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IDIOMS

ORGANISER
Organised by metaphor,
topic and key word
by
Jon Wright

Edited by Jimmie Hill and Morgan Lewis


Illustrated by Bill Stott

THOMSON

HEINLE

Australia Canada Mexico Singapore Spain United Kingdom United States

Idioms are important


Dear Student
Words don't come singly
You have probably spent a long time learning new words. Words, however, do not just
come individually, they also come in expressions - in groups. Idioms are among the
most common of these expressions. There are thousands of them in English:
I could eat a horse.
Money doesn't grow on trees.
It's not up to scratch.
I got there in the nick of time.
Language is literal and metaphorical
Sometimes when we use language we use it in a very literal way:
I've been out fahing, but caught absolutely nothing!
The same language can be used in a non-literal way - a metaphorical way:
Yesterday I caught the bus. M y car wouldn't start.
Here are more examples of this metaphorical use of catch:
He caught my attention.
Wait while I catch my breath!
Look at that tan! You've caught the sun!
I didn't quite catch what you said.
The metaphorical uses of a word are often more common than the literal ones.
Idioms have grammar
Some idiomatic expressions are fixed and cannot change:
Two heads are better than one.
Very often you can change the tense and the pronoun:
I'm/She1s/Wewere all at sixes and sevens.
How is Idioms Organiser organised?
This book organises the most important idioms in English in four sections:
1. Areas of metaphor
2. Individual metaphors
3. Topics
4. Key Words
Make sure you study the Introductory Unit of this book before you begin the main
units. Plan your study and work regularly through the units on your own or in class.

Jon Wright

CONTENTS
Introductory Unit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
Section I : Areas of Metaphor
Time is Money . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12
Business is War . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14
Seeing is Understanding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
Life is a Journey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
Life is Gambling . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .20
A Company is a Ship . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22
Moods are Weather . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .24
The Office is a Battlefield . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
A Project is a Race . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .28
Economics is Flying . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .30
Organisations are Gardens . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32
People are Liquid . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .34
Reviewunit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36
.

Section 2: Individual Metaphors


Animal Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .38
.
Bird Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
Body Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .42
Breaking Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44
Building Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
.
CatIdioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48
Clothes Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .50
Colour Idioms: Black/White . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .52
Colour Idioms: Red/Blue . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
Driving Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .56
Eating Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
Eye Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .60
Face Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .62
Fingers and Thumbs Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64
FireIdioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66
Fishmg Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 68
Food Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .70
Fmr Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72
Y a r d Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .74
Yead idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76
.
F e r n Idioms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 78