Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Pearson Brown English Lesson - Adjective Intensifier

There are some words which can be used to ‘intensify’ many adjectives – ‘very’ ‘really’ ‘totally’ ‘absolutely’ ‘completely’ ‘utterly’ ‘entirely’.

It’s very tall.
We’re really happy.
She’s totally exhausted.
I’m absolutely horrified.
He’s completely hopeless.
You look utterly miserable.
I’m entirely satisfied.

Certain adjectives have their own ‘special’ intensifiers which are often used with them. Here are some common ones:

blind drunk

He was blind drunk and behaved really badly.

bone dry

I must have a drink. I’m bone dry.

brand new

I’ve just bought a brand new car.

crystal clear

The sea near Rhodes is crystal clear.

dead easy

That exam was dead easy. I’ve certainly passed.

He’s won three lottery prizes this year. He’s dead lucky.

dead right

I agree entirely. You are dead right.

dirt cheap

I bought my car for a dirt cheap price from an old lady who had hardly driven it.

fast asleep / sound asleep

I was in bed and fast asleep by nine.
I was sound asleep and I didn’t hear anything.

paper thin

These office walls are paper thin. You can hear everything said in the next office.

pitch black

There’s no moon. It’s pitch black out there.

razor sharp

Be careful with that knife- it’s razor sharp.

rock hard

It’s impossible to dig this soil – it’s rock hard.

stark naked

The hotel door slammed behind me and I was left standing stark naked in the middle of the corridor.

stone deaf

He can’t hear a thing. He’s stone deaf.

wide awake

I was wide awake by six.

wide open

Who left the door wide open?



Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Pearson Brown English Lesson -"For" 2

We can use for to mean ‘because’. We only use this in very formal English.

  • The divers have to be careful for a sudden change in conditions could be dangerous.
  • Read the instructions carefully for you will only get one chance to enter the information.

We can use for to talk about a purpose or a reason.

  • What did you that for?
  • What is that for?
  • Thank you for your letter.
  • I don’t have enough money for the ticket.
  • I need treatment for my bad back.

For can mean that you are in favour/favor of something.

  • He is for the idea of cutting taxes.
  • I am for this change in the way we do things.
  • You need to stand up for what is right.

We can use for with expressions of time and distance.

  • I walked for miles.
  • I waited for a long time.
  • We will be away for the next week.

Sometimes we can omit the for completely in these expressions without changing the meaning.

  • I walked miles.
  • I waited a long time.

With the present perfect, for refers to a length of time. Since refers to the starting point.

  • I have studied English for seven years.
  • I have studied English since I was 12.

Here are some useful expressions using for

  • I enclose a cheque/check for 100 euros
  • What’s another word for stupid?
  • I’ve known him for ages.
  • I am all for making this change.
  • Get ready. -What for? -Anne is coming.


Pearson Brown English Lesson -"For" 1

We can sometimes use for + ing to talk about the purpose of a thing. When we do, it means the same as to + infinitive.

  • What is that for? It is for opening envelopes
  • This bell is for calling the waiter.
  • This bell is to call the waiter.

When we talk about the purpose of somebody’s actions, we cannot use for + ing.

  • I went there to ask for help.
  • To get tickets, you will have to queue for hours.

However, it is sometimes possible to use for + noun for this.

  • I went there for help.
  • You will have to queue for hours for tickets.

We can also use for + object + infinitive to talk about a purpose.

  • I gave her a notebook for her to write down new English words she found.
  • They sent a form for me to sign

  • We also use the pattern for + object + infinitive in sentences after is or was.
  • The plan is for us to get to Barcelona by lunchtime.
  • The objective was for them to get the work finished by the end of last month..

We can add details to a noun by using the pattern for + object + infinitive

  • That is an expensive place for them to stay.
  • There is a lot of work for us to do.
  • There is no need for you to be so aggressive.

We also use the pattern for + object + infinitive after certain verbs and adjectives.

  • I am waiting for him to make the first move.
  • I have arranged for you to see the bank manager tomorrow morning.
  • We are keen for you to take the job.
  • I think it would be good for you to take a break now.