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05/29/2024 | News release | Distributed by Public on 05/29/2024 06:19

Strengthen your English with these 16 synonyms for 'a lot'

Sometimes learning English can be, well, a lot.

Instead of describing something with the overused phrase a lot, add a whole bunchof synonyms for a lot to your English toolkit!

Alternatives to a lot

The phrase a lot comes from the word lot, meaning "a portion of something," but it has evolved to now mean "a large number or amount." You don't have to be stuck with a lot, though-there are many alternatives in English. Some formal options that are adjectives (and therefore require the noun you are describing) include abundant, plentiful, or immeasurable. For example, you could have abundantdesire to learn a new language, plentifulsupport from your friends who follow you on Duolingo, and immeasurablepositiveresults from learning that language.

While many synonyms for a lot that are nouns tend to be folksy-they can sound a bit old-fashioned-using them indicates deep knowledge of English. Some informal synonyms that come from units of measurement include tons, barrels, loads, and reams:

Synonym Usual meaning Example
tons a unit of weight tons of time
barrels a unit of volume barrels of excitement
loads a unit of weight or mass loads of motivation to learn synonyms
reams a measure of paper quantity (~516 sheets) reams of articles to read

Fun synonyms for a lot

When you want to refer to a large amount of something in a sillier way, you can use oodles, gobs, or a personal favorite, zillions. The noun oodles was possibly formed from the phrase kit and caboodle, which roughly means "the whole collection." You can have oodles of joy, oodles of unread emails (yikes!), or even oodles of noodles!

Speaking of a mouthful, gobs is another fun alternative to a lot that comes from the Middle English word for "a mouthful." There's even a candy called a gobstopper! You can have gobs of gobstoppers or gobs and gobs of garlic. Either way, you might want to brush your teeth after!

Finally, zillions is a delightful way to say a lot when you want to emphasize the sheer number of something. Zillions is an alteration of the words billion and million that was made in jest. If you're handing out free pens and someone asks you how many you have, you could say, "Zillions!" to stress that you have plenty to give away.

Options for a lot as an adverb

A lot can also function as an adverb, which has fewer folksy options. Instead of saying you go to the movies a lot, you could say you go often or frequently, and instead of saying you like horseradish a lot (who doesn't?), you could say you like it tremendously or considerably.

A lot of good options!

When it comes to synonyms for a lot, you have copious alternatives in your toolkit to show off your English skills!