I stumbled upon a phrase on the internet the grammar of which I can't understand.

Except as being a bit too conservative and Republican-Lite, don't you think XXX is one of the best President?

It was written by a native speaker, so it's most likely that it's just me who can't grasp the meaning of the sentence, not a grammatical mistake in it. Why is except as being used here? Wouldn't except being be fine?

  • 3
    It should be "except for being"; I don't know why there's an "as" there. – Peter Shor Apr 10 '12 at 3:04
  • So, the above-mentioned phrase is ungrammatical? – Desert Apr 10 '12 at 3:06

While I agree with @andrewdotnich that I'd probably write either 'except for being' or 'apart from being' before writing 'except as being', it is by all means grammatical. This NGram: enter image description here shows that except as being was used quite frequently in the 1800's and was overtaken by "except for being" around the turn of the century.

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  • except as being is grammatical, but seems to be used in other ways besides OP's sentence. Can you cite an instance where it is used as OP cites it? – zpletan Apr 10 '12 at 15:01
  • @zpletan: I think a lot of the instances that show up there are used similarly to OPs usage. I consider any usage where substitution of either "apart from" or "except for" does not change the meaning to be OP's usage. For example – Jim Apr 10 '12 at 15:20

The phrase as you posted is ungrammatical. A better choice of preposition would be 'for':

"Except for being…"

or even better,

"Apart from being…"

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