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English Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions 


Alphabetical List of Idioms T, page 11

Idioms T, page 11:  from:   'token gesture'   to:   'too much like hard work'


  • token gesture
    • To make a token gesture means to show a small sign of appreciation.
      "As a token gesture of gratitude for her neighbourly advice, he gave Mrs.Smith a plant for her garden."

  • by the same token
    • If you apply the same rule to different situations, you judge them by the same token, or in a similar way.
      "Teenagers should be less rebellious, but by the same token, parents should be more understanding."

  • tomorrow's another day
    • This expression means that even if everything is not satisfactory at present, there will be opportunity for things to improve.
      "For the moment you need some rest; tomorrow's another day. "

  • bite your tongue
    • If you bite your tongue, you stop yourself from saying what you really think.
      "Sam decided to bite his tongue rather than get into an argument."

  • keep a civil tongue
    • People who keep a civil tongue express themselves in polite terms.
      "Don't speak so rudely! You must learn to keep a civil tongue in all circumstances."

  • hold your tongue
    • If you hold your tongue, you stay silent and say nothing.
      "The party was supposed to be a surprise, but unfortunately the little boy couldn't hold his tongue."

  • get your tongue round something
    • If you are able to pronounce a difficult word or phrase, you can get your tongue round it.
      "She's from the village of Llanfairpwllgwyngyll. Try getting your tongue round that!"

  • give the (rough) edge of your tongue
    • If you give the (rough) edge of your tongue, you scold someone severely or speak to them very aggressively or rudely.
      "My boss was so angry that I really got the rough edge of his tongue."

  • (a) slip of the tongue
    • A slip of the tongue is a small spoken error or mistake.
      "Did I say 'blow down'? - Sorry, I meant 'slow down' - that was a slip of the tongue!"

  • on the tip of your tongue
    • To say that a word or answer is on the tip of your tongue, means that you're sure you know it but have difficulty finding it.
      "What's that actor's name? I know it ... it's on the tip of my tongue!"

  • tongue in cheek
    • If you describe a remark as 'tongue in cheek' you mean that it is not meant to be taken seriously; it is meant to be funny or ironic.
      "Peter's remark was taken more seriously than intended. It was supposed to be tongue in cheek."

  • tongue-lashing
    • When you scold someone severely, you give them a tongue-lashing.
      "The teacher gave Jeremy a tongue-lashing when arrived late for school."

  • tongue-tied
    • If you are tongue-tied, you have difficulty in expressing yourself because you are nervous or embarrassed.
      "At the start of the interview I was completely tongue-tied!"

  • tongues are wagging / set tongues wagging
    • When tongues are wagging, people are beginning to spread gossip or rumours, often about someone's private life.
      "The photograph of the couple that appeared in a magazine really set tongues wagging."

  • too many chiefs, not enough Indians
    • This expression refers to a situation where there are too many people giving instructions and not enough people doing the work.
      "The business wasn't successful. There were too many chiefs and not enough Indians."

  • too much like hard work
    • An activity or task that requires too much effort is too much like hard work.
      "It's so hot today, there's no way I'm going to do any cooking. That's too much like hard work!"

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