Each language is rich in phraseologisms that make speech interesting, rich and mysterious for foreigners. Each phraseologism has its own story. Most of them are unique. They seem ridiculous when translated literally. Some sound absolutely identical in all languages of the world and mean the same thing.
Englishmen often use idioms — stable, inseparable phrases which have figurative meaning. It is useless to translate them word for word. So, you just need to learn them. In this article, we will introduce 25 bizarre English idioms to you.
History of English idioms and rules for their use
Most of English idioms are rooted in biblical history, myths and folktales. Some modern idioms are used in the daily speech of the British on the Internet, in music and films.
Idioms are always used in their unchanged forms. They are template phrases that describe certain situations. There are already more than 1,000 English idioms. Their number continues to grow.
In addition to idioms, cliché phrases, welcoming expressions, stable expressions, proverbs, phrasal verbs and collocations are also referred to English template expressions.
You should use idioms only in certain situations, in order to not fall flat on your face talking to people. Therefore, you need to know the meaning of the phrases you say and have control of the situation, in order to understand that the idiom describes it correctly.
25 idioms that will be useful to you in daily conversations
1. Every dog has his day — everyone will be lucky someday;
2. Be like chalk and cheese — be absolutely different;
3. Cry over spilt milk — regret of something that you will never be able to change;
4. Once in a blue moon — very rarely;
5. A leopard can’t change his spots — some people cannot be changed ever;
6. Be snowed under — to be loaded with work;
7. Weather the storm — survive hard times;
8. Under a cloud — be suspected or not be trusted by others;
9. Bet your bottom dollar — be sure that something will happen;
10. Cost a fortune — very expensive;
11. Be in the red — be in debt;
12. Elephant in the room — something obvious and clear;
13. Like a cat on a hot tin roof — unable to relax, very worried about something;
14. Egghead — a person that always tries to look clever in the eyes of others;
15. Tie the Knot — get married;
16. Let sleeping dogs lie — not to disturb someone or not to remember problems that happened in the past;
17. It takes two to tango — something cannot be done by only one person; therefore two people should deal with the situation;
18. Vanish into thin air — disappear;
19. The green-eyed monster — jealousy;
20. To have green fingers/green thumb — to love gardening;
21. A white elephant — an expensive, but unneeded thing;
22. Always a bridesmaid, never a bride — a talented person that always fails to win;
23. Bark up the wrong tree — make a wrong choice or decision;
24. Saturday night special — a small-caliber revolver.
25. Bitter pill to swallow — bad news that you have to hear and accept.