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    #1

    "most likely than not"?

    Hello, there. What does "most likely than not" mean? Can you say another easy wold for the expression?

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    #2

    Re: "most likely than not"?

    Quote Originally Posted by goodsogi View Post
    Hello, there. What does "most likely than not" mean? Can you say another easy wold for the expression?
    Dear goodsogi:

    The expression is probably 'more likely than not'. It means that there is a 'more than 50% probability'. Another way to say the same thing is 'most likely'.
    Examples:

    More likely than not the flight will be on time.

    A: Do you think she will marry her boyfriend? B: It's more likely than not.

    If this rainy weather continues, it's more likely than not that they will cancel the picnic.

    Most likely the children will have eaten lunch by the time we arrive.

    I hope this is helpful,

    Petra

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    #3

    Re: "most likely than not"?

    To underline the point made in Petra's last example, 'more likely than ... not' makes sense when there are other less likely possibilities - for example, in the 'picnic' case, if there's an 80% chance of rain there's a 20% chance that the picnic can go ahead. 'Most <anything> than...<anything>' doesn't make sense - if something is 'most likely', that's what it is.

    And in response to your other question, you could use the word 'probably'.

    b

    PS As the L and R keys are so far apart on the keyboard, I suspect your 'wold' wasn't just a simple slip of the finger; 'probably' is the woRd you want.
    Last edited by BobK; 26-May-2009 at 10:37. Reason: Added PS

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    #4

    Re: "most likely than not"?

    Dear BobK:

    Thanks so much for answering the part of goodsogi's post that I completely forgot to address!

    Petra

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    #5

    Re: "most likely than not"?

    Another similar phrase is "in all probability", e.g.

    1. He took another flight, more likely than not.
    2. In all probability, he took another flight.

    MrP

    Not a professional ESL teacher.

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