Friday, October 21, 2011


The position of really (= very) is a matter of emphasis. E.g.: ‘He runs really fast.’ Very often, it comes immediately before the adjective or adverb it modifies: ‘some really good news’, ‘a really old car’. Otherwise, it is usually placed immediately in front of the main verb as an intensifier: ‘You really fooled me.’ ‘We’re really enjoying ourselves.’

Really and actually are sometimes interchangeable: ‘She sold the piano for a lot more than it was actually/really worth.’ When you mean ‘strange as it may seem’ (expression of doubtful interest or surprise, use actually (NOT really): ‘Instead of running away as he normally does, he actually offered to stay and help.’

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