Hello, everyone,

1. It is deceptively simple.

2. Deceptively, it is simple. 

I believe '1' means something like this: The thing/process etc., seems simple, but that is not so. The apparent is deceptive.

Does '2' mean this: When viewed from a vantage point of deception, the thing seems simple, which it is not.

But if that is the case (in '2'), won't that be more like self-deception than deception?

Can some correct me here, because I am surely missing something crucial here?

Thanks.

Original Post
ahmad posted:

1. It is deceptively simple.

2. Deceptively, it is simple. 

I believe '1' means something like this: The thing/process etc., seems simple, but that is not so. The apparent is deceptive.

Does '2' mean this: When viewed from a vantage point of deception, the thing seems simple, which it is not.

Hi, Ahmad,

You are correct about the meaning of (1). Sentence (2), however, is (I believe) ungrammatical. Not all adverbs are fit for sentence-initial position. Your interpretation of (2) is clever. If (2) were grammatical, I suppose that might be what it meant.

If you would like me to support my answer regarding the ungrammaticality of (2) with material from linguistic literature, I am willing to try to search for some, but it may take some time.  I do think this is an interesting issue. ♣

davidmoderator posted:
If you would like me to support my answer regarding the ungrammaticality of (2) with material from linguistic literature, I am willing to try to search for some, but it may take some time.  I do think this is an interesting issue. ♣

No need for that, sir. I don't think I should inconvenience you with that. I am immensely indebted to you for all the efforts you put in to keep this forum alive. Answering such a myriad of questions sun to sun is something to be respected for the nobility inherent to it. Sir, I thank you. 

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