1

When you search the internet there are lots of English sources written by natives including my listed structures for the topics like: "success", "happiness", etc.

For instance:

1-1- I wish you the success.
1-2- I wish you all the success.

2-1- I wish you the best.
2-2- I wish you all the best.

3-1- I wish you the happiness.
3-2- I wish you all the happiness.

What I'm looking for are the answers for the questions below:

  1. Do both sentences in each pair mean the same? If not, how they differ in meaning?
  2. Are they grammatically correct?
  3. What form is preferred / more common?

I think #2 in each pair is just a little more emphatic. But they mean the same to me, although I doubt about it.

  • 1
    From this meta answer: although you tend to establish the context very clearly, and demonstrate your effort, you usually don't explain why you're comparing them, or why they're confusing you. This question is a good example of that behavior. It would be nice to know: Are you sending an email to a coworker who is moving to a new job? Are you preparing a wedding toast? Are you sending a graduation card to your niece? Knowing a little bit more about how you plan to use this phrase would make this question more interesting and more answerable. – J.R. Jun 10 at 15:16
  • I see J.R. I will try to post more complete threads. The problem is that to me, these sentences, without no need to any context can always convey their true meanings. No matter they have been used stand alone or within a particular context. Maybe, this is because some people are not familiar with some sentences / words / expressions and in this way the forum regulation is going to ease their understanding to such category of learners. However I will explain a bit more. ;) – A-friend Jun 11 at 3:15
1

When we wish somebody success, we do so in three general forms:

  1. ✔ I wish you success.

This form doesn't take any kind of article.

  1. ✔ I wish you a great deal of success.

This version uses the indefinite article, but success is preceded by an adjectival phrase.

  1. ✔ I wish you the success you deserve.

This time, we use the definite article, but an adjectival phrase is put after success. (A prepositional phrase is also possible in some constructions.)


In the versions in your question, you use the definite article, but don't follow success with a qualifying phrase. Because of this, the first version looks completely wrong, while the second version is unusual at the least.

The correction for the first sentence would be to just remove the definite article to match 1., while the second sentence would normally have in the world added to it, as in 3.

So:

✘ I wish you the success.
→ ✔ I wish you success.

✘ I wish you all the success.
→ ✔ I wish you all the success in the world.


Note that as an oddity of how we've come to use English, the opposite is true of best. Unlike with success, I wish you the best is fine, as is I wish you all the best. On the other hand, again in contradiction to success, I wish you all the best in the world, while not wrong, is unusual. (And I can't think of any way of using the indefinite article with best.)

I can't explain why this use has come to be, all I can say is that it has.

The use of happiness is the same as that of success. You could replace all instances of success in the examples above with happiness and there would be no problem.

1

I wish you success.

is the correct way to say that. (The article "the" is unnecessary in this context.)

  • Thank you @Deep and +1 for you. But what is wrong with using "all the"? Is it a common mistake? – A-friend Jun 10 at 12:57

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.