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This is a conversation between two friends, one is 30 the other is 25. They are speaking about their school time:

First conversation:

A: Do you remember Mr. X? He was my English teacher.

B: Oh, yes. He was my English teacher too.

I want to use "so" or "too" in a short sentence (B's sentence) to show agreement with a positive statement.


I know if the conversation was as follows, I could use "I was too." or "So was I":

Second conversation:

A: Do you remember Mr. X? I was his student.

B: Oh, yes. I was his student too./ I was too./ So was I.(And informally: Me too./ Ditto.)

But I don't know how B can use this grammar to express their agreement with A, in the first conversation.

PS:

If this grammar is not applicable to the first conversation, how should B express their agreement (i.e. "That's also true for me.") in a short form? (formally or informally)

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  • 2
    He was mine too! So does not really apply here.
    – WS2
    Apr 29, 2016 at 15:37
  • I see. @WS2. How about "me too"? Can B use that?
    – Soudabeh
    Apr 29, 2016 at 15:40
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    B can say "Mine, too" or "Mine also". I agree with WS2 that so doesn't really work here - "So he was" means that B agrees that Mr X was A's English teacher.
    – Lawrence
    Apr 29, 2016 at 15:45
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    @Soudabeh Yes, likewise is idiomatic (but sounds more BrE than AmE); same is more colloquial but also common.
    – Lawrence
    Apr 29, 2016 at 15:51
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    @Soudabeh Me too doesn't really work, because you need the possessive mine. Had A have said I had Mr X as my English teacher, then you could say me too. Likewise is alright in everyday speech, and is often used, but it is not good formal English. There is no grammatical base for it.
    – WS2
    Apr 29, 2016 at 16:05

1 Answer 1

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The second conversation does not flout any of grammatical rules of eliding and is correct in its formal/ informal avatars.

The first conversation is our problem area. It is proposed that B wants to skid most of the words by restricting the answer to bare minimum. We call it Answer Ellipses. Ellipses come from Greek meaning 'to leave'. In our day to day conversation words are left out of a sentence, but the sentence can still be meaningful and in such an elliptical construction of answer, redundancies are left out when context is of real help.

But we must be careful the Answer Ellipsis can satisfy the identity requirement( parallelism) needed to license deletion for likeness of form enable the reader/ person spoken to recognize the likeness of content and function. @Lawrence suggested the best possible grammatically correct alternatives.

  • Mine, too.
  • So of mine.
  • Mine, also. or any other form as:-

  • Yes, I do, incidently my teacher too.

In answer ellipses or dialogues we can skid the whole of sentence except a word or two. Symmetry only matters.

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  • Thanks a lot for your answer@ Barid Baran Acharya. Can B use 'Ditto' or 'Same here' as colloquial replies, too? ( I mean in the first conversation.)
    – Soudabeh
    May 3, 2016 at 17:11
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    @Soudabeh I am afraid, we should not.These are informal in tone and correspond to either of the two sentences of A, not both. Add a bit of your imagination to them. To me- for me- should be suffixed to make it meaningful. May 3, 2016 at 19:02
  • Oh, I didn't know that, @Barid Baran Acharya. Thanks again. :)
    – Soudabeh
    May 3, 2016 at 19:10

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