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General Writing and Grammar Help/we do not know how many friends.....

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Question
Dear Ted:

Here is the original sentence:

Party time! Brandi is throwing a mad bash, so her friend's husband Marco is helping her move some furniture around in preparation.

You wrote the following:

Under usual circumstances, the husband's name is non-essential, so Marco would be placed within quotation marks.  We know that a woman can have only one husband.  However, we do not know how many friends Brandi has. The way the sentence is written, we can only assume that Brandi has just one friend.  The sentence is vague.

My question is this:

Why did you write, ".....we do not know how many friends BRANDI has" AND NOT ".....we do not know how many friends HER HUSBAND has"?

Again, many, many thanks for your valuable help.

Paolo

Answer
Dear Paolo:

Why did you write, ".....we do not know how many friends BRANDI has" AND NOT ".....we do not know how many friends HER HUSBAND has"?

*** I was wide awake on this one.  The wording is "so her friend's husband Marco."  HER must refer to Brandi.  Marco is a HE.  We do not need to know anything about Marco, except that he helped in the moving.

Ted  

General Writing and Grammar Help

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Ted Nesbitt

Expertise

I am the bibliographic instruction and reference librarian at a public college. Some members of the English department recommend me to their students. I offer assistance in grammar, punctuation, sentence structure, and paragraph development. My master`s thesis concerns William Faulkner`s tragic novels. I formerly taught advanced placement English at two schools in the Philadelphia area.

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I have been one of the highest-ranked volunteers in this category for more than a decade.

Education/Credentials
B. A. and M. A in English; MSIS in Library & Information Sciences; graduate study in philosophy

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