a. I gave them as little sensitive information as possible.

Can't that sentence be read in two ways?

I think little could be modifying sensitive or information, so I see two possible readings:

  1. The information I gave them was as little sensitive as possible.

  2. I gave them the least possible amount of sensitive information.

Am I right?

  • 4
    It means that you gave them only the bare minimum of sensitive information. Jun 4 '21 at 3:20

In the phrase as little information as possible, the word little is a determiner that attaches to the noun information. It can't modify the adjective sensitive.

Oxford Dictionary little

[Determiner and Pronoun]
2. Used to emphasize how small an amount is.
[as determiner] I have little doubt of their identity

[definition edited for format]

Little has uses as adjective, noun, adverb, pronoun and determiner. To modify an adjective like sensitive, it would have to be an adverb, but it isn't in this use. It's little [sensitive information].

  • To modify "sensitive" you might use a word like "slightly": "I gave them some slightly sensitive information". Jun 4 '21 at 12:19

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