10+ Common Idioms Related to Death in English

Learn common idioms related to Death in English with meaning and examples.

Full Fathom Five

  • Meaning: Lost deep in the sea
  • Example: There was a terrible boat accident yesterday. I’m afraid many people are lost full fathom five.

Note: This is rom Shakespeare’s “The Tempest.” By now, it’s rather old-fashioned and poetic.

Kick the Bucket

  • Meaning: To die
  • Example: Before I kick the bucket, I want to visit Iceland.

Over My Dead Body

  • Meaning: Under no circumstances
  • Example: You’re only 17! You’ll go to that party over my dead body!

Pop One’s Clogs

  • Meaning: To die
  • Example: In most movies, there’s a happy ending and the villain pops his clogs.

Pushing Up Daisies

  • Meaning: Dead and buried
  • Example: The Rolling Stones’ music will live on even after they’re all pushing up daisies.

Useful Idioms Related to Death in English

Idioms Related to Death

Set in Stone

  • Meaning: Fixed; unchangeable
  • Example: Nothing is set in stone—we can still change the details of the contract.

Note: This is usually used in the negative, as in the example.

Six Feet Under

  • Meaning: Dead and buried
  • Example: Even though Michael Jackson is six feet under, his recordings are still making money.

Sleep with the Fishes

  • Meaning: Dead, often by murder
  • Example: Rocco tried to siphon money off from the Mob for himself. Now he sleeps with the fishes.

Swim with the Fishes

  • Meaning: Have been killed, especially with involvement of organized crime
  • Example: You won’t be able to ask Carmine about the missing money. He swims with the fishes.

Note: This is old-fashioned Mafia jargon—not terribly common today.

Whistle Past the Graveyard

  • Meaning: Remain optimistic despite dangers; be clueless
  • Example: Stockbrokers act as though stock prices will always rise, but they’re whistling past the graveyard.

Your Number Is Up

  • Meaning: You are going to die (or suffer some bad misfortune or setback).
  • Example: When his squadron was surrounded, the soldier thought his number was up.

1 responses on "10+ Common Idioms Related to Death in English"

  1. Thank you very much! At first look some of the meanings comes a bit sinister, but I perceive them all smilingly knowing that this is the topic and that is a culture with deeply buried roots. Yet, i would be happy to know how they derive from.

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