I was just browsing the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English and stumbled on this peculiar note under the entry for delighted:
Delighted is not used with ‘very’. You say:
I’m absolutely delighted.
✗Don’t say: I’m very delighted.
This note is rather non-committal. An earlier edition flat-out says this.
► Do not say ‘very delighted’. Say absolutely delighted.
The definition of delighted is "very pleased and happy." Perhaps very is already implied, so another intensifying very would be redundant? But then why does absolutely work?
This Merriam-Webster blog post suggests that it seems somewhat arbitrary that grammarians decided that certain past-participle-based adjectives can't seem to mix well with very, suggesting that another possible reason for this is that delighted is not 100% a full-fledged adjective, but rather, it's still somewhat of a past participle and is thus resistant to very.
Randolph Quirk’s A Comprehensive Grammar of the English Language gives four criteria that must be met before a participle graduates from verbhood and is given adjectival status: it can be used attributively (“you have your annoyed face on”); in predicative use with seem (“you seem rather annoyed with me”); it can be premodified by very (“Yes, I am very annoyed”); it can be used in comparison (“I would say I am more annoyed than when you dropped my goldfish”).
And then there's this self-identified American speaker (who gave the highest-voted answer) who claims they expect to hear very delighted, still.
So is very delighted "right" or "wrong"? Is there some inherent quasi-grammatical limitation to delighted as a past-participle-based adjective? Or is it just a matter of collocation, some nebulous notion that makes very delighted sound awkward?