Archive for August 26, 2010

grammatical expression: so much for


Today, I have another common expression that English speakers use in casual conversations: “so much for”. It is used when we want to say that something we were expecting to happen will not happen. It can also be used to indicated that something we thought was true is not true. For example:

It’s just started to rain! So much for our picnic!

The prime minister just announced a tax increase! So much for his promises not to raise taxes!

I just got laid off at work! So much for buying a new house this year!

A: Bill made a huge mistake and lost the company one of our biggest clients!

B: Well, so much for the promotion he was supposed to get.

The Shepherds only had two successful songs, and then the band broke up. So much for all the predictions that they would become as successful as the Beatles.

When we use this expression, the feeling is usually either neutral or negative. If someone uses this when they feel happy about the situation, it sounds as if they are gloating. So, in the fourth example, if the person who says “so much for the promotion he was supposed to get” is happy that Bill made a mistake, it sounds like that person either doesn’t like Bill or is in line for the same promotion.

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