are many people with more influence than I have" to "there are many people with more influence than me have".

 

The correct version should be obvious.

 

 

I don't agree. By appending "am" or "have" to "I" then your are effectively reversing the subject-object order.

 

Try it on a sentence where the subject is obviously "You", e.g. "You love I" and "You love me", and then do what you say. They become "You love I am" and "You love me am" so each sentence has two subjects which is the wrong thing to do.


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  Reply # 2145833 15-Dec-2018 15:42
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I agree with Hammerer.

 

'I' and 'me' are examples of the concept of pronoun case which exists in most (perhaps all?) Germanic and Romance languages. I always understood that 'I' is the correct case for the subject of the sentence and 'me' is the correct case for the object.

 

In French I would say 'Il y a des gens qui ont plus d'influence que moi'. I would not expect to use 'je' in place of 'moi'. 


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  Reply # 2145834 15-Dec-2018 15:43
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as I understand things, personal pronouns are used (I, he, they) when they are the subject, and (me, him, us, them) when they are the object of a sentance.





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  Reply # 2145837 15-Dec-2018 15:57
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Thanks, guys.

 

Actually, I shouldn't have mentioned the possibility of 'am' following 'I' , because it clouds the issue.
Personally, I don't think 'am' is necessary, the sentence sounds fine without it.

 

Darth Kermit: 'myself' sounds a bit odd to me. There's a lot more about 'myself' in the Rule 10 section of this webpage>
https://www.grammarbook.com/grammar/pronoun.asp

 

Behodar: I agree, the 'I' ending sounds best to my ear. I only added the 'am' as a possibility because my wife is sure it's neccessary.

 

Rikkitic: My own choice of the first two is 1). But you think it needs 'am' to be complete? Similarly, it seems to me that 3) is the better of the last two. Do you feel that it needs the addition of 'have'?

 

Hammerer: Your rephrasing of 1) and 3) sound okay to me. Did you really mean that 'I' shouldn't be used in those sentences? Or should be?

 

EDIT: Sorry, I set out to answer the fourth post up from here, so missed the last three contributions.


pdh

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  Reply # 2145838 15-Dec-2018 16:04
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My 2 c...

Hammerer & Alasta have de-railed us from the 'truth-track'.

 

'You love me' is a single clause, with a subject and an object.
But this is an Apple - not an Orange.

 

The OT's sentences are all two clauses, hinged on the 'than'.
So each clause gets to have its own subject.
And 'I' is the subject in the second clauses: 'I am' and 'I have'.

 

We find it confusing only if we choose to omit the 'am' and the 'have'.

 

 


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  Reply # 2145844 15-Dec-2018 16:21
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This may be interesting to some:

 

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2215039015300035

 

"It is generally accepted that in comparative constructions, when the clausal element compared is the subject of the matrix clause, the personal pronoun following than can be either nominative which is usually used in formal English, where than is considered as a conjunction, or accusative which is usually used in informal English, where than is considered as a preposition."

 

 


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  Reply # 2145848 15-Dec-2018 16:27
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pdh:

 

My 2 c...

Hammerer & Alasta have de-railed us from the 'truth-track'.

 

'You love me' is a single clause, with a subject and an object.
But this is an Apple - not an Orange.

 

The OT's sentences are all two clauses, hinged on the 'than'.
So each clause gets to have its own subject.
And 'I' is the subject in the second clauses: 'I am' and 'I have'.

 

We find it confusing only if we choose to omit the 'am' and the 'have'.

 

 

Yes, you are right. I did ignore the reduced clause after the comparative. surprised Apologies to Rikkitic and all. embarassed

 

So ignore D. in my original reply.


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  Reply # 2145879 15-Dec-2018 17:31
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I forgot to add in my earlier post.

In terms of the OP, there is nothing wrong with the use of “me” as it was used.

I think it was quite common for people to be told it was wrong, but in english it isn’t an issue.




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  Reply # 2145892 15-Dec-2018 18:23
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al9876:

 

This may be interesting to some:

 

https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2215039015300035

 

"It is generally accepted that in comparative constructions, when the clausal element compared is the subject of the matrix clause, the personal pronoun following than can be either nominative which is usually used in formal English, where than is considered as a conjunction, or accusative which is usually used in informal English, where than is considered as a preposition."

 

 

Very interesting. More so because it might relieve some embarrassment but I don't think it does - correct me if I'm wrong.

 

For anyone who is interested, here's an explanation

 

It is possible to reduce a multi-clause comparison to a simple clause comparison

 

In the paper, the word "than" can sometimes be used as a preposition making the sentence a simple clause. I've bolded the relevant words:

 

 In comparative constructions, than is always a conjunction and the following element can be expanded into a clause. It can be used as a preposition only when the following nominal group is not the standard of comparison, hence forming a prepositional phrase. In this case, the than-phrase is not a comparative construction, and the whole sentence is not a clause complex but a simple clause.

 

Examples of ambiguous matrix clauses

 

If there are two arguments in the matrix clause, the remaining personal pronoun following than should be nominative when it is compared with the subject or accusative when it is compared with the object of the matrix clause. For example:

 

(2) a. But in a downturn, you love it more than they. b. Is he gonna like her more than me?

 

There is ambiguity about the intended meaning which can be either "Is he gonna like more than I like her?" or "Is he gonna like her more than he likes me?"

 

However, if the comparative clause is reduced to a noun phrase, “ambiguity can arise as to whether a remaining noun phrase is subject or object” (Quirk et al., 1985, p. 1132). For example:

 

(3) Jack loves the dog more than his wife.

 

So "Jack loves the dog more than his wife loves the dog?" or "Jack loves the dog more than he loves his wife?"

 

Traditional/formal interpretation

 

Apparently, more traditional (and formal) grammarians believe that the auxiliary verb can be used. So we get "is he gonna like here more than they do" and "Jack loves the dog more than his wife does". In the OP's sentences that means appending "am" to "than I" where there is no change of tense. Such constructions as the OP's examples occur 9% of the time with the other 91% of occurrences using an auxiliary verb to clarify the ambiguity.

 

Informal interpretation

 

Informal English, in comparison, is far more likely to use the accusative "me", naturally without an auxiliary verb. So "He is gonna like her more than he likes me?" and "Jack loves his dog more than he loves his wife". The ratio is about 75:25 so one quarter of such informal statements will be interpreted as a single clause with "than" functioning as a preposition rather than a conjunction.

 

It doesn't apply to our topic sentences

 

The question for me is whether it makes sense to interpret the OP's sentences in this way. Even if there is an ambiguous matrix clause with two possible comparees, I don't think that the meaning is at all ambiguous. As the paper says:

 

We cannot say that the than element in sentences such as You are taller than me can be analyzed as either a conjunction or a preposition; it is solely a conjunction.

 

 

 

P.S. Edited to remove extra lines inserted on save.


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  Reply # 2145911 15-Dec-2018 20:34
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geekIT:

 

I recently posted this query on several websites that purport to answer grammar questions.

 

But I've had no answers yet, so maybe the question is more difficult than I thought.

 

BTW, it's not a trick question - just a matter of grammar.

 

And I don't know the answer, though I do have a suspect.

 

Anyone care to chance their arm? 

 

Question:

 

Which of the first two are correct?

 

1) ...there are many people who are more influential than I.

 

2) ...there are many people who are more influential than me.

 

Alternatively, if I were to rephrase the sentences, which of the next two would be correct?

 

3) ...there are many people with more influence than I.

 

4) ...there are many people with more influence than me.

 

Additionally, if the answer is 'I', there may be an issue with whether or not 'am' should follow 'I', as in '...more influential than I am'.

 

Personally, I don't think it sounds right.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Simplify your sentences and then it becomes obvious.

 

1) He is fatter than I.

 

2) He is fatter than me.

 

It should be clear that the first is wrong and the second is right.

 

You can modify 1 to read "He is fatter than I am." That does not mean that "He is fatter than I" is correct though.

 

Similarly, the fact that "He has a fatter gut than I have" is correct does not make "he has a fatter gut than I" correct.


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  Reply # 2145912 15-Dec-2018 20:35
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DarthKermit:

 

Ain't no expert at grammar, but:

 

1) ...there are many people who are more influential than I am.

 

2) ...there are many people who are more influential than myself.

 

3 definitely doesn't sound grammatically correct.

 

4)...there are many people with more influence than me [or myself].

 

That's my two cents worth.

 

 

These are two examples of the misuse of the word myself.


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