English Collocations


In English , some words are regularly used in combination with others. The habitual and idiomatic use of this word combination is called “Collocation”. For example, Strong coffee is a collocation while  

Powerful coffee is not so Powerful coffee is wrong.

Let’s have a look at more examples:
1. A burning desire is correct while a blazing/firing desire is incorrect.
2. A blazing row is correct while a burning row is incorrect.
3. A heavy smoker is correct while a strong/devoted smoker is incorrect.
4. A crashing bore is correct while crashing nuisance is incorrect.
5. A golden opportunity is correct while a golden chance is incorrect.

Collocations add variety to your composition and give it a natural touch. Collocations also help convey exact expression of thoughts and ideas.

The followings are most important collocations used in writing and speaking:

a break, an exam, a seat, a taxi ,someone’s temperature ,a look, a chance, notes ,a rest , someone’s place (Americans = Take a walk, a swim, a rest ,a shower, a bath),a breath, a seat.

a headache ,a haircut, breakfast, lunch, supper, tea, coffee, a drink, a meal, a bath, a shave, a shower, a rest, a lie-down, a sleep, a dream, a good time, a bad day, a day off, a holiday, a good journey, a trip, a chat, a talk, a word with some one, a row, a quarrel, a fight, ,a holiday ,a bath, a drink, a rest ,a problem, a swim, a walk, a stroll, a ride, a dance, a try, a go, a game of tennis, a look, a baby, an accident, difficulty/trouble in, an operation, a nervous break-down, a phone call from, a shock, a surprise

a leg ,a window ,the law ,a world record ,someone’s heart ,a relationship ,a promise the rules ,a habit, the ice, the news to someone

a cold ,a bus ,someone’s attention ,a ball ,a thief ,a fright ,a surprise ,fire ,someone’s eye ,a mouse

attention, the bill, interest ,the price ,by check ,someone a visit, a salary ,cash ,someone a compliment ,wages

a pet, control, a promise ,calm ,someone’s place ,an appointment, quiet ,a secret, a diary, the change

time ,money ,someone’s life, energy ,someone a seat, oneself trouble ,electricity, one’s strength, space ,a penalty

a partner, time, the answer, happiness ,the money ,a solution ,space ,a way, a replacement ,a cure

mad ,wild ,crazy, white ,abroad ,missing, quiet ,bad ,dark, overseas,climbing,reading,swimming,hunting,sailing,shooting,riding,walking,shopping,skating

a cough, a loud scream, a damn care, it a try/a miss/ a chance/a clean/a push/me a ride/ a ring, it a kick, an exam

first, last, right ,early ,close ,prepared ,late, second ,complete, direct

ready ,married ,started ,divorced ,burnt ,drunk ,angry ,lost ,worried, wet

tense, comfort able, happy ,free, nervous ,old ,disappointed ,proud ,sleepy, hurt

a goal a chance the point a flight a mess one’s family a lesson one’s home an opportunity an appointment someone’s help

home, frightened ,the sack, permission ,a surprise ,the message ,lost ,ready ,a job, nowhere, old, cold, hot, a drink.

homework, the shopping ,the housework, someone a favor, business ,nothing ,the cooking, a job ,one’s best, a thing, the accounts, the ironing, a lot of/some walking,reading,swimming,letter-writing,harm,good,sport,exercise,one’s hair/teeth/duty.

progress ,an effort, money ,a mistake, furniture, a noise, the washing up ,trouble ,peace, a journey, an offer, arrangements, a suggestion, a decision, an attempt, an effort, an excuse, an exception, a mistake, a noise, a phone call, money, a profit, a fortune, love, war, a bed, a fire, progress.

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