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  1. #1
    vasea1977 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Popular vs. Famous

    Hi,
    We can say "a popular book". I think we can say "a famous book". We can also say "a famous person" and "a popular person". But why can't we say "a famous colour"?
    Thank you.

  2. #2
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    MikeNewYork is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Popular vs. Famous

    Quote Originally Posted by vasea1977 View Post
    Hi,
    We can say "a popular book". I think we can say "a famous book". We can also say "a famous person" and "a popular person". But why can't we say "a famous colour"?
    Thank you.
    As you probably know, these two words have different meanings. A person can be popular without being famous. The reverse is also true. A color can be popular (based on numbers of units of that color that are sold). However, it is difficult to imagine how a color could become famous.

  3. #3
    Tdol is offline Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    Default Re: Popular vs. Famous

    How about something like Bentley cars' racing green?

  4. #4
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    Nicklexoxo is offline Member
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    Default Re: Popular vs. Famous

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    How about something like Bentley cars' racing green?
    I would not call it "famous colour".

    I think "famous colour" sounds strange in all languages. Also, as MikeNY has said: these tow words have different meanings.

    Nickle is not a teacher nor a native speaker. Be aware.
    If I have made any mistakes, please tell me about them. I need to improve my English anyway and I hope you'll help me.

  5. #5
    Esgaleth's Avatar
    Esgaleth is offline VIP Member
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    Default Re: Popular vs. Famous

    Quote Originally Posted by Nicklexoxo View Post
    I would not call it "famous colour".

    I think "famous colour" sounds strange in all languages. Also, as MikeNY has said: these tow words have different meanings.

    Nickle is not a teacher nor a native speaker. Be aware.
    Apart from core rules, any language has common practice with certain logic behind it. The former type of rules cannot be violated
    without a communication breakdown whereas the latter could be relaxed for specific effect (humorous, etc.). The 'popular v. famous' issue seems to be of the second type, that is a 'famous colour' might not necessarily be wrong and could add something else to the initial meaning (humour, irony, sarcasm, etc.). As always, context is absolutely crucial.

    Be warned - this is a subjective view, don't go and bend the rules of the English language.

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