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semantic nuance

usage of 'irresistible to'

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semantic nuance

Hi,

I have an English question and need your help. I'd like to know this usage--A is irresistible to B.

Does it mean

1. A cannot resist B or

2. B cannot resist A?

I've seen different examples on the internet to either mean 1 and 2. That's why I'm so confused.

Could you please tell me the usage of 'irresistible to'.

examples:

109 ways to make your business irresistible to media; how to make you irresistible to women; what dishes are irresistible to you? etc. Other examples are below:

1. There are many people who are irresistible to charm of the luxury watches and wish to possess one. (from here)

2. Gennie wants to prove to that Grant is irresistible to her charms. (from here)

3. There were points in my life where I felt oddly irresistible to women. I’m not in that state now and that makes me sad.

(from here)

Thanks in advance.

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aristotle1990

B cannot resist A. Examples 1 and 2 are incorrect.

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fanglu

Examples 1 and 2 should be 'can not resist'.

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anonymoose

I had never thought about this before, but from your examples, it seems that "irresistable to" has both of the uses you listed.

But note that, in the case of "B cannot resist A", B is either a person, or something that can react. (For example, "media" is obviously not a person, but still has the ability to react to the stimulus.)

On the other hand, in the case of "A cannot resist B", B is some kind of attraction or attractive property, such as "charm" or "attractive watches".

I feel that the latter is used less than the former.

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semantic nuance

so, 3 means that Jack was attracted by women or he was attractive to women?

1 and 2 are definitely incorrect. Right? I'd like to know if they're totally wrong and cannot be written as that.

I feel that the latter is probably used less than the former.

@annonymoose: do you mean B cannot resist A is less used than A cannot resist B?

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semantic nuance

Just googled for the example from Jack Nicholson's, and I found that it meant women don't find Jack Nicholson irresistible anymore.

Still, I'd like to know if ' A is irresistible to B meaning A cannot resist B' is absolutely wrong and cannot be written as such. Could anyone confirm this?

Thanks!

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anonymoose
@annonymoose: do you mean B cannot resist A is less used than A cannot resist B?

No, the other way round.

In fact, I'm not sure if the "A cannot resist B" version is correct. It sounds OK to me, but then it might just be one of those things that if you hear enough, you eventually get used to it.

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semantic nuance

Thank you, aristotle1990, fanglu, and anonymoose, for your help. Much appreciated!!

@anonymoose: sorry for the typo of your ID in my previous post.

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abcdefg
Still, I'd like to know if ' A is irresistible to B meaning A cannot resist B' is absolutely wrong and cannot be written as such. Could anyone confirm this?

I can confirm it.

"Mary is irresistable to John" means John cannot resist Mary, not the other way around.

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skylee

Nice thread.

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creamyhorror
1. There are many people who are irresistible to charm of the luxury watches and wish to possess one. (from here)

2. Gennie wants to prove to that Grant is irresistible to her charms. (from here)

Completely wrong. :)

Still, I'd like to know if ' A is irresistible to B meaning A cannot resist B' is absolutely wrong and cannot be written as such. Could anyone confirm this?

Yup, confirmation from me as well.

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daofeishi

Just to chime in with the rest, "A is irresistible to B" means the same as "B cannot resist A" and does not under any circumstance mean "A cannot resist B". Examples 1&2 are definitely wrong.

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semantic nuance

Thank you all for your input. Now, I get the picture of it. Thanks! :)

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