Idioms with Examples Part 34 l Idiomatic Expressions l ELP

Here are Idiomatic Expressions for you!

  1. I always thought Laurence was rather shallow and superficial, but yesterday I saw him reading a book of Renaissance poetry. He’s a bit of a dark………, isn’t he?
    (someone with a secret, especially a secret ability, skill or achievement that surprises you when you discover it)
  2. I’m not going out with you looking like that. You look like something that the……… dragged in! Brush your hair and put on some clean clothes!
    (to have a very dirty or untidy appearance)
  3. I live on the 14th floor of a tower block, so I have a wonderful………’s-eye view of the town.
    (A good view of something from a high position)
  4. How did I know that you were going out with Lucy? Aha! A little………told me!
    (an expression used for saying that you are not going to say who told you something)
  5. It really gets my………, the way she keeps interrupting all the time.
    (to annoy someone)
  6. William didn’t get the promotion he wanted last year, and he’s had a……..in his bonnet about it ever since.
    (to be very involved in something that you think is important, in a way that other people find annoying)
    (30,000+ Idioms With Examples)
    (Advanced Spoken English Course)
  1. You really let the………out of the bag when you asked Louise what time her party started. She didn’t know anything about it. It was supposed to be a surprise.
    (to tell someone something that was supposed to be a secret)
  2. Where have you been? You’re soaking wet! You look like a drowned……….!
    (looking very wet and cold)
  3. Tony! What a surprise! It’s wonderful to see you again. I haven’t seen you for……..’s years!
    (an extremely long time)
  4. The hotel used to be the best in town, but since the new manager took over it’s really gone to the……….s.
    (not as good at it was in the past)
  5. I don’t trust Eric when he says he’s working late at the office. To be honest, I smell a………. .
    (to be suspicious, or to think that someone is trying to trick you)
  6. That’s the third burger you’ve eaten. I wish you’d stop making such a………of yourself.
    (to eat a lot of food)
  7. “Do you think I’ll pass my driving test tomorrow, Julie?” “Sorry, Mark, I don’t think you have a………..in hell’s chance.”
    (to have no chance at all of doing something)
    (50,000+ English Literature MCQs)
    (Advanced Grammar MCQs)
  1. I only started my new job last week, and I still feel like a……….out of water.
    (to be in a situation that you know nothing about or are not used to)
  2. “How did you know that Mr Roberts is going to resign?” “I got it straight from the……….’s mouth.”
    (information that comes from someone who is directly involved, in this case, from Mr Roberts)
  3. Have you met our new manager? He really thinks he’s the……….’s knees!
    (to think you are very clever and important)
  4. What do you think of our new English teacher? Personally I think she’s a bit of a cold………. .
    (someone who is not very friendly)
  5. Antonia is very timid: she wouldn’t say boo to a……….. .
    (an expression used to describe someone who is very quiet and shy)
  6. Why do I always have to do the……… work?
    (boring work that needs a lot of effort but has to be done as part of a job)
  7. I’d love to be a………..on the wall when Debbie tells Mr Roberts what she thinks of him!
    (to be able to see what people are doing without them noticing you)
    (20,000+ Linguistics MCQs)
    (American Literature MCQs)
  1. Two weeks before her wedding, Jane went to a nightclub for her………night.
    (a celebration for a woman who is about to get married, in which only her women friends take part)
  2. I’m so hungry, I could eat a………. !
    (an expression used for saying that you are very hungry)
  3. The bank wouldn’t lend me the money, so I had to go to a loan………. .
    (someone who lends money to people and charges them a very high rate of interest)
  4. My boss is such a……….bag. I don’t think I can go on working for her much longer. (somebody who is unpleasant with other people)
  5. I feel really sorry for poor old Steven: he’s so……….pecked.
    (criticised and given orders all the time by a wife or female partner)
  6. It was a very simple job, but I made a……….’s ear of it.
    (do something very badly)
  7. I wanted to go to Spain for my holiday, but just before I left for the airport I lost my passport. As you can imagine, that really cooked my………. .
    (to cause a lot of problems for someone, or spoil their plans)
    (Indian English Literature MCQs)
    (Summaries)
  1. I can’t help you at the moment, I’m afraid. I’ve got bigger…….. to fry.
    (to have more important things to do or think about)
  2. The party was wonderful. We had a……… of a time.
    (to have a lot of fun)
  3. You can tell John that he’s a stupid boring idiot if you like, but I’m afraid it will just be water off a………’s back.
    (an expression used for saying that advice, warnings or insults do not affect someone)
  4. I’ve got so many things to do today. I’m running around like a headless……..!
    (trying to do a lot of things quickly without being sensible or calm about it)
  5. He thinks he’s better than us. I wish he would get off his high……… .
    (stop behaving as if he knows more or is better than anyone else)
  6. Corporate fat………s have once again been accused of putting profits before people.
    (people who receive too much money for the job they do)
  7. I don’t like him, I don’t respect him, and I don’t give a………..’s what he thinks.
    (to not care about something at all)
  8. While we’re in town doing our shopping, let’s go and see my mother. That way, we can kill two……….s with one stone.
    (to achieve two aims with one action)
  9. I’ve never seen Arnie looking so happy. He’s like a……….with two tails.
    (to be very happy because something good has happened)

Answers:

  1. horse. This expression can also be used to describe someone who wins a race, competition, etc, that no one expected them to win.
  2. cat
  3. bird
  4. bird. When we find out news or information without it being officially announced, we say that we heard it on/through the grapevine, or heard it through the bush telegraph.
  5. goat. We can also say hacks me off. Somebody who annoys you intentionally winds you up.
  6. bee
  7. cat
  8. rat
  9. donkey. We can also say for ages.
  10. dog
  11. rat
  12. pig. If you eat a lot of food very quickly, you could say that you pig
    out: “The children were pigging out on biscuits and crisps”. The word pig can also be used to insult someone: “You greedy pig!” “He’s such an ignorant pig!” etc.
  1. cat. We could also say You haven’t got a hope in hell. These are not very polite expressions.
  2. fish
  3. horse
  4. bee. We can also say the cat’s whiskers:
    “Ever since he got promoted, Tom really thinks he’s the cat’s whiskers.”
  5. fish
  6. goose
  7. donkey. Somebody who often does the donkey work and the other jobs that nobody wants (often for very low pay) could be described as a dogsbody.
  8. fly. People sometimes watch fly-on-the-wall television programmes
    which show real people doing what they normally do every day: “Last night I saw a really interesting fly-on-the-wall documentary about low-cost airlines.”
  9. hen. We can also say hen party. The male equivalent is a stag night
    (in American English it is a bachelor party).
  10. horse. If you are a little bit hungry, you could say that you are peckish or have the munchies.
  11. shark
  12. rat
    (Written as one word: ratbag).
  1. hen
    (Written as one word: henpecked).
    A woman who is treated in such a way by a husband or male partner could be said to be browbeaten, although this word has more aggressive implications.
  2. pig. We can also say that you cocked it up or messed it up.
  3. goose
  4. fish. We can also say other fish to fry.
  5. whale
  6. duck
    (People who are not affected by comments, insults, etc, are thick-skinned).
  7. chicken
  8. horse
  9. cat
  10. monkey
  11. bird
  12. dog

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