0

I would like to compare the following two sentences in terms of meaning so as to see how replacing modifiers can cause to change the meaning completely.

  1. He earned nearly $100.

  2. He nearly earned $100.

For me, the first sentence has a sense that he earns an amount close to $100 or almost $100. However, I could not figure out if the second sentence has a misleading meaning or it does not just make a sense.

3

'nearly' can be read to modify a different element of each sentence.

He earned nearly $100.

'nearly' modifies the $100 amount. Therefore the sentence can be read as 'he earned an amount slightly less than $100', say, $95.

He nearly earned $100.

'nearly' modifies earned here. Therefore the sentence can be read as 'he had the opportunity to earn $100 but it didn't work out.'

  • I see. So I would rephrase the second sentence in this way : " He was going to earn $100 .(but he could not or did not because he did not get the job). Thanks :) – Mrt Dec 11 '16 at 5:12
  • btw how to put together correctly an amount + close + $100 ..is it " an amount close to $100" or " an amount to close $100" ? – Mrt Dec 11 '16 at 5:16
  • Yes, you could rephrase the second part of the sentence in that way. And to answer your second comment, "an amount close to $100" is the correct usage. – mike Dec 11 '16 at 5:24

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.