Please allow me to ask a silly question.
There's an expression "Thank you very much." in English.
I think it originally comes from "I/We thank you very much." I understand that 'I' or 'we' is omitted/implied there.
There's also an informal expression "Thanks a lot."
I've never thought about the construction seriously, but now, I've noticed it is grammatically strange.
It really confuses me when I think of the "s" in "thanks". It could be either "the third person singular" or "the plural".
I feel the latter is more likely. However, if it were the latter, it should be "a lot of thanks" or "many thanks", not "thanks a lot". How interesting language is!
Well, anyway, please look at the expressions below.
Are they both acceptable/natural? (I don't think so. The second might be probably...OK?)
1. Thank you a lot.
2. Thanks very much.
Last edited by tzfujimino; 26-Sep-2012 at 16:51.
***** NOT A TEACHER *****
I found this nugget on Google "books":
Thank you [is] shortened to thanks but intensified as thanks a lot.
Source: Philogica Pragensia (Volume 28), 1985.
"Thanks very much" is used a lot in BrE.
Remember - correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing make posts much easier to read.
Grammatically, thanks is usually classified as an interjection, which may or may not help with your thinking about it- it is an odd form to me too.