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the legs of the tables Options
Ivan Fadeev
Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2021 7:25:41 AM

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Are both correct?

“The carpenter repaired the legs of the tables”
or
“The carpenter repaired legs of the tables”
Wilmar (USA) 1M
Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2021 7:32:16 AM

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Location: Vinton, Iowa, United States
Include "the".

It might be more common to hear it worded this way.
The carpenter repaired the table legs.


You could use the 2nd version of your sentence if you included some additional information, which changes the meaning of the sentence.
The carpenter repaired table legs for a living.
Ivan Fadeev
Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2021 7:35:34 AM

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But if I include "the" wouldn't it mean that he/she repaired all the legs? Or it can mean only some legs as well?
sureshot
Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2021 10:21:48 AM
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Ivan Fadeev wrote:
But if I include "the" wouldn't it mean that he/she repaired all the legs? Or it can mean only some legs as well?


___________________

As already mentioned, the use of "the" is the preferred choice. If it is essential to specify the number of legs, one can say "two/three legs of the table".If all the (four) legs were repaired, the phrase may be suitably modified. If it is not essential to specify the number of table legs, the original sentence and the one suggested by Wilmar are both correct.
tautophile
Posted: Thursday, April 8, 2021 10:42:09 AM
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I would understand the sentence "The carpenter repaired the legs of the table" or "...the table's legs" to means that he repaired those legs that needed repairing, and presumably left the others (that were intact and didn't need repairing) alone. We don't know how many legs the table has--probably four or six--but since "legs" is plural in the original sentence, I would presume at least two legs on the table needed repairs, and maybe all of them did. If the original sentenced had (singular) "leg" rather than "legs", I would presume that only one leg needed repair.

So, to answer your question, Ivan, if the "the" is included, then yes, the sentence can mean that the carpenter repaired some of the legs--or perhaps all of them.

If the sentence said "...the legs of the tables" (or "...the tables' legs), then there were at least two tables and maybe more, and the carpenter repaired those legs that needed repairing, just as above.
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