A LOT OF

 

a) Frequency

 

A lot of was the most frequent three-word cluster in the BEC and the second most frequent in the BNC.

 

N in BEC

Word

bec freq.

bec.lst %

N in BNC

bnc freq.

bnc.lst %

1

A LOT OF

451

0.04

2

658

0.03

 

 

b) Semantic Prosody

 

Left: No groups identified but see colligation section below.

 

 

Right: Three groups identified.

 

semantic prosody

frequency/ 451 & %

example

people

69 - 15.29%

a lot of clients

a lot of contractors

a lot of people

money/finance/economy

35 - 7.76%

a lot of investment

a lot of invoices

a lot of money

companies/institutions

17 - 3.76%

a lot of advertisers

a lot of companies

a lot of firms

 

c) Clusters

 

6-word:

 

N

cluster

Freq.

1

a lot of time and money

3

2

is that a lot of people

3

3

there will be a lot of

3

 

5-word:

 

N

cluster

Freq.

1

we have a lot of

11

2

there are a lot of

10

3

a lot of money on

8

4

there is a lot of

6

5

there was a lot of

6

6

a lot of people who

5

7

i think a lot of

5

8

that a lot of people

5

9

we do a lot of

5

10

we've had a lot of

5

11

you've got a lot of

5

12

a lot of work for

4

13

to get a lot of

4

14

we get a lot of

4

15

we've got a lot of

4

 

4-word:

 

N

cluster

Freq.

1

a lot of people

45

2

a lot of money

31

3

a lot of the

31

4

have a lot of

25

5

there's a lot of

25

6

quite a lot of

20

7

a lot of work

17

8

got a lot of

16

9

had a lot of

15

10

and a lot of

12

11

do a lot of

12

12

get a lot of

12

13

because a lot of

11

14

is a lot of

11

15

we have a lot

11

16

a lot of time

10

17

are a lot of

10

18

there are a lot

10

19

a lot of it

9

20

a lot of them

9

21

a lot of things

9

22

lot of money on

8

23

that a lot of

8

24

a lot of these

7

25

be a lot of

7

26

with a lot of

7

27

in a lot of

6

28

there is a lot

6

29

there was a lot

6

30

think a lot of

6

31

was a lot of

6

32

a lot of business

5

33

a lot of companies

5

34

a lot of talk

5

35

a lot of that

5

36

for a lot of

5

37

i think a lot

5

38

lot of people who

5

39

spend a lot of

5

40

we do a lot

5

41

we've had a lot

5

42

you've got a lot

5

43

a lot of fun

4

44

a lot of other

4

45

a lot of problems

4

46

been a lot of

4

47

it's a lot of

4

48

lot of work for

4

49

to get a lot

4

50

we get a lot

4

51

we've got a lot

4

 

d) Macro-generic distribution

 

 

 

e) Colligation

 

Definition: A lot of = a phrasal quantifier

a lot of is a phrasal quantifier and serves to determine the rough amount of what it refers to: a lot of money, a lot of people, a lot of problems

 

Patterns:

 

i) existential subject + to be + a lot of + noun (group):

48 instances - 10.64% of sample

 

 

ii) modifier + a lot of + (noun group)

20 instances - 4.43% of sample

its going to cost quite a lot

The only modifier collocating with a lot of was quite.

 

 

iii) personal pronoun + to get* + a lot of + noun group/

personal pronoun + to have + a lot of + noun group

47 instances - 10.42% of sample

You get a lot of stress and strain, Ive got a lot of hotel experience

we have a lot of international guests, weve had a lot of very good product

 

* get used in several forms/meanings

 

 

 

f) Associates

 

No associates identified.