English Idioms You Should Know
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English Idioms You Should Know
The British love to use idioms in everyday conversation, which is why you often find them in books, TV series and movies . To perfect your English , you really need to familiarize yourself with these idioms, thus knowing the difference between “breaking a leg” and “pulling someone’s leg”.
Here are 20 idioms in English that you should know.
1. Under the weather (Bajo el clima)
- What does that mean? Not feeling well, feeling sick.
- How to use it? In England they love to talk about the weather and they do it very often, but don’t be fooled by this expression. If someone says “I feel bad,” your response should be “I hope you get well soon” and not “Do you want to borrow my umbrella?”
2. The ball is in your court (La pelota está en tu tejado)
- What does that mean? It is up to you to decide.
- How to use it? Make your move, but this expression refers more to life than to sport. If you have the ball in your hand, the decision is yours and someone is waiting for you to take it.
Spill the beans (Descubrir el pastel)
- What does that mean? Discover a secret.
- How to use it? If you told someone about their surprise party, in that case you’ve “spilled the bean” or even “let the cat out of the bag.” The secret has now been revealed.
Break a leg (Romper una pierna)
- What does that mean? Wish someone good luck.
- How to use it? This expression is not at all threatening. Often accompanied by a thumbs-up, “break a leg” is an encouraging wish for good luck. It stems from the habit of successful theater artists of bending over so many times after a show to the point of breaking a leg.
Pull someone’s leg (Tirar de la pierna de alguien)
- What does that mean? Joke around with someone.
- How to use it? This is the perfect expression to learn if you are a fan of jokes. “Pulling your leg” is similar to “Winding someone up.” In context: “Relax, I’m just kidding you! “Or” Wait, are you kidding me? “.
Sat on the fence (Sentado en la valla)
- What does that mean? Being undecided.
- How to use it? If you’re sitting on the fence, you haven’t decided yet which side of the debate to side with. “I’m undecided about hot yoga classes” translates to “I’m not sure if I’d like to do yoga in a sauna.”
Through thick and thin (En las buenas y en las malas)
- What does that mean? Be faithful in spite of everything and everyone.
- How to use it? Often used to describe family ties or best friends, the term “through thick and thin” means that you will be by the other person’s side no matter what happens, through thick and thin.
Once in a blue moon (Una vez en una luna azul)
- What does that mean? Rarely.
- How to use it? This fascinating expression is used to describe something that doesn’t happen that often. For example, “I remember calling my parents from my study trip abroad once on a blue moon” (“I rarely remember calling my parents while I was abroad”).
It’s the best thing since sliced bread (Es lo mejor desde el pan de molde)
- What does that mean? It’s really great.
- How to use it? Sliced bread must have really revolutionized life in England because it has always been used as a reference for everything fantastic. We love it as much as tea.
Take it with a pinch of salt (Tómalo con una pizca de sal)
- What does that mean? Don’t take it too seriously.
- How to use it? “I heard that elephants can fly now, but Sam often makes up stories, so I take everything he says with a pinch of salt.” (“I heard that elephants can fly now, but Sam makes up so many things so many times that I no longer take everything he says seriously”)
Come rain or shine (Llueva o haga sol)
- What does that mean? Whatever happens.
- How to use it? When you promise to do something, regardless of the weather or whatever else may happen. “I’ll be at your soccer game, rain or shine.”
Go down in flames (Bajar en llamas)
- What does that mean? Fail spectacularly.
- How to use it? This expression is quite obvious. “That exam caught fire, I should have learned my English idioms.”
You can say that again (Puedes decir eso de nuevo)
- What does that mean? It is true.
- How to use it? Usually, you are exclaimed to express your agreement with someone. When a friend says’ Ryan Reynolds is beautiful! ‘, You can say’ You can say that again! ‘
See eye to eye (Ver cara a cara)
- What does that mean? Completely agree.
- How to use it? We are no longer suggesting a challenge to look in the eye – seeing someone in the eye means that you agree with what they are saying.
Jump on the bandwagon (Súbete al carro)
- What does that mean? Follow a trend.
- How to use it? When a person follows a trend or does something just because it’s cool. For example, regarding brunches: “She doesn’t even like avocado on toast. She is just getting on the bandwagon. “
As right as rain (Tan justo como la lluvia)
- What does that mean? Perfect.
- How to use? Another weather-based idiom, but this one is more misleading than the others. We often complain about the rain, but “just like the rain” is actually a positive comment. I’m as right as the rain! “Could be exclaimed with great joy when asked if everything is okay and, in fact, it is.”
Beat around the bush (Andar por las ramas)
- What does that mean? Avoid saying something.
- How to use? When you scam them, avoid a question because you don’t want to answer honestly or express your opinion.
Hit the sack (Golpea el saco)
- What does that mean? Going to bed.
- How to use? This is a very easy expression to learn. “I’m exhausted, it’s time I gave up!”
Miss the boat (Perdiste el bote)
- What does that mean? It’s too late.
- How to use? Use this expression when you miss an opportunity or go past a certain delivery date. “I forgot to apply for that study abroad program, now I lost the boat.”
By the skin of your teeth (Por la piel de tus dientes)
- What does that mean? Barely.
- How to use? Ugh, I passed that test with the skin of my teeth! ‘If all goes well, you will excel in your exams, but if you pass, you will hardly use this expression.