samaritan

kenny4528

Senior Member
Mandarin, Taiwan
Hi there, just wonder about the word samaritan. Does it sound normal in conversation to refer to someone who is great help:

A: Could you borrow me 700 dollars? I really need it now!
B: Sure, no problem.
A" Oh, you are samaritan.
 
  • LV4-26

    Senior Member
    Hello, kenny

    The first thing we'd have to check is whether the word samaritan can be used as an adjective.
    As a first approach, I'd be tempted to say "you're a Samaritan" instead.
     

    Elwintee

    Senior Member
    England English
    Hi there, just wonder about the word samaritan. Does it sound normal in conversation to refer to someone who is great help:
    The phrase "Good Samaritan" is well known from the Bible story. However, Samaritan on its own is perhaps less usual, and could (out of context) mean that the person is a member of today's Samaritan religious persuasion.
     

    kenny4528

    Senior Member
    Mandarin, Taiwan
    Thank you all~
    I think this word can be used as adjective because I read it used in the paper like: His Samaritan act of ...
     

    Franzi

    Senior Member
    (San Francisco) English
    Thank you all~
    I think this word can be used as adjective because I read it used in the paper like: His Samaritan act of ...
    Personally, I'm only used to seeing 'Samaritan' used in journalism, usually in headlines like "Good Samaritan Helps Homeless". It's almost always in the compound noun "good Samaritan".

    I suppose someone might use 'Samaritan' as an adjective in an article that had already used "good Samaritan".

    If I were thanking my friend for money, I'd say "You're a lifesaver!" or "You've really saved my bacon!". I would never mention good Samaritans. A good Samaritan is a stranger who helps you when you're about to fall in front of a bus or you've lost your wallet or something like that.
     

    JamesM

    Senior Member
    Just as a side note, "good Sam" was a common phrase in American English in an earlier time and is not as common now, although I still hear it from time to time. It was a shortening of "good Samaritan" and it meant a charitable or selfless person. "He's a good Sam." This name has been co-opted by a recreational vehicle club (The Good Sam Club) and probably is associated more with the club now than with its original meaning.

    I can't imagine saying "You're samaritan" as an adjective.
     
    Last edited:

    dn88

    Senior Member
    Polish
    Not exactly relevant to the original question, but I'm tempted to say it should be "Could you lend me 700 dollars?". You borrow something from someone.
     

    Loob

    Senior Member
    English UK
    In BrE:

    (1) You're Samaritan wouldn't work at all
    (2) You're a Samaritan would probably suggest that you're a member of an organisation which provides support to those who feel desperate or suicidal: click
    (3) You're a Good Samaritan would mean "you're a person who helps others".

    I don't think I'd use any of these in your context, kenny (even though You're a Good Samaritan would make sense).
     
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