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    #1

    tousled of hair, crinkly of eye

    Today I have come upon such a description of an actor: "crinkly of eye, tousled of hair and mumbly of speech, Ruffalo is not afraid to step up to the plate". It is the first time since I have noticed a phrase built this way: tousled of hair. Can I then say 'slim of figure', 'soulful of eyes'? I would like to know if there is a term for "adjective + of+ noun" kind of a phrase and why not "with crinkly eyes", etc. - is it for emphasis?
    kind regards,
    Magda
    Last edited by emsr2d2; 13-Mar-2016 at 15:48. Reason: Removed formatting to make post readable.

  1. Skrej's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: tousled of hair, crinkly of eye

    You can say those things, yes, but be aware it's not a common construction.

    I don't know if there's a name for it, but this construction of adjective+of+noun is mostly a poetic device. It would be used in normal writing or speech mostly for comedic effect, or perhaps to be purposely overly-dramatic.

    Edit: I guess one exception is 'faint of heart', with is used a bit more commonly.

    There may a few other similar phrases I can't think of at the moment which are used a bit more commonly, but for the most part, I'd consider the construction poetic.
    Last edited by Skrej; 14-Mar-2016 at 04:47. Reason: addendum
    Wear short sleeves! Support your right to bare arms!

  2. Raymott's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: tousled of hair, crinkly of eye

    "Hard of hearing" seems to be one normal usage.

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    #4

    Re: tousled of hair, crinkly of eye

    There's also "fair of face", but that's entering poetic territory: "Monday's child is fair of face"
    Translator, editor and TESOL certificate holder, but not a teacher. Native speaker of American English (West Coast)

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