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Hi,

Please tell me if I am right? Does it "I couldn't care less" mean " I could care much"?

Thanks
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This is what I found at http://dictionary.reference.com/help/faq/language/g09.html

The expression I could not care less originally meant 'it would be impossible for me to care less than I do because I do not care at all'. It was originally a British saying and came to the US in the 1950s. It is senseless to transform it into the now-common I could care less. If you could care less, that means you care at least a little. The original is quite sarcastic and the other form is clearly nonsense. The inverted form I could care less was coined in the US and is found only here, recorded in print by 1966. The question is, something caused the negative to vanish even while the original form of the expression was still very much in vogue and available for comparison - so what was it? There are other American English expressions that have a similar sarcastic inversion of an apparent sense, such as Tell me about it!, which usually means 'Don't tell me about it, because I know all about it already'. The Yiddish I should be so lucky!, in which the real sense is often 'I have no hope of being so lucky', has a similar stress pattern with the same sarcastic inversion of meaning as does I could care less.

Only for your reference. And maybe others would give you more explanations.
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Maybe means "I have nointerest at all"Emotion: rolleyes
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Oh, I can't still understand.

What about " I could care less."

Thanks.
 Maple's reply was promoted to an answer.
Thank you very much, Maple.

You are very helpful to me.

Many thanks to you.
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Imagine a scale of 1 to 10 for how much you care about something. 1 being that you don't care at all and 10 that you care very much. If you couldn't care less, you'd have to be at the bottom of the scale already wouldn't you. You can't get a lower level of 'care'.

I could care less is American only, and actually makes the phrase mean the complete opposite, but it is still used in the same way.
I believe the negative is transferred (by what the tranformational grammarians call "negative raising") to some main clause which is then deleted (unspoken).

I could not care less. > I don't think/imagine that (, even if I tried,) I could care less. > I could care less.
I could not care less. > There is no possible way that I could care less. (I already don't care at all.) > I could care less.


A Yiddish origin (or an origin in the imitation of similar phrases) sounds plausible to me.

CJ
http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/000368.html

There are some other phrases where the presence or absence of negation doesn't change the meaning. Each of these pairs of sentences mean the same thing.

(1) Eddie knows squat about phrenology.
(2) Eddie doesn't know squat about phrenology.

(3) a. That'll teach you not to tease the alligators.
b. That'll teach you to tease the alligators.

(4) a. I wonder whether we can't find some time to shoot pool this evening.
b. I wonder whether we can find some time to shoot pool this evening.

(5) a. You shouldn't play with the alligators, I don't think.
b. You shouldn't play with the alligators, I think.

(6) a. I couldn't care less about monster trucks.
b. I could care less about monster trucks.
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O, so many similar phrases in this regard!

Very interesting!
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