do for emphasis

Discussion in 'English Only' started by Julianus, Mar 9, 2013.

  1. Julianus

    Julianus Senior Member


    As far as I know, do/does/did can be used for the emphasis like following.

    1a. I did meet her yesterday. b. She does write a novel. c. Do be kind to him!

    But I doubt whether 1c is correct; I heard 1c is correct. If so, can 'do' emphasize 'be-verb' like following?

    2a. I am really smart. b. I do be smart.
    3a. You are really a genius. b. You do be a genius.
    4a. He was really handsome b. He did be handsome.
    5a. They are really doctors. b. They do be doctors.

    Are (b)patterns possible and correct? If not, why are these different with 1(c)?

    Thank you always~.
  2. boozer Senior Member

    I would never say any of those. For what it's worth, I would never say 1c either.

    Out of context 'She does write a novel' also sounds to me incomplete but it is not ungrammatical.
  3. Elwintee Senior Member

    London England
    England English
    "Do be kind to him" is grammatical and correct. "do" in that sentence is emphatic, emphasising the imperative form of the verb 'be'. The other uses of do, as in "You do be a genius", are not in an imperative context, and are therefore 'wrong'. However, although all the (b) patterns are not standard English, they are dialect variants found in the West of England.

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