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What is the difference between these two sentences?

1) I have interviewed more than a hundred of the greatest politicians, artists …

2) I have interviewed more than a hundred politicians, artists …

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    The first adds the modifier "of the greatest" meaning you only interviewed the best of the group instead of a random sampling. If the 'of' os tripping you up, you could also say: "more than a hundred politicians , artists, ... that are the greatest in their fields of study." The "of" here allows you to modify the whole group here. Jun 29, 2015 at 20:36

2 Answers 2

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You forgot to look at the entire difference:

I have interviewed more than a hundred *of the greatest* politicians, artists …

vs

 I have interviewed more than a hundred politicians, artists …

The difference is that in the former you are making the distinction of having interviewed a particular kind of politicians and artists. While the latter only says that a certain number of people were interviewed, the former makes a point of that the hundred people are among the greatest.

It doesn't only work with hundreds, it is the same with singular nouns:

I ate one banana...

vs

I ate one of the greatest bananas...
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A hundred of means that there are more then hundred of artists, politicians...

A hundred means that there COULD be a little bit more than hundred or exactly one hundred

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    I disagree that "a hundred of" means "more than"
    – J.R.
    Jun 29, 2015 at 20:49
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    There were 650 paintings in the museum, but I only saw a hundred of them. (That doesn't mean I saw 110 paintings, it means I saw 100.)
    – J.R.
    Jun 29, 2015 at 20:54
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    There were 650 paintings in the museum. I saw a hundred of them. Even with the "only" removed, I still don't see how "a hundred of" in that sentence implies more than 100.
    – J.R.
    Jun 29, 2015 at 21:00
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    "There were two apples on the table. I ate one of them." This means that one apple was eaten, one was left behind. It is not ambiguous. Now consider: "There were two apples on the table. I ate one apple." The only way this could have a different meaning is if the apple I ate did not come from the table. If my apple that was eaten had been on the table, the two sentences have exactly the same meaning. Of serves to restrict which apples were eaten or which paintings were seen. It does not change the count of eaten or seen items in any way.
    – Adam
    Jun 29, 2015 at 23:14
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    Wow! Quite a learning experience from the above discussion. Thank you all.
    – Roy
    Jul 1, 2015 at 17:50

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