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What's the difference between "I see, I see" and "I see. I see"? Can one use a comma in between?

The first sentence could be used in formal writing, right?

What about this one: "My house, my rules" instead of "My house. My rules"? What's the difference between these two sentences and are both grammatically correct?

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Makes for a good question on ELL area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/41665/… –  Kris Jan 27 '13 at 7:54
    
You can construct a similar question there, if you like. –  user36521 Jan 27 '13 at 8:00

4 Answers 4

'My house, my rules.' and 'My house. My rules.' are both correct, but the comma or full stop indicates slightly different use and pronunciation/inflection when speaking.

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Firstly, a period or 'full stop' signals the end of a sentence, i.e., a complete statement or idea that is independent.

"I see. I see"

Two individual sentences. Two thoughts. That they are identical is merely incidental. Here it is either a simple repetition or, esp. in speech, depending on intonation, a very different pair of ideas conveyed.

"I see, I see"

One sentence. One thought. The second occurrence reinforces ("Have no doubt, I confirm."), modifies, (per intonation, cf. above) or restates differently to complete the expression.

The reasoning is more reflective in the second example.

"My house, my rules" vs. "My house. My rules"

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Can anyone give me an example of 'I see, I see' and 'I see. I see' being used that portrays the differences in the meaning? –  user36521 Jan 27 '13 at 7:39
    
@user36521 You need to do some background research and bring it to the table. –  Kris Jan 27 '13 at 7:40
    
The thing is, to me 'I see, I see' does seem like it can be two thoughts as well. –  user36521 Jan 27 '13 at 7:40
    
@user36521 Yes, two, but not independent of each other, which is all that grammar can assert. Beyond that any implications are in the domain of writing and literature. –  Kris Jan 27 '13 at 7:43
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Yes. And yes. Can you tell us why you think they may not be? –  Kris Jan 27 '13 at 7:47

The two expressions are colloquial, and therefore likely to occur in writing only in informal contexts, or as a record of what someone has said. A comma before the repeated I see, will give the impression of continuous speech. On the other hand, a full stop (period) between my house and my rules will make the statement more emphatic.

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Both of these are grammatically correct and the choice of which one to use would depend on context.

I see, I see could mean anything from an absent-minded murmur of agreement to an irritated "Yes I understand, stop going on about it."

I see. I see. The slight pause between them could mean you are acknowledging true understanding of something which is being explained to you. Or it could be angry, as in:

"I see. I see. You think you can behave exactly as you like and I'll still here be waiting for you! Well I won't!"

My house, my rules is a statement that I am in charge because I pay the bills.

My house. My rules is more emphatic, perhaps repeating it to someone who has broken a rule.

My house! My rules! is a full blown argument often followed by "And if you don't like it you can pack your bags and get out!"

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Cool, this helps me. Thanks. –  user36521 Jan 28 '13 at 1:57

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