Greatly vs. Highly

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taureauxx

Member
French
Hi everybody,

I'd like to know the difference between "greatly" and "highly". My english teacher told me that there is a difference of meaning.
Should I say: "this person is highly important ?" or "this person is greatly important ?" Is it switchable ?

Thanks a lot!
 
  • panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Being honest, I wouldn't say either.
    (This person) is very important.
    (This person) is really important.

    Greatly or highly would not occur to me in this context.
     

    taureauxx

    Member
    French
    Hi Panjandrum,

    Yes my exemple wasn't good. I'm sorry... But could you give me please two sentences with greatly and highly ? Because I can't distinguish where and in what context I can use them.

    Thanx you
     

    river

    Senior Member
    U.S. English
    One hears "highly regarded" and "greatly appreciated."

    "Highly paid workers" or "I don't think highly of his writing" or "I was highly insulted."
     

    A90Six

    Senior Member
    England - English.
    taureauxx said:
    Hi everybody,

    I'd like to know the difference between "greatly" and "highly". My english teacher told me that there is a difference of meaning.
    Should I say: "this person is highly important ?" or "this person is greatly important ?" Is it switchable ?

    Thanks a lot!
    In this sense, greatly refers to quantity and highly refers to position.

    Greatly missed - very much missed.
    Greatly appreciated - very much appreciated.
    Greatly saddened - very much saddened.
    Highly regarded - of those regarded, this one is in a position near the top.
    Highly respected - of those respected, this one is near the top.
    Highly unlikely - of all the possibilities, this one is near the top of the most unlikely.

    When used in this way, greatly and highly are not interchangeable.
     

    mgarizona

    Senior Member
    US - American English
    A90Six said:
    In this sense, greatly refers to quantity and highly refers to position.

    Greatly missed - very much missed.
    Greatly appreciated - very much appreciated.
    Greatly saddened - very much saddened.
    Highly regarded - of those regarded, this one is in a position near the top.
    Highly respected - of those respected, this one is near the top.
    Highly unlikely - of all the possibilities, this one is near the top of the most unlikely.

    When used in this way, greatly and highly are not interchangeable.
    This is all nicely stated but I don't think it actually gives the answer. (I say this admitting freely that I don't have the answer myself.) I just don't see any way a non-English speaker could be expected not to say:

    Highly missed - of all those missed, this one is near the top of the most missed

    or

    Greatly respected - very much respected

    Both of which sound logical enough but are incorrect.
     

    A90Six

    Senior Member
    England - English.
    mgarizona said:
    This is all nicely stated but I don't think it actually gives the answer. (I say this admitting freely that I don't have the answer myself.) I just don't see any way a non-English speaker could be expected not to say:

    Highly missed - of all those missed, this one is near the top of the most missed

    or

    Greatly respected - very much respected

    Both of which sound logical enough but are incorrect.
    John left the company a year ago and he is highly missed.:cross: When someone is missed, I don't think that people would group those they miss and rank them in that way.
    I would use greatly respected if that was what I meant.

    Perhaps the explanation does not pass muster, but other than saying nothing, it was the best I could come up with.:(
     
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