An idiom is a group of words which, when used together, has a different meaning from the one which the individual words have. Learn List of Idioms in English with meaning and examples.
You can jump to any section of this lesson:
- 1 Measurements Idioms
- 2 Colors Idioms | List of Idioms
- 3 Idioms Using Numbers
- 4 Time and Times of Day Idioms
- 5 Place Names Idioms
- 6 List of Idioms: Other ways to say
(The) Whole Nine Yards
- Meaning: The entire amount; everything; all of something
- Example: Sandra does everything around the office: sales, secretarial work, personnel management – the whole nine yards.
Note: There is much debate over the origin of this idiom; no one really knows where it came from.
A Bit Much
- Meaning: More than is reasonable; a bit too much
- Example: You’re asking us to pay for your trip to Ibiza? That’s a bit much, don’t you think?
A Cut Above
- Meaning: Slightly better than
- Example: There are lots of good midsize cars on the market, but the Toyota Camry has been a cut above the others for many years.
Colors Idioms | List of Idioms
- Meaning: A warning; a sign of trouble ahead
- Example: Jennifer always drinks too much when we go out after work. I was thinking of promoting her, but that’s a red flag.
(To Be) Yellow
- Meaning: Be cowardly
- Example: I got up on the high dive, but I was too yellow to jump off.
Note: This is old-fashioned.
Show One’s True Colors
- Meaning: Reveal one’s true nature
- Example: Andrew acts very friendly, but he showed his true colors when he stole the money that Ellen left on the table.
At sixes and sevens
- Meaning: Someone is in a state of confusion or not very well organized.
- Example: I’m at sixes and sevens now that the whole schedule has been rearranged.
At the eleventh hour
- Meaning: It happens when it is almost too late.
- Example: I was shocked that they reached an agreement at the eleventh hour after weeks of squabbling.
Back to square one
- Meaning: Back to the start
- Example: The project failed, we’re back to square one.
Place Names Idioms
10 Downing Street
- Meaning: The title or office of the Prime Minister. The government of the United Kingdom
- Example: During the colonial era, a young administrator whose aspirations reached toward 10 Downing Street might serve in India to build a network and credentials.
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
- Meaning: The current U.S. President and administration members; the White House
- Example: In American politics, Congress and the courts try to assert their power, but 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue is where important international policies get decided.
Shipshape And Bristol Fashion
- Meaning: Tidy, clean
- Example: I want to see this office shipshape and Bristol fashion when the president visits tomorrow. Clean up all the papers on your desks!
Note: This is rather old-fashioned.