20 Useful Personal Names Idioms, Phrases and Sayings

Personal Names Idioms are a fascinating aspect of the English language. These idioms use the names of people to convey a certain meaning or situation. For example, the idiom “Jack of all trades” refers to someone skilled in many different areas. Meanwhile, the idiom “Rob Peter to pay Paul” means to solve one problem by creating another.

List of Idioms about Names

  • Not Know Jack
  • The Real McCoy
  • No Names, No Pack Drill
  • Any Tom, Dick or Harry
  • Rob Peter to Pay Paul
  • On the Fritz
  • Jack of All Trades
  • Even Steven
  • (Between) Buckley’s and Nunn
  • Peeping Tom
  • Doubting Thomas
  • Lazy Susan
  • Johnny-on-the-spot
  • Smart Alec(k)
  • Average Joe
  • Joe Bloggs
  • Uncle Sam
  • For Pete’s sake
  • Keeping up with the Joneses
  • Plain Jane

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Personal Names Idioms with Meaning 

Idiom Meaning
Not Know Jack To not know something; to be ignorant.
The Real McCoy The genuine article; is something authentic or of high quality.
No Names, No Pack Drill To avoid giving specifics to prevent trouble or repercussions.
Any Tom, Dick, or Harry Any ordinary person; people in general, without regard for their individuality.
Rob Peter to Pay Paul To take from one person or thing to give to another, often creating a new problem.
On the Fritz Not working properly; malfunctioning.
Jack of All Trades A person who is competent in many skills but may not excel in any particular one.
Even Steven Having nothing owed on either side; being in a situation where everything is equal.
(Between) Buckley’s and Nunn It’s an Australian idiom meaning having no chance at all.
Peeping Tom A person who secretly watches others, especially for sexual gratification.
Doubting Thomas A person who is skeptical and refuses to believe something without proof.
Lazy Susan A revolving tray is often used on dining tables to pass items around with ease.
Johnny-on-the-spot Someone present and ready to perform a task or respond to a situation.
Smart Alec(k) A person who is irritating because they behave as if they know everything.
Average Joe An ordinary person with nothing special or remarkable about them.
Joe Bloggs A name used to represent the average man or everyman; a typical person.
Uncle Sam A personification of the United States government or the country in general.
For Pete’s sake An exclamation of frustration or impatience.
Keeping up with the Joneses Competing with one’s neighbors in social status and material goods.
Plain Jane A unadorned woman, simple in appearance, or lacking in obvious beauty or allure.

Personal Names Idioms with Example Sentences

Idiom Example Sentences
Not Know Jack He claims to be an expert, but when it comes to the details, he doesn’t know Jack.
The Real McCoy If you’re looking for authentic leather, this is the real McCoy.
No Names, No Pack Drill Let’s keep this discussion off the record: no names, no pack drill.
Any Tom, Dick or Harry She won’t just date any Tom, Dick, or Harry; she’s very selective.
Rob Peter to Pay Paul Taking out another loan to pay off the first one is like robbing Peter to pay Paul.
On the Fritz My old laptop is on the fritz again; it might be time for an upgrade.
Jack of All Trades He’s a jack of all trades, skilled at carpentry, plumbing, and electrical work.
Even Steven After paying back the $20 I owed, we’re Even Steven now.
(Between) Buckley’s and Nunn  I have Buckley’s and Nunn of winning the race against those professional runners.
Peeping Tom The neighborhood peeping Tom was caught spying on residents.
Doubting Thomas I’ll believe it when I see it; call me a doubting Thomas.
Lazy Susan Pass the salt, please; just spin the lazy Susan around.
Johnny-on-the-spot Whenever there’s an emergency, he’s Johnny-on-the-spot with a solution.
Smart Alec Stop being such a Smart Alec and just listen to what I’m saying.
Average Joe He’s just an average Joe, living a simple life with no interest in fame or fortune.
Joe Bloggs Joe Bloggs might not care about the new tax law, but it affects him nonetheless.
Uncle Sam Many people see Uncle Sam as a symbol of the United States government.
For Pete’s sake For Pete’s sake, can you please turn down the music? It’s too loud!
Keeping up with the Joneses They bought a new car not because they needed one, but simply to keep up with the Joneses.
Plain Jane Despite being a plain Jane, she has a vibrant personality that draws people to her.
 
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Last Updated on November 21, 2023

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5 thoughts on “20 Useful Personal Names Idioms, Phrases and Sayings”

  1. The Real McCoy said to any tom, d**k or harry that he’s going to Rob Peter to pay Paul, and Jack of all trades, being on the Fritz said well now you are Even Steven. So Karen says to Stacey, stop being a Karen, thats between Buckleys and Nunn! Becky butts in and says no names, no pack drill, you do Not Know Jack, be careful, Karma’s a b***h! Light fingered Larry says stop being a Karen, you are already living the Life of Riley! 

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  2. They missed the term: “Living the life of Riley/Reilly” meaning living the good life without hard work, worries and (money) problems.

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