I’m English learner living in Korea and I’ve just studied English ‘intonation.’ I already know when people speak a general sentence, the last word is focused.
However, I can’t understand some parts of the book.
“If people want to emphasize on the words in the sentence, they can put an intonation on the sentence. For instance,
(General sentence) There is a lot of books on the table.
(emphasis on ‘lot’)There is a lot of books on the table
(emphasis on ‘lot’)There is a lot of books on the table.”
Is there any meaning difference between the sentence 1 and 2?
Does Sentence 2 emphasize on the word ‘lot’ more than Sentence 1?
There is no difference in meaning, but there is a difference in emphasis.
Sentence 1 stresses both the quantity of books and the location.
Sentence 2 stress just the quantity.
Which words a speaker would emphasise would depend on the context.
If the speaker wants to emphasise both the number of books and their location, the emphasis is per 1.
If it’s just the quantity that’s important, sentence 2.
Both are possible. The choice depends on the speaker’s intention.