a tight love affair

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  • macphie

    Senior Member
    English - Australia
    Yes you are correct. He meant that in his opinion the relationship between the UK and the EU was not a very close one. He is indirectly referring to aspects of the UK- EU relationship such as UK not taking up the euro and also receiving opt-out exemptions from the Schengen Agreement.


    Senior Member
    English - Northeast US
    We understand his meaning, but I have comments on the word usage.

    "Tight" is an odd word to apply to "love affair" in English. In English we use "close" instead, as macphie does when he writes "the relationship was not a very close one".

    EU head Jean-Claude Juncker is probably not fluent in English. He is using meaning 1 in your MW dictionary (close together), and probably thinks "tight" and "close" are interchangeable words.

    He is not using meaning 8, which is the meaning of the phrase "tight with <someone>". It would not make sense to use that meaning with "love affair", since it would be redundant: "a love affair that is a close personal relationship".
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