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  1. anhnha's Avatar
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    #1

    How much is it worth?

    I am wondering how would you parse the sentence "How much is it worth".
    For the sake of anylisis, I rewrote it as follows:

    It is worth how much.

    It: subject
    is: linking verb
    worth: preposition
    much: pronoun
    how: ???
    Is my analysis correct?
    Could you tell me your opinion?

  2. BobK's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: How much is it worth?

    'How much' is an adverb phrase. It might as well be one word (though it isn't: howmuch).

    b

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    #3

    Re: How much is it worth?

    Hello, Anhnha:

    You are right: for the sake of simplicity, many books tell us to parse "worth" as a preposition.

    "It is worth ten dollars." (The noun phrase "ten dollars" is the object of the so-called preposition "worth.")

    *****

    But many books say that "worth" is actually an adjective.

    A very strange adjective, indeed, for it takes an object.

    IF we accept the traditional view that "worth" is an adjective, then maybe we can parse your sentence as:

    It = subject.
    is = linking verb.
    worth = adjective (that refers to "it").
    much = adverb that modifies the adjective "worth."
    how = adverb that modifies the adverb "much."

    James: That is a beautiful vase. I think that it must be worth very much.
    Mona: Yes, it is.
    James: You say that is worth very much. Can you tell me exactly how much it is worth?
    Mona: No.




    James

  3. anhnha's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: How much is it worth?

    Thank you very much, BobK and James.

    Actually, I prefer to classify "worth" as a preposition. I just found two interesting discussions about this problem but I need some time to digest them.
    Here are the links to discussions:
    1. http://linguistlist.org/issues/19/19-3858.html
    2. https://www.usingenglish.com/forum/t...-a-preposition

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