James while John had had had had had had had had had had had a better effect on the teacher

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James while John had had had had had had had had had had had a better effect on the teacher”是一个表示用词歧義标点符号重要性的英文句子[1]然而,句子本有的標點符號被語調[2]重音停頓代替了,结果它们只能通过对话听出却无法写到纸上。[3]在對於人類怎樣處理資訊的研究中,该句經常會被用来說明標點符號的重要性,我們應倚重標點符號來表達句子的意思,而非用語調、重音或停頓。[4]


故事起自有兩個學生,James(詹姆斯)和John(約翰)。他們曾經需要在一個英語考試上描述一個曾經着涼的人。約翰寫的句子是“The man had a cold”,這句在文法上不正確;而詹姆斯寫的句子在文法上正確:“The man had had a cold”。老師於是註記「由於詹姆斯的答案是正確的,所以它對於老師有一個較好的效果。」


James, while John had had "had", had had "had had"; "had had" had had a better effect on the teacher.[5]

詹姆斯在当约翰用“had”时用了“had had”,老师认为“had had”的效果更好。


James had had "had had", while John had had "had"; "had had" had had a better effect on the teacher.

詹姆斯用了“had had”,而约翰用了“had”,老师认为“had had”的效果更好。


這句子可以作為一個文法遊戲[6][7][8]或一條考試題目,[1][2]考生需要赋予合适的標點符號來明晰句子意思。Hans Reichenbach在1947年用了一個類似的句子給讀者作為練習(“John where Jack...”),來表達語言的不同階級,例如目標語言元語言[9]在研究如何人讓他們的環境中的信息意識,這句話來演示如何武斷的決定可以大幅改變的意義,類似於如何,標點和句秀引號的變化,老師輪流喜歡詹姆斯的工作和約翰工作。 (“詹姆斯,而約翰不得不”,“...”,或“詹姆斯,約翰不得不”不得不,“......”)[10]




  1. ^ 1.0 1.1 Magonet, Jonathan. A rabbi reads the Bible 2nd. SCM-Canterbury Press. 2004: 19 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 9780334029526. You may remember an old classroom test in English language. What punctuation marks do you have to add to this sentence so as to make sense of it? 
  2. ^ 2.0 2.1 Dundes, Alan; Carl R. Pagter. When you're up to your ass in alligators: more urban folklore from the paperwork empire Illustrated. Wayne State University Press. 1987: 135 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 0814318673. The object of this and similar tests is to make sense of a series of words by figuring out the correct intonation pattern. 
  3. ^ Hudson, Grover. Essential introductory linguistics. Wiley-Blackwell. 1999: 372 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 0631203044. Writing is secondary to speech, in history and in the fact that speech and not writing is fundamental to the human species. 
  4. ^ van de Velde, Roger G. Text and thinking: on some roles of thinking in text interpretation Illustrated. Walter de Gruyter. 1992: 43 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 3110132508. In scanning across lines, readers also make use of the information parts carried along with the punctuatuion markes: a period, a dash, a colon, a semicolon or a comma may signal different degrees of integration/separation between the groupings. 
  5. ^ "Problem C: Operator Jumble" 互联网档案馆存檔,存档日期2009-05-09.. 31st ACM International Collegiate Programming Conference, 2006–2007.
  6. ^ Amon, Mike. GADFLY. Financial Times. 2004-01-28 [2009-04-30]. HAD up to here? So were readers of last week's column, invited to punctuate "Smith where Jones had had had had had had had had had had had the examiners approval." 
  7. ^ Jackson, Howard. Grammar and Vocabulary: A Resource Book for Students. Routledge. 2002: 123 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 0415231701. Finally, verbal humour is often an ingredient of puzzles. As part of an advertising campaign for its educational website , the Guardian (for 3 january 2001) included the following familiar grammatical puzzle. 
  8. ^ 3802 - Operator Jumble 互联网档案馆存檔,存档日期2008-10-13.
  9. ^ Reichenbach, Hans (1947) Elements of symbolic logic. London: Collier-MacMillan. Exercise 3-4, p.405; solution p.417.
  10. ^ Weick, Karl E. Making Sense of the Organization 8th. Wiley-Blackwell. 2005: 186–187 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 0631223193. Once a person has generated/bracketed part of the stream, then the activities of punctuation and connection (parsing) can occur in an effort to transform the raw data into information. 
  11. ^ Lecercle, Jean-Jacques. The violence of language Illustrated. Routledge. 1990: 86 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 0415034310. Suppose I decide that I wish to make up a sentence containing eleven occurrences of the word 'had' in a row ... 
  12. ^ Hollin, Clive R. Contemporary Psychology: An Introduction Illustrated. Routledge. 1995: 34 [2009-04-30]. ISBN 0748401911. Do readers make use of the ways in which sentences are structured?