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English Idioms and Idiomatic Expressions 


ACTIONS - BEHAVIOUR, page 5

(Idioms:  excuse my French  → freeze somebody out )


  • excuse/pardon my French
    • This expression is used as an apology for using crude or offensive language.
      "He's a bloody nuisance, if you'll excuse my French."

  • fall over backwards
    • If you fall over backwards to accomplish something, you do everything you possibly can to please and impress.
      "Sally's mother fell over backwards to make her wedding reception a memorable event."

  • false move
    • In a dangerous or risky situation, if you make a false move, you do something which may have unpleasant consequences.
      "He is under close surveillance. If he makes one false move he'll be arrested"

  • feed the kitty
    • If you feed the kitty, you contribute to a collection of money called a 'kitty' in order to help a good cause.
      "Come on! Every little helps. You should feed the kitty for a good cause!"

  • fiddling while Rome burns
    • To say that someone is fiddling while Rome burns means that they are doing unimportant things while there are serious problems to be dealt with. me
      "His visit to the trade fair during the strike was 'fiddling while Rome burns' according to the workers."

  • fight a losing battle
    • If someone is fighting a losing battle, they are trying to do something even when there is little chance of succeeding.
      "The headmaster is fighting a losing battle trying to ban mobile phones at school."

  • fight shy
    • If you fight shy of something, such as a task, a problem or a duty, you want to avoid doing it or you are unwilling to confront it.
      "He had money problems for years but he fought shy of asking his children for help."

  • fish for compliments
    • When someone is obviously waiting for you to say something nice, they are fishing for compliments.
      "I know why she invited us to her new house - she's just fishing for compliments."

  • fling yourself into something
    • If you fling yourself into an activity, you do it with a lot of energy and enthusiasm.
      "Ever since she flung herself in the anti-pollution campaign, she rarely has a free moment!"

  • follow your nose
    • If you follow your nose, you go straight ahead.
      (This can also mean to follow your instinct in life.)
      "The station is at the end of the road - just follow your nose."

  • follow in someone's footsteps
    • If you follow in someone's footsteps, for example a parent, you lead a similar life or do the same job.
      "Lily followed in her mother's footsteps and became a teacher."

  • foul your own nest
    • If you act in a way that harms your own interests, your position or your reputation, you foul your own nest.
      "He fouled his own nest by wrongly accusing his boss."

  • freeze somebody out
    • If you deliberately isolate someone or prevent them from participating in a social or business activity by treating them unfairly or harshly, you freeze them out.
      "Pablo was treated unfairly. The rest of the team just decided to freeze him out of the project."

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Please note that British English spelling is used on this website.

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