redundant element

Globally and internationally, the 1990’s stood out as the warmest decade in the history of weather records.

It is a good idea to be careful in buying or purchasing magazines from salespersons who may come to your door.

In my opinion, I think you are right.

In such sentences, there are redundant elements namely "globally/internationally", "purchasing", "in my opinion" (because there are the similar meaning words or phrases in the same sentences),  aren't there?

If so, why do I often hear such compliments as "she is beautiful and attractive"? 

Would you be kind to clarify this for me? 

Original Post

To redundantly repeat oneself by saying the same thing over and over more than once is like drawing a round circle without any corners on it, to use an analogy as a comparison.

J Christoffer, 1974


I think you are right.

That is, in my opinion, you are right.

All of your examples are ridiculously redundant.

So, are these examples of your own creation, or did you read them somewhere?  If so, where?  And from whom do you "often hear such compliments as 'she is beautiful and attractive'"?  Do you hear these from intelligent, educated people who speak English as their native language?



novice posted:

Forgive my absurdity if I don't understand what you mean.

My question was intended to illustrate that it is not redundant to say "she is beautiful and attractive" (though the reverse would be redundant: "she is attractive and beautiful"). You're not asking about your other examples, since you already know they exhibit redundancy. Let me put the point another way. Do you find any really old women, or handicapped women, or women who are your immediate family members to be beautiful people? If so, would you also want to say that you find them attractive?

Sorry, David.  I started my reply an hour ago but was interrupted, so once again we are writing at cross-purposes.  Or are we?  I don't really think my reply disagrees with yours.

You bring up an interesting point, though.  Does "finding something attractive" necessarily mean that you are physically attracted to it?  Or can it mean, as I think it can, that it attracts your attention?

Certainly, some women are beautiful (Emily Ratajkowski, for example), some are pretty (Jaclyn Smith), and some are cute (Valerie Bertinelli).  Some women transcend these boundaries.  Emma Hamilton, for example, is both pretty and beautiful, but I would hesitate to call her cute.  Odette Annable can be all three.  I would say that all of these women are attractive.

I think I found Lorraine attractive more for her artistry and intellect than anything about her physical appearance, so "beautiful and attractive" is not necessarily redundant.  However, beauty need not be physical.  There is such a thing as beauty of spirit.

And what if I say that my sister is beautiful?  That certainly wouldn't mean that I am "attracted" to her in any carnal sense, even though I might be able to appreciate the way she looks.

novice posted:

If I want to own it, does this have the similar meaning that I am attracted by it?

Novice, your user name doesn't give me any clue as to whether you are a man or a woman.  That's none of my business, really, unless you choose to make it so.

Regardless, think about your question.  If, in your opinion, a certain woman is beautiful, does that mean that you are attracted to her?  And if this is true, does that mean that you want to own her?

docvguestcontributor posted:
 Does "finding something attractive" necessarily mean that you are physically attracted to it? 

It's interesting that you chose to use "something" rather than "someone" in posing that question. We certainly don't think of physical attraction (normally) when we speak of "attractive offers," say, or "attractive new website platforms with emoticons galore." 

But if someone describes another person as attractive, it is natural to assume, I think, that the speaker finds that person physically attractive -- which is not to deny that we can prevent that assumption by saying things like "I find her intellect attractive."

For some married men, the following sentence might work:

(1) My wife's intellect is as attractive as she was, though in a different way, the day I proposed to her.

davidmoderator posted:

If you found a tree beautiful, would you be attracted to it?

davidmoderator posted:
docvguestcontributor posted:
 Does "finding something attractive" necessarily mean that you are physically attracted to it? 

It's interesting that you chose to use "something" rather than "someone" in posing that question.


I was merely responding to what you had posted.

This might be the first time that we've had cross-talk (by which I mean only that one of us posted while the other was writing) two times in the same thread on the same day.

I still don't think that we're necessarily in disagreement here.  I can imagine speaking of a building or a painting as being attractive, but that doesn't mean that I want to ...

Hold on, the phone's ringing.  I'll finish this later.


(2) She is beautiful, but she isn't attractive.

(3) She is attractive, but she isn't beautiful.

Both of those sentences are strange, but I'd say that (3) is much stranger than (2). When the predicates are applied to human beings (holistically applied, not just with respect to certain attributes or traits of theirs), there seems to me to be an entailment relation between attractiveness and beauty which does not hold in reverse. It is asymmetrical. That is why I think that there is no redundancy in "She is beautiful and attractive" -- Novice's example ("and attractive" adds information not contained in "is beautiful") -- but that there would be redundancy in ? "She is attractive and beautiful." ("and beautiful" does not add any information not contained in "is attractive"). In any case, this is more of a philosophical matter than a grammatical one.

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