Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-768dbb666b-9hf5z Total loading time: 0.416 Render date: 2023-02-07T16:31:02.877Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "useRatesEcommerce": false } hasContentIssue true

7 - Qualifiers

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 January 2010

Get access

Summary

Qualifiers (also called degree adverbs) are expressions that modify adjectival or adverbial constructions. They seem to be more frequently used in British than in American, a generalization that is statistically supported for quite and very according to the LOB and Brown corpora. On the other hand, some qualifiers are characteristic of American, such as kind of in The argument waskind ofcompelling, mighty in It'smightyhot today, plenty in The nights wereplentycold (a MW usage note points out that, despite advice against the use, it is more precise in some contexts than the alternatives, although it is informal), and some in He's feelingsomebetter today. Other qualifiers identified as primarily American are pretty, real, really, so, and totally (LGSWE 564–7).

Modifying adjectives or adverbs

  1. (a) bit A little; rather: CIC has 1833.7 iptmw in British texts and 670.7 in American texts. <After the judge had said he hoped that the women would “be able to arrive at some sort of truce”, Lady Archer, 58, remarked to her solicitor: “That's a bit rich.”> 2003 July 4 Times 7/1.

  2. absolutely <How absolutely super!> 1985 Mortimer 229. Cf. LGSWE 564.

  3. as near as makes no difference/matter/odds Very nearly: CIC has no American tokens but a number of British ones. <There are new options. These are mostly based upon the realisation, which has come upon the Irish like a cloudburst at a race meeting, that the country is as near as makes no odds bankrupt.> 1987 Feb. 9 Evening Standard 7/2.

  4. at all Very in a negative context <He didn't feel he knew either at all well.> 1983 Innes 55.

  5. […]

Type
Chapter
Information
British or American English?
A Handbook of Word and Grammar Patterns
, pp. 153 - 158
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2006

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below. (Log in options will check for institutional or personal access. Content may require purchase if you do not have access.)

Save book to Kindle

To save this book to your Kindle, first ensure coreplatform@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about saving to your Kindle.

Note you can select to save to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be saved to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

  • Qualifiers
  • John Algeo
  • Book: British or American English?
  • Online publication: 08 January 2010
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511607240.009
Available formats
×

Save book to Dropbox

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

  • Qualifiers
  • John Algeo
  • Book: British or American English?
  • Online publication: 08 January 2010
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511607240.009
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Qualifiers
  • John Algeo
  • Book: British or American English?
  • Online publication: 08 January 2010
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511607240.009
Available formats
×