Phrases and Idioms

Meaning

301.

ever – ever and anon

Occasionally; from time to time.

302.

every – every now and again

Occasionally.

303.

every – every now and then

Sometimes but not often.

304.

every – every other

Each alternate item in a list of items.

305.

every – every so often

Occasionally; sometimes.

306.

every – every Tom, Dick, and Harry

Used to refer to ordinary people in general.

307.

every – every which way

In all directions.

308.

evil - the evil eye

A look from the evil eye according to old superstition is believed to cause considerable harm.

309.

eye - an eye for an eye

Retaliation in kind as appropriate to deal with a wrong.

310.

eye – be all eyes

Be watching eagerly and attentively

311.

eye - catch someone’s eye

To attract someone’s attention.

312.

eye – close one’s eyes

To deliberately not notice something unpleasant.

313.

eye – make eyes at

To look at someone with sexual interest.

314.

eye – open someone’s eyes

To make someone aware of something.

315.

eye - the naked eye

Seeing without using a telescope, microscope, etc

316.

eye – to my eye

In one’s opinion with regards to how someone or something looks.

317.

eyeball - eyeball to eyeball

Face to face with someone in a mutually angry or hostile way.

318.

face – face the music

Accept the consequences of something one has done.

319.

fact – facts of life

Information about sex.

320.

fair - fair and square

Accurately; honestly and openly.

321.

fair - fair’s fair

Request for fair play or treatment, or a statement that something has been fair.

322.

fair - fair-weather friend

A person whose friendship is not genuine, especially in times of crisis.

323.

fair - the fair sex

Women.

324.

faith – act of faith

An action demonstrating trust.

325.

faith – breach of faith

Betrayal of trust; insincerity.

326.

faith – in good faith

With intention to be honest; sincerity.

327.

fall – fall foul of

To break a rule or law.

328.

fall – fall from grace

To stop being liked by others, especially those in authority.

329.

fall – fall into line

To conform to what is required of someone.

330.

fall – fall into place

To begin to become clear or make sense.

331.

fall – fall short of

To be less than the amount or standard required.

332.

fancy – take someone’s fancy

Make something attractive or interesting to someone.

333.

favour – in favour of

In support of or agree to something.

334.

feather – feather in (one’s) cap

An achievement that one should be proud of.

335.

feel – feel the pinch

Experience difficulties, especially financial.

336.

fiddle – play second fiddle (to)

To take a less important role.

337.

fight – fight or flight

Instinctive response to a threatening situation.

338.

fight – fight shy of

To avoid doing or becoming involved with something.

339.

fill – fill someone’s shoes

Substitute someone’s role and perform it acceptably.

340.

fill – fill the bill

To have the qualities suitable for a particular purpose.

341.

find – find favour with

To be liked or approved of.

342.

fine – one’s finest hour

Time when someone experiences their greatest success.

343.

fire – fire and brimstone

Refers to hell.

344.

first – at first light

Dawn; daybreak.

345.

first – first among equals

The most outstanding one.

346.

first – first and foremost

The primary purpose of something.

347.

first – first of all

Before doing anything else.

348.

first –first things first

Dealing with things in or

349.

flat – go flat against

To completely disregard or reject outright.

350.

flesh – flesh and blood

Someone of one’s own family.

351.

flesh - put flesh on

To provide details so as to clarify.

352.

floor – take the floor

To dance or speak at a social event, etc.

353.

fly – fly a kite

To try out something new so as to test reaction.

354.

flying - with flying colours

Very successfully.

355.

follow – as follows

To present a list of something.

356.

follow – follow suit

To do the same thing as someone has just done.

357.

follow – follow the herd

To just blindly do what other people do.

358.

foot - feet of clay

Someone whose faults are not easily known.

359.

force – by force of

By means of.

360.

force – come into force

Start to operate.

361.

force – force of circumstance

External factors that influence one’s decisions

362.

force – force someone’s hand

Exert pressure on someone to do something.

363.

force – force the bidding

To deliberately and quickly drive up a price

364.

force – force the issue

To pressure someone to make a hasty decision.

365.

force – forces of darkness

Evil influences or the devil.

366.

force – forces of nature

Natural forces such as the earthquakes, volcanoes, wind, etc.

367.

fortune – a small fortune

A large amount of money.

368.

fortune – soldier of fortune

A soldier who will fight in return for money; a mercenary.

369.

French – take French leave

To absent oneself form work, etc. without permission.

370.

full – full steam ahead

To proceed or do something energetically and speedily.

371.

further - until further notice

Until one is notified again.

372.

garbage – garbage in, garbage out

Inferior quality input will produce low quality output.

373.

gauntlet - run the gauntlet

Take whatever criticisms or attacks that come one’s way.

374.

get – get a life.

Used to tell someone that they are boring.

375.

go – go for it

Put in all one’s effort to get something.

376.

go – go without saying

To be self-evident.

377.

go - have a go

Make an attempt at something.

378.

go – on the go

On the move all the time.

379.

go – who goes there?

A sentry’s challenge to someone to identify themselves.

380.

goalpost – move the goalposts

Alter the rules in an unfair manner.

381.

grade - make the grade

To accomplish what is required. Succeed.

382.

grass – the grass roots

The ordinary people as opposed to the leaders in an organization.

383.

grease - grease someone’s palm

To bribe someone.

384.

grease - like greased lightning

Extremely fast.

385.

green - green with envy

Very envious or jealous

386.

green - green-eyed monster

Jealousy.

387.

green - have green fingers

Clever at growing plants.

388.

grim – like/for  grim death

With great determination.

389.

grind - the daily grind

The monotonous work that one does every day.

390.

grit – grit one’s teeth

To persevere in one’s efforts to overcome something difficult.

391.

groan – moan and groan

Complain constantly.

392.

guard – guard of honour

A group of soldiers assembled to ceremonially welcome an important visitor, usually a foreign head of state.

393.

guard – lower your guard

Fail to give proper care or attention to.

394.

guess - be anybody’s guess

Something that no one knows but only guess at.

395.

guest - be my guest

Used to express permission to someone to do what they have asked to do.

396.

guest – guest of honour

The most important person invited to a special function.

397.

gun – jump the gun

To act sooner than one should without considering the proper time to do it.

398.

gutter – the gutter press

Newspapers engaging in sensationalism and considered as fit only for the gutter

399.

hair - a hair’s breath

A very small margin

400.

half - half a mind (to)

Used when one is unsure about doing something.