a little bit of both

Gavril

Senior Member
English, USA
Does the phrase a little bit of both mean "very little of either", or is it a set phrase meaning "some of both", with no specification of how much "some" is?
 
  • Gavril

    Senior Member
    English, USA
    Please give us context for your question: How and where you've seen or heard it used, or how you propose to use it.
    a little bit of both should mean "not much of either", if the phrase a little bit is taken literally. In some cases, though, the intended meaning of a little bit of both seems to be "a combination of both", with no specification of how much.

    My question is, which is the most normal, accepted meaning: "a small amount of both", or "some (unspecified) amount of both"?
     

    panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Host: Would you like lemon meringue or sticky toffee pudding?
    Panj: Could I have a little bit of both?

    I expect my host to serve me with a smaller-than-normal helping of both. I wouldn't be surprised if this was two half-sized portions. But there's a good chance that it will be rather more than that :)
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    Host: Would you like lemon meringue or sticky toffee pudding?
    Panj: Could I have a little bit of both?

    I expect my host to serve me with a smaller-than-normal helping of both. I wouldn't be surprised if this was two half-sized portions. But there's a good chance that it will be rather more than that :)
    I think I'd be more likely to ask for "a little of each." I actually can't think of a situation where I'd say "a little of both."
     
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