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What's the point of saying both words if one of them already implies a small amount of something? Doesn't it seem a bit redundant?

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closed as primarily opinion-based by FumbleFingers, Josh61, Edwin Ashworth, choster, Mahnax Jun 9 at 23:25

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

    
This general question has been covered here many times. –  Edwin Ashworth Jun 9 at 18:48
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Yes, it seems a little bit redundant. –  Soylent Green Jun 9 at 19:20
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@Soylent: But only a tiny little bit. I think this is a pointless question. –  FumbleFingers Jun 9 at 20:24

1 Answer 1

Technically it is superfluous, but it is designed to be that way for emphasis. It's not just a litle, or not just a bit, it is a little bit.

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It's not even superfluous technically. There is no technical standard for superfluity; there isn't even one for regular fluity. –  John Lawler Jun 9 at 20:40
    
Yes, I struggle to understand what people mean by technically in this sort of discussion. Sometimes it's according to some rule somebody taught me once, which probably has no relation to how people speak. Sometimes it means according to a bogus theory of language where pragmatics doesn't exist. Sometimes it means if I pretend this is algebra instead of English. –  Colin Fine Jun 9 at 21:25
    
Superfluous = unnecessary, especially through being more than enough. Technically = according to the facts or exact meaning of something; strictly. In the strictest sense of language, the phrase "a little bit" is superfluous due to redundancy. A more technically accurate turn of phrase would "a very little." However, in the vernacular, "a little bit" communicates an emphatic idea (not just a little, a little bit). –  Gaius619 Jun 10 at 12:56

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