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I saw this in a TV programme: "And that's all your guesses used up"

I get the meaning but I'm not sure if it is "that's" instead of "those're".

Maybe it stands for "that has", but I am not sure about that.

Can you help me? This is getting me crazy.

3 Answers 3

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Without disagreeing with any grammatical analysis, it is correct, in my view, if it is consistently used in any dialect of English. That particular example sounds fine to me in Standard British English but this sort of structure is exceptionally common in Central Scots, often in sentences which sound odd in standard English. You often hear That's me finished. or That's the dishes put away.

Scots went to practically every part of the world where English is spoken and we can assume they made some contribution to local dialects but it is also obvious that their contribution will vary considerably from place to place. This means that the extent to which this structure had become part of the local dialect will vary enormously.

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They are saying your guesses are used up or exhausted. This could be from playing Twenty Questions. The abbreviation says it means "That is all your guesses" but would also be valid as "Those are" or "Those were all your guesses". Not "That has.."

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  • And
    • That
    • (is)
    • all
      • (of)
        • guesses
          • your
          • (that are) used up

The basic sentence here is "That is all." "That" is singular, and "all" can be either singular or plural. Since "all" refers to all of a group of multiple items, it is plural, making the sentence "That (sg) = all (pl)" which would be incorrect. It should be "Those (pl) = all (pl)." Then the full sentence would be "And those are all your guesses used up."

While that last sentence is correct, it still isn't the best way to say it. Better ways would be "And all your guesses are used up," or "And that was your last guess." You could technically say, "And those are all your guesses used up," even if they still have more guesses because the sentence is merely showing you all the guesses that are used up. For example, you might find a sheet of paper that shows all the guesses you already guessed, and you could say that "Those are all the guesses you used up."

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  • Thank you so much, someone else told me it’s something of an idiom, I guess It could be. Anyway, I prefer "those are all your guesses used up" as you said, but I suppose the other way is just like a informal expression. Thank you for your help. I'm trying to improve my English.
    – DaNer
    Commented Jan 16, 2019 at 18:35
  • @DaNer - Please don’t adopt “And those are all your guesses used up” instead of the original. If you don’t like the original formation say something entirely different: “You’ve got no guesses left” “You’re all out of guesses.”
    – Jim
    Commented Jan 16, 2019 at 19:58

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