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1. Lexical and Grammatical Valency.

2. Structure and Classification of Word-groups.

3. Types of Meaning of Word-groups.

4. Motivation in Word-groups.

5. Free Word-groups Versus Phraseological Units Versus Words.

5.1. Structural Criterion

5.2. Semantic Criterion

5.3.Syntactic Criterion

6. Classification of Phraseological Units.

7. The Origin of Phraseological Units.



Key words:word-group, collocability, lexical valency, grammatical valency, cliché, syntactic structure, syntactic pattern, motivation, phraseological unit, free word-group, semantic unity, syntactic fixity, structural divisibility, morphological


stability, transference of phraseological units, phraseological fusions, phraseological unities, phraseological collocations, one-top units, two-top units, phraseologisms





1. Fill in the blanks in the sentences with the correct form of the italicized words. Pay special attention to the restrictions of their collocability. Give meanings of the italicized words.


a) to mend, to repair


1. These socks need to be .... 2. It is difficult to find anyone who knows how ... a clock. 3. The convicts were employed in ... the highway. 4. He had been ... a tiny hole in the lining of his leather coat. 5. Please have this typewriter ... . 6. The gate needs to be ... so it closes properly. 7. I know how ... my car myself but I can't do without necessary tools. 8. Let me ... your shirt. 9. In those days, all the farming equipment was made and ... in the village. 10. I got into conversation with the man who came ... the roof.


b) mistake, error


1. I was trying to dial my mother‟s number but I ended up phoning my friend by .... 2. Goods dispatched to your branch were in ... . 3. The crash was caused by human ... . 4. She made the ... of thinking they were important. 5. It's time you pointed out to him the ... of his ways. 6. Children learn from their ... . 7. Mrs Smith‟s huge phone bill was the result of a computer ... . 8. The accident was caused by a(n) ... of judgment on the part of the pilot. 9. He is an odd character and no ... . 10. If we don't finish the job today they won't pay us; make no ... about it. 11. I taught myself how to cook through trial and ... .


2. State meanings of the given polysemantic adjectives on the basis of their lexical valency, i.e. with the help of nouns they are combined with.


M o d e l:smart: 1) shirt, car, garden, officer; 2) person, child, carpenter 3) blow, rise/fall, attack; 4) restaurant, set (society)

According to its lexical valency the adjective smart has the following meanings: 1) neat and

stylish in appearance; 2) good or quick in thinking, clever; 3) quick and forceful; 4) being or used by very fashionable people.

full: 1) bottle, glass, train, drawer, mouth; 2) truth, name, address year, height;

3) speed, marks, force, gallop;

dry: 1) shirt, soil, paint; 2) climate, month, heat, summer; 3) sherry, wine;

4) book, subject, lecture, text; 5) joke, answer, humour, thanks, manners;

broad: 1) shoulders, river, chest, staircase, smile; 2) lands, plains, fields;

3) opinions, view, taste, ideas; 4) outline of a plan (framework), sense; 5) hint, statement, purpose, distinction; 6) joke, laugh, story, humour;

ugly: 1) face, man, houses, furniture, building, picture, surroundings; 2) scene,

wound, confrontation, clouds; 3) ideas, feelings, rumours, moment;


wide: 1) road, gate, river, gap, avenue, foot; 2) interests, experience, support, variety, selection, choice.


3. Analyze the lexical valency of the polysemantic words to run and to charge. Translate the sentences into Ukrainian.


to run


1. The horse runs. 2. The film runs for two hours. 3. The water runs 4. The tap runs. 5. His nose runs. 6. The motor runs. 7. The wine ran over the floor. 8. The whole argument runs on this point. 9. She ran the water into the bath-tub. 10. He ran his business well. 11. The ice-cream is beginning to run.


to charge


1. He charged the man ten cents for the pencil. 2. He charged the battery.

3. He charged them to do their duty. 4. He charged these goods to the man‟s account.

5. The soldiers charged the enemy. 6. I don‟t want to charge my memory with trifles.

7. The judge charged him with the crime.


4. State which of the italicized units are phraseologisms and which are free word-combinations. Give proof of your answer.


1. He asked to warm a glass of juice but they left it rather cold on the table.

2. Instrumental music, oddly enough, left me rather cold. 3. Where do you think you lost your purse. 4.I couldn‟t stand that noise any longer. I lost my temper. 5. Have a look at the reverse side of the coat. 6. The reverse side of the medal is that we'll have to do it ourselves. 7. Keep the butter in the refrigerator. 8. Keep the eye on the child.

9. He threw some cold water on his face to wake up. 10. I didn‟texpect that he would

throw cold water upon our project. 11. The tourists left the beaten track and saw a lot

of interesting places. 12. The author leaves the beaten track and offers a new treatment of the subject.


5. Replace the italicized words by the corresponding phraseological units from the box.


the stronger sex, to get smb‟s drift, as cool as a cucumber, blood and thunder, in two ticks, as green as grass, by leaps and bounds, to get out of hand, the apple of discord, all at sea, to join hands, to hold one's horses, hot under the collar, the upper crust, out of a blue sky


1. She was naive when she was sixteen but other girls in the typing pool taught her the ways of the world. 2. The girls had got on well together until the rivalry in the person of a handsome young apprentice appeared in their midst. 3. I understand you now, I think. If you mean by „integrity‟ what I would call „consistency‟ then we‟ve been arguing at cross-purposes. 4. We must unite with our friends in Europe. 5. She dropped upon me unexpectedly and began asking questions which I had to answer.

6. I thought there would have been protestations and tears when I told her I wanted to



move out of the flat, but no, she stayed calm. 7. When his son was in Paris, the boy ill- behaved and caused many difficulties. 8. He got very angry when I suggested that he might be mistaken. 9. After listening a few minutes to their conversation, I was bewildered. Botany is not my subject. 10. There were at least six murders in that violent story. 11. Joan belongs lo the aristocracy; you can tell by the way she walks and talks. 12. Publishers are well aware that rumours of possible prosecution of a book are likely to send the scales up rapidly. 13. All the people involved in the Commonwealth Architects‟ competition were told to wait – because time would be needed to organize an exhibition in which the entries could be put on show. 14. You should not exaggerate her attraction for men. 15. I don't like to hear people sneering at positions and titles they‟d have accepted immediately if they‟d got the offer.


6. Choose the correct phraseological unit from the box to fill in the gaps in the sentences below.


dark horse, to work like a dog, sour grapes, to lord it over, Achilles heel, to put one's cards on the table, red tape, to see somebody in the flesh, fat cats, around the clock


1. Workers are losing their jobs while the ... who run the company are getting richer. 2. Stuart‟s getting married? He's a ... – I never even knew he had a girlfriend.

3. He was a gifted businessman, but greed was his ... . 4. If I criticize her book, people

will think it's just... . 5. There's so much ... involved in getting a visa. 6. Doctors and nurses worked ... to help the people injured in the train crash. 7. She thought it was time ... and tell him that she had no intention of marrying him. 8. He likes ... the more junior staff in the office. 9. I knew his face so well from the photographs that it felt a bit strange when I finally ... . 10. He ... all day to finish the wallpapering.


7. True or false? Say whether the phraseological units in the following sentences are used correctly (true) or incorrectly (false).


I. He goes there often – at least once in a blue moon. 2. He didn‟t have much power; he has only a figurehead 3- It's not new; it's second-rate. 4. My grandmother has been married for fifty years and she‟s still a very happy оld maid. 5. I don't understand it; it's all Greeek to me. 6. You would probably feel very proud if someone gave you the sack. 7. He was so hungry that he ate his heart out: 8. We ate potatoes in their jackets last night. 9. He loved animals and spent a lot of his free time in the doghouse. 10. This book is dog-eared. I can't possibly sell it.


8. Complete the following proverbs choosing from those marked a-р. Then try to explain what each proverb means.


1. Honesty… a) … less speed.

2.Better late... b) ... gathers no moss.


3.Still waters... c) ... twice shy.

4.Actions... d) ... lie.


5. More haste... e) … while the sun shines.

6. A fool and his money... f) … is the best policy.

7. All's well... g) … was not built in a day.

8. A rolling stone... h) … than never.

9. A stitch in time... i) … leap.

10. Don't count your chickens... j) … are soon parted.

11. Strike... k) … run deep.

12. Let sleeping dogs... l) … that ends well.

13. Look before you... m) … while the iron is hot.

14. Once bitten... n) … before they are

15. Make hay... o) … saves nine.

16. Rome... p) speak louder than words


9. Match up the definitions on the left (a-g) with the correct phraseological unit on the right (1-7).


a) to be impudent enough to 1. to have two faces b) to become opposed to 2. to face the music

c) to grimace 3. to face someone with

d) to appear courageous 4. to set one‟s face against e) to make one‟s appearance 5. to make a face or faces f) to accuse someone with 6. to show one‟s face

g) to be hypocritical 7. to have the face to


10. Analyze the origin of the following phraseological units and explain their meaning.


Cross the Rubicon, Solomon‟s judgement, shed crocodile tears, the sword of Damocles, a doubting Tom, the hub of the universe, in the seventh heaven, Achilles‟ heel, Procrustean bed, an apple of discord, the horn of plenty, a baker‟s dozen, a Peeping Tom, Hobson‟s choice


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