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While proofreading an essay I suggested this sentence:
"His persona does not finally overcome grief."
be changed to:
"His persona does ultimately not overcome grief."

Is there any difference between the two at all? The suggestion was based on a feeling only.

  • They are not the same at all, and certainly not in the negative. – michael.hor257k May 17 '17 at 20:11
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"Ultimately" and "Finally" are synonyms in the sense that they can both mean "at the end."

The reason that "ultimately" works in this context whereas "finally" doesn't is that "ultimately" has another meaning (from MW):

: at the most basic level : in the central or most important way

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