not much more

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not much more

Post by azz » Fri Aug 09, 2019 7:59 am

a. He did not offer more than a few words of condolence to the families of the victims.
b. He offered not more than a few words of condolence to the families of the victims.

c. He did not offer much more than a few words of condolence to the families of the victims.
d. He offered not much more than a few words of condolence to the families of the victims.

Which of the above sentences are grammatically correct?

Do (a) and (b) mean the same?
How about (c) and (d)?

Many thanks.
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Re: not much more

Post by Erik_Kowal » Fri Aug 09, 2019 12:32 pm

They are all grammatically correct, and mean pretty much the same thing.

The inclusion of much in c) and d) has a softening effect, which means that a) and b) could -- depending on the context -- sound more critical of the person whose action is being described.
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