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Does the word 'very' qualify the adjective 'same' or is it the opposite?

  • They will be in the same very state.

  • They will be in the very same state.

Which one is correct?

And can this be used?

  • "They will be in the very state.'

Is there any grammatical error in this?

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If you want to emphasize that two (or more) people will be in the same state, and maybe it's unexpected that this is the case, "the very same state" conveys that. E.g. "Mary and John each separately booked a vacation to Florida. Coincidentally, they will be in the very same state."

If you want to emphasize that some people will be in a particular state, maybe where something else interesting is going on, but it's less interesting that the different people will be in the same place, then "the very state" can be used. E.g. "Mary and John will be in the very state that sent the first people to the moon."

"the same very state" doesn't sound right. "very" in this context means "particular" or "exact" - for some reason it's ok to say "the same exact state" but it's unusual to say "the same very state." Not sure if there's any good reason for this.

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    When used with other meanings of "state", the answer is the same. "State" meaning condition: "They both are bankrupt because of bad investments. They are in the very same state." – jonathanjo May 22 at 16:05
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    @jonathanjo you have a good point and I agree. I am not sure why I assumed "state" was being used in the geopolitical sense here. – Mixolydian May 22 at 16:14

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