the house seems a bit too old

pasitoo

Senior Member
Spanish
Hello,

e.g. "The house seems a bit too old."
I don't get what it is like when "a bit" + "too"... is it a little more than "too old" or a little less than "too old"?

Thanks a lot! :)
 
  • xqby

    Senior Member
    English (U.S.)
    The house seems too old, but not by very much. It's probably like five years older than what the speaker was looking for.
     

    Trisia

    Senior Member
    Romanian
    I might have interpreted it as a polite version of "this place is about to fall down, let's get out of here." Assuming the owner is present, one wouldn't want to be rude.

    Any background information you could provide?
     

    RCA86

    Senior Member
    UK
    British English
    I think if you take it literally, it means it's not VERY old, but it's slightly older than you would like. So I would say that if something is "a bit too old", then it's not as old as something which is "too old", since it's only "too old" by a small amount.

    If the house is very very old, then you could say, "the house is much too old" or "the house is far too old", or very informally, "the house is way too old". The last one is colloquial, so you can use it with friends and family, but not in business meetings!

    So, in order of oldness:

    The house is brand new.
    The house is a bit too old.
    The house is too old.
    The house is far/much/way too old.

    This is very literal though, and sometimes people will be a bit sarcastic and say "...I think the house is a bit too old, don't you?", which would probably be more equivalent to "the house is way too old", but it's cheeky. Don't worry about that though, just look out for the tone and facial expression.
     

    RCA86

    Senior Member
    UK
    British English
    I might have interpreted it as a polite version of "this place is about to fall down, let's get out of here." Assuming the owner is present, one wouldn't want to be rude.

    Any background information you could provide?
    Yeah, that's pretty accurate if it's said with a certain tone, or expression. It can be used in a lot of different ways, but if it's said completely honestly, then xqby's answer is right.
     
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