RE: Grammar: "So" as a modifier

Subject: RE: Grammar: "So" as a modifier
From: "Wilcox, Rose" <rwilcox -at- ssqi -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 6 Oct 2005 14:42:43 -0700

--- arroxaneullman -at- aol -dot- com wrote:
> Hey all,
> Another interesting grammatical conversation came up
> today. This time
> we discussed "so" as a modifier. For example, "We
> are so lost" (instead
> of "very?) or "That is so an inconvenience" (instead
> of "such"?). I
> commented that this usage was incorrect, but really
> can't back it up
> with a grammatical rule.
> it appears to
> be recently revived in youth culture.

This same discussion took place on the Copyeditor-L recently (archives
available at
and I found much of the discussion by entering "so verb" in the subject
line search.)

The upshot -- unless I misremember -- seems to be that the usage is not
so much incorrect as terribly informal -- correct for informal speech
but to be avoided in written communication.

Rosie Wilcox


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