as bad as it can be, but a great deal worse

HolyUnicorn

Senior Member
Mandarin / the Shanghai Dialect
Hello,

“Dr. Weitbrecht-Rotholz belongs to that school of historians which believes that human nature is not only about as bad as it can be, but a great deal worse……”


From W. Somerset Maugham: The Moon and Sixpence


If it is as bad as it can be, it cannot be any worse. How can I interpret “a great deal worse”?
 
  • lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    You’re right, it’s not exactly logical. But the whole thing is written “tongue in cheek”.


    agreeing with Loob again
     
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