A to Z Idioms with Meanings and Sentences

An IDIOM is a group of words or a phrase that differs from their literal meaning. Idioms enrich the language.

In this post, we present you A to Z Idioms with Meanings and Sentences.

A to Z Idioms with Meanings and Sentences

A Idioms

ABC basic knowledgeShe doesn’t have the ABC of cooking.
Above allmost importantlyAbove all, we need to prioritize safety in this project.
Above boardcompletely transparent and honestThe financial records of the company are always above the board.
After allconsidering everythingAfter all, he did show up to the party, even though he had said he wouldn’t.
All at oncesuddenlyAll at once, the lights went out.
All of a suddensuddenly and unexpectedlyAll of a sudden, she realized she had lost her wallet.
All but almost entirelyThe company was all but bankrupt before the new CEO took over.
All earsfully attentive and interestedThe students were all ears when the guest speaker arrived.
All in allsupremeThe chef is all in all when it comes to creating the menu.
All Greekcompletely incomprehensibleThe instructions in the manual were all Greek to him.
Apple of one’s eyea person or thing that is cherished above all othersHis dog is the apple of his eye.
Apple of discorda source of conflictThe inheritance became an apple of discord among the siblings.
As ifas thoughShe acted as if she knew the answer.
As it wereso to speakThe flowers bloomed, as it were, overnight.
As usualtypicallyAs usual, the train was running late.
At baycornered and under threatThe company was at bay after the stock market crash.
At one’s fingertipseasily accessibleThe lawyer always has the latest legal information at his fingertips.
At daggers drawn in a state of intense hostilityThe two politicians were at daggers drawn during the debate.
At homecomfortable and familiarShe is at home in the world of fashion.
At a lossunsure of what to doHe was at a loss as to how to fix the broken vase.
At all in any wayThe book is not helpful at all.
At all events in any caseWe will be attending the wedding at all events.
At a low ebbat a low pointThe company’s profits are at a low ebb this quarter.
At arm’s lengthkeeping a safe distanceShe kept the poisonous snake at arm’s length.
At a stretchwithout a breakHe worked on his project for six hours at a stretch.
At largefreeThe suspect is still at large.
At lastfinallyI got my missing phone at last.
At least at a minimumAt least fifty people attended the concert.
At sixes and sevens in disarrayAfter the earthquake, everything was at sixes and sevens.
At stakein dangerHer life is at stake now.

B Idioms

Bad bloodill feelingLet’s try to resolve our issues and avoid any bad blood between us.
Bag and baggagewith all belongingsShe left the apartment with her bags and baggage.
Be-all and end-allultimate goalFor him, achieving success in his career is the be-all and end-all.
Beat about the bushavoid getting to the pointCan you please stop beating about the bush and tell me what happened?
Bed of roseseasy and comfortable situationLife is never a bed of roses; one must face challenges.
Behind the screensecretlyThere might be some shady dealings behind the screen.
Beat black and bluebeat severelyThe bullies beat the innocent kid black and blue.
Between the devil and the deep sea in a difficult situation with no good optionsBetween the Devil and the deep sea
Beggar descriptionbeyond wordsThe beauty of the sunrise was so breathtaking, it beggars description.
Black sheepa person with a bad reputationHe is considered the black sheep of his family, always getting into trouble.
Bid fairhave a good chanceShe bids fair to win the competition with her exceptional talent.
Big gunan influential personHe is a big gun in the music industry, with many successful albums.
Birds of a featherpeople with similar interestsThey are birds of a feather, both passionate about environmental conservation.
Bolt from the bluea sudden and unexpected eventThe news of the company’s bankruptcy came as a bolt from the blue.
Bone of contentiona matter of disagreementThe salary hike was the bone of contention between the employees and the management.
Bosom frienda very close friendMy childhood friend is my bosom friend; we share everything.
Book wormsomeone who loves to read booksShe is a bookworm who can spend hours reading.
Bide one’s timewait patiently for the right opportunityHe is biding his time to launch his startup until the market conditions are favourable.
By farto a great extentThis is by far the best pizza I have ever had.
By and largegenerallyBy and large, the students were satisfied with the course content.
By leaps and boundsrapidlyThe company’s revenue has been growing by leaps and bounds since it launched the new product line.
By the byincidentallyBy the by, did you hear about the new store opening in town?
Burning questionan issue that needs immediate attentionClimate change is the burning question of our time.
By chanceaccidentallyI found my lost ring by chance while cleaning the house.
By all meansdefinitelyBy all means, you should pursue your dream career.
By and bygraduallyBy and by, he will learn how to speak English fluently.
Build castles in the airindulge in unrealistic dreamsInstead of building castles in the air, let’s focus on our goals and work hard to achieve them.
Breathe one’s last pass awayAfter a long battle with cancer, she breathed her last in the presence of her loved ones.
Bring to lightrevealThe investigation brought to light many irregularities in the company’s finances.
By fits and startsirregularlyHe has been working on the project by fits and starts, without a proper plan.
By no meansabsolutely notBy no means should you compromise on your principles.
Bring to bookhold accountableThe corrupt officials must be brought to the book and punished for their crimes.
By hook or by crookby any means necessaryShe was determined to win the competition by hook or by crook.

C Idioms

Call to mindremember I’m trying to call to mind where I put my keys.
Call in questiondoubtThe evidence presented calls in question the suspect’s alibi.
Call a spade a spadeto speak the truthLet me call a spade a spade and tell you that you’re not doing your job well.
Carry the daywin victoryThe home team carried the day with their last-minute goal.
Catch red-handedcatch with the articlesThe police caught the thief red-handed with the stolen goods.
Cats and dogsraining very heavilyIt’s been raining cats and dogs all day.
Chip of the old blocka worthy successorThe CEO’s son is a chip off the old block and is just as capable as his father.
Cock and bull storyabsurd storyI don’t believe his cock and bull story about being abducted by aliens.
Cold waterdiscouragementThe negative comments threw cold water on his idea.
Come to lightbecome knownThe truth about the scandal came to light after a journalist’s investigation.
Come off with flying colourswin a victory The team came off with flying colours in the championship game.
Crying needurgent needThere is a crying need for more affordable housing in the city.
Crocodile tears fake tearsI don’t trust her crocodile tears, she’s just trying to manipulate us.
Curry favourgain through flatteryShe’s always trying to curry favour with the boss by complimenting him excessively.

D Idioms

Dead againststrongly opposed toI’m dead against the proposal to build a highway through the national park.
Dead languageno longer in use as a spoken languageLatin is a dead language but is still used in academic settings.
Dead of nightmidnightThe burglars broke into the store at the dead of night.
Die in harness die while workingThe burglars broke into the store in the dead of night.
Dark horserelatively unknownThe political newcomer surprised everyone by winning the election, he was a real dark horse.

E Idioms

End in smokefail to materializeThe company’s plans to expand overseas ended in smoke due to lack of funding.
Every now and then occasionallyThe company’s plans to expand overseas ended in smoke due to a lack of funding.
Eke outmanage to survive with difficultyThe family was able to eke out a living by farming a small plot of land.
Every inchcompletelyShe’s every inch a professional with her confident demeanour and attention to detail.

F Idioms

Fall flatto fail completely or have no impactMy joke fell flat and no one laughed.
Fair and squaredone honestly or justlyShe won the competition fair and square, without cheating.
Far cryvery different from somethingThe new restaurant is a far cry from the old one.
Far and awayby far or significantlyShe was far and away the best singer in the competition.
Far and wideeverywhere or over a wide areaThe news of the accident spread far and wide.
Few and far betweenrare or scarceGood job opportunities are few and far between in this economy.
Fight shyto avoid or be hesitant about somethingI always fight shy of public speaking, as it makes me nervous.
Fish out of water feeling uncomfortable in a new or unfamiliar situationBeing the only vegetarian at the barbecue, she felt like a fish out of water.
Fish in troubled watertaking advantage of a difficult situationHe tried to profit from the company’s financial troubles, like a fish in troubled water.
Flesh and bloodhuman or physical existenceShe was just flesh and blood, and couldn’t work 24/7 without getting tired.
Fool’s paradisea false or unrealistic sense of happiness or securityIf you think you can get rich quick without any effort, you’re living in a fool’s paradise.
For goodpermanently or foreverShe left the city for good and moved to the countryside.
French leaveleaving without telling anyone or without permissionHe took French leave from the party early, without saying goodbye.

G Idioms

Gala daya special or festive occasionThe wedding was a gala day, with lots of music, dancing, and food.
Get rid ofto remove or eliminate something unwantedHe wanted to get rid of his old car and buy a new one.
Gift of the gaba natural talent for speaking or persuading othersAs a politician, she had the gift of the gab and could charm voters with her speeches.
Get by heartto memorize somethingIn order to pass the exam, she had to get the formulas by heart.
Give wayto collapse or break downThe bridge gave way under the weight of the truck.
Give one’s wordto make a promise or give an assuranceHe gave his word that he would always be there to support her.
Give birth toto have a babyThe actress gave birth to a healthy baby girl.
Gain the dayto win or be victoriousDespite the odds against them, the underdog team gained the day and won the championship.
Go through fire and waterto face and overcome great difficultiesShe was willing to go through fire and water to achieve her dream of becoming a doctor.
Go without sayingto be obvious or not need to be statedIt goes without saying that he loves his family very much.

H Idioms

Hair-breadth escapea narrow or close escapeHe had a hair-breadth escape from the burning building, just managing to get out in time
Hard and faststrict or inflexibleThe company had hard and fast rules about working overtime and taking breaks.
Hard nut to cracka difficult problem or challengeFinding a cure for cancer is a hard nut to crack, but scientists are working tirelessly to achieve it.
Head and earscompletely or deeply involvedHe was head and ears in love with her, unable to think of anything else.
Head and shouldersmuch better or more superiorThe new restaurant was head and shoulders above the competition, with better food and service.
Heart and soulwith all energyShe poured her heart and soul into her performance, impressing the judges.
Herculean taskvery difficult taskStarting a new business from scratch is always a Herculean task.
High timepast the appropriate timeIt’s high time for him to apologize for his rude behaviour.
Hold waterbe logically soundThe theory presented by the scientist does not hold water and needs further research.
Hold goodremain validThe contract between the two parties will only hold good if both parties fulfil their obligations.
Hue and crya loud outcry or protestThe citizens made a hue and cry against the government’s decision to raise taxes.
Hush moneymoney paid to keep someone quietThe politician offered hush money to the journalist to suppress a negative story.

I Idioms

In accordance withfollowing or conforming to something.The team acted in accordance with the coach’s instructions.
In a fixin a difficult situationAfter losing his job, he found himself in a fix and unable to pay his rent.
In finein conclusionIn fine, I believe we should all work together to achieve our goals.
In full swingactively happening with enthusiasmThe party was in full swing when we arrived.
In good steadusefulHer experience as a teacher stood her in good stead when she became a principal.
In keeping withconsistentHis actions were not in keeping with his promises.
In order towith the aim of doing somethingHe enrolled in a business school in order to learn about entrepreneurship.
In lieu of instead ofCan you please give me a voucher in lieu of a refund?
In black and whitein writingWe need to have the contract in black and white before we proceed.
In cold blooddone intentionally and without emotionThe murder was committed in cold blood and shocked the community.
In no time very quickly or soonWith the right tools, we can finish the job in no time.
In the facedespite or in defiance of somethingShe stood up to the bully in the face of danger.
In the good booksin favour with someoneAfter completing her project on time, she was in the good books of her boss.
In the nick of time just in timeThe ambulance arrived in the nick of time to save the patient’s life.
In the twinkling of an eyevery quicklyThe food disappeared in the twinkling of an eye when the children came home hungry.
In the long runultimatelyIn the long run, exercise and healthy eating habits will benefit your health.
In the teeth ofdespite strong oppositionThe team won the championship in the teeth of strong opposition.
In the meantimeduring the time between two eventsI’ll be busy this afternoon. In the meantime, could you help me with this task?
Ins and outsall the detailsBefore making a decision, we need to know all the ins and outs of the proposal.
In voguecurrently popularThis style of clothing is currently in vogue among teenagers.
In forceactive or effectiveThe new is in force now.
In a nutshellbriefly summarizing something.In a nutshell, the company’s profits have been declining for the past year. 

J Idioms

Jail Birda repeat criminalThe detective recognized the suspect as a jail bird who had been in and out of prison for years.
Jack of all tradesskilled in many areasHe’s a jack of all trades and can fix anything around the house.
Jaundiced eye a biased attitudeThe employer viewed all candidates with a jaundiced eye, assuming they were all unqualified.
jot or littlethe smallest amountHe didn’t know even a jot or little about the subject.

K Idioms

Kith and kinnear and dear onesShe prefers to spend time with her kith and kin.
Keep late hourswork diligently through the nightThe software developers kept late hours to finish the project before the deadline.
Keep pace withmatch the speed ofHe had to run faster to keep pace with his athletic friend.
Kill timeengage in leisurely activitiesShe watched TV to kill time before her flight.
Keep the wolf from the doormanage to survive financiallyHer part-time job helped her keep the wolf from the door.
Kill two birds with one stoneachieve two things in one strokeShe listened to an audiobook while doing house chores, killing two birds with one stone.
Know no boundsbe limitlessThe love a mother has for her child knows no bounds.
Knock at the doorannounce arrival or opportunityA new opportunity was knocking at his door, and he had to decide whether to take it or not.

L Idioms

Lame excuseweak argumentHis explanation for the late submission of the report was a lame excuse.
Laughing stockobject of amusementHis clumsy dancing made him the laughingstock of the party.
Leave in the lurchabandon in a difficult situationHe left his teammate in the lurch by not showing up for the match.
Leave no stone unturnedexhaust all possible optionsShe left no stone unturned in her search for a new job.
Lion’s sharethe major partThe CEO took the lion’s share of the company’s profits.
Loaves and fishesspiritual benefitsHe volunteers at the shelter not for the loaves and fishes, but to give back to the community.
Last but not the leastlast but equally importantThe team was comprised of excellent players, but last but not least, the coach was also a key player in their success.
Lay heads togethercollaborateThe team needed to lay their heads together to come up with a winning strategy.
Lead a cat and dog lifehave a tumultuous relationshipThe couple had been leading a cat and dog life for years, but they still loved each other.
Long and shortbottom lineThe long and short of the matter is that we need to increase our sales revenue.

M Idioms

Make both ends meetlive frugallyThey had to make both ends meet after losing their jobs.
Make goodfulfil a promiseHe promised to make good on his word and return the borrowed money.
Maiden speechfirst public addressThe newly elected representative gave her maiden speech at the town hall.
Man of letters a writerThe Nobel laureate was not just a scientist but also a man of letters.
Man of strawan insignificant personThe small-time crook was a man of straw compared to the big-time criminals.
Moot point an irrelevant matterWhether or not to have dessert after dinner is a moot point when you’re on a diet.
Make up one’s mind come to a decisionShe couldn’t make up her mind about which dress to wear to the party.
Man in the street the average personThe politician’s speech was meant to appeal to the man in the street rather than the elite.
More or lessapproximately, not exact The cake recipe called for two cups of sugar, but I used more or less depending on my taste.
Make boldto take a risk or do something courageous He made bold to propose to his girlfriend in front of a large crowd.

N Idioms

Now and theninfrequentlyI only indulge in sweets now and then, as I am trying to eat healthier.
Null and voidhaving no legal or binding effectThe contract became null and void when one of the parties breached the terms.
Narrow escapea close call or lucky avoidance of dangerI had a narrow escape from a car accident yesterday.
Nip in the budto stop something at an early stageThe company nipped the security breach in the bud before any sensitive information was compromised.
Now or neverurgent and decisive action must be takenIt’s now or never to apply for the dream job before the deadline passes.
Near at handclose or imminentThe deadline for the project is near at hand and we need to speed up the work.

O Idioms

Of laterecently or latelyOf late, I have been experiencing a lack of motivation towards my work.
Of courseexpressing agreement or certaintyOf course, I will attend your graduation ceremony.
Off and onintermittently or irregularlyI have been practising yoga off and on for the past year.
On the brink ofon the edge of a significant change or eventThe company is on the brink of bankruptcy due to the economic downturn.
On the contraryexpressing the opposite view or opinionI do not agree with your assessment. On the contrary, I think the project was a huge success.
On the eve of just before a significant event or occasionThe city was buzzing with excitement on the eve of the New Year’s celebration.
On the wanedecreasing or decliningThe popularity of the singer is on the wane after the release of their latest album.
On the wholeconsidering all aspects or factorsOn the whole, I think the team did well in the competition.
Out of date outdated or old-fashionedThe fashion trend from last year is now out of date.
Out of doorsoutside or in the open airWe decided to have a picnic out of doors to enjoy the beautiful weather.
Out of sortsfeeling unwell or not oneselfI am feeling out of sorts today and may need to take a sick day.
Out of ordernot functioning or brokenThe elevator is out of order and we need to take the stairs.
Out of temperin a bad mood or irritableThe boss was out of his temper today due to the delays in the project.
Out of the woodno longer in a difficult or dangerous situationThe patient is out of the woods and is expected to make a full recovery.
Out and outcompletely or thoroughlyThe team played an out and out aggressive game.

P Idioms

Palmy daysa period of prosperity and successThe company enjoyed its palmy days during the economic boom of the early 2000s.
Part and parcelan essential and inseparable part of somethingLong working hours are part and parcel of the job.
Pros and consthe advantages and disadvantages of a situationBefore making a decision, it’s important to weigh the pros and cons of the options.
Pick a quarrelintentionally start an argument or fightI could tell he was trying to pick a quarrel with me, but I refused to engage.
Plain sailingeasy or smooth goingThe project was plain sailing, thanks to the efficient team management.
Play ducks and drakeswaste or squander something valuableDon’t play ducks and drakes with your money if you want to save for a secure future.
Play a double gameto engage in deceitful behaviour or to have conflicting loyaltiesHe was playing a double game by pretending to be friends with both sides in the political dispute.
Play hide and seekavoidThe suspect is playing hide and seek with the police.
Point-blankdirectly I asked him point-blank if he was cheating on me and he didn’t deny it.
Provide for a rainy dayto prepare for unforeseen circumstancesIt’s always a good idea to save money and provide for a rainy day in case of unexpected expenses.
Pure and simpleplain and straightforwardHis answer was a lie, pure and simple, and he got caught.

R Idioms

Rank and fileordinary membersThe management should listen to the opinions of the rank and file of the company.
Red-tapeexcessive bureaucracyThe red tape in the government system is causing delays in the implementation of policies.
Red-letter day special occasionWinning the championship was a red-letter day for the team.
Red-handedcaught in the actThe robbers were caught red-handed by the police.
Root and branchcompletely eradicateThe government needs to uproot corruption root and branch from the country.
Right and leftin all directionsThe storm was blowing things right and left, causing a lot of damage.
Run into debtaccumulate debtHe kept spending money on unnecessary things and ran into debt.

S Idioms

Salt of the eartha good and honest personMy grandfather was the salt of the earth, always helping others in need.
Set freerelease from captivityThe animal was set free into the wild after rehabilitation.
Silver lininga positive aspect in a negative situationa positive aspect of a negative situation
Slowcoachsomeone who is slow to actHe was a slow coach in submitting his assignment and got a low grade.
Small fryunimportant or insignificant peopleHe dismissed the criticism of small fry who didn’t understand the complexities of the issue.
Smell a ratsense something suspiciousI smell a rat in his story about why he was late for the meeting.
Slip of the penan unintentional mistake in writingThe writer made a slip of the pen, misspelling the name of the protagonist.
Slip of the tonguean unintentional mistake in speakingShe made a slip of the tongue, accidentally revealing the surprise party.
Square dealfair and honest treatmentThe company offered a square deal to all its employees, ensuring equal opportunities and fair wages.
Square meala substantial and satisfying mealAfter a long day of work, he enjoyed a square meal of steak and potatoes.
Stand in the way ofobstruct or hinderProcrastination can stand in the way of achieving success.
Steer clear ofavoiding or keeping away fromTo maintain good health, it’s important to steer clear of junk food.
Stone’s throwa short distance awayThe grocery store was just a stone’s throw from his apartment.
Storm in a teacupan overreaction to a small issueThe argument was just a storm in a teacup, and they soon made up.

T Idioms

Take heartto gain confidenceAfter a string of rejections, he took heart and continued to pursue his dream of becoming an actor.
Take to heartto take something personallyShe took his criticism of her artwork to heart and felt discouraged.
Take to one’s heelsto flee quicklyThe children took to their heels when they saw the neighbourhood dog chasing them.
Take placeto occurThe meeting is scheduled to take place next Tuesday.
Take into accountto consider as importantWhen planning a vacation, it’s important to take into account the budget and time available.
Three R’sbasic literacy skillsMany schools in underdeveloped countries focus on teaching the three R’s.
To and froback and forthShe paced to and fro in her office, trying to come up with a solution to the problem.
Take to taskto criticize or reprimandThe boss took the employee to task for consistently arriving late to work.
Tooth and nailstrongly/ with fiercelyThe protesters fought tooth and nail against the government’s decision.
Through thick and thinto remain loyal through all difficultiesMy best friend has always stood by me through thick and thin.
To a TperfectlyThis job suits him to a T.
To the backbonecompletelyShe is a feminist to the backbone and fights for women’s rights.
To the letterpreciselyThe chef followed the recipe to the letter to ensure that the dish was perfect.
To the contraryto express the opposite opinionDespite what many people believe, to the contrary, cats can be trained.
Turn downto rejectThe company had to turn down several applicants due to a lack of experience.
Turning pointa critical momentGraduating from college was a turning point in her life, as it marked the beginning of her career.

U Idioms

Under the thumbto be controlled by someoneShe realized that she was under the thumb of her overbearing boss.
Up and doingto be active and energeticIf you want to succeed in life, you must be up and doing.
Ups and downsthe highs and lows of lifeMarriage is a journey with its ups and downs.
Under agenot yet of legal ageHe couldn’t join the army because he was still under age.
Under lock and keyto be securely locked awayThe jewelry was kept under lock and key in a safe.
Under considerationto be reviewed or evaluatedThe proposal is still under consideration by the board of directors.
Under the circumstancesconsidering the situationUnder the circumstances, it’s best to postpone the event.
Under one’s nosehappening in front of someone without their knowledgeThe thief stole the purse right under the woman’s nose.
Up and downhither and thitherThe waves of the ocean were moving up and down.
Up-to-datecurrent and modernIt’s important to keep your skills up-to-date in today’s rapidly changing job market.

V Idioms

Vexed question a complex and much-debated issueClimate change remains a vexed question among policymakers.

W Idioms

Wild goose chasean unsuccessful pursuitSearching for the lost ring in the park proved to be a wild goose chase.
White elephantan expensive and unprofitable possessionThe luxurious yacht he bought turned out to be a white elephant.
Weal and woeboth joy and sorrow in lifeThe couple had experienced their fair share of weal and woe during their long marriage.
Widow’s mitea small but meaningful contributionThe donation of a single dollar may seem small, but it can be a widow’s mite to someone in need.
With an eyewith a specific goal in mindHe invested his money with an eye towards retirement.
With a grain of saltto be cautious and skepticalto be cautious and sceptical
With a view towith the intention ofShe enrolled in college with a view to pursuing a career in medicine.
Without rhyme or reasonwith no apparent cause or explanationThe sudden decision to cancel the event was without rhyme or reason.
Why and whereforethe reasons or explanations behind somethingThe detective was determined to uncover the why and wherefore of the crime.
Well and goodsatisfactory and acceptableIt’s well and good that you want to help, but we need a more concrete plan.

Y Idioms

Yeoman’s servicediligent and valuable workThe volunteer organization provided yeoman’s service to the community after the natural disaster.

Z Idioms

Zenith of powerthe peak of one’s authority or influenceThe president’s approval ratings were at the zenith of power after his successful foreign policy initiative.

Also, Read

Examples of Phrases

Examples of Phrases

Uses of Infinitives

Uses of Infinitives

Gerund after Prepositions

Gerund After Prepositions

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