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Colloquialism   Listen

A colloquial expression; characteristic of spoken or written communication that seeks to imitate informal speech.

WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University

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"Colloquialism" Quotes from Famous Books

... [17] such eclecticism we have a justifying example in one of the first poets of our time. How illustrative of monosyllabic effect, of sonorous Latin, of the phraseology of science, of metaphysic, of colloquialism even, are the writings of Tennyson; yet with what ...
— Appreciations, with an Essay on Style • Walter Horatio Pater

... doing of an appointed work. And that idea is distinctly to be attached to the use of the word here. But, on the other hand, there is emphasis laid on 'your,' and that hour is thereby designated as a time in which they could do as they would. It was their opportunity, or, as we say in our colloquialism, now was their time when, unhindered, they might carry into ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... conflict of the war. It was Majuba reversed, and the issue had far-reaching consequences. The news of the victory spread quickly through South Africa, and had considerable influence on the Dutch Colonists, who were, to use an expressive colloquialism, 'sitting on the fence,' and kept them sitting there, at a time when had they descended on the wrong side their action could not have failed to be extremely prejudicial to the interests of the Empire; but over and above all else it showed to ...
— The Second Battalion Royal Dublin Fusiliers in the South African War - With a Description of the Operations in the Aden Hinterland • Cecil Francis Romer and Arthur Edward Mainwaring

... if ever there was one," says the old soldier, in a lucid interval when speech is articulate. But he is allowing colloquialism to run riot over meaning. No everlasting person can ever have become part of the past if you think of it. He goes on to say that the boy has had twopence and is to come back for fourpence in an hour, or threepence if you can see the gas-lamps, because then a link will be superfluous. Sally ...
— Somehow Good • William de Morgan

... of a novelist are too witty, the characters of a poet too profound, one cannot but feel thankful that it is once in a while possible for such strictures to be made. The style of Mr. Sludge is the very acme of colloquialism. It is not "what is commonly understood by poetry," certainly: but is it not poetry, all the same? If such a character as Sludge should be introduced into poetry at all, it is certain that no more characteristic expression could have been found for him. But should he be dealt with? We ...
— An Introduction to the Study of Browning • Arthur Symons

... mind, the nature of his subject, and the character of his audience. Students often err in one of two directions, either by being too bookish in language or by allowing the other extreme of looseness, weak colloquialism in words, and formless monotony of sentence, with the endless repetition of the connective "and." Language should be fresh, vital, varied. It should have some dignity. Much reading, writing, and speaking are ...
— Public Speaking • Irvah Lester Winter

... procedure. Many restorations were made; and, as these swelled the lists beyond the number then authorized by law, there was established a reduced pay for those whose recent promotion made them in excess. For them was adopted, in naval colloquialism, the inelegant but suggestive term "jackass" lieutenants. It should be explained to the outsider, perhaps even many professional readers now may not know, that the word was formerly used for a class of so-called frigates ...
— From Sail to Steam, Recollections of Naval Life • Captain A. T. Mahan

... sermons in the Scotch thistles; and good in everything. Light and Darkness!—aptest of metaphors! And see how the symbolism permeates our language, from the loftiest poetry to the most trifling colloquialism. "There is no darkness but ignorance," says the pleasantest of stage fools; "in which thou art more puzzled than the Egyptians in their fog." And what many-languaged millions of passably brave men have sympathised with Ajax in his prayer—not for courage or strength; he had those already— ...
— Such is Life • Joseph Furphy

... and startling appeals, his solemn pauses, the dramatic and even theatric energy which he threw into his attitudes and his action, his flights of lofty and sustained declamation, contrasting with sentences of homely colloquialism, were overwhelming in their effect on such an audience. "The first discovery," he says himself, "of their being affected was to see the white gutters made by their tears, which plentifully fell down their cheeks, ...
— A History of the Four Georges, Volume II (of 4) • Justin McCarthy

... streets of Rome, so the keen-eyed product of New York pavement life "took in" all about him. Existence had forced upon him the habit of sharp observance. The fundamental working law of things had expressed itself in the simple colloquialism, "Keep your eye skinned, and don't give yourself away." In what phrases the parallel of this concise advice formulated itself in 55 B.C. no classic has yet exactly informed us, but doubtless something like it was said in ancient Rome. Tembarom did not give himself away, ...
— T. Tembarom • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... lips of every theatre-goer; but also because he believed that Euripides had spoiled the old, stately, heroic art of Aeschylus and Sophocles by incongruous infusions of realism and sentimentalism, and had debased the "large utterance of the early gods" by an unhallowed mixture of colloquialism, ...
— Library Of The World's Best Literature, Ancient And Modern, Vol. 2 • Charles Dudley Warner

... to the door, and from there turned round. "So long!" he cried out cheerily, and she was surprised, for Varick seldom made use of any slang or colloquialism. ...
— From Out the Vasty Deep • Mrs. Belloc Lowndes

... distinction, the magic of dress and cut roses. Her private inelegant word for Lowrie's wife was "bold;" indeed, describing to herself the younger woman's patronage of her bearing, she descended to her mother's colloquialism "brass." ...
— Linda Condon • Joseph Hergesheimer

... that he will remember before he awakes to his agony. Or nearer to the line, the whistle of an approaching shrapnel speaks of coming danger, and then a prone figure on the ground tells of one more who has been 'pipped,' to use a colloquialism of the Front. When we consider the extreme range of a seventeen-inch gun as being not far short of thirty miles, the difficulty of being out of range is at once apparent. Nearer at hand, within a few yards, an accurately thrown bomb ...
— With The Immortal Seventh Division • E. J. Kennedy and the Lord Bishop of Winchester

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