'almost not' [synonym for barely?]

Tenacious Learner

Senior Member
Spanish
Hello teachers,
Would 'almost not' be a good synonym for 'barely' in the following sentence? 'Hardy' is also a good one, I know it.
The two countries have barely spoken for more than 50 years.

Thanks in advance.
 
  • Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    "Almost not" sounds awkward to my ears. "Barely", "hardly", and "scarcely" work fine for me.

    It is the "almost" part that does not work for me. It is like saying, "Did you take your vitamins today?" and the reply was "Almost". It does not work.
     

    Tenacious Learner

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    "Almost not" sounds awkward to my ears. "Barely", "hardly", and "scarcely" work fine for me.

    It is the "almost" part that does not work for me. It is like saying, "Did you take your vitamins today?" and the reply was "Almost". It does not work.
    Hello Packard,
    Thank you for your reply. What about 'not at all; definitely not', will they also work?

    TL
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    We wouldn't say that they have "not at all spoken".

    Anyway, as Packard says, barely/scarcely/hardly all mean just a little; they don't mean "not at all".
     

    Tenacious Learner

    Senior Member
    Spanish
    We wouldn't say that they have "not at all spoken".

    Anyway, as Packard says, barely/scarcely/hardly all mean just a little; they don't mean "not at all".
    Hello Parla,
    Thank you for your help. 'Just a little' really fits, to me, the meaning in this case, and the students will understand it in the given context.
    TL
     
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