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  1. #1
    Joannes Souza is offline Newbie
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    Smile What means "come down to"?

    I saw this phrasal verb in a song (Hand in my pocket by Alanis Morissette), but I don't find this verb here. One another question: in this same song there's this one other phrasal verb "boil down to". It's in the place of the first one.

    Thanks a lot!!!!
    Last edited by Joannes Souza; 26-Jun-2008 at 20:02.

  2. #2
    paochai01's Avatar
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Joannes Souza View Post
    I saw this phrasal verb in song (Hand in my pocket by Alanis Morissette), but I don't find this verb here. One another question: in this same song there's this one other prhasal verb "boil down to". It's in the place of the first one.

    Thank a lot!!!!
    'Come down to something' means 'to be recognized as the most important thing'.
    But I'm not sure since I haven't seen the entire context. It could have a different meaning though.
    'Boil down to' means 'amount to'.

  3. #3
    mfwills is offline Junior Member
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    [quote=paochai01;308449]'Come down to something' means 'to be recognized as the most important thing'./quote]

    I don't know that I agree. It is commonly used to establish any subject upon which you're expressing an opinion, not necessarily a most important thing.

  4. #4
    paochai01's Avatar
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    [QUOTE=mfwills;308866]
    Quote Originally Posted by paochai01 View Post
    'Come down to something' means 'to be recognized as the most important thing'./quote]

    I don't know that I agree. It is commonly used to establish any subject upon which you're expressing an opinion, not necessarily a most important thing.
    'come down to' could also mean 'to get lower' (price, level, value, etc.) or 'to accept a lower price, value, etc.' or 'to travel south to a place'

  5. #5
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    That's true, but that's not what it means in the song.

    "What it all comes down to" = what it means in the final analysis of things.

    I can give you statistics for half an hour, and then say "What is all comes down to" or "What is boils down to"... is that we're losing market share with our most profitable products and with our most important clients while our least profitable products are the only ones that are not losing marek share. The situation is bad.

  6. #6
    mfwills is offline Junior Member
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    That's true, but that's not what it means in the song.

    "What it all comes down to" = what it means in the final analysis of things.

    I can give you statistics for half an hour, and then say "What is all comes down to" or "What is boils down to"... is that we're losing market share with our most profitable products and with our most important clients while our least profitable products are the only ones that are not losing marek share. The situation is bad.
    The insertion of a word can drastically change the meaning of a phrase. "All" was not part of the question, nor was it part of the original answer. In this new usage, yes, it implies the most important thing, but by itself (without "all"), it can represent any comparison.

    "Boil down to," on the other hand, does imply the most important thing on its own: boiling is a process of reduction, such as boiling maple sap to make syrup. The sap itself is basically useless: it is the syrup we're after (or even further down, sugar), so we boil the sap to remove the water. The imagery is that of removing the unimportant parts.

    I overlooked the connection between "come down to" and "boil down to" in my first comment. Had I looked more closely, I would say that Morrissette was using the two interchangeably.
    Last edited by mfwills; 14-Jun-2008 at 12:46.

  7. #7
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    English idiom
    In the end, it all comes down to the fact that you don't really care about me.

    Idiom definition

    In the end, it all is because of the fact that you don't really care about me.

    Answers: Idioms with come / English and grammar
    come down to: Information and Much More from Answers.com

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    boils down to
    Click Idioms: what-if -- what the Sam Hill

    boil down: Information and Much More from Answers.com

  8. #8
    mfwills is offline Junior Member
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Soup View Post
    English idiom
    In the end, it all comes down to the fact that you don't really care about me.

    Idiom definition

    In the end, it all is because of the fact that you don't really care about me.

    Answers: Idioms with come / English and grammar
    come down to: Information and Much More from Answers.com
    With the "all" in there, yes, I agree. That is what I said. I also pointed out that "all" was neither part of the original question nor part of the original answer. The addition of "all" changes the expression.
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    I agreed with that as well.

  9. #9
    Barb_D's Avatar
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    Steady on, mfw!

    The "all" was indeed part of the original question in that the question specifically mentioned the song by Alanis Morissette. Unless you've listened to a different version than I have, it's in there.

    My post was made in response to the post prior to mine saying "'come down to' could also mean 'to get lower' (price, level, value, etc.) or 'to accept a lower price, value, etc.' or 'to travel south to a place' "

    And while I agreed that that was true, it was not the answer to the original poster's question.

    What it all comes down to
    Is that everything's gonna be quite alright
    'cause I've got one hand in my pocket
    And what it all comes down to
    And what it all comes down to...

  10. #10
    mfwills is offline Junior Member
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    Re: What means "come down to"?

    It may be in the lyrics, but we're not listening to lyrics, we're responding to text displayed on a screen. Yes, the song is referenced, but having never heard it, all I have to go on is that which is actually visible in the original question and answer, upon which I based my comments.

    I would suggest that if someone knows referenced material is other than as quoted, such should be pointed out.

    I am indeed steady on that neither the original question nor the original answer as displayed here contain the word "all," and, lacking that, the phrase takes on a different meaning.
    Last edited by mfwills; 15-Jun-2008 at 12:15.

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