“Exactly The Same” vs. “The Exact Same” – Correct Version

As we all know, the English language is composed of many grammar rules that make it confusing. Even if we say the exact same thing, what we mean may not be exactly the same! Like, is there a difference between ‘the exact same’ and ‘exactly the same?’ Let’s find out!

Is It ‘Exactly The Same’ Or ‘The Exact Same?’

‘The exact same’ and ‘exactly the same’ are acceptable and correct. Both phrases also mean that something is exactly as another. The two only differ in terms of formality. We consider ‘exactly the same’ more formal, compared to ‘the exact same,’ which we use more casually.

Exactly The Same vs. The Exact Same

In ‘exactly the same,’ ‘exactly’ is used as an adverb modifying the adjective, ‘same.’ In ‘the exact same,’ ‘exact’ is used as an adverb despite being in adjective form. Because of this, ‘the exact same’ is generally not accepted in formal English, and using ‘exactly the same’ is better. However, we can still use both phrases for casual conversations and exchanges.

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Examples Of How To Use ‘Exactly The Same’ In A Sentence

Below are examples of how to use ‘exactly the same’ in a sentence.

  1. I have exactly the same car as Mary. We bought our cars together.
  2. Results will never be exactly the same for all people. Everyone has different bodies that respond differently to lifestyle changes too.
  3. Her work is exactly the same as mine. I think she copied from my paper when I wasn’t looking.
  4. I have exactly the same idea in mind. Of course, great minds think alike.
  5. I wore exactly the same shoes as you. What a fun coincidence!
  6. I can’t believe I now have exactly the same shirt as my favorite actor. This shirt cost a lot.
  7. I don’t have exactly the same future plans as my friends do, but we promised to stick together no matter what.
  8. I can’t have exactly the same life that she has, but I want to know what it’s like to live like her for a day.
  9. I bought exactly the same gift for Anna. While it shows that we know her well, it might also be a problem that she has two pieces of the same thing.
  10. My work isn’t exactly the same as our teacher’s sample, but I think it’s acceptable.

Examples Of How To Use ‘The Exact Same’ In A Sentence

Below are examples of how to use ‘the exact same’ in a sentence.

  1. I have the exact same ring as Mary. We bought our rings together.
  2. Efficient study habits will never be exactly the same for all people. Everyone has different personalities that fit different study habits too.
  3. Her paper is the exact same as my paper. I think she copied my work when I left it on the table.
  4. I have the exact same thought in mind. Of course, great minds work good together.
  5. I wore the exact same shirt as you. What a fun coincidence!
  6. I can’t believe I now have the exact same shoes as my favorite singer. This pair of shoes cost a lot.
  7. I don’t have the exact same path as my friends do, but we promised to stick together no matter what.
  8. I can’t have the exact same life that Marie has, but I want to know what she does to live such a seemingly perfect life.
  9. I bought the exact same shirt for April. While it shows that we know her well, it might also be a problem that she has two pieces of the same shirt.
  10. My work isn’t the exact same as our other classmates’ work, but I think mine is still acceptable.

Is ‘Exactly The Same’ Or ‘The Exact Same’ Used The Most?

According to the Google Ngram Viewer, ‘exactly the same’ is used more often than ‘the exact same.’ It’s probably because ‘exactly the same’ is more formal and acceptable. Thus, it is safer for speakers to use ‘exactly the same,’ whatever the circumstance.

Exactly The Same vs. The Exact Same historical development

Aside from ‘exactly the same’ being more acceptable and formal, ‘the exact same’ is totally not accepted in other English writing style guides. So, ‘exactly the same’ is probably used by more people because it is more generally acceptable.

Are ‘Exactly The Same’ And ‘The Exact Same’ Used Differently In The UK And The US?

According to the US Google Ngram Viewer and the UK Google Ngram Viewer, ‘exactly the same’ and ‘the exact same’ are used similarly in both the US and the UK. For both English-speaking countries, ‘exactly the same’ is used more often than ‘the exact same.’

Exactly The Same vs. The Exact Same American English
Exactly The Same vs. The Exact Same British English

For the same reason of being more generally acceptable and correct in the English community, ‘exactly the same’ is used most often for both the US and the UK.

Is It Correct To Say ‘Exactly The Same’ And ‘The Exact Same?’

It is grammatically correct to say either ‘exactly the same,’ or ‘the exact same.’ While ‘exactly the same’ is more acceptable in formal English, ‘the exact same’ is still grammatically correct and is used by many in conversations. So, both phrases are acceptable and correct to use.

Though, despite being correct, both phrases do pose an issue of redundancy. ‘Exact’ and ‘same’ can be synonymous. So, to avoid redundancy, it’s best to use other synonymous phrases that are not repetitive, like using ‘exactly’ only or ‘same’ only.

Is It Ever Correct To Use ‘Exact The Same?’

‘Exact the same’ is grammatically incorrect. This phrase does not agree with English grammar rules as ‘exact’ acts as an adverb even if it is in adjective form. So, it is wrong to say ‘exact the same.’ It’s best to stick with ‘exactly the same’ or ‘the exact same’ instead.

Among the three phrases, it’s still best and most acceptable to use ‘exactly the same’ as it does not violate any grammar rules. Thus, it does not pose a problem with acceptability in whatever English writing style guidelines or rules.

‘Exactly The Same’ And ‘The Exact Same’ Synonyms

Below are words and phrases synonymous with ‘exactly the same’ and ‘the exact same.’

  • Identical
  • Alike
  • Indistinguishable
  • The Same
  • Similar
  • Matching
  • Exact
  • Spitting Image
  • Parallel
  • Twin