Key Word: explanation
1 Verb + explanation
Use the correct form of these verbs:
defy demand give
hear owe think of
- I heard you coming in at five o’clock this morning. You said you would be home by midnight. I’m waiting to _________ your explanation.
- The instructor_________ us a very clear explanation of how the machine worked. It was very easy to follow.
- This is the second time you’ve failed to attend the meeting. I think you _________ us all an explanation.
- No wonder you’re angry! If Gwen was paid to produce the report by last Friday, I think you can _________ an explanation from her as to why nothing has appeared.
- Nobody can understand why the Prime Minister has given the job to one of his best friends. It’s a strange decision that _________ explanation.
- I can’t _________ an explanation for Pete’s bad behaviour. He’s usually so well-behaved.
2 Common adjective collocations
Complete the sentences with these adjectives:
no apparent convincing
a very detailed an immediate
the most likely logical
any other possible
- I’m sorry I’m late. The manager insisted on going into _________ explanation of every aspect of the job and I just couldn’t get away.
- _____________ explanation for Steve’s absence is that his plane has been delayed. => Yes, I can’t think of _________ explanation.
- When I caught my oldest son trying on my best dress, I demanded _________________ explanation! He said he was going to a fancy-dress party!
- There seems to be _________ explanation for the attack. It’s beginning to look like an act of mindless violence.
- That’s not a very _________ explanation. I’ll believe you, but thousands wouldn’t!
- Our dog has been acting strangely lately, but there’s probably some perfectly _________ explanation for its odd behaviour.
3 Noun + of + explanation
Use these words to complete the sentences:
some sort of by way of a word of
- His first wife just left without _________ explanation. One day she was there; the next she had gone!
- I told the policeman – _________ explanation – that I hadn’t seen the speed limit sign. He just laughed and booked me!
- There must be _________ explanation for John’s sudden resignation. It’s just come out of the blue!
4 More common expressions
Match the two halves of these sentences:
- Can you just give us a quick explanation of
- There are lots of possible explanations
- The official explanation for the crash blames
- The only explanation I can think of is
- The generally accepted explanation of the disaster
a that he’s lost his memory.
b is human error.
c how the system works?
d the driver of the London-bound train.
e why girls do better at school than boys.
1. Note the different verbs:
He didn’t offer any explanation for his late arrival.
The director went into a long explanation.
Nobody could come up with an explanation.
2. Note this expression:
He gave no explanation as to why he wasn’t there.
3. If an explanation is ‘far-fetched’ or ‘not very plausible’, it is difficult to believe.
- hear 2. gave 3. owe 4. demand 5. defies 6.think of
1 a very detailed 2.The most likely, any other possible
3 an immediate 4. no apparent
5 convincing 6. logical
- a word of 2. by way of 3. some sort of
l-c 2-e 3-d 4-a 5-b