[Grammar] let him try ever so hard...

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notletrest

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Teachers , can we say "Let him try ever so hard, he cannot pass."?
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Tdol

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I wouldn't use it. I would use something like No matter how hard he tries, he won't pass.
 

BobK

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:up: About 100 years ago, one could say 'Let him try never so hard, he won't pass'. If you break that down like this, you can see why it's 'never':

A. However hard he tries, he won't pass.

B: But he should try harder; wouldn't he pass then?

A: He could never work so hard that he'd pass.​

But because 'ever so' is a common collocation in other circumstances (e.g. 'If he worked ever so hard, he'd pass'), people trying to use the archaic 'Let him try...' construction often say 'ever'. In fact I fully expect that at least one reader will think (though maybe not write ;-)) 'But I'd say 'ever' there.'

b
 
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