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This video (https://youtu.be/4kuhQzbc2Tw) says "type of", "sort of", "kind of" and "style of" are all the same when referring to categories.

What type of music do you like?
What kind of music do you like?
What sort of music do you like?
What style of music do you like?

All of them is to talk about the favorite category.

I got some other sense about this, "type of" would be used in some more formal cases, such as written English; while "sort of", "kind of" would be used in some less formal cases; all of them mean some categories.

The following sentence sounds normal.

Adverbs are a type of words that describe verbs adjectives other adverbs or clauses.
Adverbs are a sort of words that describe verbs adjectives other adverbs or clauses.
Adverbs are a kind of words that describe verbs adjectives other adverbs or clauses.

While this one Adverbs are a style of words that describe verbs adjectives other adverbs or clauses.

seems a little bit strange,

As for "style", this one

jazz is a style of music 

is more idiomatic, though this one

jazz is a genre of music

seems better.

Is my understanding above correct?

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  • To me 'a sort of restaurant' suggests an establishment that serves food but isn't exactly a restaurant. Anyway since KFC is a commercial franchise, wouldn't you describe it as a 'chain of restaurants'? Feb 16, 2020 at 15:02
  • Your understanding here is pretty good. We are talking about idiomatic preference rather than rules so it’s hard to be definitive. Any statement about what is “most appropriate” can fall over in another context or even in a different English language idiolect. Some people would often see KFC as a particular example of a restaurant not a type/sort/kind/style: “A fast food outlet is a type of restaurant and the KFC and MacDonald’s chains offer good examples.” (In traditional Australian usage a fast food shop was not even considered to be a “restaurant”.) Feb 16, 2020 at 23:53

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