Surely “neither” and “either” are indeed to be used only with two objects. If someone asks you whether you want a spoon, fork or knife, I don’t agree it sounds right to say “either” or “neither” as an answer.
Got it, baby? It is pure logic, but you are right, language oftentimes is illogical. Should an educated person support such a usage? I certainly do not think so.
Have a nice day.
P.S.: Perhaps you did not repeat this particular subject over and over for 30 years on end.
Toto mi pise moj americky priatel v toki pona, byvaly, t.c. penzionovany asistent znameho americkeho filozofa Richarda Montague, logik a jazykovedec:
The “neither .. nor … nor …” is one of those prescriptivist/logician rules. Since “neither” is “clearly” about just two things (what the “-ther” ending says, historically), you can’t have three things involved. Similarly, since the logical operative NOR is two place, adding a third place will result in some one of several messes, depending on where you add it and none of the what you want. But, in fact, If you treat ‘neither … nor …” as short for “not either … or …” , it all works out just fine, a claim true if all the partial claims are false, regardless of whether you take it as “not either for or q, or r” or “not either p.or q or r”. The same goes for “either p or q or r” itself, of course (to the dismay of purists).
Tym je pre mna tato tema uzavreta: