Date: Thu, 20 Jul 1995 18:44:36 +0000


Subject: Re: "at the end of the day"


"At the end of the day" is very widespread here in Belfast - everyone from

politician to plumber seems to use in expressing their point of view about

what might ultimately happen:

At the end of the day we all want to live in peace.

Or it might express an ultimate inference or conclusion:

At the end of the day it all comes down to money.

On some occasions, though, it has a pragmatic function: either to seek

immediate agreement or to avoid addressing the present or the immediate -

as none of us can really know what will happen at the end of the day - so

your view is as good as mine right now.

Sp Philip Hiscock is right in pointing its use back to Britain. I'm sure if

you logged onto COBUILD direct on-line you'd come up with many examples

from their 215 million words (!) monitor corpus.

Best wishes,

John Kirk


John M. Kirk

School of English

The Queen's University of Belfast

Email: J.M.Kirk[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] (used to be eng0997[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]

Fax: (+44) 1232 314615

Phone: (+44) 1232 245133, Ext 3815