overwhelming and dazzling

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reginaregina

Senior Member
Chinese
I searched the internet, it seems overwhelming variety and dazzling variety mean the same thing. Is that correct?
Here is how I want to use the word overwhelming.
Cellphones come in many types on the market today. Could you introduce me some?
We have flip phones, candy bar, PDAs, PPCs, smarthphones, and blackberries in America.
The varieties are overwhelming. (Can I use dazzling to replace overwhelming here?)
I am overwhelmed with the varieties. . (Here I probably can't say: I am dazzled by the varieties. do I?)

Thank you very much.
 
  • sandpiperlily

    Senior Member
    I would say that the primary difference between the two words is that "dazzling" has a positive connotation whereas "overwhelming" is often negative.

    If you say "I am overwhelmed by the variety of cellphones," then you're probably feeling frustrated or confused because there are so many types that you can't understand which is the best for you.

    If you were to say "I am dazzled by the variety of cellphones," then you're amazed, perhaps thrilled, by all the choices you have.

    When I think about the word "dazzled" or "dazzling," I think about fairy tales in which the hero is "dazzled" by a treasure trove of sparkling jewels, a huge city with lots of lights, etc. The idea is that there is so much sparkle that your eyes have trouble making out the details.
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    If I go on the Internet, I see "The food is good" and "The food is bad" but I don't decide that good and bad mean the same thing. I look them up in the dictionary.
    From the Macmillan Dictionary:
    overwhelm:
    2: to exist in such great amounts that someone or something cannot deal with them

    dazzle:
    2: to impress someone a lot, for example with your beauty, intelligence, or skill
     
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