A best piece of luck

Silver

Senior Member
Chinese,Cantonese,Sichuan dialect
Hi,

What does the phrase mean in this context:

It would have been a best piece of luck if the first AIDS vaccine to be tested in this way had been a success.

My guess is "it would be very lucky", but is this a valid idiom or not?

Thanks a lot
 
  • Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    A best piece of luck doesn't mean anything to me, Silver.

    Where did you find this sentence?
     

    Silver

    Senior Member
    Chinese,Cantonese,Sichuan dialect
    Don't do any search please, I feel ashamed to say that I got it from a Chinese-English forum. I am sorry for wasting your time. But would it be Americanism?
     

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    Hi Silver
    I'm not familiar with this collocation "a best piece of luck". I'd express this idea differently probably leaving out 'a' and 'piece of' and using a different adjective but you haven't bothered to give a source, so I'm not bothering to say anything more.
    Added - There's nothing to be ashamed of except not saying what the source is - knowing this helps us to help you.
    :)
    Hermione
     
    Last edited:

    Silver

    Senior Member
    Chinese,Cantonese,Sichuan dialect
    Hi Silver
    I'm not familiar with this collocation "a best piece of luck". I'd express this idea differently probably leaving out 'a' and 'piece of' and using a different adjective but you haven't bothered to give a source, so I'm not bothering to say anything more.

    :)
    Hermione
    Do you mean the source of this expression? I am willing to give the source, but since it is a Chinese forum. I am deeply sorry for my mistake this time.
     

    Hermione Golightly

    Senior Member
    British English
    While I was posting, you mentioned you had seen the phrase on a Chinese- English forum. That's what I am calling a source. There's nothing to be deeply sorry or ashamed about, but just tell us where you saw or heard expressions you are asking about.

    :)
    Hermione
     

    boozer

    Senior Member
    Bulgarian
    I think whoever wrote "piece of luck" was not aware of the phrase "stroke of luck", Silver :)
    PS. Or even "bit of luck"...
     

    boozer

    Senior Member
    Bulgarian
    But, Silver, see what I found in the British National Corpus:

    We've had luck here — two pieces of luck.
    Well, well, what a piece of luck.
    This is a terrific piece of luck, Bridget.
    :D

    And there's a lot more. I've just learnt something new, which I intend to use with moderation. And only at the utmost end of need. :D
     

    Silver

    Senior Member
    Chinese,Cantonese,Sichuan dialect
    Even though we can find some results in British National Corpus, can I still say that the idiom is not that popular, Boozer?
     

    boozer

    Senior Member
    Bulgarian
    I don't know, Silver. I did know the first two "things" of luck that I offered in post #9. I did not know "piece of luck" until several minutes ago. That's all I can say...

    Afterthought: Of course, "piece of... " is certainly used with other uncountable nouns like news, evidence, etc. So maybe I should have known the same was possible with luck as well...
     
    Last edited:

    Silver

    Senior Member
    Chinese,Cantonese,Sichuan dialect
    I don't know, Silver. I did know the first two "things" of luck that I offered in post #9. I did not know "piece of luck" until several minutes ago. That's all I can say...

    Afterthought: Of course, "piece of... " is certainly used with other uncountable nouns like news, evidence, etc. So maybe I should have known the same was possible with luck as well...
    Personally, I think it would be better to avoid the term in daily use. It might not be understood by foreigners even in context. The phrase is from a Chinese-English forum and I know exactly that the forum is unreliable but I want to respect language so I ask the question here.

    Whereas, many of the terms are invalid and even could be considered ridiculous.
     

    PaulQ

    Senior Member
    UK
    English - England
    "The best piece of luck" is acceptable as "The best" is a superlative and thus often takes the definite article. "A best piece of luck" is simply not possible or acceptable, as it suggests, illogically, that there might be another "best piece of luck" within the whole event.
     
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