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What does "helluva" stand for?

Here's an extract from The catcher in the rye;
"Stradlater's all right He's not too bad," I said. "You don't
know him, thats the trouble." "I still say he's a sonuvabitch. He's a
conceited sonuvabitch." "He's conceited, but he's very generous in some
things. He really is," I said. "Look. Suppose, for instance, Stradlater was
wearing a tie or something that you liked. Say he had a tie on that you
liked a helluva lot--I'm just giving you an example, now. You know what he'd
do? He'd probably take it off and give it ta you. He really would. Or--you
know what he'd do? He'd leave it on your bed or something.

For learning: English
Base language: English
Category: Language



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    Best Answer - Chosen by the Asker
    a hell of a lot = emphatic "a lot"
    a son of a bitch


    It's "a hell of a lot" written in the way it sounds when people say it (phonetically). The phrase means "very much". I've done a hell of a lot for you = I've done a lot for you! Ok?

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