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I think I've seen this before but I'm not sure if it is proper English: can I use "He finds XYZ a good thing" or whatever for "He approves of XYZ"?

Thanks!

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    Yes. It can mean that. Very old joke: Waiter: How did you find your steak, sir? Diner: I just moved my peas and there it was! Jan 31, 2022 at 15:34
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    You can also say He finds XYZ good.", without *a..thing. Jan 31, 2022 at 16:16
  • This idiom generally refers to "finding" something in a particular state or condition. So you would not generally say "find something a good thing." You can, however, say: "find something to be a good thing" to indicate the "state" or "condition" of the thing. Jan 31, 2022 at 16:36
  • @vegawatcher - that isn't true. To find something good, delicious, funny, frightening, tedious, etc, is a perfectly normal usage. Jan 31, 2022 at 18:40
  • I agree, but you wouldn't say ''find it a good deal," "find it a delicious snack, etc." You are describing how you find it, not what you find it, unless you say what you find it to be. Jan 31, 2022 at 18:43

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You can use 'find' that way.

find verb

(EXPERIENCE A FEELING) [ T ]

to think or feel a particular way about someone or something:

[ + obj + noun/adj ]
Do you find John difficult to talk to?
I don't find him an easy person to get on with.
She doesn't find it easy to talk about her problems.

[ + -ing verb ]
I find living in the city very stressful.

Find (Cambridge Dictionary)

I found her a sensible woman Jack London (novel, 'Samuel', 1907)

We really liked the idea of the land management plan and found it a useful way to help us see the potential our farms can deliver - UK government web site, 2021.

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