Post by Madrigal Gurneyhalt Post by John Dunlop Post by Katy Jennison Post by John Dunlop
Acknowledging the recency illusion, I'm not sure whether or not
this is a new or increasingly used usage, but in the last few years
I've been noticing more and more people saying things like "he just
about held on" to mean that he actually held on, not that he nearly
held on. Have you noticed that where you are?
Are you saying that it used to mean that he didn't hold on?
I think it still does mean that, usually.
Post by Katy Jennison
I don't think I've ever come across it meaning that. IME it hasn't
changed from meaning 'he held on, but only just'.
For me "just about" means, as the OED defines it, "almost, very nearly".
So "he just about held on" means that he nearly held on, which implies
that he didn't.
No, it doesn't. Nor did it ever!
Maybe once in a while. I found it remarkable how ambiguous most of the
examples I saw at the British National Corpus were. (I presume that's
how the meaning shifted from "nearly", which must be the original, to
the frequent British one of "barely".)
This one seems to be an "almost".
"Cognos has just about sorted out one of the big problems software
companies with a proprietary platform background face when getting into
Unix: pricing.' We've modelled 500 of our customers, and within 12
months all pricing will be by per-user, as the Unix products already
are,' adds Zambonini. Much of this direction was outlined at the
company's first international user group meeting, Cognition' 91, in Los
Angeles last June, which explains the low-key reaction of journalists
and analysts to the roadshow."
The title is Unigram x. (I included the last sentence because the only
date given was 1985-1994.)
Here's another clear one. To minimize the salt in the wounds, I'll say
from the start that it's about rugby.
"I can't see anyone stopping England. France will just about be able to
hold them in the line-out if Roumat plays, but the so-called hard men in
the pack don't look that tough to me. England -- even in Paris -- should
win that one, which will leave Wales at Twickenham between them and the
Rugby World and Post. Reading: Rugby Pub, 1991, pp. ??
This one isn't really about an achievement, but I'm mentioning it
because it looks like an "actually".
(SP:KPVPS000) And he built up a whole business just by picking famous
names and saying, look I think your design is really outdated and it's
not doing your image any good. How about this?
(SP:PS586) I couldn't believe that he just about had the audacity to
phone this guy up.
13 convs rec. by 'Rebecca' (PS586) between 15 and 19 Oct 1993 with 9
i's, 6179 utts, and over 5 hrs 15 mins 27 secs of recs.
(Does it matter who rec. them? It seems more important to know who
Post by Madrigal Gurneyhalt
You're using completely the wrong
definition. It applies to measurements not achievements.
I just about held on -> I held on but it was a darned close thing
I nearly held on -> I couldn't hold on at the last moment
In a different dialect of English, I had much less trouble finding an
"'You know, you just about had me convinced. There was just one thing.'
"'What?' he says in dull reflex.
"'I called up some fellows over at NASA. And there was a problem with
C. W. Johnson, "Political Science", Analog (2007)