Date: Fri, 22 Sep 1995 11:31:13 -0500

From: Katherine Catmull kate[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]BGA.COM

Subject: Re: acceptability/grammaticality judgments, please -Reply

On Fri, 22 Sep 1995, Molly Dickmeyer wrote:

2. Who does she think said ate the cake?

This one is harder for me to understand. Perhaps:

Who does she think said "ate the cake"?

Or is there an understood "you" here?

Perhaps it's just my natural cavalier approach to spoken grammar, but

this sentence made immediate sense to me. I read it as "Who does she think

said [he or she] ate the cake?", with the "who" doing double-duty

referring to the person who ate the cake and the person who said they ate

the cake--which would of course be the same person.

However, the more I re-read it, the more uncertain I get. It doesn't do

to think too hard about on-the-fly grammatical constructions.

Kate Catmull kate[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]