While looking at new glasses today, my daughter was saying, "I like these ones" or "I like those ones". A bystander made clear her disapproval of the use of "these ones" and "those ones". I am assuming the proper way to say this is "I like these" or "I like those" but is it improper to add "ones"?
In the sentences "I like these ones" and "I like those ones", "these" and "those" function as adjectives/determiners, and "ones"
a pronoun is used instead of repeating the word "glasses".
In "I like these" and I like "those", "these" and "those" are used as pronouns, so "ones" is not needed.
All four sentences are grammatically correct.
However, not long ago, I read in a dictionary that in American English and in formal British English "ones" is not used after "these/those":
"I prefer these glasses to those" instead of "I prefer these glasses to those ones".
I don't live either in the USA or in the UK, so I am not sure this still applies today.
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It is true that "ones," according to proper grammar should not follow "these" or "those" only because one is a singular object. If there is a plural number, "one" becomes inappropriate however there are few people I know (I live in the midwest US) that do not use this construction, as in common speech leaving an object out of a sentence sounds strange or over educated.
Anon, what pronoun would you suggest then for something to replace "pens" in the second and third line below?
I'm looking for a particular set of drawing pens.
Are these the pens you're looking for?
Thanks, but no, those aren't the pens I'm looking for.
(I agree that "Those ones aren't the right ones" is wrong - it's simply "Those." But I don't agree that ones can't be plural.)
I think we had a thread on this some time ago, and the "conclusion" there was that the use of "these ones" and "those ones" is not wrong, but British! I agree that it's wrong in American English.
Yes; in ordinary BrE, "those ones are better than these ones", or "the red ones are the right ones" would be fine, though not necessarily common.
And I have learned something new about our British counterparts again!
Well, it saves us the trouble of remembering the correct names for things.
What an odd bystander to start correcting the grammar of a complete stranger!