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English - 100 Idioms and Phrases

Idioms and Phrases

English - 100  Idioms and Phrases

1. A blessing in disguise - Something good that isn’t recognized by first

2. A dead letter - a matter that is no longer important

3. A chip on your shoulder- Being upset for something that happened in the past

4. Afraid of her own shadow - to be extremely nervous and easily frightened

5. To be fair and square - in an honest way and without any doubt

6. A damp squib- Complete failure

7. Forty winks - a nap; some sleep.

8. A dime A dozen - Anything that is common and easy to get

9. Pink slip - a letter from your employer which tells you that you do not have a job any more

10. A gentleman at large- An unreliable person/Has no serious occupation

11. Always in the swim - alert to or actively engaged in events

12. A man of straw - A weak person

13. Barking up the wrong tree - to make the wrong choice

14. A green horn- Inexperienced

15. Know the ropes - Be informed about the details of a situation or task

16. A man of straw - A weak person

17. Added fuel to the fire - to say or do something that makes a bad situation worse

18. A piece of cake- A task that can be accomplished very easily

19. Rubbed him up the wrong way - to irritate someone

20. A slap on the wrist - A very mild punishment

21. Rings a bell - to stir something in someone’s memory

22. A taste of your own medicine - When you are mistreated the same way you mistreat others

23. Stood her ground - Maintained his position

24. A wolf in sheep’s clothing- A dangerous person pretending harmless

25. Cut someone dead - to ignore someone totally

26. Above board- Fair and honest

27. At daggers drawn - angry and ready to fight

28. Against the clock- Rushed and short on time

29. Go through the hoops - to do a lot of difficult things before you do something you want

30. Playing ducks and drakes - to carelessly misuse one’s wealth, to behave recklessly

31. Curtain lecture - Wife's tough talk

32. All and Sundry- Without making any distinction

33. Ended in smoke - To come to nothing

34. All Greek to me- Meaningless and incomprehensible like someone who cannot read, speak

35. Going places - to become very successful.

36. All in the same boat- When everyone is facing the same challenges

37. Pulls no punches - to deal with something honestly without hiding anything

38. Alpha and omega- First and last letter of Greek alphabet, means beginning and end

39. On the same page - thinking in a similar way

40. An axe to grind- To have a dispute with someone

41. Back to the drawing board - time to start from the start

42. Apple to my eye- Someone who is cherished above all others

43. A red letter day - A special occasion

44. At heart- Basically, fundamentally

45. All moonshine - Total lies

46. Back seat driver- People who criticize from the sidelines, much like someone giving unwanted advice

47. Showed a clean pair of heels - to run faster than someone who is trying to catch you

48. Back to square one- Having to start all over again

49. Fight tooth and nail - Engage in vigorous combat or make a strenuous effort, using all one's resources

50. Bank on/upon- Depend on, count on

51. Piece of his mind - to speak angrily to someone because they have done something wrong, scolding

52. Beat/Flog a dead horse- To force an issue that has already ended

53. Black and white - a very clear choice that causes no confusion

54. Between Scylla and Charybdis- Choice between two unpleasant alternatives

55. A hard nut to crack - a problem difficult to solve

56. Bite your tongue- To avoid talking

57. Egged you - to encourage

58. Blue moon- A rare event or occurrence

59. Not fit to hold a candle - not as good as that other person

60. Paying through the nose - To pay excessively.

61. Putting the cart before the horse - doing things in the wrong order

62. Can’t cut the mustard- Someone who isn’t adequate enough to compete or participate

63. Casting pearls before swine - to waste something good on someone who doesn't care about it.

64. Cats and dogs- Heavy rain

65. On the wane - in a state of decline

66. Chip on his shoulder- Angry today about something that occurred in the past

67. In doldrums - feeling sad and lacking the energy to do anything

68. Cock and bull story- An unbelievable tale, untrue story

69. Drops a bombshell - Make an unexpected or shattering announcement

70. Cross your fingers- To hope that something happens the way you want it to

71. Dots one’s I’s and cross one’s t’s - to do something very carefully and in a lot of detail

72. Dark horse- One who was previously unknown and is now prominent

73. Down in the dumps - In a gloomy or depressed mood

74. Dead Ringer- 100 % identical, a duplicate

75. Turned up his nose at my offer - a sign of rejection

76. Don’t count your chickens before they hatch- Don’t rely on it until you sure of it

77. Strained every nerve - to make the greatest possible effort

78. Fifty- fifty- Divided into two equal parts

79. Salt of the earth - a very good or worthy person

80. Hit below the belt- Contrary the principles of fairness

81. Hither and thither- Here and there

82. Hue and cry- Great noise

83. Pin money - Small amounts of money for incidental expenses

84. Lock and key- In safe place

85. Brought the house down - to entertain people very successfully, so that they laugh or clap for a long time

86. Knock on Wood- Knuckle tapping on wood in order to avoid some bad luck

87. Picking holes - to find mistakes in something someone has done or said

88. A can of worms - a very difficult issue or set of problems

89. A man of letters - a man, who knows a lot about literature

91. Latin and Greek- Unable to understand

92. Lend me your ear- To politely ask for someone’s full attention

93. To be in two minds - unable to decide about something

94. Lend me your ear- To politely ask for someone’s full attention

95. Full of hot air - Talking a lot

96. Let the cat out of the bag- To share a secret that wasn’t suppose to be shared

97. Run into rough weather - to run into difficulties or experience problems

98. Fell on stony ground - be ignored or badly received

99. Off the top of his head - without giving it too much thought

100. It takes two to tango- A two person conflict where both people are at fault

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