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exceptionally vs exceptionally well

 
 
Reply Sat 19 Aug, 2017 08:11 pm
You speak French exceptionally.

You speak French exceptionally well.

Which of these are native English speakers more likely to say? Is one unequivocally preferable to the other? Would suitability depend on context?

Thank you.
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Type: Question • Score: 2 • Views: 486 • Replies: 6
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centrox
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Aug, 2017 01:50 am
@perennialloner,
I unequivocally prefer the second sentence. A native speaker would be very likely to think that the first is ambiguous or unclear. "You speak French exceptionally": exceptionally what? Exceptionally badly? Exceptionally slowly? Exceptionally fast? With an odd accent? It could even mean "You speak French, which is unusual". A careful native speaker would add a clarifying adverb such as well, badly, clearly, etc, or even a phrase, e.g. "You speak French exceptionally well for a first year student", or "You speak French exceptionally well for someone who has never lived in France".


centrox
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Aug, 2017 02:16 am
I was talking to a French lady in a train (in France) and she flattered me very much by asking if I was Swiss.
izzythepush
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Aug, 2017 04:10 am
@centrox,
Maybe she thought you'd stashed a load of Nazi gold.
centrox
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Aug, 2017 04:54 am
@izzythepush,
izzythepush wrote:

Maybe she thought you'd stashed a load of Nazi gold.

Or she was Berne-ing with desire.
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perennialloner
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Aug, 2017 06:46 am
@centrox,
Merci beaucoup
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perennialloner
 
  1  
Reply Sun 20 Aug, 2017 06:47 am
@centrox,
Quel bon compliment!
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