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Is "I wanted to have written something more round" correct? Or do I have to use "rounder"?

I think that I hear more people saying "This should be more round", than "This should be rounder". When round means to be in a good shape, decent quality.

Please help me find out which is the appropriate way to say this.

EDIT: It has been suggested that "well-rounded" is the appropriate expression. But also mentioned that "Your writing should be better rounded." could also be appropriate.

Then, I ask: should I say: 1 - "I wanted to have written something more well-rounded" or 2 - "I wanted to have written something better rounded"?

EDIT 2: These links came up in a research about these words, but they do not explain usage well enough. Hence, my question. Thank you.

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    Hi, what have you found in your research? Please include your findings; even dictionary entries are good sources.
    – livresque
    Feb 24, 2023 at 4:09
  • 'more round' and 'rounder' (both acceptable syntactically) mean 'closer to a round shape' (ie not metaphorical). 'Well-rounded' is not literal at all. For the comparative, use 'more well-rounded'. An alternative is 'more filled out'.
    – Mitch
    Feb 27, 2023 at 20:02

2 Answers 2

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Is "I wanted to have written something more round" correct?

No.

Or do I have to use "rounder"?

No that is wrong too.

I think that I hear more people saying "This should be more round", than "This should be rounder". When round means to be in a good shape, decent quality.

You think wrongly, or the people are not native speakers or speak substandard English or a dialect.

"This should be rounder". When round means to be in a good shape, decent quality.

I doubt this. You can use "rounder" but it is mainly an attributive adjective often with a modifying adverb: it is rarely a predicative adjective.

Here are some examples of "rounded":

1850 Blackwood's Edind. Mag. Apr. 442/2 A carefully rounded phrase intended for the ear of royalty.

1986 N.Y. Times (Nexis) 19 Jan. g17/1 Most of the characters speak in rounded periods, often with a touch of malicious wit.

2001 G. Indiana Depraved Indifference (2003) 122 The things he'd practiced telling her in nice rounded sentences full of vocabulary reached her as the oppressive gibberish of an implacable child.

Please help me find out which is the appropriate way to say this.

The easiest way is a rewrite:

"I wanted to have written something more well-rounded"

The OED entry in this context is:

well-rounded (adj)

2. Of a sentence, phrase, etc.: very neatly finished; elegantly expressed.

1764 Crit. Rev. Feb. 108 Those amongst our readers who look only for smooth and well-rounded periods..will be greatly disappointed.

1946 Amer. Hist. Rev. 51 349 In a country attuned to the well-rounded phrase, that was Rui's great advantage: he was a born orator.

2005 R. P. Irvine J. Austen 73 This paragraph consists of a series of clauses and phrases separated by dashes and semi-colons instead of Austen's more usual well-rounded sentences.

Well-rounded is more emphatic and, I suspect, commoner than rounded.

The idea behind "rounded" is that the object has had the roughness taken from it and is now smooth and round like a billiard/pool ball.

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None of those phrases make sense to me

I'm a native of the U.S. living in Montana.

None of your example sentences make sense to me. Or, more accurately, I wouldn't say anything using any of those phrases. But it's possible you're trying to use a form of "well-rounded."

  1. adjective

You describe someone as well-rounded when you are expressing approval of them because they have a personality which is fully developed in all aspects.

  1. adjective

If you describe something that is made up of several parts as well-rounded, you mean that the way that the different parts are put together is good, because there is not too much or too little of any one part.

well-rounded in American English

(ˈwɛlˈraʊndɪd ) adjective

  1. well-planned for proper balance, "a well-rounded education"

  2. showing interest or ability in many fields or showing many facets of personality, "a well-rounded character"

  3. fully developed; shapely, "a well-rounded figure"

Webster’s New World College Dictionary, 4th Edition. Copyright © 2010 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. All rights reserved.

well-rounded in American English

(ˈwelˈraundɪd) adjective

  1. having desirably varied abilities or attainments

  2. desirably varied, "a well-rounded curriculum"

  3. fully developed; well-balanced

Most material © 2005, 1997, 1991 by Penguin Random House LLC. Modified entries © 2019 by Penguin Random House LLC and HarperCollins Publishers Ltd

well-rounded in British English

adjective (well rounded when postpositive)

  1. rounded in shape or well developed, "a well-rounded figure"

  2. full, varied, and satisfying, "a well-rounded life"

  3. well planned and balanced, "a well-rounded programme"

If this is the case, what would I expect to hear?

I'd expect, and would personally use, the following,

Your writing is well-rounded.

Meaning that your grasp of grammar, syntax, vocabulary, and writing style is good.

In this context you could say:

Your writing should be better rounded.

But that would sound very odd to me and would take me a bit to work out its context. That might come from my background as a technical writer. In the technical writing world, specificity is important. Therefore, I would expect to hear:

You need to improve your syntax and grammar, but your vocabulary is good.

If what I have just explained doesn't reflect what you are trying to understand, please edit your post to provide more detail about the meaning of the sentences you provided.

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  • Thank you very much. Very complete and useful answer. I edited my question for a final clarification related to what you provided Feb 24, 2023 at 4:54
  • Edited my question further. Would be great to know the usage nuances. Thank you. Feb 26, 2023 at 13:24
  • All of them don't make sense to you, or not one of them makes sense to you?
    – tchrist
    Feb 26, 2023 at 20:27

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