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The diameter of hole A is smaller than the diameter of each of holes B and C.

I would like to know whether the above sentence I created means that holes B and C have the same diameter.

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    It's ambiguous. All we know is that they are smaller than A.
    – Andrew
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 2:54
  • I prefer ambiguous.
    – rama9
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 7:39
  • Sorry, misread your sentence. I meant that all we know is that the diameter of holes B and C are both larger than the diameter of A. We know nothing of their relationship to each other. By the way this kind of thing is used in tests of logical reasoning to catch students who are too quick to make assumptions.
    – Andrew
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 16:08
  • I was worried that "the diameter of each of holes B and C" means only they have the same diameter and that "the diameters of holes B and C" mean only they have different diameters. According to your comments, each of these expressions can be interpreted as having both meanings.
    – rama9
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 17:08

1 Answer 1

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I think it would be more clear if you said

The diameter of hole A is smaller than the diameters of holes B and C, and B and C have the same diameter.

Your original sentence does not make it clear to me that they have the same diameter, but rather that A is bigger than both of them.

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    I'm relieved to hear that because I want the sentence to have two possible meanings : holes B and C have the same diameter; and have different diameters.
    – rama9
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 0:56
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    Glad I could clarify:)
    – Element115
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 1:00

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