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Amybal
Posted: Monday, March 5, 2018 2:15:45 AM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 2/8/2018
Posts: 296
Neurons: 1,615
Hi,I would be grateful if you check the sentence below.

When four most influential students in school make a pact to not have a serious girlfriend, one of them breaks the promise, and strange occurrences start to take place.
FounDit
Posted: Monday, March 5, 2018 5:57:09 PM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/19/2011
Posts: 9,420
Neurons: 50,129
Amybal wrote:
Hi,I would be grateful if you check the sentence below.

If these four are simply four out of many influential students, then you should write: "When four influential students..."

However, if these are THE four most influential students in the whole school, then you should include the article "When the four most influential...".

When four most influential students in school make a pact to not have a serious girlfriend, one of them breaks the promise, and strange occurrences start to take place.


We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Tuesday, March 6, 2018 3:38:46 AM

Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 9/12/2011
Posts: 29,916
Neurons: 174,211
Location: Livingston, Scotland, United Kingdom
Hello Amybal.

In addition to FounDit's answer . . .

It depends on why you wanted the check - your sentence (with the 'most' omitted) is correct.
It does not sound quite natural, and there is one phrase which some examiners may disagree with.

If you want the sentence checked for "Would this be accepted in an examination?", I would change it to ". . .a pact not to have a . . .".
Your sentence is not incorrect, but some people definitely do not like the negative infinitive "to not do" or "to not have".

If you want the sentence checked as "Would this sound natural in a conversation?", the answer would be slightly different.

"To not have" sounds natural, to me. However some of the other word-choices sound a little 'formal' for everyday conversation. We tend to use rather simple words normally, and simple sentence-forms.

When four of the leading boys in school make a pact to not have a serious girlfriend, one of them breaks it and strange things start to happen.

Wyrd bið ful aræd - bull!
Amybal
Posted: Saturday, March 10, 2018 12:26:07 PM
Rank: Advanced Member

Joined: 2/8/2018
Posts: 296
Neurons: 1,615
Hi Drag0nspeaker,

Thank you for your kind advice. I would prefer the formal writing because I want to use them for my blog. There is no preference on word-choices, to me, as long those sentences are interesting and nice to read.
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