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  1. Key Member
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    #1

    The steak isn't delicious.

    The steak isn't delicious.

    The above sentence is grammatical. Is it acceptable to native speakers?
    I need native speakers' help.

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    #2

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    I think it is not natural for "delicious" to be used in the negative.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #3

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    It might be OK if the speaker was disagreeing with someone else's assertion that the steak was actually delicious. In that case, I would expect them to go on clarify what they thought about the steak.

    Jon: This steak is delicious.
    Harriet: It's not delicious. It's just OK.
    Jon: Well, it's one of the best steaks I've ever had.
    Harriet: I've had better.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #4

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    It might be OK if the speaker was disagreeing with someone else's assertion that the steak was actually delicious. In that case, I would expect them to go on clarify what they thought about the steak.

    Jon: This steak is delicious.
    Harriet: It's not delicious. It's just OK.
    Jon: Well, it's one of the best steaks I've ever had.
    Harriet: I've had better.
    Go on clarifying?
    I need native speakers' help.

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    #5

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    Go on clarifying?
    ' ... go on to clarify...'

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    #6

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    Quote Originally Posted by sitifan View Post
    The steak isn't delicious.

    The above sentence is grammatical. Is it acceptable to native speakers?
    Quote Originally Posted by tedmc View Post
    I think it is not natural for "delicious" to be used in the negative.
    I've heard it used that way when someone wants to soften a criticism.

    A: How was the steak?
    B:​ Well, it wasn't delicious [it was terrible].
    I am not a teacher.

  7. Editor, UsingEnglish.com
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    #7

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    Quote Originally Posted by sitifan View Post
    Is it acceptable to native speakers?
    It is acceptable, but there aren't many contexts where it would be natural. What's the wider context?

  8. Key Member
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    #8

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tdol View Post
    It is acceptable, but there aren't many contexts where it would be natural. What's the wider context?
    A Taiwanese teacher of English ate some Chinese food in an Englishman's house in England, and then she said: "It's not delicious." All the other English people burst into laughter. A native English speaker explained to her that "not delicious" is unidiomatic. An idiomatic expression is "not tasty."
    Last edited by sitifan; 02-Jan-2017 at 06:01.
    I need native speakers' help.

  9. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    I doubt they were laughing because it's not idiomatic. I imagine they were laughing because the teacher had just insulted the host's cooking. Saying "It's not tasty" wouldn't have been any better!
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

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    #10

    Re: The steak isn't delicious.

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    I doubt they were laughing because it's not idiomatic. I imagine they were laughing because the teacher had just insulted the host's cooking. Saying "It's not tasty" wouldn't have been any better!
    Sorry. The exact story is as follows: A Taiwanese teacher of English named Jennifer went to the UK as a homestay guest. She cooked some Chinese food to treat her host family. After they tasted the food, they all said the Chinese food was delicious. But Jennifer replied, “It’s not delicious.” (In Chinese culture, such reply shows modesty.) All the host family burst into laughter right away. One of them was also an English teacher and explained to her that “delicious” is not normally used in the negative.“Not nice or tasty is used instead of not delicious.”
    I need native speakers' help.

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