The following sentence is taken from Wifey Redux by Kevin Barry:

"He was seventeen, six two, with blonde, floppy hair, and about eight million quids’ worth of dental work."

How to understand the expression "eight million quids' worth of dental work?" Is the author suggesting that "he" has a mouthful of bad teeth that may take eight million pounds to correct, or "he" has perfect teeth that seems to have been corrected by eight million worth of dental work?

  • I think by now enough of your posts have been edited that you should know how to format quoted text: literature.stackexchange.com/editing-help#simple-blockquotes – muru Dec 15 '19 at 3:18
  • THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR THE LINK! I am not a native English speaker and I found some troubles in editting texts but I am learning. – Sleepywolfey Dec 15 '19 at 3:44
  • 3
    As a non-native speaker I would take that to mean that his teeth looked like a fortune had been spent on them, i.e. they looked absolutely perfect. – Jos Dec 15 '19 at 22:46
  • And 'quid' is slang for a UK pound, by the way. – Old Brixtonian Feb 12 '20 at 0:33
  • @OldBrixtonian True, but in this context (a story set in the Republic of Ireland), "quid" would mean either the former Irish pound or in latter days the euro. – Rand al'Thor Feb 15 '20 at 12:37

It's hyperbole, suggesting that a huge sum of money had been spent on cosmetic dentistry. You can also tell from the reference to his height and the floppy blonde hair that Barry is creating a character from a relatively wealthy background.

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.