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Some important Idioms and Phrases

Idioms and Phrases are an integral part of the English language and are commonly used to make sentences fascinating. Idioms are often used in stories, poems and even in spoken words. The origins of these idioms are not always known, but they are said to originate from stories and creative writing and are modified over time.

Phrases are unlike idioms, they are actually direct and to the point. They do not have figurative meanings, the expression means what the words indicate.

1. set in = begin / start

set in = winter has set in early this year.

2. get into = became involved in

get into = Srilekha got into her preparation for the exams.

3. run over = hit someone or something with something and drive over them

run over = The car ran over a small goat on the main road.

4. kick down = strike forcibly with the foot

kick down = Anadini kicked down the ball

5. speed off = left in a vehicle or on a bicycle

speed off = The actress sped off in a waiting car.

6. bounced back = recovered quickly after a defeat

bounced back= T.D.P. bounced back in 2014 elections after 10 years.

7. freak out = make someone up-set / shock

freak out = Nick freaked out the girl at the traffic lights by doing a 360 degree spin.

8. call into = call to a person to come to some place

call into = I called my brother into the house.

9. break down = failing to function

break down = The car broke down when we were driving through the desert.

10. get rid of = discard as undesirable.

get rid of = He got rid of his bad company.

11. take off = remove / leave

take off = Revanth took off his shirt after entering his room.

12. stagger in = walk

stagger in = The thief staggered in and fell down.

13. talk over = speak with others about something / have a discussion

talk over = The two brothers are talking over sharing of their father's assets.

14. run up = move quickly to some place

run up = I ran up to the post man to receive the letters.

15. get off = remove / take off

get off = He got off his shirt after entering his room.

16. leave behind = not to take someone with you when you go somewhere

leave behind = The young man left his old mother behind.

17. see off = to say goodbye to someone

see off = I saw her off at the airport.

18. catch up = to come from behind and reach someone infront of you by going faster.

catch up = The old man caught up to the young man at last.

19. come across = meet by chance

come across = I came across a short person yesterday.

20. go about = tackle

go about = You are not going about in the right way to find a solution.

21. fight over = compete for / argue about something

fight over = The birds were fighting over a scrap of food.

22. set off = start a journey

set off = we set off for work at 7.30 pm.

23. look after = take care

look after = Their auntie looked after them while their mother was in hospital

24. get one's own way : get what one wants even when somebody tries to opposite it;

Shefali is intelligent and very particular about her interests. She gets her own way at

the end.

25. for ages : for a long time

He had been waiting for ages for his promotion.

26. set foot : visit ; come ;

When I set foot in the USA, I was really thrilled.

27. drive a hard bargain : argue in an agrressive way and force someone to agree to the best

possible deal.

These days many companies try to drive a hard bargain with their customers.

28. get rid of : make free of something or somebody that is annoying

Some people are terribly boring. Every one tries to get rid of such persons.

29. give way : stop resisting ; agree to something one doesn't want to ;

She refused to give way on any of the points.

30. at length : for a long time and in detail ;

We have been discussing this topic at length.

31. on purpose : deliberately ; intentionally ;

He opened the topic on purpose.

32. took by surprise : shocked

He decision to join Army took his family by surprise.

33. at a loss : not knowing what to do

All the students were at a loss as the examination dates were announced at such a short


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