Exclamations in English

Exclamations in English

In the current environment, exclamations and abbreviations should already be equated with a separate variant of any language, because teenagers communicate that way. Sometimes for adults it is just a large and not very clear set of letters, in which it is very difficult to find the meaning. 

What are exclamations? These are very emotionally colored words, sometimes phrases. Moreover, the coloring can be both positive and negative. 


Simple exclamations 

Everyone knows came to us from the English "wow!", right? But now we will try to go further and see how many more exclamations there are. 

  • Hey! You! 
  • Oops! 
  • Whoa! 
  • Geez!/Gee! 
  • Dah! 
  • Nah! 
  • Awe! 
  • Urgh! 
  • Yay! 
  • Eww! 


Exclamations of two and three words 

This is where constructions with what and how appear. The latter is the easiest, so let's start with it. Adding an adjective to how is enough to make an exclamation. Emotions are added depending on the situation. 

  • How beautiful! 
  • How big! 
  • How bright! 
  • How slow! 
  • How loud! 

And so on…

Everything is simple here. Then there will be a construction with what, in which the indefinite article appears, giving the expression emotionality and an exclamatory tone. Remember that the article is used only in the singular. 

The structure will be like this: 

What + article + adjective + noun 

  • What a big house! 
  • What a long river!
  • What a smart girl! 
  • What a boring movie! 
  • What an interesting book! 
  • What a strange person! 

So/such + adjective in a sentence 

In addition to individual exclamations, we can say that there are exclamations that are part of the sentence. In this case, we will add so/such to the adjective to enhance its meaning.

So + adjectivе

  • That painting is so unusual! 
  • The boy I met before is so smart! 

Such + indefinite article + noun + adjective

  • My grandmother was such a wonderful woman!  
  • Chris is such a good swimmer! 

The article is not used in the plural or with uncountable nouns. 

  • We’ve read such interesting books!  
  • Granma gave us such delicious juice!  


Denial in exclamations 

Another way to express an exclamation is to add a question and a negative to it. 

  • Wow, isn’t this lake amazing!  
  • Doesn’t he look pretty! 


Converting normal sentences to exclamatory ones 

To make a sentence with, say, a compliment, an exclamation, it is enough to change its structure. Usually the sentence has the following structure: subject + auxiliary verb + adjective (predicate). In an exclamatory sentence, the scheme will be: what / how + article (singular) + adjective + subject + predicate. Let's look at examples to make it easier.

  • He is attractive boy. – What an attractive boy he is.
  • She has big eyes. – What big eyes she has.


Bonus ;) 

English will not be English if it does not contain words that are not so easy to hear in everyday communication, or they are unfamiliar to us as exclamations. So, here is a list of what English-speaking people use as exclamations, and what might sound like complete nonsense to us! 

  1. Bazinga! Big Bang Theory fans have entered the chat. Here explanations are superfluous. However, if you are not familiar with this exclamation, then the closest in meaning can be called “Boo!” When you scare someone. In the series, Sheldon often used this expression in surprise situations.
  2. Cowabunga! “An untranslatable pun on the local dialect.” Or Michelangelo's signature phrase from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, most often paired with the word dude.
  3. Aloha! - A Hawaiian word used as a greeting or farewell, or to express love, affection, etc. Reminds me of Lilo & Stitch, huh?
  4. Banzai! - translated from Japanese as "ten thousand years", but in the language it is used as a battle cry. Strange, isn't it?
  5. Eureka! - An exclamation known to all thanks to grandfather Newton. Now you rarely see him in colloquial speech, but the fact of his presence in the list of famous exclamations cannot be denied,
  6. Hasta la vista (baby)! – See you, (baby)! / See you! The most Hollywood of all ever existing Hollywood statements. Yes, we are talking about movies again. In this case, Terminator.
  7. Shazam! - Pabam! Used to express a surprising or unexpected action. There's also a superhero movie of the same name... ahem, sorry.

In fact, you can easily list at least a dozen more exclamations, but they will already have a negative connotation, so it’s better to learn them on your own, and preferably directly in the language environment. 


The topic of exclamations, as we said at the beginning, is quite extensive and interesting. Therefore, if you are in America, and people speak English that is not familiar to you, expressing emotions simply by a set of letters, do not be alarmed, perhaps this is the language that you will speak after spending a month or two there.