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A Quick Question [linguistics foo]

This one's really much easier, I swear it.

Again, I ask you to tell me if you're a native or non-native speaker and not to look at anyone else's answers before you give your own.



Lily, the princess of the realm, is given her choice of rings for her birthday. She can choose any of them she wants, and she can choose more than one if she wants. (Basically, she gets whichever one(s) she wants - it's good to be the princess.) Several dwarf smiths have spent the year working on rings of exquisite caliber. They present Lily with a garnet ring, a moonstone ring, an opal ring, and an onyx ring.

The head dwarf smith, Hoggle, is fairly sure he knows Lily's taste in rings. He says (rather snootily), "If Lily chooses the opal ring or the onyx ring, I'll run naked around the castle."

Lily comes in, sees the rings, and chooses both the opal ring and the onyx ring.

Question 1: Is Hoggle going to be running around the castle sans attire?

Higgle, another dwarf smith, goes to the king to report on which ring(s) Lily chose. Higgle, however, is a dwarf with a tricksy streak. He says to the king: "Lily chose the opal ring or the onyx ring."

Question 2: Is Higgle misleading the king?

Comments

silmaril
Nov. 2nd, 2004 10:36 am (UTC)
Non-native.

Question 1: Yes. Boolean-algebra-wise, A ^ B = 1 if A=1 or if B=1 or both.
Question 2: Yes. Use of "or" that way implies "one of", to my ear. But not in the sentence for Question 1, where the "if" seems to make all the difference to my logic-procession bits.

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