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To my biggest surprise and that of the others, he suddenly started speaking fluently in Japanese.

or

To my and others' biggest surprise, he suddenly started speaking fluently in Japanese.

or

To the biggest surprise of mine and of others', he suddenly started speaking fluently in Japanese.

or what?

1 Answer 1

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All of those are quite wordy, and a little muddled.

If the speaker can be grouped with the others, I'd phrase it:

To our enormous surprise, he suddenly started speaking fluent Japanese.

If it's important that the speaker is separated from the group, I'd say:

To my--and many others'--enormous surprise, he suddenly started speaking fluent Japanese.

Unless this is a list of things that were surprising, I would replace biggest (a comparative adjective) with a word like enormous or immense that would maintain the sense of largeness without implying a comparison.

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