English expressions of uncertainty

mais ou menos ≠ more or less

It is not often used in English

: You cannot say " I speak English more or less" ....only "I speak a little English"

it can only be used to mean approximately e.g. itís 5 Km more or less


Will you go to the party ?

perhaps (not)

Will Palmeras win ?

maybe (not)


probably (not)

all can be given a negative feeling e.g. perhaps not

When something is not 100 % true

Is she your girlfriend ?

kind of

Do you like the Spice Girls ?

sort of

Questions about quantity - approximately

Have you finished ?

almost (below the quantity)

São Carlos is 50 Km away ?

just about (below the quantity)

more or less (below or above)

Questions about quantity Ė small amount

Do you speak English?

(yes) (just) a little


(yes) (just) a bit



Did you like the English lesson ?

it was OK (I suppose)

What do you think about that song ?

it was alright (I suppose) on intonation


it was average (I suppose)


it was so so = not very good when replying to a question only (Not I feel so so)

...not often used

How Often

Do you go to the movies often ?

once in a while

Donít you get bored with English ?





now and then