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    #1

    Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    Is the sentence fine? I was told by a friend that "fine" is incorrectly used in the sentence.

    Why is it so when "The sentence is fine" is OK.? Again, this is according to him.

    Thanks.

  1. lotus888's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    Is the sentence fine?
    Is the sentence OK?
    Is the sentence correct?

    They are all fine.

    Usually, we ask:

    Is this sentence fine?
    Is this sentence OK?
    Is this sentence correct?


    --lotus

  2. Odessa Dawn's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?


    ***NOT A TEACHER***

    An English teacher once said, "We do not normally use 'fine' in this sense in negative and interrogative sentences."

  3. Roman55's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    I am not a teacher.

    I agree.

    It may not be wrong to say 'Is the sentence fine?' but it isn't very natural and I can't imagine myself saying it.

  4. lotus888's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    I disagree, and it may be a matter of listening experience. I've certainly heard it used. Probably it's used when you're almost certain what you're asking is correct.

    It doesn't hurt my ear as much as it might others.

    Teacher: Did you do the exercise on proper nouns?
    Student: Yes, I've capitalized every proper noun. I'm on the last sentence now.
    Teacher: OK, let me take a look at it.
    Student: Sure, I'm finished. Is this last sentence fine?




    --lotus
    Last edited by lotus888; 22-Aug-2014 at 19:51. Reason: simplification

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    #6

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    I'm with Roman.
    There's nothing ungrammatical to it, but it's not natural to me.

    I can't say why "Sure, that sentence is fine" works but "So is this sentence fine?" does not.
    I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.

  6. Charlie Bernstein's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    Oy! At least in American, "Is the sentence fine?" is just fine.

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    #8

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    I would never ask if a sentence was "fine." Is it OK? Is it correct? Those sound natural to me.

    Now, someone answering may say it is "fine."

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    #9

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    I agree with that original theory. It works in statements and answers but not in the interrogative and not really in the negative. The following exchanges are all perfectly natural for me:

    I'm really worried there's something wrong with my sentence. Can you have a look at it please?
    Your sentence is fine. I really can't see anything wrong with it. Stop worrying.

    How was your meal? You didn't look like you were enjoying it much.
    My meal was fine. I'll go back to that restaurant.

    Does my bum look big in this dress?
    You look fine. Now can we please leave for the party?

    The usage in the following sentences is not natural:

    I'm worried my sentence isn't fine. Can you look at it for me?
    Was your meal fine? It was difficult to tell from the look on your face.
    Do I look fine in this dress?

    I really can't put my finger on why the first sentences work and the second don't (other than what I already said about interrogative/negative/statement). WE must, of course, bear in mind that the adjective "fine" has more than one definition (see HERE).

    He wore a fine coat of velvet and silk. ("Fine" here means "of very high quality".)
    Your sentence is fine. ("Fine" here means "OK, adequate, satisfactory".)
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  8. lotus888's Avatar
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    #10

    Re: Why is "fine" wrongly used?

    Your examples are excellent. But, I think some women might take exception to not being able to ask the following:

    Do I look fine in this dress?

    I've certainly heard it many times. "Do I look OK in this dress?" just doesn't have the same ring to it.

    I guess it's just a matter of what works for us. Again, I think it's used when you are certain you know what the answer is. And the answer is always "You look great in that dress, Honey!"


    Also, I've heard these rhetorical questions many times:

    "Is this fine?"
    "Is this fine with you?"
    "Would that be fine with you?"

    Think about a waiter who is trying to please you.




    --lotus
    Last edited by lotus888; 24-Aug-2014 at 09:16.

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