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English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions

Body idioms


 all ears To say that you are all ears means that you are listening very attentively.
Of course I want to know - I'm all ears!
fall on deaf ears If something such as a suggestion or a request falls on deaf ears, it is ignored.
I told him not to take any risks, but my advice fell on deaf ears.
grin from ear to ear If somebody is grinning from ear to ear, they look very satisfied and happy.
When we saw Paul grinning from ear to ear, we knew he had passed the exam.
keep your ear to the ground If you keep your ear to the ground, you make sure that you are aware of all that is happening and being said.
We don't know what has been decided, but Jack is  keeping his ear to the ground!
lend an ear If you lend an ear to someone, you listen carefully and sympathetically.
The best person to talk to is Jenny.  She's always ready to lend an ear.
make one's ears burn If something makes your ears burn, you are embarrassed by what you hear, especially if the conversation is about you.
The comments I overheard made my ears burn.
music to your ears If something is music to your ears, the information that you receive makes you feel very happy.
His compliments were music to my ear.
prick up your ears If you prick up your ears, you suddenly pay attention to what is being said.
The children pricked up their ears when they heard the word 'ice-cream'.
turn a deaf ear If you turn a deaf ear to something, you refuse to listen.
Sam turned a deaf ear to his wife's advice and went off in the rain without an umbrella.
play by ear To play by ear means to improvise or act without preparation, according to the demands of the situation.
(Music : to play by remembering the tune, without printed music.)
It's hard to know how the situation will develop.  Let's just play it by ear.

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