I'd like to ask you if I can use like instead of as in a such + noun + as structure. I know that I can just use a noun + like something structure instead, which is simpler. But, what I would like to know is merely whether it is correct.

For instance:

He tends to easily get close to such people as Tom.

He tends to easily get close to such people like Tom. ( ← Is this correct?)

He tends to easily get close to people like Tom.

Thank you for your help.


No, your such people like structure is not correct. It might be clearer to you if we arrange it in a way that's more natural to most modern English speakers, with such + as together:

He tends to easily get close to people such as Tom. ← Correct

He tends to easily get close to people such like Tom. ← Incorrect

That combination, such like, is only ever heard in very limited regional varieties of British English, in the phrase "and such like", meaning "and other things like that", and should really never be used by an English language learner.

  • Thank you for the neat answer very much! I would like to ask you one more thing about your answer. Is people such as Tom structure really more natural and more frequently used than such people as Tom structure? Apr 15 '19 at 8:13
  • 1
    Well there can be big differences between different varieties of English, but my experience with American, British, and Australian English is that such people as is a more formal, old-fashioned way to say it. Taking a look at Google's Ngram viewer at books.google.com/ngrams/…, there was a dramatic change in usage in the 1970s, and now "people such as" is much more common!
    – Johnny
    Apr 15 '19 at 8:46

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