BAD BLOOD: enmity, hostility.
He has denied there is any bad blood between him and his classmate



WARTS AND ALL: with flaws included.

"It's a warts and all view of what happened during the meeting of board of directors



TO BE BREATHING DOWN SOMEONE'S NECK: to be about to catch up to someone, OR to be watching someone very closely, to be putting pressure on that person, for example at work.

Victor group are breathing down their necks after extending their unbeaten score of 95 runs 


To LIVE LARGE is to lead a luxurious lifestyle. 

Those who like to live large should fear about the end result.


A TALL ORDER: something that's very difficult to do.
It was always going to be a tall order and would require a very long and complicated process.


PLAY HARDBALL: take an aggressive stance in negotiations, behave ruthlessly. 

  Ministers want to play hardball ,they better bring their A game.

To "bring your A game" is to be prepared to compete at your top level.

Meaning of Idioms and Phrases

Idioms on Animals

A Paper Tiger

paper tiger is an expression drawn from a Chinese saying. A paper tiger may pose in a threatening way, but it is actually completely harmless.

 He would be a busy bee around the house, repairing or renovating everything in sight. . 

He was a packrat who never threw a single tool away, leaving his garage very crowded.

He was a fat cat who had made hundreds of millions during the real estate boom. 

He was criticized as a white elephant that consumed a great deal of money while delivering very little in return.

 she smelled a rat when he was arriving "late from work" 

 He let the cat out of the bag by telling the truth

This revelation opened a can of worms by causing a great deal of friction

sarah enjoys pigging out at the local fast food restaurant. 

Often, she can be seen wolfing down a pizza

 People have been dropping like flies with the flu this year. when pigs fly!"

 You sound like you have a frog in your throat

A Busy Bee

A "busy bee" is someone or some creature who or that is very busy, like an industrious worker bee.

Example: "She was a busy bee around the house, washing dishes, dusting shelves, and doing the laundry."

Smelling A Rat

Just as something being "fishy" describes something suspicious, to "smell a rat" is to suspect trickery or treachery.

Example: "I considered buying that car at nine thousand dollars, but I smelled a rat.

A Packrat

The Packrat - genus Neotoma - is a type of rodent of western North America that is famousfor hoarding food and other objects.

He is a total packrat. He never throws his old junk away. His house is so packed full of old things, you can barely walk in it! He needs to throw that junk out!"

If a person really did have a frog in his or her throat, that person would have a very difficult time speaking. As an idiom, to have a frog in your throat means to be speaking with a hoarse voice.

When Pigs Fly

One of English's more colorful idioms, "when pigs fly" describes an extremely unlikely event, one that will never realistically come to pass.

Horsing Around

To "horse around" is to play roughly, without regard for normal limitations such as rules or safety.

An Eager Beaver

Someone said to be "an eager beaver" is someone very excited and enthusiastic about doing a particular task.

Wolfing Food Down

To "wolf down" food is to eat food quickly, without fully chewing it.

Pigging Out

To "pig out" is to eat a great deal of food, thus resembling a hungry pig.

Opening A Can Of Worms

Figuratively, to open a can of worms is to create or initiate a situation that will cause trouble or will simply be unpleasant.

Letting The Cat Out Of The Bag

Letting the cat out of the bag, is a metaphor for revealing a secret.

A Fat Cat

Idiomatically, "a fat cat" is someone who is very wealthy and, as a result, is able to eat more food than necessary and otherwise enjoy a life of luxury. Thus, they resemble fat, lazy cats that eat, sleep and do nothing useful.

A White Elephant

Idiomatically, a white elephant is something that is very expensive to maintain, and which provides absolutely no benefit whatsoever to the owner.

Most Popular Course:Data Science of Harvard, MIT, IBM.... 


HOLD SOMEONE'S FEET TO THE FIRE: to put pressure on someone about fulfilling a commitment. 

 Protesters will be holding their elders’ feet to the fire. 


FLY YOUR FREAK FLAG, or LET YOUR FREAK FLAG FLY: embrace and be proud of your own unusual individual style.

He is ready to let his freak flag fly. 


SKELETON CREW : a minimum staffing level that covers only essential functions of an organization. 

Only skeleton crews are monitoring complaints of consumers


A Case For Action

In English, a case is an idiom used to refer to any respectable argument that can be made for a given position. So long as an argument will not be simply laughed at as too ridiculous, it constitutes a case; therefore, an argument.

When the economy darkens, the outlook worsens.


When economic prospects brighten, they improve.

Salvaging Victory

Figuratively, to salvage something is to save it from disaster. Thus, to salvage victory is to obtain a narrow victory after having been facing defeat.

Political Battlegrounds

Elections are not properly fought with muskets and cannon, but figuratively speaking, any area where there is a fierce political campaign, with the final outcome in serious doubt, can be referred to as a political battleground.

Pumping Money

pump is a device for pushing air, water or other fluids through tubes or pipes. To pump is to perform this pushing. Therefore, to pump money somewhere is to put money into that place for some kind of purpose.

This is easy to demonstrate with an example from politics.

A Wave Of Ads

When we figuratively refer to a wave of something, we mean a large series, with one coming after another. Thus, the effect is like a large wave washing ashore, with sustained (but finite) force.

Thus, a wave of advertisements (ads for short) is a series of one advertisement after another.

Ramping Up Spending

ramp is a flat walkway raised to rest at an angle, performing the same function as stairs (but far more suitable for anything wheeled, such as wheelchairs for the disabled).

When raising a level of spending, a graph would show a series of points, one rising after another. If you connect the dots, the resulting image looks like a ramp. Therefore, toramp up is to increase the level of something measurable, particularly in relation to money or effort.

Smooth Sailing

The opposite of rough sailing, smooth sailing implies particularly easy progress with little effort required.

Smooth sailing would be sailing in calm waters.

Rough Sailing

Rough sailing is an abbreviation for rough weather sailing or sailing in rough waters. This gives the impression of very difficult progress requiring much greater effort than normal progress.

Sailing To Victory

Figuratively, to sail to victory is to achieve victory easily, with little effort. 

As a sailboat seems to move gracefully and with little effort - certainly less effort than rowing -sailing has become an idiom, in general, for success with minimal effort. 

Going Solar

To go solar is to convert a house so that it will collect solar energy through the use of solar energy panels (or some kind of equivalent). It does not imply powering a house by electrical power alone, but suggests a great effort to maximize the percentage of power drawn from solar energy. The most reliable use of this energy is often to heat water.

Zombie Banks

A "zombie" is a fictional undead creature, usually the animated corpse of a human being. A zombie is among "the living dead," something that is neither fully dead, nor alive in any normal sense.

Thus, a "zombie bank" is a bank which is technically "alive" (i.e. not in bankruptcy) but which is incapable of meaningful, productive, or new financial activity. Such a bank may exist, but it does not truly live.

Taking The Temperature (of a group)

To "take the temperature" of a group is to obtain opinions from various members and determine the level of support, or opposition, in the group for a particular action or policy.

A group can be warm or cold to an action or policy.

Buck Up

To buck up is to behave like a buck - in the sense of, a male deer - that is rutting, that is, in the midst of its mating cycle. This would be similar to a cat in heat, except it applies exclusively to males and represents aggressive male behavior, such as butting heads with other bucks (figuratively and very much literally), displays of antlers to female deer, and so forth.

Show Some Backbone

The backbone is really just another word for spine. The form of this idiom is to "show" or "demonstrate" some backbone, meaning, to demonstrate to others that you are not a chicken (coward), but rather, a brave and vigorous person.

Have / Grow A Spine

The spine is the set of bones that is the body's pillar of support. The human body's muscles use the spine as the foundation for all firm, aggressive motion. Therefore, having a spine has become idiomatic for behaving in a courageous or vigorous manner, the opposite of behaving like a "chicken" (a coward).

To grow a spine is to begin behaving in a courageous or vigorous manner, while having a spine is to continue to behave in such a manner.

Breathing Down Someone's Neck
In politics, as in horse races, to be breathing down someone's neck is to be very close behind that person in a race. 

Front Runner Status

One of a variety of "horse race" political idioms, front runner status means the state of being in the lead.

The "race" is the campaign for political office.

Staring Down The Barrel Of....

When you are staring down the barrel of something, you are faced with an imminent danger (one which happens soon). 

In Line (To Succeed)
When you are "in line" to succeed someone, you are part of a line of succession determining who, and in what order, will replace a leader if he/ she cannot continue to serve due to death, disability or other causes.

Up For Grabs

When something is up for grabs, it is available; it can be obtained freely without stealing from someone else. 

This is often used in electoral politics, but has other applications.

Band-Aid Solution
A band-aid is a small covering placed over small cuts to protect an injured area, limit bleeding, and speed healing. Properly speaking, Band-Aid is a brand name, but is so widely known that it has become an idiom in itself.

A band-aid solution is a quick fix incapable of dealing with problems of a large scale, providing temporary relief only, and usually, inadequate temporary relief at that.

A Blip
Unlike a wave, "a blip" is a reference to a signal given off by radar (originally an acronym, now treated as a noun) indicating the presence of a real object at a given moment in time.

In trends, a figurative "blip" means a temporary event that is not, or is not yet known to be, part of a larger trend.

A Wave

In idioms, "a wave" is any significant, sustained change. This can be positive, but is often used in a negative manner.

A Tsunami/ A Tidal Wave

In nature, a tsunami (Japanese term) is a giant wave. Properly speaking, "a tidal wave," used as the equivalent of tsunami, is incorrect; a wave created by a tide can be very, very tiny.

In politics, as well as other settings, "a tsunami" or "a tidal wave" (such as a tidal wave of support) means a powerful trend that, temporarily at least, changes the proverbial landscape.

A Method To One's Madness
Proverbially, when there is said to be a method to someone's madness, this expresses thatwhat at first appears to be madness, that is, random, illogical behavior, has a real purpose. It is in fact a method to achieve a tangible goal, with actual thought behind it. 

Crowning Achievement
A "crowning achievement" is a great success worthy of much praise and respect.

Easier Said Than Done
Something that is "easier said than done" - in other words, this idiom used as an adjective - means, something that is more difficult to actually do in reality, than to promise, pledge, or vow to do it. 

In Store
Idiomatically speaking, "in store"  means something that is lying in wait for a person to encounter.

For Starters

When I use the phrase, "for starters," I mean, as a starting/ beginning point, the first of a series.

Jumping The Shark
The phrase "jumping the shark"means began a permanent decline away from its peak until the moment it ended. 

Heading Downhill

When something is figuratively heading downhill (that is, going downhill), it is in declineit is past its peak and deteriorating.

In All Seriousness

When I write the phrase, "in all seriousness," I mean, as a completely serious, literal point, without sarcasm, irony, or humor.

Digging It
An idiom popularized in the 70's, to "dig something" is to like that something very much.

Giving A Damn

A "damn" (a damnation/ condemnation) directed at something is not a positive thing, but at least it means the person "giving a damn" cares about the subject in one way or another. 

A.M. and P.M.
Abbreviated from Latin. A.M. means Ante Meridiem and P.M. means Post Meridiem.

Meridiem = Meridian, the dividing line between the early day and the late day, otherwise known as noon.

Keep Up The Good Work
If someone tells you to keep up the good work, that person is telling you to continue what you are doing. In addition, this statement is complimenting your efforts as good work.

To Keep Something Coming

If someone says, keep X coming, this is an invitation to bring more of that thing.

"Make My Day"
Doubling as a famous quote, "Make my day" is urging someone else to provide an excuse for a violent confrontation, which will provide pleasure to the speaker. This may or may not be used as a bluff.

More broadly, if something makes your day, it has made the day a good one.

Forcing Something

Literally, to force something into a suitcase (for example) would be to push and push to squeeze clothing into the suitcase. This is despite the clothing not being properly packed to fit inside the suitcase's size.

Figuratively, to force something is to attempt to succeed by effort where an action is not appropriate, suitable, or comfortable.

Turning The Page
Figuratively speaking, to "turn the page" on something is to leave an event or series of events behind and continue on with life. 

Mission Accomplished

Originating from the military, "mission accomplished" simply means that a mission's goals have been successfully fulfilled.

The trick is defining the mission properly. Technically, a mission is a single complex task within larger operations, battles, and wars. Idiomatically, politicians often use the wordmission to refer to any major sustained effort. These two meanings can come into conflict.

I Can't Thank You Enough

When someone says, "I can't thank you enough," this is saying that words alone are insufficient to represent the deep gratitude the other person has for you.

Words Fail Me

When words fail you, you are unable to find the proper words to fit a situation, often because the situation is so abnormal.

At A Loss For Words

When a person is at a loss for words, that person is speechless.

Speechless does not mean unable to speak (i.e. a person who is mute); it means someone who is too overwhelmed to speak, or at the very least, unable to say anything profound enough to suit (fit) the occasion.

"I Can't Hear You!"
An idiom used by military drill sergeants in an aggressive, provocative way. When a drill sergeant yells this at a new recruit at a distance of two inches, the message being conveyed is this: "Speak louder!"

To Snatch Away

To snatch away something is to a) grab onto something, b) take possession of it, c) take it out of reach of the original possessor.

This idiom is often split.

At The Top Of Your Lungs

To say something at the top of one's lungs is to say it very loudly, probably by SHOUTING.

The reason Internet writers are encouraged not to use "all caps" (all capital letters) is because it is understood by the native English speaker as equivalent to shouting, which is far too loud for a conversational tone.

Hanging Your Head (In Shame)
To "hang your head" is not to commit suicide; it is to lower your head in shame or embarrassment.

You hang your head by tilting your head forward, eyes looking down. This is body language associated with shame, defeat, and humiliation


Easy softwares by Anil Singhania The Website of Professor Paul Brians; Common spoken English mistakes by Alif innovative solutions; 25000+ Amazing Facts - Did You Know?; IP idioms and phrases

  Seven Ways to Support Healthy Blood Pressure During Pregnancy ( NewsUSA ) – Pregnant or planning a pregnancy? It’s time to think about yo...