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English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions

Body idioms

Knees - Legs - Heels - Toes

bee's knees To say that someone/something is the bee's knees means that you think they are exceptionally good.
If you say "Chloe thinks she's the bee's knees" you mean that
Chloe has a high opinion of herself.
on its knees When something such as a country or organisation is on its knees, or brought to its knees, it is in a very weak situation.
The civil war brought the country to its knees.
knee-high to a grasshopper This term refers to a very young or small child.
Look how tall you are!  Last time I saw you, you were knee-high to a grasshopper!
not have a leg to stand on To say that someone does not have a leg to stand on means that they cannot prove what they say.
Three people testified against him.  He didn't have a leg to stand on.
on one's last legs If you are on your last legs, you are in a very weak condition or about to die.
I was so sick that I felt as though I was on my last legs!
pull (someone's) leg If you pull somebody's leg, you tease them by telling them something that is not true.
Of course I'm not going to buy a sports car.  I was just pulling your leg!
put your pants on one leg at a time To say that someone puts their pants on one leg at a time means that the person is a human being no different from anyone else.
Don't be scared to speak to him.  He puts his pants on one leg at a time just like the rest of us!
sea legs A person who has sea legs is used to walking on a moving ship, or has the ability to adjust to a new situation.
It takes a while in a new job to find your sea legs.
Achilles heel This expression refers to a vulnerable area or a weak spot, in an otherwise strong situation, that could cause one's downfall or failure.
He's extremely intelligent, but his inability to speak in public is his Achilles heel.
bring someone to heel If you force someone to behave in a disciplined manner, you bring them to heel.
The boy had always behaved badly, but the new headmaster managed to bring him to heel.
cool one's heels If you are left to cool your heels, someone keeps you waiting.
After rushing to be on time for my appointment, I was left to cool my heels in the waiting room for an hour.
dig in your heels If you dig in your heels, you refuse to do something, especially if someone is trying to convince you to do so.
My grandfather dug in his heels and refused to move to an apartment.
hairy at the heel A person who is hairy at the heel is thought to be untrustworthy or even dangerous.
Rumour has it that the owner of the club is a bit hairy at the heel.
dip one's toes in the water If you dip your toes in the water, or get your feet wet, you start to do something new or unfamiliar, or explore new territory for the first time.
It will be a new experience for me, but I can't wait to dip my toes in the water!
keep someone on their toes If you keep someone on their toes, you make them stay alert and ready for action at any time.
The manager never announces his visits beforehand.  That's his way of keeping the personnel on their toes.
step/tread on someone's toes If you annoy or irritate someone by intervening in a situation that is their responsibility, you step on their toes.
I could offer some advice but I'm afraid of stepping on someone's toes.

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