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I struggle with the transformation of a declarative sentence with "a lot" into exclamative. I am familiar with the rule but I am not sure in this specific case:

He talks a lot.

will be

How lot he talks!

or

What a lot he talks!

I am inclining to the first option since "a lot" is an adver, but the indefinite article is kind of confusing.

Thanks a lot!

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    "How he talks a lot!" is possible.
    – BillJ
    Commented Jun 5, 2020 at 8:47
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    Does ' info na' there mean ' into an'… or what, please? Commented Jan 25, 2023 at 1:33

3 Answers 3

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It doesn't seem to me that this "converts into eclamatory" very well, at least not so a native American-English speaker would think it natural. "What a talker he is!" is about the best I've come up with. Or "Man, he sure talks a lot!", where "Man" could be replaced with other interjections.

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In this sense "a lot" is a single adverb, so you can't break it into pieces (as in "How lot he talks!").

It also isn't a noun in this sense, so you can't use it with "what," as in "What a lot he talks!").

Instead, you would usually say: "How much he talks!"

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  • I'd agree with Alphabet, but crop the theoretical "How much he talks" down to the more realistic "How he talks". There is nothing theoretically wrong with "How much he talks" yet the idiomatic form will always be "How he talks", with "How…" in italics to show the emphasis… Commented Jan 25, 2023 at 2:18
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"He talks such a lot!" seems the only way of using "a lot" if you really must use "a lot". It is common to use "so" or "such" in such expressions, where "so" with an adjective refers to degree and "such" with a noun phrase to refers to extent or quality: "It's so big!", "That's such a stupid idea!"

The relevant sense of such is in Merriam-Webster "3 : of so extreme a degree or quality"; their example is "never heard such a hubbub".

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