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    Smile 'How do you do' VS 'How are you'

    **He rose when Ellen appeared, and asked how she did, and offered her a chair. She thought that he had never looked better.**

    I think that in the above sentence, 'he asked how she did' is the reported speech and the direct speech is ' he said to her, 'How do you do?'.
    I think that she is acquainted with him because of the sentence ' he had never looked better.
    If so, I wonder why he greeted with 'how do you do'. Because I think it's a greeting used when you first meet someone you don't know.
    I think 'how are you?' is better greeting than 'how do you do?'. What do you think of that?
    I want to know why 'how do you do' was used in the above sentence.

    Thanks in advance.

    • Join Date: May 2009
    • Posts: 22
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    Re: 'How do you do' VS 'How are you'

    Could it be that he's asking her about something specific? I can't tell from the contect but let's say she just had a test at school. Then he could ask her how she did. Otherwise I think it's more common to say:

    **He rose when Ellen appeared, and asked how she was doing**

    Mind I'm not a teacher nor a native.


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