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Prepositions - Very, A Little, Somewhat

Prepositions - Very, A Little, Somewhat

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Very, A little, Somewhat

 

Hello! In this lesson we will learn to qualify some of our words with the expressions "very, a little," and "somewhat". We can use these words to qualify our adjectives and adverbs. As we learned in a previous lesson, an adjective is a word like "happy, sad, good," and "bad". Adjectives modify or tell us more about nouns and pronouns. As we learned in other lessons, an adverb is a word like "happily, sadly, well,", and "badly". Adverbs modify or tell us more about a verb, an adjective, or another adverb.
Let us take a look at how to use these three expressions. We might say, for example, "David is a good cook.". Using the word "very", we could say "David is a very good cook.". We could say "David cooks well.". Using the word "very", we could say "David cooks very well.".
We might say "James is happy.". We could use the phrase "a little" to say "James is a little happy.". We could use the expression "somewhat" to say "James is somewhat happy.". We might wish to say that "James swims very happily." or "James works somewhat happily.".
We might use the expression "a little" to say "It is late. Jennifer is not home. David is a little worried.". If Jennifer does not get home soon, "David will be very worried.".
Now that we have an idea of how to use these expressions, let us listen to the dialog. In this dialog, Jennifer calls home.

David: Hello?
Jennifer: Hi David. I am a little lost.
David: Where are you? You are a little late. I was very worried.
Jennifer: I am somewhat far from home.
David: Are you very lost?
Jennifer:  Yes. I will use my GPS. It will be very helpful.
David:  I will see you very soon.
Jennifer: Not very soon – somewhat soon.

David begins by answering the telephone in a typical way, by saying "Hello?". Some people answer the phone by saying their family name, like this, for example: "Smith residence.".
Jennifer says "Hi David. I am a little lost." "Hi" is a typical informal greeting to anyone. She might have said "I am somewhat lost.", or "I am very lost.".
David says "Where are you? You are a little late. I was very worried." He might also have said "You are somewhat late." or "You are very late.". He could have said "I was a little worried."  or "I was somewhat worried.".
Jennifer answers "I am somewhat far from home.". She might also have said "I am a little far from home." or "I am very far from home.". 
David asks her "Are you very lost?" He might also have asked "Are you truly lost?". In this question, David uses the word "very" to modify the adjective "lost".
Jennifer answers "Yes. I will use my GPS. It will be very helpful.". In this case, Jennifer uses the word "very" to modify the adjective "helpful". She could also have said "It will help a lot.".
David replies, "I will see you very soon.". In this sentence, David uses the word "very" to modify the adverb "soon". But Jennifer says "Not very soon – somewhat soon.".  She is "somewhat far from home" so she will be home "somewhat soon".
Now that you understand how to use these words, let us listen to the dialog again. Listen to the way the words "very, a little," and "somewhat" qualify the adjectives and adverbs in the dialog.

David: Hello?
Jennifer: Hi David. I am a little lost.
David: Where are you? You are a little late. I was very worried.
Jennifer: I am somewhat far from home.
David:  Are you very lost?
Jennifer:  Yes. I will use my GPS. It will be very helpful.
David:  I will see you very soon.
Jennifer: Not very soon – somewhat soon.

Very good! Now that you understand the words "very, a little," and "somewhat", use them to qualify the descriptions of people, places, things, and ideas that you discuss every day. Add these expressions to your conversations in English.