not so much (something) as (something else)

idiom

Definition of not so much (something) as (something else)

: less like (something) than (something else)
  • What bothered me was not so much what he said as how he said it.
  • Sailing is not so much a science as an art.

Word by Word Definitions

much play
  1. : great in quantity, amount, extent, or degree

  2. : great in importance or significance

  3. : many in number

  1. : to a great degree or extent : considerably

  2. : very

  3. : frequently, often

  1. : a great quantity, amount, extent, or degree

  2. : something considerable or impressive

something play
  1. : some indeterminate or unspecified thing

  2. : some indeterminate amount more than a specified number

  3. : a person or thing of consequence

  1. : in some degree : somewhat

  2. used as an intensive giving adverbial force to an adjective

else play
  1. : in a different manner or place or at a different time

  2. : in an additional manner or place or at an additional time

  3. : if not : otherwise

  1. : other:

  2. : being different in identity

  3. : being in addition


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