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How Many in a Couple?

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  • Where I grew up (southern Minnesota) there was distinction between couple, a few, several, and a bunch. Although the terms were never considered specific and I can’t remember anyone being upset if the word they used to ask for something didn’t get them the quantity they hoped for. A couple was definitely thought of as the most specific of those terms however and from what I recall it was implied a couple meant two or a pair or at least less then a few. However, it wasn’t uncommon for people to say “hand me a couple three” or “hand me a couple four” of something if they needed to be specific. People never would say just “hand me a couple napkins” if they were really hoping for three or four of them though, they’d either ask for a specific amount or use the a few or several.

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