could you tell me the word class category of the word 'same' in the following sentence? And what would be your explanation / reason for your classification?

  • I'd rather stay here, if it's all the same to you.

Would you say that "same" is an adjective or does it rather function as a (pro)noun (or something else)? In the former case, how could we explain that the definitive article 'the' precedes 'same' (usually it's not possible unless the adjective is followed by a noun)

  • marc4, Do you understand the use of "same" in this sentence: (in a restaurant, so the server) "I'm having spaghetti and she's having the same."?
    – gotube
    Jul 6, 2021 at 1:38
  • Yes, I do (I see it as a pronoun there), but this doesn't help me for my question unfortunately.
    – trimmu
    Jul 6, 2021 at 5:20
  • Good. Then David's answer below is a good one
    – gotube
    Jul 6, 2021 at 5:40
  • The idiom "all the same to you" (meaning "acceptable to you"), could be analysed whereby "the same" is classified as an adjective phrase headed by "same".
    – BillJ
    Jul 6, 2021 at 6:11
  • But, isn't it like a basic rule that determiners specify nouns?
    – trimmu
    Jul 6, 2021 at 6:30

1 Answer 1


"All the same", often "all the same to X" is a fixed phrase, perhaps even an idiom. As such, it is pointless to analyze the individual words of the phrase for grammar or syntax.

"All the same" means "equally acceptable" or just "acceptable", with an implication of asking if there is an objection.


I'd rather stay here, if it's all the same to you.


I prefer to stay here, unless you object.


I prefer to stay here, if you don't care what my choice is.

(The 2nd of these sticks closer to the literal meaning pg the phrase, but the first is by far the more common usage.)

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