Idioms ~ On the ball

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An idiom is a whole group of words taken together to convey a message. The idiom has little, often nothing to do with the meaning of the words taken one by one.

Idioms appear in every language. The English language has thousands of them.

An idiom is an expression that cannot be understood from the meanings of its separate words , but the words together in the idiom expression has a separate meaning all its own.

Idioms relate to a particular language or country. Idioms are a form of language that is spoken using that country's own language, grammar and pronunciations.

Idioms are a style or form of expression that is characteristic of a type of art or like a colloquialism; informal phrases or everyday language specific to a peculiar people or district or community or class or dialect.

The idiom's syntactical, grammatical or structural form is peculiar to a certain cultural language.

Idioms are an expression in the usage of a language that is peculiar to itself either grammatically or having a meaning that cannot be derived from the conjoined meanings of its elements.

Idioms are a style or form of artistic expression or manner that is characteristic of an individual, a period or movement or medium or instrument.

Idioms are a statement said or spoken that cannot be understood from the meanings of its separate words, but must be learned as a whole phrase (all the words in the phrase must be spoken together in order that the idiom makes sense, and to ensure the idiom is being delivered according to its meaning).

In order for the idiom to be understood, it must be said in a specific order so that the meaning is understood.

Examples of Idioms

You may recognize some examples that follow ;

Although Jack had promised not to gossip, he let the cat out of the bag. Meaning, Jack did tell the secret.

Show your true colours. Meaning; be honest.

Put your best foot forward. Meaning; always try your best.

Draw things to a close. Meaning; to end or finish.

Idiom: The writing is on the wall. Meaning:something very bad is about to happen, a premonition.

Etymology: based on a story in the bible about Daniel who reads the handwriting on the wall that predicts the end of the kingdom of Babylon

Example: The sky is black on the horizon. The writing is on the wall, a serious storm is on its way.

Using idioms in your writing will add fun and flavour to your writing. Enjoying laughing and learning about the idioms you may recognize and some you may not as you work your way through the lessons.

You'll also find a printable list of 30 Common Idioms here. (Alternative version in PDF format)