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I wanted to say a sentence below but I made whole 5 variants of how it could be said. Do they really mean the same or the differ somehow?

1) From what shelf will people not be taking milk any longer?

2) From what shelf will people not be taking milk any more?

3) From what shelf will people not be taking milk anymore?

4) From what shelf will people be taking milk no longer?

5) From what shelf will people be taking milk no more?

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My first comment is that the begining should be:

From which shelf...


Second comment: regardless of correctness or word order, the sentence is weird, asking a specific detail which will happen NOT.


Other than that, if I must choose "the best" sentence, I choose sentence 1:

1) From which shelf will people not be taking milk any longer?


Note: using "what" instead of "which" might mean, depending on the context, that the object either never existed, or it disappeared:

The milk is on the shelf.

What shelf?!

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2 is incorrect; "any more" is not an adverbial phrase.

4 is awkward, and 5 is very awkward verging on ungrammatical. Putting negations at the end of sentences like 4 and 5 do is archaic and confusing (you're waiting until the very end of the sentence to tell the listener that you're saying the opposite of what you've been saying so far). I would prefer "From which shelf will people no longer be taking milk?" to any of the options presented.

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They all mean the same thing, although not all of them are grammatical.

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  • Which ones aren't? – Michael Azarenko Mar 31 '19 at 7:07
  • I'm not a grammatical expert, so I can't necessarily furnish explicit justification. That said, #2, "any more" is awkward; it may yet be correct, #4 and #5 are not in grammatical order. So #4 could be "From what shelf will people no longer be taking milk?" and #5, maybe "From what shelf will people be taking no more milk?" That one is quite awkward. You don't want that negative clause hanging out there after the subject "milk." I think. – Hunter Mar 31 '19 at 7:34
  • Please edit to include an explanation of why this is correct; answers without explanation do not teach the patterns of the language well. See the Submitting Answers that merely answer the question discussion on meta. – Nathan Tuggy Mar 31 '19 at 7:45

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