A question from a non-native speaker:

For some reason I have to find at least three different formal ways to express "we got very good comments". The context is like "our paper got published and the reviewer's comments were very positive". Now I have three candidate expressions:

  1. we received rather positive reviews

  2. our results were appraised highly by the reviewers

  3. the comments were quite affirmative

I am not sure whether "rather" and "quite" are used properly here. Also, I don't know whether "affirmative" has the same meaning with "positive" here. If these expressions are not ideal, can anyone help me find at least three different formal ways to express "we got very good comments"?

Thank you.

  • Affirmative means agreeing with. Agreement can be combined with praise but it is something else.
    – Kaz
    Commented Nov 16, 2013 at 6:22
  • The paper was well received. We received very favorable feedback
    – Jim
    Commented Nov 16, 2013 at 6:28

1 Answer 1


I would avoid, where possible, words like 'rather' and 'quite', in the sense of 'quite good'. They are imprecise and overworked. In any case, if you say you got 'very good' comments, using 'rather' and 'quite' may mean you are tending to be too modest.

So for starters you could say:

  1. We received very positive reviews.

The word 'appraise' is used more in the sense of 'evaluate'. In your case I would use its root 'praise'.

  1. Our results were praised by the reviewers.

    'Affirmative' hints at something being positive but doesn't really say it directly. I think you need to say they were affirmative of something. How about:

  2. The reviewers comments affirmed the strength of our results.

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