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If I have 2 pens and I want to say all of them are green, I can say "Both of them are green" but if I have 3 pens should I use "Triple of them are green" or "All of them are green"?

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1  
Is that you, Dr Seuss? –  Ed Guiness May 11 '11 at 10:30
    
Of note, triple compares to double, not both. "Triple of them are green" is wrong for the same reason "double of them are green" is wrong. –  MrHen May 11 '11 at 16:22
    
@Ed: who is Dr. Seuss? –  Anonymous May 12 '11 at 1:00
    

2 Answers 2

up vote 13 down vote accepted

You could go with any of the following:

All 3 of my pens are green,

All (of) my 3 pens are green,

My 3 pens are all green,

The word triple as an adjective means that the three are parts of one greater object, as seen in the phrase,

a triple murder. Here, there is one case made up of three parts.

It can also be used as a verb to mean 'multiply by three': triple it and then add 4 (n x 3 + 4)

Hope that helps.

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2  
The closest construction to "Both of them are green." is "All three of them are green." –  Peter Shor May 11 '11 at 12:30
    
Yes, @PeterShor; you're quite right. –  Karl May 11 '11 at 13:53
    
@Peter Shor: That's exactly what i said, in one sentence. I don't know why long answers are more attractive here. –  Gigili May 11 '11 at 18:46
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@zizi: "All my three pens" is different from "All three of my pens," and I believe the second one is quite a bit more natural in English. You can say "All my pens" and "My three pens," but when you put these constructions together, you need to add an of. I don't know why. –  Peter Shor May 11 '11 at 19:28
    
@Peter, it's because "All my pens" really needs an 'of', too ("All of my pens"). I think omitting the 'of' really only sounds OK because of a certain long-running TV show by the name of All My Children. –  Marthaª May 11 '11 at 21:04

You can say "all my 3 pens are green" to mention the number of your pens and their color, simultaneously.

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1  
"Each of my 3 pens are green" sounds more natural to me. –  MrHen May 11 '11 at 17:26
4  
@MrHen: "Each of my 3 pens is green" –  Mr. Shiny and New 安宇 May 11 '11 at 17:54

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