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Sergey Vakshul
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Postby Sergey Vakshul » Wed Oct 13, 2004 11:34 am

Hi, everyone!
One of the new words I leant recently is likewise.
I came across it in the following context:

- It's been very nice meeting you. (said by an adult)
- Same here.(said by a child of 13 years)
- Likewise.(said by another child of 13 years)

In Russian this expresion(Likewise) is commonly used in answers just like in the dialogue above. Nevertheless I never use it myself as I find it churlish and unacceptable. But it's just my personal humble opinion and nothing more.
I wonder is it perfectly normal to answer in this way(Likewise) in English? Doesn't it sound churlish?

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Postby nikita » Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:03 pm

Hello Sergey!

I do not use "likewise" very often. But here is what my beloved Longman says (I bet my life you already looked it us so most probably this answer is of no much use for you).

formal in the same way
ᅳsynonym similarly
Nanny put on a shawl and told the girls to do likewise .
[sentence adverb]The clams were delicious. Likewise, the eggplant was excellent.
spoken used to return someone's greeting or polite statement
'You're always welcome at our house.' 'Likewise.'

According to Longman, usually likewise is quite formal unless it is used to return someone's greeting.

I also hope to get commends from somebody else apart from me.

Best regards,

Nikita Kovalyov


Sergey Vakshul
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Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2004 2:09 pm

Postby Sergey Vakshul » Wed Oct 13, 2004 12:40 pm

Thanks for your answer, Nikita!
I just wanted to add that IMHO if someone wants to show his sincerity he should give full answer.
It was nice to hearing from you

If I were in your shoes I wouldn't respond to my last line with 'Likewise' :)

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Postby NyVlad » Wed Oct 20, 2004 9:02 am

Hello Sergey,
I've heard this expression in "Cruel Intentions" movie =)))

- Nice to meet you!
- Likewise, Im sure.

And person who said that were trying to look really nice and concerned, at least I saw it in that way.


Sergey Vakshul
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Joined: Sat Aug 07, 2004 2:09 pm

Postby Sergey Vakshul » Wed Oct 20, 2004 1:17 pm

Hi, Vlad!
Yeah, even Longman acknowledges that 'likewise' could be used as a response to someone's greeting or polite statement.
But what I am trying to say is IMHO word 'likewise' doesn't convey your genuine attitude towards the statement you respond to.
I'll make an example.

- I love you...(on the verge of unconsciousness, blood throbbing in your head, brimming over with emotions)
- Likewise (making another sip of coffee and getting down to what you had been up to before)

That is how I see this scene :)


Re: likewise

Postby Paul » Sat Oct 23, 2004 12:53 pm


Allow me to weigh in on the word "likewise". The first definition used by Longman's is, by far, the best way to use this word. The second has a more sinuous meaning.

In Victorian times the word was a type of affectation used by the upper class as a retort to a greeting, and that is the example Longman's uses. It was originally used in formal speech and not considered base. Then, with what I assume was the advent of talking pictures, the word was used by two classic comedy groups, the Marx Brothers and The Three Stooges. These fellows used the word constantly in their comedy routines, usually in conjunction with hitting one of the others, was picked up by the children during the 1930's in America and became a crude form of response to an adult. The word died out in the late 1950's and I seldom hear it used in either context. Finally, also hear "likewise" used in legal settings, but usually to sound pompous and not to impart civility.

By the way, for those of you who do not know the Marx Brothers, they were wildly successful in the 1930's. There were actually six brothers, one died in infancy, who did vaudeville in the early 1920's and took the stage name of:

Groucho (Julius Henry)

Chico (Leonard)

Harpo (Adolph, changed to Arthur during Hitler's time)

Gummo (Milton) and

Zeppo (Herbert)

The first three were the most famous on the silver screen. Harpo was an accomplished musician and played the harp on many of the movies. His character never spoke, but pantomimed all his "lines". Groucho was host of a popular television program called "You Bet Your Life" in the 1950's.

The Three Stooges were actually six different men, with the part of "Curly" or Shemp" played by four different people. Their comedy was very, very physical and involved punching their eyes, hitting each other with hammers and slapping each others faces constantly. Their contribution to the language was "nyuk nyuk" and "whoob whoob whoob whoob whoob", which anyone my age would understand instantly if you said it. Moe, the leader of the group, would find a job to do and then get Larry (who had long curly hair) and Curly (who was usually bald) to do the work. Of course nothing would go right and they would end up getting fired or kicked out. They enjoyed a resurgence in popularity about ten years ago, long after they were all dead. My parents would only let me watch them for limited amounts of time - I have been told that many children were killed trying to reproduce the stunts of the Three Stooges. They seem rather tame by today's standards!

That's all for today!


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