What is Colloquialism and Examples?

People often ask question that what is Colloquialism and examples thereof. Colloquialism is a phrase that is used in ordinary or familiar conversation.

What is Colloquialism and Examples?

A word or a phrase that is not formal or literary and is used in ordinary or familiar conversation. It is the most common purposeful style of speech, the idiom normally engaged in conversation and other informal contexts.

Colloquialism is considered by extensive usage of interjections and other animated devices. It makes use of non-specialist language and has a rapidly changing lexis. It can also be distinguished by its usage of designs with an incomplete logical and syntactic collection.

Colloquialism Words List:

In dictionaries, colloquial words are often displayed with the abbreviation colloq. Some examples of informal colloquialism are as under:

Wanna (Want to go)
Gonna (Going to)
Dunno (Don’t know)
Buzz off (Go away)
Babe (Good looking young lady)
Hunk (Attractive man)
Chill out (Relax)
Hubby (Husband)
Honey (Sweet person)

Colloquialism Use in Sentences:

  1. The food was A1.
  2. He is a big tycoon.
  3. I bought a lot of food.
  4. This is an excellent exhibition.
  5. He is an important guy for the company.
  6. Apple sauce
  7. A clumsy person
  8. Nonsense
  9. To get the ax
  10. Automobile

Colloquialism Vs. Slang:

Both colloquialism and slang are forms of language. Often, people consider both of them a synonym. Although both these terms are used for informal language yet there is a distinction between them.
Colloquialism is an informal language used by people in everyday life. It is used in our daily conversations with people.

Slang words are more informal than a colloquialism. Slang words are not common knowing words and can be better understood by some specific social groups. In other words, they can be self-created words and are often used for easiness. For example, Old foggy, bee’s knees, etc.
Idiom Vs. Colloquialism:

An idiom is a phrase that grips a specific meaning with a particular group of people. The groups are usually divided by language. It is an easy approach to recognizing whether something is an idiom or not. In simple words, when the term or word does not give a literal sense, it cannot be an idiom. For example, a drop in the bucket’ is not an idiom.

Colloquialism includes a short form of language. These forms of words are usually appropriate for everyday conversation. We cannot use them in formal writing. For example, ‘ain’t and ‘sup’.
How Writers Use Colloquialisms

In literature, writers use colloquialism to maintain the character’s voice. These words tell some specific information about the character, for example, his background, education, and where he/she belongs.
In story writing, the writers use colloquialism in a first-person narrative to create a realistic effect in language. However, in third-person narrative, the writer designates access to some specific character.

Examples in Literature:

The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark Twain

“The Widow Douglas, she took me for her son, and allowed she would svilize me; but it was rough living in the house all the time, considering how dismal regular and decent the widow was in all her ways; and so when I couldn’t stand it no longer, I lit out.”

The writer uses colloquialism and phrases in whole the paragraph. He uses the words like “allowed”, “rough living”, “dismal regular” and “decent the widow” unusually and informally. The use of these words indicates that ‘Huck’ was a pure heart and he was a living person in his society.

 Othello by William Shakespeare

‘Zounds, sir, you are one of those that will not
serve God, if the devil bid you

‘Zounds commonly sounds like a nonsense person. However, it was spoken in Shakespeare’s lifetime. The word ‘zound’ was used to describe the sense of frustration.

A Study of Reading Habits by Philip Larkin

When getting my nose in a book
Cured most things short of school,
It was worth ruining my eyes
To dirty dogs twice my size.

Poetry, as a literary form, is known for its formal, emotive, and exalted language. The poet employs informal language to build meaning and imagery for the reader in this stanza. The use adds richness to the poem’s diction. Furthermore, the reader may be able to identify more closely with the poet and his experiences as a result of this.

Larkin’s poem is an odd reflection on and inversion of the stereotype that “bookish” people are less confrontational and physically aggressive. When the poet says he can “dish out the old right hook,” he’s implying that he’s at ease and even good at fist fights.

This is a novel literary image and an unusual subject matter for a poem that most readers would not expect. Furthermore, Larkin’s literary device of colloquialism shows that poetry may be significant and effective for readers without relying on formal, elevated language.

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