Idioms and Phrases in English | Idioms with Meaning in English

Every language has its own journey to learn. Slowly you move forward on this journey. The use of Idioms and Phrases is an important step in this journey. You can learn good English only by going through this ladder, but remember that instead of memorizing these Idioms and Phrases, your emphasis should be on using them constantly in conversation.

Idioms and Phrases

  • A bed of roses – comfortable and easy work.
  • A black sheep – a mean fellow.
  • A bolt from the blue – a sudden sad event.
  • A bone of contention – cause of dispute.
  • A bottleneck – hindrance.
  • A dark horse – a man of extraordinary.
  • A fair-weather friend – companion of good times.
  • A feather in one‟s cap – distinction.
  • A golden mean – middle course between two extremes.
  • A fool’s paradise – utopia.
  • A good deal of – large amount.
  • A herculean task – daring deed.
  • A hornet’s nest – cause of the trouble.
  • A horse laugh – a coarse, unmeaning laugh.
  • A lame excuse – unsatisfactory, explanation.
  • Apple of one’s eye – very dear.
  • At sixes and seven – scattered.
  • At the time – of his own time.
  • Bad blood – enmity.
  • Bag and baggage – with belongings.
  • Bear the brunt – be the main victim.
  • Bet about the bush – approach a subject without coming to the point.
  • Bed of roses – an easy task.
  • Beggar description – unexplainable.
  • Beside the mark – irrelevant.
  • Birds of the same feather- having the same nature.
  • Blockhead – fool.
  • Blow hot and cold – be favorable and unfavorable at the same time.

Idioms and Phrases have great importance in any language. Idioms and phrases convey the big thing very effectively. That is why good speakers use Idioms and Phrases in their speeches. In this column, we are introducing you to some such Idioms and Phrases.

  • Call a spade a spade – to speak plainly.
  • Call in question – put objection, to object.
  • Carry the day – be victorious.
  • Caste pearls before swine- to give what is precious to those
  • Who is unable to understand its value.
  • Chicken hearted – timid.
  • Child‟s play – easy work.
  • Cut and dried – inflexible.
  • Die in harness – to die doing one‟s duty.
  • End in smoke – to come to nothing.
  • Ever and anon – occasionally.
  • Fair and square – honest.
  • Fall short – decrease.
  • Far and near – everywhere.
  • Feel the pulse of – know the opinion.
  • Fight sky of – avoid.
  • Flesh and blood – body.
  • Follow suit – do the same thing.
  • For good – forever.
  • Get into hot rather – be in trouble.
  • Get rid of – be free.
  • Get the better of it – be more effective.
  • Go between – an intermediary.
  • Go scot-free – go unpunished.
  • Go to the dogs – be ruined.
  • Go to rack and ruin – be in a miserable condition.
  • Grease the palm – bribe.
  • Hand and glove with – to be intimated
  • Hard and fast – definite.
  • A hard nut to crack – to solve the difficult problem.
  • High and low – people of all ranks.
  • Hold good – remain in force.
  • In a fix – confused.
  • In a nutshell – in brief.
  • In black and white – in writing.
  • In cold blood – brutally.
  • In full swing – very active.
  • In quest of – in search of.
  • In the throes of – in the struggle.
  • In vain – without success.
  • In vogue – in fashion.
  • Ins and outs – full details.
  • Iron will – firm determination.
  • Keep body and soul together- to pass days.
  • Kill two birds with a shot- to do two work at a time.
  • Keep company with – to associate.
  • Kith and kin – blood relations.
  • Leave in the lurch. – leave in difficulty.
  • To talk shop – to talk nonsense.
  •  To turn a deaf ear – to disregard.
  • To gain ground – to become more general.
  • To have finger in the pie- to do something in an affair.
  • My hands are full – I am busy.
  • To give someone a piece- to scold.
  • To kick up a row – to make great noise and fuss.
  • To bury the hatchet – to make peace.
  • To set the Thames on fire- to do some remarkable or surprising thing.
  • High and dry – isolated, stranded.
  • To be at the end of one‟s tether- to have no resources left.
  • Odds and ends – various articles.
  • A hotline – direct telephone line between heads of States.
  • To shoot a line – to exaggerate about one‟s success.
  • To feather one‟s nest – to provide the money even dishonestly.
  • To black-ball – prevent from doing something.
  • A blue book – a government report.
  • To paint the town red – to celebrate noisily in public unpleasant.
  • A red-letter day – an important day.
  • To work like a dog – to work very hard.
  • To foot the bill – to make payment.
  • Cut no ice – to make no effect.
  • Under a cloud – to be in a bad book.
  • Once and for all – forever.
  • Oily tongue – one who flatters.
  • Hole and corner policy-improper policy.
  • Far and wide – all around.
  • Brown study – in reverie.
  • Moot point – controversial point.
  • Bring home – emphasize.
  • Rank and file – the common man.
  • Talk through one‟s hat- talk nonsense.
  • To lead one by the nose- to cause to follow blindly.
  • To get away with – to escape.
  • All agog – in a state of excitement.
  • One‟s cup of tea – what one likes and can do well.
  • In a flutter – in a state of nervous excitement.
  • A close shave – a lucky escape.
  • Blow hot and cold – to be inconsistent.
  • To have the floor – to make a speech.
  • To snap one‟s fingers – to become contemptuous of.
  • To stand to one‟s guns- to preserve when hardships press.
  • To take people by storm- to captivate them unexpectedly.
  • To spill the beans – to reveal secret information.
  • A lady‟s man – a lover of women‟s company.
  • To draw a bead upon – to take aim at.
  • Foam in the mouth – to be in extreme hatred.
  • A baker‟s dozen – thirteen.
  • To oil the knocker – to the tip of the office-boy.
  • To cool one‟s heels – to be kept waiting for some time.
  • To clinch the issue – decide.
  • To turn the corner – past the crisis.
  • Shoplifter – a thief in the guise of a customer.
  • to chew the cuds – to muse on.
  • To keep the pot boiling- keep the controversy alive.
  • To cut both ends – to argue in support of both sides of the issue.
  • Midas touch – ability to succeed in all projects.
  • Lynch law – law of mobs.
  • A man of the world – an experienced man, often with a Cosmopolitan background
  • Free and easy – casual, unworried, unconcerned.
  • Meek and mild – gentle and quiet.
  • Null and void – invalid, without legal effect.
  • Rough and ready – not exact, only approximate.
  • Short and sweet – brisk, without delay.
  • Cloak and danger – like a spy.
  • Hammer and sickle – the emblem of socialism.
  • Backstairs gossip – gossip among servants.
  • Forty winks – short sleep.
  • French leave – absence without permission.
  • A hot potato – an issue that is awkward or embarrassing to deal with.
  • a soft spot – a liking or fondness for something or someone.
  • The bill of fare – the menu.
  • A drug on the market – goods on the market for which there is no Hope.
  • A storm in the tea-cup- a lot of excitement and discussion about a trivial matter.

It is very important to understand Idioms and Phrases to make a good hold of the English language. This is the basic mantra for learning and teaching English. If you think that I will learn to speak English without Idioms and Phrases, then it is your biggest mistake.

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