Common idioms

Some common idioms are given below with their meanings and example sentences.

Call in question / Call into question

To call something in question is to challenge it.

  • Nobody can call his integrity into question.

In the nick of time

If something happens in the nick of time, it happens at the right moment.

  • They came to her rescue in the nick of time.

Through thick and thin

To stand by someone through thick and thin is to stand by them under all conditions.

  • His wife stood by him through thick and thin.

Throw cold water on

To throw cold water on something is to discourage it.

  • His business partner threw cold water on his plan.

With a high hand

To rule people with a high hand is to rule them in an oppressive manner.

  • The Sultan ruled his subjects with a high hand.

Hand and glove

When you are hand and glove with somebody, you are on very intimate terms with them.

Sit on the fence

To sit on the fence is to avoid taking a decision or choice.

Bring to light

To bring something to light is to disclose it.

  • The inquiry brought some startling facts to light.

Burn your fingers

To burn your fingers is to get yourself into trouble.

  • He invested in the stock market and burnt his fingers.

Live by your wits

To live by your wits is to earn money by clever or dishonest means.

  • He does not have a job. He lives by his wits.