Few (7)

1 Name: Anonymous Linguist : 2006-11-16 00:56 ID:0YAuDPNQ

If I told you you should prepare for a few weeks of bed rest, for how many weeks would prepare, exactly? Please give a numerical answer and also mention whether you are a native speaker of English and if so, which variety you speak. The purpose of this not so well-planned experiment is to prove someone wrong.

2 Name: Anonymous Linguist : 2006-11-17 17:17 ID:yVkV7U0V

> If I told you to be prepared for a few weeks of rest, exactly how many weeks would you be prepared for?

Maybe this is what you are trying to say, >>1 ?

The answer is, within English it is assumed that "a few" is a non-definitive number that can represent any multiple amount, so I can't give you a numerical number to it, since it is interpreted. However in terms of "ambiguous counting" in order of smallest to largest; a couple, several, a few, many, a lot.

For the record I am a native speaker of English, and I speak Commonwealth English.

3 Name: Anonymous Linguist : 2006-11-17 18:55 ID:GoyPcBND

Like Australia, UK, NZ ?

4 Name: Anonymous Linguist : 2006-11-23 21:47 ID:qD5p6zuc

Huh. I'm a native American (wwww) and I always thought several was larger.

My vague idea of quantities-
Couple: 2
A few: ~3
Several: ~5-7
Many: 10+

5 Name: Anonymous Linguist : 2006-11-24 09:01 ID:mi3dAd3/

not native, but New England taught and raised

6 Name: Anonymous Linguist : 2006-11-25 06:53 ID:rnQRkUfN

I agree. A couple of people = 2
A few is 3-4, while several is a bit more.

"There are several people in the room, enjoying drinks and light conversation." implies that there are enough for said activities.

7 Name: Anonymous Linguist : 2006-12-09 02:11 ID:X8FBbM09

I am a native english speaker from Canada.
I agree that normally "a couple" = 2 and "a few" = 3-4.

But in the context of "prepare for a few weeks of rest" I would interprate it as 2-3 weeks. I say this because if the person had meant up to 3-4 weeks, they would have said "a month" rather than "a few weeks"

This thread has been closed. You cannot post in this thread any longer.