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Note 133 – What is a colloquialsm?

A colloquialsm is an informal word or phrase which is used instead of a more appropriate or formal one. Some examples are below:

Informal: Pros and cons
Formal: Advantages and disadvantages

Informal: You’re skating on thin ice (something I admit to saying to my daughters!)
Formal: You’re taking a risk

There is a great website called ‘ English as a Second Language’:  On this site there is a quiz where you can select the correct colloquialism to complete the sentence.  I was surprised when I got 90% – I obviously use colloquialisms more than I thought, as I knew most of them! 

My thoughts:  I might consider revising some colloquialisms in my writing after today – for formal writing anyway; however, I believe that even if you use colloquialisms regularly and want to continue doing this, there is nothing wrong with researching their formal meaning in order to express the word or phrase in a different way.  It’s a good way to improve your vocabularly and knowledge (and also to be able to explain the meaning to others).

I hope you enjoyed today’s blog.  Don’t forget that you can subscribe to receive my daily blogs by email so that you don’t miss any. Just click ‘sign me up’ on the home page. Alternatively you can follow me on Twitter!/madeirasandra or my new Tips and Luxuries Facebook page, where the blogs also get posted. Requests for future blogs (punctuation/grammar/writing tips) are always welcome.

Until tomorrow…


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About Sandra Madeira

I am a full-time working mum with a passion for writing and inspiring others. Subjects I tend to blog about are life skills, parenting, decluttering, worklife balance, etc. At the moment I am on a decluttering mission creating space in my house, garden and mind. I have challenged myself to do at least ten minutes a day and write about it. Have a good day! Sandra Freelance Writer


2 thoughts on “Note 133 – What is a colloquialsm?

  1. I enjoy your writing and the quiz link…I will be quizzing myself as well, thanks Sandra.

    Posted by Jackie Paulson Author | September 11, 2011, 11:02 pm

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