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SRPGgamer

Senior Member
Chinese
Guys, please tell me how does the first one differ from the second?


"Do you happen to know what is XXXX"

"Do you know what is XXXX"
 
  • nzfauna

    Senior Member
    New Zealand, English
    I would depend on what XXXX is.

    I would say, informally:

    Do you happen to know what XXXX is?
    Do you know what XXXX is?

    Effectively, they mean the same thing. However, the first is more polite.

    Do you happen to know... = By chance, do you know...
     

    Thomas Tompion

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Guys, please tell me how does the first one differ from the second?


    "Do you happen to know what is XXXX"

    "Do you know what is XXXX"
    1. "Do you happen to know what a doodlebug is?" - note the order Gamer.

    2. "Do you know what a doodlebug is?"

    I don't see the one as being more or less polite than the other, except that 2 is perhaps more direct and 1. more suitable to suggest sensitivity to the fact that you may be interrupting the other person.

    Apart from that, 1. suggests that you think the person is less likely to know than 2, that the knowledge in question more obscure, perhaps.
     
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