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If it weren't for Jim, this company would be in a mess.

If it weren't Jim, this company would be in a mess.

What is the function of "for" in the first sentence? And if we remove it from the sentence ,as in the second sentence, is the meaning distorted? Why?

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    For means because of in that sentence. If you remove it, the sentence makes no sense because you say the company is Jim. Unless you explain why you think you can remove a (random?) word form a sentence, I don't think this question is very valuable.
    – oerkelens
    Feb 18, 2023 at 11:39
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    If it were not for is a standard phrase in English. Feb 18, 2023 at 11:55

1 Answer 1

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If it weren't Jim, this company would be in a mess.

Is nonsensical, since it means "If the company was not Jim..." But this doesn't make sense, since "Jim" is person, not a company.

On the other hand

If it were not for Jim, This company would be in a mess

Is an idiom, meaning that the reason that the company is not in a mess is because Jim has done something to prevent it.

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