We use vague language when we do
not want to be (or cannot be) exact,
accurate and precise.
For each of the six questions choose the one correct
1. Is rugby … American football?
a. sort of
b. kind of similar
c. kind of
d. sort of like
d. sort of like – Correct – the two
sports are similar, but not 100%
2. I need a … to open this can. Have you
a. thingummy - Correct – this is
the correct spelling.
3. I think the two houses are … the same.
b. less or more
c. more or less
c. more or less - Correct - an
informal expression which means
'approximately' or 'roughly'
4. He’s a workaholic. He always works late
a. and that all sort of thing
b. and all that sort of thing
c. and of all that sort thing
d. all of that sort and thing
b. and all that sort of thing Correct – this is the correct word
5. I’m ... angry because you left all this …
in the sink.
a. sort / stuff
b. roughly / things
c. sort of / thing
d. kind of / stuff
d. kind of / stuff - Correct – ‘kind
of’ before adjectives, ‘stuff’ after
6. She’s got … hair and she’s … 1.5m tall.
a. more or less red / ish
b. blondish / sort of
c. reddish / about
d. about blonde / roughly
c. reddish / about - Correct –
notice the doubling of the final
letter of red.
A lexical phrase is a group of words which forms a
grammatical unit of some kind and which exhibits a degree
of ‘inflexibility’. As to the last feature, some lexical phrases
are totally 'frozen' (unchangeable) while others are rather
Invariable phrases: by and large, as well, let alone, so be it
There are a few small things that I don't like about my job, but
by and large it's very enjoyable.
Somewhat variable phrases: Don’t rock the boat, She’s
rocking the boat…[rock the boat = ‘disturb the institutional
Don't rock the boat until the negotiations are finished.