to be no slouch + ...

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Senior Member
Español (Santiago, Chile)

I've just seen some examples of to be no slouch "in action". He is no slouch on the guitar, at languages, in the kitchen... Does that mean there is no fixed preposition after this expression? Also, I'd like to know if it is acceptable to use the Present Participle: He's no slouch learning languages. Thanks in advance.

  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    Hi, Gonzalo. You're right that there is no fixed preposition after "to be no slouch". "At", "in", and "on" are all possible if they fit the following phrase: on the guitar, etc.

    I understand the present participle after "to be no slouch", but it sounds slightly substandard to me. I'd much rather see "at learning languages" instead of "learning languages." Then "learning" is a noun, a gerund, that is the object of the preposition "at".
    Last edited:


    Senior Member
    English - England
    He's no slouch at learning languages.
    He's no slouch when it comes to learning languages.

    The preposition is determined by what follows not by the word 'slouch.'

    I'm good in the kitchen.
    I'm good at languages.
    I'm good on the guitar.

    I'm an expert in the kitchen.
    I'm expert at languages.
    I'm expert on the guitar.

    I'm useless in the kitchen.
    I'm useless at languages.
    I'm useless on the guitar.
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