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An idiom is a phrase or expression that has a meaning that in most cases cannot be deduced directly from the individual words in that phrase or expression.
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Idioms Meaning
A piece of cake It’s easy to do.
A shot in the dark A wild guess
A stitch in time saves nine It’s better to deal with problems immediately rather than wait by when they worsen and become much bigger.
Against the clock Working in great hurry.
Allow the dust to settle To allow a situation to become calm or normal again after a period of excitement or upheaval
An eye for an eye and a tooth for tooth If a person does something wrong, then they should be punished with the same thing done to them.
Back against the wall Be in a difficult situation from where escape is difficult
Back the wrong horse To support a person or action that later turns out to be unsuccessful.
Barking up the wrong tree To ask the wrong person or follow the wrong course
Be in a tight spot To be in a difficult situation
Be off the mark Incorrect or inaccurate.
Behind one’s back To do it secretly without someone's knowledge (used in negative way).
Bend over backwards To try please or accommodate someone to an unusual degree
Between the devil and the deep blue sea Caught between two undesirable alternatives.
Bite off more than you can chew To try to do something that is too difficult for you
Bitter pill to swallow Something such as failure or rejection that is difficult to accept, but has to be accepted.
Blow hot and cold Vacillate.
Blow your own trumpet Tell people how good or successful you are (used in negative way).
Boil the ocean To accomplish something too ambitious.
Break new ground To do something that was not done before.
Burn the candle at both ends To work excessively hard, say, by keeping two jobs or by leading a busy social life in the evening.
Burn the midnight oil To work late in the night
Burn your boats/ bridges To do something that makes it impossible to change your plans and go back to the earlier position or situation.
By the skin of your teeth Extremely narrow margin
Call a spade a spade To speak truth even if it’s unpleasant
Cast pearls before swine Offering something valuable to someone who does not recognize its worth.
Change hands Change ownership.
Change tune To change the way you behave with others from good to bad.
Chicken and egg situation It is impossible to decide which of the two came first and caused the other one.
Clear the decks Remove all hurdles to get started on that work.
Close the door on someone No longer deal with it.
Cool your heels Wait for something, especially when it’s annoying.
Cry for the moon Make a demand that can’t be fulfilled.
Cut corners Save money or effort by finding cheaper or easier ways to do things.
Cut no ice Fail to influence or make an effect
Draw first blood Cause the first damage to an opponent in a conflict or contest.
Drive a hard bargain Argue hard to get a favorable deal.
Eat humble pie Be humiliated by admitting that you are wrong
Eat like a bird To eat little food.
Eat like a horse Eat a lot.
Eat your words Retract your statement or words.
Egg on your face Look stupid and face embarrassment because of something you’ve done.
Face the music The receiving end of somebody’s criticism or reprimand.
Get someone off the hook Help someone get out of trouble.
Go against the grain Do not do it or accept it because it is against your beliefs or principle.
Go on record Say it publically and officially.
Go through the roof To increase beyond all expectations
Hand in glove Work closely with someone often to accomplish something dishonest.
Handle with kid gloves Treat with extreme tact and care.
Have a thick skin To be less affected by criticisms and rebuffs
Have the last laugh Succeed from a seemingly losing position.
Head and shoulders above Greatly superior to
Head in the clouds Not in touch with the ground realities.
Head over heels Completely in love.
Hit the jackpot Achieve big success, usually through luck.
Hit the nail on the head Exactly right about something.
Hold your tongue Don't speak.
In cold blood To do something violent and cruel deliberately and in an unemotional way.
In full swing Highest speed or level of activity.
In the same boat In the same difficult situation.
In the same breath Two very different or contradictory things.
Jump the gun To do something too soon without proper thought
Keep an ear to the ground Be well informed of current trends, opinions, and happenings.
Keep someone at arm’s length Avoid from becoming friendly with them.
Kill the goose that lays the golden eggs To destroy something that gives you lot of money to get immediate returns
Kill two birds with one stone To achieve two goals with a single effort.
Leave no stone unturned To do everything you can to achieve your goal
Left out in the cold Being ignored.
Light at the end of tunnel Signs of improvement in a situation that has been bad for a long time.
Like a fish out of water Feel awkward because you haven’t experienced that situation before.
Live on borrowed time Continue to exist longer than expected.
Look for needle in a haystack Looking for something small in a pile of other things or a vast area
Make no bones about something To say clearly what you feel or think about it.
Make one’s blood boil To make someone extremely angry
Miss the boat/bus To miss an opportunity
Move heaven and earth Make supreme effort
No smoke without fire A suspicion or rumor is not for nothing. It usually has some basis.
No strings attached Free of conditions.
Not the only fish in the sea Not the only suitable thing or person one can find.
Not your cup of tea Not the kind of person or thing you like.
On cloud nine Very happy.
On thin ice In precarious or delicate situation.
Once in a blue moo Happens rarely.
Over my dead body You dislike it and will do everything you can to prevent it.
Pay someone back in his /her own coin Treat someone in the same way he/ she treated you.
Pay through the nose Pay too much for something.
Play your cards right To behave or work in a way that gives you an advantage or improves your odds of success.
Point finger at Someone should be blamed
Pour cold water on Criticize it to the extent that people lose enthusiasm to pursue it.
Pour out one’s heart Reveal your thoughts or inner feelings.
Put the cat among the pigeons Say or do something that makes lot of people angry or uncomfortable.
Raining cats and dogs Raining heavily.
Read between the lines To understand someone’s real feelings or intentions from what they say or write.
Rub salt into someone’s wounds To make a bad thing worse
Run around in circles To be active without achieving any worthwhile result.
Save your skin Save yourself from an unpleasant or dangerous situation without thinking of what happens to others.
Scrape the barrel Using something you do not want to but you’ve no option.
See the light of day It finally happens for the first time.
Sell like hot cakes Sell very fast.
Separate the wheat from the chaff To separate valuable from worthless.
Set in stone It’s very difficult to change.
Set the record straight Quash misinformation about something by telling the truth.
Show someone the door To ask someone to leave
Small cog in a large wheel Someone or something that has a small role in a large setup or organization.
Spill the beans To reveal a secret information unintentionally
Spill the tea Share gossip
Stab someone in the back Harm someone who trusts you.
Start with a clean slate Make a fresh beginning forgetting what happened, usually bad, in the past
Steal the show Get lot of attention or credit in an event or show.
Stir up a hornets’ nest Provoke trouble
Strike while the iron is hot To act quickly when the opportunity comes by
Swallow your pride Do something even though it hurts your self-respect.
Take a back seat Choose not to be in a position of responsibility or power.
Take away your breath To astonish.
Take the word out of somebody’s mouth To say exactly what the other person was about to say
Test waters Try to find how people will receive your idea or action before actually launching it or telling people.
The luck of the devil Extremely lucky.
The other side of the coin The other point of view
The pot calling the kettle black Accusing someone of faults that you yourself have
Through thick and thin To do it whether circumstances are good or not.
Throw a spanner in the work To disrupt or cause problems in an activity or project.
To come to a head It reaches to the point of a crisis.
Turn the clock back To return to the earlier period.
Twist someone’s arm Make someone do something by pressurizing them
Under a cloud Under suspicion or in trouble.
Under someone’s nose Do it openly, although unnoticed.
Up in arms Angry about something
Walk a tightrope To do something that allows little room for error.
Wash dirty linen in public Discuss private matters in public.
Wear two hats To function in more than one capacity.
Wear your heart on your sleeve Express your sentiments openly.
White elephant Costs a lot (on maintenance etc.) to keep, but does little useful.
Wild-goose chase A search that turns out to be time-wasting and unsuccessful because the thing being searched doesn’t exist or you were given wrong information about its location.