I have few confusions regarding the usage of very and very much.
1. From OALD I found this usage guide -
It states that very can be used with past participles used as adjectives, but not with past participles that have a passive meaning.
Now here comes the confusion. How to distinguish between past participles used as adjectives and past participles that have a passive meaning?
Looking at the examples - I am very pleased to get your letter and Your help was very much appreciated - it seems like both the past participles - pleased and appreciated - can be used as adjectives as well as the one with passive meaning. So how to distinguish between them so that I can use very correctly with past participles?
2. From OALD I found this usage guide -
It is clear that very is used with adjectives, but it is apparent with the exception mentioned in the guide that not all adjectives is used with very*, some take **very much to make correct usage.
There are other such examples I found from this thread - (I have not found good answers there, so I had to ask it myself here)
i) I am very much tired (Incorrect)
ii) I am very tired (Correct)
iii) I am very aware of ... (Incorrect)
iv) I am very much aware of ...(Correct)
So clearly very can't go along with all adjectives, there are certain adjectives with which simply very will cause error in sentence. In case of those adjectives, we need to use very much.
My question is which adjectives to use with very and which adjectives to use with very much. How to determine?
3. From OALD I found this usage guide -
This looks very like what we had at our shooting party in November.
Source - Fall of Giants by Ken Follett
Let's analyze the quoted sentence -
i) How this looks? This looks like what we had at our shooting party in November.
So it's clear that like what we had at our shooting party in November is an adverbial phrase. And so as stated in the above guide from OALD, very can be used with adverbs. So the quoted sentence is correct.
There is another way of analyzing that quoted sentence. In that sentence like is a preposition and what we had at our shooting party in November is a noun clause. And very is an adverb that modifies a verb - looks here. As stated in the above guide from OALD, very can't be used with verbs this way. We have to use very much to make the sentence correct.
Now it confuses me. In one way this sentence is correct, and in other way if we look at it, this sentence is incorrect? So my question is is this sentence is really correct?
Please help me. Thank you in advance.