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  1. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #1

    He is a great character.

    It seems so easy and still (because of the fact that I am always confused by the words character and personality) could you explain 1) what this phrase means exactly and 2) whether the word character may be substituted with personality in this sentence (if yes, will it change the meaning?).
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  2. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: He is a great character.

    That's how we would talk about a wonderful fictional person: Indiana Jones is a great character.

    If he weren't fictional, we might say:

    - He has great character. (= He has integrity.)
    - He is a character. (= He is eccentric.)
    - He is a great personality. (= He is a wonderful celebrity.)
    - He has a great personality. (= He has a very enjoyable nature.)

  3. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: He is a great character.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post


    - He has a great personality. (= He has a very enjoyable nature.)
    We can't substitute the word personality with character in this particular sentence, can we?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  4. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: He is a great character.

    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie Bernstein View Post
    - He is a character. (= He is eccentric.)
    What about "He is a great character."? Could it mean "He is very eccentric"? Does this sentence make sense at all?

    Here's the context: He is my mother’s father and he is a great character. His name’s Shames and he is eighty-two this year.
    Last edited by englishhobby; 07-Aug-2014 at 10:05.
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  5. MikeNewYork's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: He is a great character.

    I would not use "great" there.

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    #6

    Re: He is a great character.

    In BrE, a great character would work for someone whose eccentricities were enjoyable in some way.

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