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    #1

    Very much

    Hi everyone,

    I've learned that I should only use "much" and "many" in negative sentences and questions.

    My friend told me that I can't say:-

    I have very much money. (It's affirmative)but she said I can say:-I liked that film very much. (But it is an affirmative sentence)

    Can anyone tell me why this is ok?

    Thank you!

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    #2

    Re: Very much

    You have learned something that is incorrect. There is no restriction of "much" and "many" to negative sentences.

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    #3

    Re: Very much

    I'm not doubting you but why do I read lots of webpages that say this such as http://www.grammar.cl/Notes/Much_Many_Lot_Few.htm ? Could it be something that is different between American and British English? My friend is British.

  1. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: Very much

    'I have much money. (Incorrect because the sentence is positive / affirmative)'── quoted from the link provided by the OP.

    I don't believe it, but I am not a teacher.

  2. Roman55's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Very much

    I am not a teacher.

    I think the operative phrase on that web page is, 'Note: we almost never use Much and Many in positive sentences, we almost always use a lot of or lots of.'

    In your first two examples from post #1 you are comparing two different uses of the word 'much'.
    In, 'I have much money', much is a determiner. It isn't wrong but it sounds archaic, and people just don't speak like that anymore.
    In, 'I liked that film very much' it is an adverb. You could also change the word order to, 'I very much liked that film.

    I am not aware of an AmE/BrE difference as far as this goes.

  3. Matthew Wai's Avatar
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    #6

    Re: Very much

    Quote Originally Posted by Roman55 View Post
    'I have much money'... sounds archaic
    Does the following sound archaic too?
    'Much money has been spent.'
    Not a teacher.

  4. BobK's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: Very much

    [agreeing with #5] ... often archaic. A usage that is current but dying out (a decline that is probably helped by all the web pages that say you can't do it ) is 'much as adverb'. For example 'I was much impressed by...' (of which the positive-ness is much greater than the negative-ness of 'I was not much impressed by...). Here, 'much' means much the same as 'greatly'.

    Matthew: That doesn't sound archaic, but possibly rather formal. Colloquially one might say something like 'a lot of...' or even 'loads of/tons of...'. These synonyms are more appropriate for some contexts. (For example, 'tons of money' sounds a bit childish; I suppose children may sometimes naively assume that 'more coins => more money'.)

    b
    Last edited by BobK; 08-Jan-2015 at 16:50. Reason: Intervening reply
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    #8

    Re: Very much

    ***** NOT A TEACHER *****


    Anne,

    One highly respected (British) author tells us that in an informal style, "much" and "many" are unusual in affirmative sentences except after "so," "as," and "too."

    He tells us that "He's got lots of men friends" is more "natural" than "He's got many men friends."

    (Personally, I find "He has many men friends" quite "natural.")

    He tells us that "There was a lot of bad driving" is more natural than "There was much bad driving."

    He tells us that "You make a lot of spelling mistakes" is more natural than "many."

    But he assures us that in a formal style, those two words are NOT so unnatural in affirmative clauses: "In the opinion of many economists, ..."

    (In my opinion, if you wrote a report for your university class, the instructor would expect you to use "many" in that sentence. "A lot of" would sound much too informal.)

    Source: Michael Swan, Practical English Usage (I have the 1995 edition. See entry #349 on page 341).
    Last edited by TheParser; 08-Jan-2015 at 17:40. Reason: punctuation

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    #9

    Re: Very much

    I think way too much has been made of "much" versus "lot of". There is nothing wrong with "much". In my opinion, we should use it more often.

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