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Consider the following:

  1. He is too weak that he cannot walk.

  2. He is so weak that he cannot walk.

  3. He is too weak to walk.

I feel all the above sentences are correct. But my grammar book suggests, that the first one is wrong and the rest is correct. Why is it so? Any explanation?

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+1 curious. I agree with your grammar book, but I'm unsure as to exactly why… – andrewdotnich Jul 25 '12 at 6:07
up vote 8 down vote accepted

Valid constructions:

  • too <adjective> to <verb>
  • so <adjective> that <condition/state expressed as a standalone sentence>

There is no such construction "too <adjective> that <condition>".

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2 and 3 are perfectly right, 1 is wrong. The correct formation would be "He is too weak and cannot walk". The formation of such a sentence requires an implied comparison - "He is so weak that he cannot walk" implies a comparison to someone/something that is extremely weak and cannot walk, while "He is too weak that he cannot walk" just says he is too weak - doesn't show the he is as weak as someone/something else that is extremely weak and cannot walk.

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