Introduction 1: Definition and Characteristics of Idioms

Some of us could not differentiate between idiom and proverb. Let’s look at a simple example of a proverb and an idiom before focusing on idiom.

“An apple a day keeps the doctor away.”   > This proverb comes from the ancient Romans, who believed the apple had magical powers to cure illness. In fact, apples are filled with vitamin C, protein, pectin, natural sugars, copper, and iron. They do promote health.

“The pot calling the kettle black.”  > In the seventeenth century, both pots and kettles turned black because they were used over open fires. Today, this idiom means criticizing someone else for a fault of one’s own

So when you say, “The pot calling the kettle black” instead of “Someone hypocritically criticises a person for something that they themselves do,” you’re using an idiom . The meaning of an idiom is different from the actual meaning of the words used.

“An apple a day keeps the doctor away” is a proverb. Proverbs are old but familiar sayings that usually give advice.

Both idioms and proverbs are part of our daily speech. Many are very old and have interesting histories. If you want to look at more examples of proverbs and idioms, please click here

Now, we shall look at what an idiom is and its characteristics.

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Introduction 2: Idioms and Social Norms

To have greater understanding of idioms, we should know how idioms come about.  In this entry, we can see the connection between Social Customs and English Idioms followed by an example. We will be looking at the relationship between religious belief, Greek and Roman mythologies, social fashions, food customs, literary masterpiece, ancient fables, and English Idioms.

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Lesson 1: Food Idioms

We shall now move on to our first lesson which revolves around food.  All the idioms below contain at least a ‘food word‘  in bold and its definition is next to it.

Posted in Lesson 2.1, Section 2: Lessons | 3 Comments

Lesson 2: Body Idioms

Our second lesson revolves around body parts.  All the idioms below contain at least a ‘body word‘  in bold and its definition is next to it.

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Lesson 3: Animal Idioms

The third lesson will be on animal.  All the idioms below contain at least an ‘animal word‘  in bold and its definition is next to it.

Posted in Lesson 2.3, Section 2: Lessons | 2 Comments

Lesson 4: Number Idioms

We shall now move on to our forth lesson which revolves around number.  All the idioms below contain at least a ‘number word‘  in bold and its definition is next to it.

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Lesson 5: Colour Idioms

Our final lesson will be on colour.  All the idioms below contain at least a ‘colour word‘  in bold and its definition is next to it.

We have finished all the 5 lessons on idioms. By now, you should be able to grasp most of the common English idioms. I hope you will make full use of the idioms learnt in your writing and learning of English in general.

Do try out the exercises in the next entry for better understanding. Have fun answering and Break a Leg!!!

Posted in Lesson 2.5, Section 2: Lessons | 1 Comment