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I highly advise anyone who is launching a new venture to buy this book and build a brand that works.

Is this correct or should it be strongly advise?

4 Answers 4

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Both are possible and grammatical.

In terms of commonality, Google Books Ngram Viewer suggests that strongly advise is much more common than highly advise—at least in printed form.

strongly advise


Logically speaking, the use of highly advise might not make sense, simply because its antonym, lowly advise, doesn't; however, its meaning is understood idiomatically and there is no problem with the phrase per se.

But if you are concerned with what is more common, and the context is not something specifically different than what is expressed by Google Books Ngram Viewer (perhaps high is a word in the title of the book, making highly advise a deliberate play on words), then strongly advise would seem to be more appropriate.

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  • It may not violate any formally articulated rules of grammar, but it is not an idiomatic usage. People don't actually ay it with any regularity, to the point that is sounds improper for an undefinable reason.
    – ohwilleke
    Jul 31, 2019 at 20:29
  • @ohwilleke I've heard it often. It depends where you're from and the specific context. It's certainly idiomatic in my experience. (As also indicated by another answer here.) Jul 31, 2019 at 20:38
  • This tool is great. Thank you for sharing! I feel compelled to post the entire book here to you experts. ;) Aug 3, 2019 at 8:34
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"Strongly advise" is what I would use to show powerful conviction.

However, you could also use "highly recommend".

In my opinion, either "strongly advise" or "highly recommend" works for both scenarios.

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  • lacks of a creditable citation(s)
    – lbf
    Jul 31, 2019 at 14:59
  • This is true, but I'm trying to figure out what underlies it. You highly praise, highly recommend, highly value, etc, which suggests highly is used when celebrating or esteeming something. Advising something is a bit different in connotation: it has less of an implication that the object is good or praiseworthy, and more that the object is useful or necessary.
    – Stuart F
    Jul 31, 2019 at 15:22
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Depends what you mean by 'proper'! But it isn't common, previous answers are right. I couldn't find any instances at all of "highly advise" in the British National Corpus, but 'strongly' is the sixth strongest collocate with 'advise'.

enter image description here You can see the BNC here

Funnily enough though I follow a particular (British) YouTuber who uses 'highly advise' frequently in his videos. Sounds weird to me every time he does it. But he has about 4 million subscribers so it hasn't done him too much harm in life!

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  • Awesome, what research for a stranger. Much love from me back. Aug 3, 2019 at 8:32
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highly advise(d)

I, an AmE native, prefer highly advise over strongly advise, despite usage numbers. My sense: either is acceptable (not sure what proper even means). The following 21st C. usages are offered in support: (all google books)

There are many more listings with a simple google book search: "highly advise".

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  • OK, so I won't be embarrasing anyone then. Do think I lean towards 'stronger' as a non-native... Aug 3, 2019 at 8:33

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