My grammar book says 'much' can not be used in a positive sentence to modify uncountable nouns, for example;
1. I have much money (x)
2. I have a lot of money. (o)
Then, is it safe to teach my student number 1 sentence is grammatically incorrect?
Or can I say to them it is not really matter to say 'I have much money' instead of
'I have a lot of money'?
Last edited by wotcha; 11-Jan-2012 at 04:29.
I agree with Raymott; it would be wrong to call it grammatically incorrect. It's collocation not grammar. And when they come across thing like However much money you have..., it may be confusing. I have much money is not wrong; it's a bit strange. You can say things like not many people had much money, which may be a bit tricky to explain to someone who has been taught that have much money is a grammatical error.
There are also forms like they had so/too/as much money that might trouble them.
It would be safe to explain to them that while the use of "much" in positive sentences isn't grammatically incorrect, it's rarely used and should be avoided. However, it's important that they remember that they will come across "much" in lots of other situations and it may well be perfectly appropriate.
Examples of common use:
I haven't got much money.
He hasn't got much food.
Have you got much money on you?
Is there much food in the fridge?
I have much money.
He has much food.
The only example I can think of where it is used quite a lot is in the specific phrase "much to do", frequently along with a intensifier.
Hurry up, there's much to do.
I can't go out tonight, I have so much to do!
You can also say
'He has too much money'.
'We have bought too much food.'
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