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How many British idioms do you know?
How many of them do you use?
Idioms are an important part of the language.
They are part of everyday speech, used both in written and spoken English.
Idioms, however, don't make sense literally. Therefore, you have to know their meanings and purpose, as well as in which situations particularly to use them.
For example, English weather idioms don’t refer only and to weather but many similar situations.
Learning to use common British idioms is fun. Besides expanding your vocabulary, they can help you sound more fluent.
That’s why in the following lines, we've provided you the 30 most commonly used British idioms.
Memorize them, learn their meanings, and how to use them and shine in front of native English speakers.
This expression is used in situations when you want to ask someone to tell you what they are thinking at the moment. It means that the person is even willing to give you money to find out what is on your mind, that's how bad he wants to know.
When you just talk about doing something but you actually don't do a thing about it, that is the ideal case when you can use this phrase.
For example, telling someone you love him but not showing that at all isn't worth it.
This idiom is usually used when people exaggerate about something and that it is overpriced when it actually isn't worth that much.
In situations when you have two or more skills or abilities so that you can use another if the first one doesn't work.
When an idea or proposal isn’t good and when the new one has to be provided, this expression is ideal for it.
In other words, 'now it's your turn' and you have to make the next move.
You’re looking in the wrong place – accusing the wrong person or pursuing a mistaken or misguided line of thought.
When you don’t want to answer or you avoid talking about a particular topic is one of the typical British expressions.
It is used to explain that it is better to arrive late or finish something even after the deadline than not to do it at all.
This idiom is used in situations when you are trying to accomplish something that is too hard for you or you don't have the right knowledge or experience to achieve it.
There's a good reason why the best thing to the British is sliced bread.
Therefore, when you say 'the best thing since sliced bread' it means that the thing, object, or opinion is really that good, almost ideal.
Just like apples and oranges aren't the same and you can't compare them, the same you can compare two different things.
Did curiosity really kill the cat? Perhaps not but we will never know for sure.
What this expression wants to say is that you have to be careful in finding out the answer you are interested in because you can find many unpleasant things or situations.
Here's another great idiom. It's a bit realistic, shoeing you should be careful and
don’t make plans for something that might not happen.
Don’t put all your hope/resources in one possibility, lose the basket and you're left hopeless.
This expression became the catchphrase since Elvis Presley’s concerts.
The idiom refers that something has ended as the show has ended and we can all go home.
This expression dates back centuries ago when people were sleeping on sacks. Therefore, it means that you would be going to bed.
Can you dance the tango alone? Of course not. You need a partner.
That's how it is in real life, too. It means that for some actions it needs more than one person to work successfully. Therefore, in some cases, teamwork is better.
When you successfully finish two tasks at once or solve two problems at the same time. If you, however, think that it is against animals and living beings, you can use 'feed two birds with one scone.'
Here's one idiom that refers to what it is really about- the money. It means that if you start saving small amounts of money, you'll accumulate it.
In other situations, it refers to concentrating on small things to get the bigger ones in the end.
In situations when you have to say something briefly without getting into the details, you use this expression.
The phrase means that if you want something really hard, you have to try and give your best to get it.
When you want to somehow show someone that he doesn't think in common sense or lacks intelligence.
You don't really pull other people's legs. It is enough to joke with someone, for which you can use this idiom.
Even though many would think that this expression is used to meet someone, it actually means when people agree on some subject because of the same view.
This phrase is used in situations when a person arrives just after he is being mentioned, as he knew you were talking about him.
When you take someone else’s work or idea and turned it into your own for which you get all the credits while the person whose work or idea originally was, says without the promotion.
You don't have to try mixing your own medicine and try it for real, but the meaning of this expression refers to the fact that people should treat others the way they want to be treated.
No English student who hasn't heard of this expression.
And an explanation is really simple: don't judge people or objects by their look but what's inside because that's what matters.
In cases when having no idea or you don't have the answer, just like the others, feel free to use this expression.
Now that you've learned some of the most common idiomatic expressions to use all the time, perhaps it's time to expand your idioms vocabulary with English tutors. Moreover, you can practice them together to improve your pronunciation as well, so it's a win-win situation, or should we say 'you've fed two birds with one scone.'
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