'Insist on' in American English

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Xavier da Silva

Senior Member
Hello everyone,

I got a British English answer here that said "insist on" wasn't idiomatic, which made sense to me. My question: is my use of "insist on" idiomatic/common in American English? If not, could you give an example where "insist on" is idiomatic?

Anna: Shall we go to the movies?
Paul: Now? I have no money with me.
Anna: It's not a problem. I insist on taking you to the movies. You've been so nice to me.

Meaning intended of "insist on": Really want, it is extremely important, it is something that you consider essential.

Thank you in advance!
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  • london calling

    Senior Member
    UK English
    I'm also English and I understand and use use insist on/upon all the time. I wonder by a speaker of BE would say it isn't idiomatic (and why that would make sense to you)....:confused:

    Edit. Oh, I see. Beryl didn't mean that insist on wasn't idiomatic, in my opinion. I believe she mrant that the sentence using it was a bit long and suggested a more succinct way of expressing the idea.;)
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    Senior Member
    English USA, Northeast, NYC
    Here's one of the OED's acceptances:

    4. a.4.a To make a demand with persistent urgency; to take a persistent or peremptory stand in regard to a stipulation, claim, demand, proposal, etc. Const. on, upon (formerly for, against, or inf.).



    Senior Member
    English - Californian
    I do think that "I'll pay; I insist" is more idiomatic (in the sense of "everyday things I could imagine myself saying") than "I insist on paying," which is both a little more forceful and a little more formal.
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