Results 1 to 8 of 8
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    6
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default to be riddled with grey areas

    I would like to know what is the exact meaning of the expression "To be riddled with grey areas"?

    Thank you!!!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    19
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to be riddled with grey areas

    Quote Originally Posted by AnaZ View Post
    I would like to know what is the exact meaning of the expression "To be riddled with grey areas"?

    Thank you!!!
    I would say that it is describing something vague or imprecise.
    It could also mean confusing.

    It depends a little on the context.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,024
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to be riddled with grey areas

    Quote Originally Posted by AnaZ View Post
    I would like to know what is the exact meaning of the expression "To be riddled with grey areas"?

    Thank you!!!

    ridĚdle
    –verb (used with object) 1. to pierce with many holes, suggesting those of a sieve: to riddle the target.
    2. to fill or affect with (something undesirable, weakening, etc.): a government riddled with graft.

    Filled with grey areas?
    Last edited by queenbu; 14-Mar-2007 at 12:06.

  4. #4
    MrPedantic is offline Moderator
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • Other
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • England
      • Current Location:
      • England
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    2,585
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to be riddled with grey areas

    Here's an example from Google:

    1. The issue of insider trading is riddled with grey areas.

    This means that there is no consensus about many aspects of "insider trading". Rather than being "black and white" (i.e. explicable in simple terms), those aspects are "grey", i.e. neither "black" nor "white".

    MrP

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Posts
    1,024
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to be riddled with grey areas

    I see. It's always difficult to tell when you don't have the context.

  6. #6
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15,556
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to be riddled with grey areas

    Quote Originally Posted by queenbu View Post
    ridĚdle
    –verb (used with object) 1. to pierce with many holes, suggesting those of a sieve: to riddle the target.
    2. to fill or affect with (something undesirable, weakening, etc.): a government riddled with graft.
    Filled with grey areas/patches?
    And a 'grey area' is one where definitions are not clearly demarcated. So if a system is 'riddled with grey areas' it is full of unclear relationships/responsibilities/duties.

    b

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    6
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to be riddled with grey areas

    Thank's everybody. Actually the "grey areas" part was clear to me :) It was more about the "riddle"... Although I knew its literal meaning, I thought that in the context of this expression it could have a particular meaning (ie, not just "filled with grey areas", but sth stronger, maybe intentional)! Anyway, it was helpful :) AZ

  8. #8
    BobK's Avatar
    BobK is offline Harmless drudge
    • Member Info
      • Member Type:
      • English Teacher
      • Native Language:
      • English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • UK
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    15,556
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: to be riddled with grey areas

    'in the context of this expression it could have a particular meaning'

    Not especially, though it's quite often used pejoratively - 'full of X [and I don't think it should be]':

    That argument is riddled with holes - do you honestly expect anyone to take it seriously?


    b

Similar Threads

  1. grey and blue
    By jiang in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 13-May-2006, 09:26
  2. Replies: 1
    Last Post: 13-Apr-2006, 23:54
  3. Rule for capitalization of geographical areas?
    By tanders in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 23-Dec-2005, 01:42
  4. Gray
    By Antonio in forum English Idioms and Sayings
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 09-Dec-2004, 02:57
  5. Pls tell me some words in these areas.
    By eric2004 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 12-Nov-2003, 02:21

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •