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FAQs Idioms Phrases. How to Learn General English Series

What are the Important Idioms and Phrases?

A bitter pill - Unpleasant fact but must be accepted

A dime a dozen - Anything that is common

A hot potato - A controversial issue

Achilles' heel - A weakness

Actions speak louder than words - People's intentions can  be judged better by what they do than by what they say

All ears -Listening intently

Apple of discord -Anything causing trouble

At the drop of a hat -Instantly

Back to the drawing board -Start planning all over again

Barking up the wrong tree - Looking in the wrong place

Beat around the bush -To treat a topic, but omit its main points.

Beating a dead horse -To uselessly dwell on a subject far

beyond its point of resolution

Bed of roses -Easy and comfortable

Best of both worlds- A situation wherein someone has the privilege of enjoying two different opportunities

Bite off more than one can chew –Handle more activity than one can manage

Bite the bullet –To start

Bite the dust -Euphemism for dying or death

Burn the midnight oil -To work hard

By the skin of one's teeth - Narrowly; barely

Call it a day -To declare the end of a task

Chink in one's armor -An area of vulnerability

Clam up- To stop talking.

Cold shoulder- To display aloofness

Couch potato - A lazy person

Crocodile tears -Fake tears

Don't count chickens before they hatch -Don't make plans for something that may not happen;

Elephant in the room - Issue left unresolved

Every cloud has a silver lining - Be optimistic

Fit as a fiddle -In good physical health

For a song - almost free

From A to Z - Comprehensively

From scratch / to make from scratch -Start from the beginning

Get your goat -To irritate someone

Grass is always greener on the other side -Think others have it better.

Have a blast -To have a good time

Hit the road -To leave

Hit the sack -To go to bed to sleep

Hit the spot -To be just right

It takes two to tango - It takes more than one person to start a fight

Jump ship -Leave

Kick the bucket    - Euphemism for dying or death

Kick the habit – Stopping a habitual practice

Kill two birds with one stone -To accomplish two different tasks at the same time

Let the cat out of the bag –Secret revealed

Look a gift horse in the mouth - To find fault with something that has been received as a gift or favor

Nip It In the Bud -To stop something at an early stage

Off the hook -To escape a situation of responsibility,

Once in a blue moon -Rarely

Piece of cake -Easy or simple

Pull somebody's leg -Teasing

Put the cat among the pigeons -To create a disturbance and cause trouble

Raining cats and dogs -Raining really strong or hard

Rock the boat - Do or say something that will upset people or cause problems

Spill the beans -Reveal someone's secret

Take with a grain of salt -To treat someone's words with a degree of skepticism

Through thick and thin - In both good and bad times

Thumb one's nose -To express scorn or to disregard

To steal someone's thunder -To take credit for something someone else did

Two a penny -Cheap

Under my thumb - Under my control

Under the weather -Feel sick or poorly

Wild goose chase - A frustrating or lengthy undertaking that accomplishes little.

What are Common Punctuation Marks?

Question Mark (?)

A question mark is used at the end of a sentence which is a question.

E.g.  Have the girls completed the test?

Comma (,)

Commas are used in sentences to separate information into readable units.

A set of commas is a means of separating items in a list within a sentence.

The details required as name, date of birth, address and telephone number. 

Hyphen (-)

A hyphen links two or more words


Dashes (_)

Dashes enclose extra information.

Have an ice-cream-or would you prefer desert?

Parentheses ( )

Parentheses are brackets.

Parentheses indicate additional information in sentences.

E.g.  It was surprising to see Ram come so early (as he often came late) and others were astonished.

Exclamation Mark (!)

An exclamation mark denotes emotion.

It is used at the end of sentence.

How pathetic!

Ellipsis (…)

An ellipsis consists or three full stops.

 It indicates that some information or material have been left out.

Full stop (.)

Full stop indicates the end of a sentence.

Full stop indicates abbreviated words

Full stop is used to punctuate numbers and dates

E.g. the dog is completely black.

The teacher will be Mr. Mohan.

All work should be submitted by 7.8.18.

Colon (:)

Colon used to indicate that a lists or quotations etc.

E.g. buy these items: a packet of peanuts, two loaves of bread and a kilogram of steak,

Semicolon (:)

Separates two complete sentences that are closely linked.

E.g. To err is human: to forgive, divine

Apostrophe (’)

Apostrophe (’) is used for contractions. A contraction is a

shortened version of a word.

It’s raining.

Apostrophe (’) is used to show possessives

John’s book

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English Errors Articles

 Subject Verb Agreement

 Pronouns and Avoid Errors

 How to use Adjectives

 English Adverbs

Important Conjunctions

 Important Prepositions

 Sentence Completion

Sentence Improvement

 Sequences of Sentences

 Cloze Tests

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