Archive for November 11, 2010

grammatical expression: out and out

OutAndOut

Today’s expression is “out and out”, and it has the same meaning as “completely” or 100%. Let me give you some examples of how to use it.

My neighbor is out and out crazy. He believes that there are aliens in the city walking around disguised as humans.

That company has been using child labor to manufacture its products. It’s out and out unethical.

Georgio’s is out and out the best Italian restaurant I’ve ever been to.

You told me that you were having dinner with your father, but I called him and you weren’t with him! That was an out and out lie!

We usually use this expression with adjectives, as in the first three examples. However, sometimes it can also be used with a noun, as in the last example.

We use it with adjectives that describe our view or opinion of a situation or person. We don’t use it with adjectives that describe something physically. So, we CAN’T say, “My apartment is out and out small.” We also don’t use it with adjectives like “good” and “bad”, but we can use it with “the best” or “the worst”.

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