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Can we say

You are reminiscent of your father

in order to refer to someone`s either psychical or characteristic resemblance of another person in the sense of to remind?

or this sentence is more correct

You are reminiscent of the way your father behave.

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3 Answers 3

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I don't think "reminiscent" fit since it is very linked to memory and mental representation. It is coming from reminiscence:

An act of remembering long-past experiences, often fondly.

A mental image thus remembered.


You may talk about "copy", "twin" or just say he behaves similarly if you want a strong image.

You act like a copy of your father

If you prefer something more common, you can say :

When you {act|smile} like this, you look like your father !

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  • Thank you. Can I ask something else .Suppose someone's grandfather passed away so somebody who had very strong bond his grandfather says : your smile reminiscent of my grandfather or I should stick to ` your smile remind me of my grandfather`
    – Mrt
    Commented May 19, 2015 at 8:51
  • @Murat I don't think "reminiscent" is often used and people may not understand why you use it. "your smile remind me ..." is perfect imho.
    – Yohann V.
    Commented May 19, 2015 at 8:56
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For some reason,

  • You are reminiscent of your father.

sounds much less natural than

  • You remind me of your father.

Perhaps this is because the first is in passive tense, which makes it quite vague as to who might be doing the reminiscing.

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We normally say that "Something or someone is reminiscent of Y". We do not say "You are reminiscent of Y". Why not?

To say that something or someone is reminiscent of Y is to say that the thing or the person would remind anyone and everyone of Y, which is not the same as saying "It reminds me of Y* or "She reminds me of Y" or "You remind me of Y".

The thing or person in question has characteristics so similar to Y that anyone would be reminded of Y. I (the speaker) am a person, so I am reminded of Y, true, but so would you (my conversation partner or reader) be reminded, and so would the person-on-the-street be reminded.

It is the impersonal construction together with the direct address ("you") which makes the following sound odd:

You are reminiscent of your father.

You remind a person of your father. Since you, too, are a person, you would remind yourself of your father.

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