English Idioms 1
Welcome back to another English article. Today we’re going to look at a few common English idioms.
But what is an idiom exactly? Well, my definition would be something like this:
“A form of expression or a phrase with an abstract meaning, often poetic in nature with the use of metaphors.”
Basically, you’re saying something in an indirect way, and idioms, in general, are a fun way to add an entirely new flavor to your language.
Let’s get into it with some examples:
To be over the moon
Literal meaning: estar muy feliz o como diríamos los porteños hoy en día “estar como loco”
Meaning: Quite simply, if you’re “over the moon” then you are very happy, pleased, or satisfied with something, for example, a result.
“Anna has just won the lottery. She must be over the moon.”
To be all bark and no bite
Literal meaning: perro que ladra no muerde / mucho ruido pocas nueces
Meaning: This means you make a lot of noise but don’t take action. In other words, you say things that you usually don’t mean or intend to act upon.
“Don’t worry about what he says. He’s all bark and no bite.”
To break the ice
Literal meaning: romper el hielo
Meaning: To get something started, or more commonly, to get introduced with someone with the help of a light-hearted comment or game.
“He tried to break the ice with a joke.”
To lay/spread it on thick
Literal meaning: exagerar las cosas / dorarle la píldora a alguien
Meaning: To exaggerate the description of something, to use unnecessary extreme descriptions that are borderline untrue; or, to compliment effusively.
“You’re really laying it on thick now.”
“He keeps telling me how fabulous I look; he’s really laying it on thick.”
To be a fly on the wall
Literal meaning: ser una mosquita para observar que sucede
Meaning: To be a passive observer of something going on such as: someone else working, a classroom, a conversation, or anything that happens with you passively watching it.
However, It is not used when someone is the bystander of an accident.
“I want to watch how you teach. I want to be a fly on the wall.”
To milk it/something
Literal meaning: sacarle jugo a una situación
Meaning: To milk something for what it’s worth, as in, to extract all the resources from something. Often used when making money off the same idea again and again. You could also be making the most out of a situation, for example, if you are sick but play on it to get more time off work.
“I’m going to milk this opportunity for all it’s worth.”
Money doesn’t grow on trees
Literal meaning: los árboles no hacen plata
Meaning: Money doesn’t come from nowhere, money has to be earned.
“Do you think that money grows on trees?”
To go/sell like hotcakes
Literal meaning: venderse como pan caliente
Meaning: Something is selling very well, as in, a product is very popular and everyone wants it.
“The new iPhone is selling like hotcakes.”
Here’s an example text with the idioms:
My son wants the new iPhone so badly. Don’t we all? But I had to tell him, “money doesn’t grow on trees, you know?” We just don’t have much money right now, and that’s a shame, because the new version is selling like hotcakes, and I’m worried they’re going to sell out completely. That’s what my son keeps saying, anyway. But he’s just spreading it on thick, if you ask me. He got really upset when I told him, and he said a lot of awful things. He threatened to run away from home, but I’m not worried. You see, he’s all bark and no bite, that one.
He’s just keeps mentioning it though, and telling me how upset he is that he can’t get it. Yeah, he’s really milking it. Little does he know that I’ve already bought one for him. Yes, that’s right. I’m giving it him for Christmas. He’s going to be over the moon.
Do you know more awesome English idioms? Drop a comment below.