I was reading 'How Did Scientists Discover a Massive Hole in the Great Pyramid?' in Slate...

Now, a new room has been discovered in a Pyramid.

The real question, however, is what’s inside the big room? Is it a hoard of valuable, rare treasure from the era of the Fourth Dynasty? A special room for ceremonial purposes or part of the burial rituals for Khufu? The deceased pharaoh’s missing mummy itself? The discovery really just creates more questions than answers. “Being inaccessible, we still don’t know about any possible entrance points, and there may not be any, if this is some sort of construction gap,” says Harvard University–based Egyptologist Peter Der Manuelian. Moreover, he emphasizes, the muons don’t shed light about the void’s individual chambers (if any), form, size, or any possible objects (emphasis mine).

The writer says "The discovery really just creates more questions than answers" but something is wrong there; There seems to be some implication which is not suitable for this situation.

I think, if there were some mystery or unsolved Problem, and somebody gave some "unsatisfactory" explanation, then we could claim "this [just] creates more questions than answers", implying that the explanation is not sufficient or not complete; we might be better off without this explanation.

In the case of a new room in a Pyramid, there may be new questions to be asked, but are we better off without this discovery ? Does it require the phrase "just creates more questions" ?

  • It doesn't require just, but there's no problem with using it there. Have you looked up just in the online Oxford dictionary, read the definitions and, most importantly, looked at the example sentences? Nov 5, 2017 at 17:18

1 Answer 1


Using the adverb "just" sends a stronger message. It usually adds the sense that a waste of time or a need for further elaboration exist.

  • yes, the implication (indirectly mentioned in my question) of "just" , is that this is a waste of time or we are better off without it. but the given scenario is about finding something new and it is not a waste of time. that is why I feel something is wrong here.
    – Prem
    Nov 5, 2017 at 6:38
  • The scenario is about finding something new which tells us nothing else about itself. Before the find, speculation as limited by the possibility there was nothing there at all. Confirming something exists increases speculation about what it might be… creating more questions than answers Why are you so worried about just and not about really? Nov 16, 2017 at 19:43

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