Student or Learner
I come across this sentence
it was the barest of welcomes, but it was a welcome nonetheless
What is the meaning of the barest of welcomes ?
why not the barest welcomes ?
why the author add '' of '' between barest ( adjective ) and welcomes ( noun ) ?
Mary: John, this is my friend Peter. He's staying for dinner.
John: Oh, hi. (John walks into his bedroom)
That is a welcome, but just barely. Of all possible welcomes, this is the barest. It is the "barest welcome" or "the barest of all possible welcomes", or "the barest of welcomes".
Similarly, "I told her a joke to try and cheer her up, but she only gave the barest of smiles."