Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Idioms = slang?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    3
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Idioms = slang?

    Is a idiom the same as a collection? I am guessing it is.

    Also I was wondering about how valid idioms are in proper English. Most seem to be slang, 'A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush' or 'just what the doctor ordered' are many examples of idioms that would not be acceptable when writing English formally.

    However, there are a few that are acceptable English 'abide by a decision' is one - taken from a Idioms dictionary - but is it really a idiom or just a sentence because I could write 'accept the decision' and the meaning would still be the same. I think?

    Are idioms more important in American English then UK English?

    Hope someone understands the questions and if they answer thanks for your reply!

  2. #2
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    19,448
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Idioms = slang?

    Quote Originally Posted by Skittles View Post
    Is a idiom the same as a collection? I am guessing it is.
    AN IDIOM IS: noun 1 a group of words whose meaning cannot be deduced from those of the individual words (e.g. over the moon). 2 a form of expression natural to a language, person, or group. 3 a characteristic mode of expression in music or art.

    A "collocation" is:
    noun 1 the habitual occurrence of a word with another word or words with a frequency greater than chance. 2 a word or group of words that habitually occur together (e.g. heavy drinker).

    Also I was wondering about how valid idioms are in proper English. Most seem to be slang, 'A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush' or 'just what the doctor ordered' are many examples of idioms that would not be acceptable when writing English formally.

    Idioms are not necessarily slang, though slang is idiomatic. They can be used in formal writing.

    However, there are a few that are acceptable English 'abide by a decision' is one - taken from a Idioms dictionary - but is it really a idiom or just a sentence because I could write 'accept the decision' and the meaning would still be the same. I think?

    Are idioms more important in American English then UK English? Have about the same value.

    Hope someone understands the questions and if they answer thanks for your reply!
    The value of idioms is that they add life and colour to the language.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    3
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Idioms = slang?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    The value of idioms is that they add life and colour to the language.
    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    The value of idioms is that they add life and colour to the language.
    Thank you for your explanation, but I have more questions please

    What is the difference between an idiom and a collocation?

    According to Wikipedia

    Non-substitutabilityWe cannot substitute a word in a collocation with a related word. For example, we cannot say yellow wine instead of white wine although both yellow and white are the names of colours.Non-modifiabilityWe cannot modify a collocation or apply syntactic transformations.
    Although other sites do not seem to be so strict on their advice on collocations

    what is 'on a date', is it a collocation or idiom?

    I was recently in a dispute over the use of the term 'for a date', as I wrote 'a cinema is a fine place to go for a date', this was corrected to 'on a date', the other party felt that on a date is a collocation and must always be constant. I have searched many dictionaries and have come up with only a legal collocation of 'on a date unknown'.

    However clearly for a date is not incorrect usage either, at least in my opinion

    Sorry if I am blabbering

  4. #4
    Anglika is offline No Longer With Us
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Posts
    19,448
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Idioms = slang?

    Did you read the meanings given with care?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Posts
    3
    Post Thanks / Like

    Default Re: Idioms = slang?

    Quote Originally Posted by Anglika View Post
    Did you read the meanings given with care?
    Sorry, I guess I did not.

Similar Threads

  1. [Idiom] Dificult idioms
    By Unregistered in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 17-Mar-2009, 15:14
  2. slang and idioms
    By ahmed adam in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 22-May-2008, 19:38
  3. Books on American Slang, Dialects, Idioms and Accents
    By Marstead in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 08-Sep-2006, 12:24
  4. Search Idioms & Slang
    By Red5 in forum News and Announcements
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 30-Mar-2006, 23:42
  5. New References of English Idioms, Slang and Swearing
    By Red5 in forum News and Announcements
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 10-Jun-2005, 20:31

Posting Permissions

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