English Grammar and Exercises for ESL learners.
SO - SUCH
SO and SUCH often have the same meaning : 'very' or 'to this degree'.
So is used before an adjective or an adverb (without a noun after it):
- so big
- so carefully
Such is followed by 'a' or 'an', + an adjective + a singular noun :
- such a long time
- such an incredible
Such is used without a, an before plural nouns, mass nouns (luggage, furniture)
and abstract nouns (advice, courage, generosity, kindness ... )
- such fools
- such (beautiful) furniture
- such generosity
Compare the following sentences:
- This book is so interesting.
- This is such an interesting book.
- Such interesting books are
hard to find.
- I was amazed that the crowd was so big.
- I was amazed that there was such a big crowd.
- Such big crowds can be frightening.
- The story was so complicated.
- It was such a complicated story.
- Such complicated stories are difficult to follow.
- You are so intelligent.
- You are such an intelligent person.
- A person of such intelligence is a pleasure to meet.
So ... that and such ... that are used to describe reasons and results.
So + adjective + that :
◊ The hotel was so comfortable that we decided to stay another night.
Such + adjective + noun + that :
◊ It's such a comfortable hotel that we'll definitely stay there again.