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I'm a Russian student. On the courses of interpreters in my university there was a task to put sentences into the interrogative form. One of sentences was: Ann always brings some flowers with her when she comes to the office.
I answered "Does Ann always bring some flowers...".
But my teacher said that it is "Does Ann always bring any flowers..." as by general rule some in questions is changed to any with some exceptions and this case doesn't fall under any of these exceptions.
If not "always" I would write as she said "Does Ann bring any flowers...". But "always" changes situation. I've asked 4 people who speek English well how would they write, and they said to use "some" or may be not to use any word at all, like "Does Ann always bring flowers...", but in any way they refused to put there "any". Still I can't prove my teacher that I'm right as I can't find any official rule explaining use of "some" here. My explanation is that "always" changes the meaning of this sentence to checking of "does it happen sometimes or always" but the fact of her brining flowers at least sometimes is considered to be true. And there is an exception rule which states that if the subject of a question is expected to be true, then some is used. Still she doesn't take such an explanation. How can I prove her that I'm right? Or may be I'm wrong?
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Hi,

I'm a Russian student. On the courses of interpreters in my university there was a task to put sentences into the interrogative form. One of sentences was: Ann always brings some flowers with her when she comes to the office.
I answered "Does Ann always bring some flowers...".
But my teacher said that it is "Does Ann always bring any flowers..." as by general rule some in questions is changed to any with some exceptions and this case doesn't fall under any of these exceptions.
If not "always" I would write as she said "Does Ann bring any flowers...". But "always" changes situation. I've asked 4 people who speek English well how would they write, and they said to use "some" or may be not to use any word at all, like "Does Ann always bring flowers...", but in any way they refused to put there "any".


Yes, 'some' is correct and 'any' is not correct.

Still I can't prove my teacher that I'm right as I can't find any official rule explaining use of "some" here. My explanation is that "always" changes the meaning of this sentence to checking of "does it happen sometimes or always" but the fact of her brining flowers at least sometimes is considered to be true. And there is an exception rule which states that if the subject of a question is expected to be true, then some is used. <<<<< That's true. Still she doesn't take such an explanation. How can I prove her that I'm right? Or may be I'm wrong? You're right.

'Any' is used in statements like these that really have a negative meaning. eg

She did not bring any flowers. She came without any flowers. She hardly ever brings any flowers. She never brings any flowers. Ann never brings any flowers when she comes to the office.

You certainly can't say 'Does Ann always bring any flowers?', but you can say 'Does Ann never bring any flowers?', because it makes a question that has a negative meaning. When you use 'always', you are not forming a question that has a negative meaning.

Best wishes, Clive
this case doesn't fall under any of these exceptions.
Here's the problem. Your teacher (or the source she's working from) does not have the complete list of exceptions. The presence of the frequency adverb always certainly is an exception, and it should be in that list. All of the following are wrong:

Do you always carry any pens and pencils to class?
Does he always take any money with him when he leaves for work?
Do they always have any coffee for sale?


It seems to me that this observation with regard to always can be extended to include the presence of any universal quantifier whatsoever in the question, so that any use of always, everywhere, every, both, or all would likewise bar the use of any in the same question. For example, all of the following are wrong:

Did everyone understand any questions?
Did you give both of them any help?
Are all of the employees expecting to take any vacation time during the coming week?


If your teacher accepts only that one list and admits of no additions to that list, you're sunk. She will probably not, in that case, be eager to add another item to the list on your word (or mine). It's odd, however, that a list is more important to her than the evidence from the daily practice of millions of native speakers. Emotion: smile

CJ
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CalifJimFor example, all of the following are wrong:

Did everyone understand any questions?
Did you give both of them any help?
Are all of the employees expecting to take any vacation time during the coming week?

Aaaargh! Emotion: crying This thread literally made me swear, lol. Darn some and any, they always give me trouble.

I think, the difference between some and any is not "any goes in questions, some in affirmative sentences", although that's exactly what most teachers teach...Emotion: angry
I think the difference (in questions) is this:
- Do you have any books? = I want to know if you have at least a book. It is the most general.
- Do you have some books? = I want to know if it is true that you have some books. You are actually asking directly about "some books", that's why it's usually used when you expect a positive answer.

So I don't think adding "always", "everyone", etc. actually changes anything. It's just that using them with "any" might be unusual... I don't feel like thinking of a particular example where they could work together, but I guess some examples exist.

So when you ask "Does she always bring some flowers", the common context is one where you already know she sometimes brings some flowers, or she brought some at least one time. So you are actually asking if that is always true, you are asking about always, not the flowers or how many of them she brings:
- Does she always bring some flowers? = I want to know if it's true that she always brings some. (You are asking about "always")
- Does she always bring any flowers? = literally: I want to know if she always brings at least a flower (which is ok, but has a different meaning than the above version with "some". You are asking about the flowers)

Now, I'm afraid the version with "any" doesn't sound good because "always" is usually used in comparison with other expressions of time, so in the first example it's kind of like the opposite of "sometimes", and you are asking if she always brings flowers, knowing she sometimes does.

That's the way I interpret "some" and "any". And so I was really surprised to read this:
CalifJimIt seems to me that this observation with regard to always can be extended to include the presence of any universal quantifier whatsoever in the question, so that any use of always, everywhere, every, both, or all would likewise bar the use of any in the same question.
I said that "Does she always bring any flowers?" probably sounds pretty odd because of "always". But let's take "every", as an example. I think I could put "every" in there and make it sound good, with the same meaning of the version with "always":

"Does she bring any flowers every time she get back to LA?"

I think that's the normal way to say the odd "Does she always bring any flowers?"- But be careful with intonation, or you'll end up asking if that happens every time instead of asking about the flowers, and you'd need "some" instead.

What do you guys think of my insane theories? Emotion: smile
What do you guys think of my insane theories?
I think you've answered your own question!

No -- just teasing. Emotion: smile
Some of what you say has a ring of truth to it, for example,
the difference between some and any is not "any goes in questions, some in affirmative sentences"

However,
Does she bring any flowers every time she gets back to LA?
is a real ugly dog! Emotion: ick!

The flowers part has affirmative polarity; you can't just go sticking a non-affirmative item like any on it!!!
The non-affirmative part -- the part not being stated, but questioned -- is the every time part.

The answer can be Yes, every time or No, not every time.
The answer cannot (comfortably) be Yes, some or No, none.
Not to my ear, anyway.

What we need for the version you're talking about (I think) is:

Does she bring any flowers when she gets back to LA?

Note, also, that I said it seems to me that ..., indicating that the matter needs further thought. Emotion: wink

I wonder if anyone's done some Googling on this pattern of every and any together in questions.
Any volunteers?

CJ
Hi Jim,
thank you very much!

You know what? I think you are right... On second thought, "every" is part of the main question, so you are asking about "every" too. You say "Did you tell anything to anyone?" and not "Did you tell anything to someone?", so I think I understand why "every" (and "always", etc.) is not good. It should be replaced with "when", as you said, or also "whenever", I think.

This is not difficult to understand after all, but I have to say I'd never thought about it... I've learned something new! Emotion: smile

So the original question... was to turn this into a question: "Ann always brings some flowers with her when she comes to the office." - I'm afraid there isn't only one solution. Either you ask with "any" and leave out "always", or you keep "always" but use "some" in the question. Two different solutions, with two different meanings.

PS: I'm glad there are bad teachers in other countries too. I thought they were all in Italy, LOL.
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I'm glad there are bad teachers in other countries too. I thought they were all in Italy, LOL.
No, no, no! Sometimes the rain of justice does fall equally on all!

CJ
AnonymousI'm a Russian student. On the courses of interpreters in my university there was a task to put sentences into the interrogative form. One of sentences was: Ann always brings some flowers with her when she comes to the office. I answered "Does Ann always bring some flowers...". But my teacher said that it is "Does Ann always bring any flowers..." as by general rule some in questions is changed to any with some exceptions and this case doesn't fall under any of these exceptions. If not "always" I would write as she said "Does Ann bring any flowers...".
I agree with everyone here in the forum. Your sentence is right with 'some'. The only easy way I see to change the statement "Ann always brings some flowers ..." to a question using 'any' would be to also change the word 'always' to 'ever':
"Does Ann ever bring any flowers ...?"