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Is it natural to say:

She gave the waitress a tip of $10.

Or

She gave the waitress a $10 tip.

Do both of them sound natural. I guess the second sentence sounds natural, whereas the first one doesn't. What do you think? Do they sound natural as this one: she tipped the waitress $10.

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  • As you surmise, the second sentence is the more likely. It's just easier off the tongue. Your final suggestion is also idiomatic. The first is fine; it just takes more effort. Commented May 3, 2019 at 15:24
  • @RonaldSole - I think this is an interesting question, though, because we use that construct with other phrases. For example: she gave the waitress a bite of food; she gave the waitress a piece of her mind; she gave the waitress a cup of coffee; she gave the waitress a work of art. For some reason, though, it sounds unusual with ...a tip of ten dollars.
    – J.R.
    Commented May 3, 2019 at 15:40

2 Answers 2

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She gave the waitress a $10 tip.
She tipped the waitress $10.

Both of those sound natural and idiomatic to my ear

She gave the waitress a tip of $10.

That sounds awkwardly structured to me. I wouldn't go so far as to call it "ungrammatical," but I don't think you'd hear it nearly as often as the other two.

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According to the ngram only the second variant is found in printed works.

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