Discussion:
with the baby/ambiguity question
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a***@gmail.com
2019-12-03 03:00:54 UTC
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1) With the baby, we didn't have much time to go out.
2) We didn't have much time to go out, with the baby.
3) We didn't have much time to go out with the baby.

Which of the above sentences could mean:
a) With the baby being around, we didn't have much time to go out.
As the baby was there, we didn't have much time to go out.

I think they all could have that meaning and I think '3' could also mean:
b) We didn't have much time to go out taking the baby with us.

Is that correct?

Many thanks.
Jack
2019-12-03 10:24:13 UTC
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Post by a***@gmail.com
1) With the baby, we didn't have much time to go out.
2) We didn't have much time to go out, with the baby.
3) We didn't have much time to go out with the baby.
a) With the baby being around, we didn't have much time to go out.
As the baby was there, we didn't have much time to go out.
b) We didn't have much time to go out taking the baby with us.
Is that correct?
If 3) were used to mean a), I would consider it badly punctuated.

Spoken, in 1) and 2) the phrase 'with the baby' is distinct from the
rest of the sentence, and the comma is needed to show that in writing.

3) sounds unlikely even with meaning b). Some more expanded expression
would be used, unless the context had established 'with the baby' as
the operative phrase.

--
Ken Blake
2019-12-03 19:28:50 UTC
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Post by a***@gmail.com
1) With the baby, we didn't have much time to go out.
2) We didn't have much time to go out, with the baby.
3) We didn't have much time to go out with the baby.
a) With the baby being around, we didn't have much time to go out.
As the baby was there, we didn't have much time to go out.
1 and 2 could mean that, although neither is particularly good, because
they could be misunderstood.

3 could not mean that.
Post by a***@gmail.com
b) We didn't have much time to go out taking the baby with us.
Is that correct?
No. Delete the "also" from b. That's what 3 means
--
Ken
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