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I got an email from an instructor today. Towards the end of email she says:

"Here is to finishing off the semester in a positive way."

What does that mean?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 15 down vote accepted

"Here's to ..." is a phrase used when making a toast. It means "Here is a toast to ...", at which point it is customary to raise your glass. The phrase has a life of its own, used by a speaker or writer expresses a situation that calls for a toast-like salute to something.

The "Here is" part can be omitted also. For instance, the wording of a toast may simply be something like, "To your health!"

The preposition or particle "to ~" in this situation means something like: "for the sake of the (continued) good status of ~" or "in recognition/appreciation/celebration/congratulation of ~" or "in hope of ~"

"Here is to you, Bob!" -> "Here is a toast in appreciation of you, Bob!"

"To your health!" -> "Let this symbolic drink be made for the sake of the continued good status of your health!"

"Here is to finishing off the semester in a positive way."

-> "Here is a wish in hope of finishing off the rest of the semester in a positive way."

-> "Here is a cheer in celebration of having finished the semester in a positive way."

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Ooh, downvote with no comment. Here is to the plus-voters out there! All you others: do not hate, emulate. :) –  Kaz Apr 25 '12 at 21:15
There you go - have my upvote to counterbalance the dark force. Not that the other answers are wrong - but they give no explanation as to how the expression arose in the first place, so they're incomplete. –  FumbleFingers Apr 26 '12 at 0:33
It may also be related to the the expression hear, hear. As is discussed in this wikipedia article: –  Brad Apr 28 '12 at 10:28

It is a way of expressing a wish for success. In other words: "I hope you will finish off the semester in a positive way".

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+1, Your answer is concise and perfect. –  user19148 Apr 25 '12 at 20:19

"Here is to..." or "Here's to..." is a friendly way of saying "I am looking forward to..."

Another example: A salesman may say at the end of the year: "Here's to another great year of sales"

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protected by tchrist Feb 26 at 2:18

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